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Raining Cats and Dogs

It is safe to bet that nobody ever saw cats and dogs fall from the heavens during a rainstorm. Yet whenever there’s a heavy downpour, the common phrase we all use is “it’s raining cats and dogs.”  Little do we know that we’re taking a page out of ancient northern mythology.

In the myths of the Teutons, an ancient people of either Germanic or Celtic origin who occupied Jutland around 100 BC, the wind was envisioned as a huge dog that served as chief attendant to Odin, the Norse god of wisdom and war who was responsible for the cosmos. 

The Teutons believed that when it rained very hard, Odin’s dog (in the form of the wind) was chasing a cat (which took the form of the rain).  When it poured then, Odin was dropping “cats and dogs” from the sky. Science, of course, has dispelled the claims of mythology, but when we’re drenched with rain we still revert to the ancient Teutons and mutter, “it’s raining cats and dogs".   


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