Etymology
Advertisement
trompe l'oeil 
1889, French, literally "deceives the eye," from tromper "to deceive," a verb of uncertain origin and the subject of many theories (see trump (v.2)).
Related entries & more 
Advertisement
light bulb (n.)
also lightbulb, 1884, from light (n.) + bulb (n.). Changing one as figurative of something easy to do is from 1920s; jokes about how many of a certain type it takes to change one date from 1971.
Related entries & more 
in totidem verbis 
Latin phrase, "in just so many words," that is, "in these very words," from demonstrative of Latin totus "whole, entire" (see total (adj.)) + ablative plural of verbum "word" (see verb).
Related entries & more 
Tin Pan Alley (n.)
"hit song writing business," 1907, from tin pan, slang for "a decrepit piano" (1882). The original one was "that little section of Twenty-eighth Street, Manhattan, that lies between Broadway and Sixth Avenue," home to many music publishing houses.
Related entries & more 
flea market (n.)
1910, especially in reference to the marché aux puces in Paris, so-called "because there are so many second-hand articles sold of all kinds that they are believed to gather fleas." [E.S. Dougherty, "In Europe," 1922].
Related entries & more 
Advertisement
Wall Street (n.)
"U.S. financial world," 1836, from street in New York City that is home to many investment firms and stock traders, as well as NYSE. The street so called because it ran along the interior of the defensive wall of the old Dutch colonial town.
Related entries & more 
polka-dot 

"pattern consisting of dots of uniform size and arrangement," especially on fabric, 1851 (polka-spot and polka-dotted are used in 1849), when they were in fashion, from polka (n.) + dot (n.). Named for the dance, for no reason except its popularity, which led to many contemporary products and fashions taking the name (polka hat, polka-jacket, etc.). They had a revival in fashion c. 1873. Related: Polka-dots.

Related entries & more 
absolute zero (n.)
"lowest possible temperature which the nature of heat admits" (determined to be –273 centigrade, –458 Fahrenheit), the idea dates back to 1702 and its general value was guessed to within a few degrees soon thereafter, but not precisely discovered until Lord Kelvin's work in 1848. It was known by many names, such as infinite cold, absolute cold, natural zero of temperature; the term absolute zero was among them by 1806.
Related entries & more 
hoi polloi (n.)
1837, from Greek hoi polloi (plural) "the people," literally "the many" (plural of polys, from PIE root *pele- (1) "to fill"). Used in Greek by Dryden (1668) and Byron (1822), in both cases preceded by the, even though Greek hoi means "the," a mistake repeated often by subsequent writers who at least have the excuse of ignorance of Greek. Ho "the" is from PIE *so- "this, that" (nominative), cognate with English the and Latin sic. From the adjective agoraios "pertaining to the agora; frequenting the market" Greek had hoi agoraioi "loungers in the market, loafers, common, low men."
Related entries & more 
pig Latin (n.)

childish deformed language (there are many different versions), by 1889 (hog Latin in same sense is attested by 1807).

The animals play quite an important part in the naming [of children's languages], as the hog, dog, fly, goose, pigeon, pig, all give names, with Mr. Hog leading. Among the names the Latins take the lead, and Hog Latin leads the list, being accredited as naming nearly as many languages as all the other names combined. Besides Hog Latin, there is Dog Latin, Pig Latin, Goose Latin, and Bum Latin. Then there is Greekish and Peddlers' French and Pigeon English. ... Very few can give any reason for the naming of the languages. In fact, no one can fully say where the great majority of names came from, for in most cases in the naming the following pretty well expresses the difficulty: "It was born before I was. I can't tell how young I was when I first heard of it." ["The Secret Language of Children," in The North Western Monthly, October 1897]

For the language itself, compare loucherbem, a 20c. French slang similar to pig Latin, which takes its name from the form of the word boucher in that language (which is said to have originated among the Paris butchers).

Related entries & more