Why Do the Words “Guts” and “Pluck” Mean Courage and How Did They Originate?

Having “guts” or “pluck” means having courage or backbone, while having neither means lily-livered cowardice, and they are all references to intestinal fortitude.

Guts, of course, are internal organs while pluck is collectively the heart, liver, and lungs.

Lily-livered comes from the belief that fear drains blood from the liver, making it white.

why do the words guts and pluck mean courage and how did they originate

It was once believed that these internal organs, specifically the heart, were the source of a person’s character.

In the eighteenth century, the pluck contained the heart, liver, lights, melt, and skirt, lights were lungs, melt was the collected blood, and the skirt was the diaphragm.

About Karen Hill

Karen Hill is a freelance writer, editor, and columnist for zippyfacts.com. Born in New York, she loves interesting random facts from all over the world.