Tag Archives: films

To haggle

I recently watched the ever-so-popular Monty Python’s Life Of Brian and I can honestly say it was one of the funniest films I’ve seen recently. There was one word in particular I wanted to remember (and a great way to do so would be to mention it in this blog) -‘to haggle‘. There was a scene when Brian was fleeing from the Roman soldiers and wanted to buy a beard from a man in the market to disguise himself. However, the man wasn’t prepared to part with the beard without the haggling ritual (the transcript of the whole scene can be found here).

Below are some examples of this useful verb:

– In the markets of Cairo there are no prices on the items, and people are expected to haggle. While the presenter is haggling she emphasises how to say yes – na’am – and no – laa – in Arabic (BBC).

– We love Porte de Vanves it is a proper ‘broccante’ junk and antiques in equal amounts or one person’s junk is another person’s antique. But this is a place where you just don’t know what you might find and you don’t know what you might pay; this is a place to haggle and enjoy the bargaining. But mostly this is a long long street full of stalls with an amazing array of just about everything you can think of including the kitchen sink (Tripadvisor.co.uk).

– Smithfield [market] is both cheaper and friendlier to those determined to haggle (The Economist).

However, it is not only the price that can haggle over:

– Even if the governments could today agree on what to do, haggling over the details, holding referendums and amending constitutions could easily take three years. The delay in even starting that process is only making a difficult task harder (The Economist).

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