Thirteen for twelve. When a heavy penalty was inflicted
for short weight, bakers used to give a surplus number of loaves,
called the inbread, to avoid all risk of incurring the fine. The
13th was the “vantage loaf.”
Mr. Riley (Liber Albus) tells us that the 13th loaf was “the
extent of the profit allowed to retail dealers,” and therefore the vantage loaf means, the loaf allowed for profit.
To give one a baker's dozen
, in slang phraseology, is to give him a sound drubbing —i.e
. all he deserves and one stroke more.
Source: Dictionary of Phrase and Fable, E. Cobham Brewer, 1894
More on Baker's Dozen from Fact Monster:
- Twyla Tharp - Tharp, Twyla Tharp, Twyla , 1941–, American dancer and choreographer, b. Portland, Ind. An ...
- Idioms and Proverbs - Idioms and Proverbs If you say, “The cat's out of the bag” instead of “The ...