History of Words and Phrases
Cute as a button: To be charming, pretty or attractive in a dainty way. The "button" referred to here is actually the flower bud on a bachelor's button.
Cock and bull story: A rambling or incredible tale; a tall story invented as an excuse; lie. In 17th-century London the stage coach stopped at two inns: The Cock and The Bull. The waiting passengers would exchange stories and jokes.
Kitty-cornered: A colloquial variation of cater-cornered, meaning "diagonal." This French word was in use as early as 1519.