If there is, what idiom is used to refer to a book, which is famous and/or has interesting ideas, so that it's often quoted in speech, books etc.

Maybe something like "divided into quotations" ?

I'm not sure if there's an equiualent in English, but the following is an example of how it's used in Russian:

«Маленький принц» переведён на 100 языков мира. Притча разошлась на цитаты, самая известная из которых: "Ты в ответе за тех, кого приручил".

  • Either there's no equivalent in English to the Russian phrase or I completely fail at English to be able to explain what I'm looking for. – Yasir Arsanukaev Dec 27 '10 at 2:15
  • What Russian phrase, exactly, do you have in mind? – RegDwigнt Dec 27 '10 at 15:40
  • @RegDwight: I've updated a question. – Yasir Arsanukaev Dec 27 '10 at 15:51
  • Thank you. I am not aware of a similar, let alone identical, construction in English. – RegDwigнt Dec 28 '10 at 12:35
  • 2
    I don't see a reason to close. CW would be justified if there were dozens of hard-to-pick-from options. As it stands, the question has a rather clear answer: there's no perfectly equivalent idiom in English, but there are certainly a couple expressions on which you can build to bring the same idea across. "The Little Prince is chock-full of memorable quotes", "The book gave birth to many winged words", or something to that extent is surely possible. Robusto's "oft-quoted" is not too far-fetched, either. – RegDwigнt Dec 28 '10 at 13:16

You could call it oft-quoted or classic. Often such a book will be called the "Bible" of a particular field of study.

Adam Smith's The Wealth of Nations is considered by many to be the Bible of economics.


Maybe "Take a leaf out of someone's book" ?

If you take a leaf out of someone's book, you copy something they do because it will help you.

  • Nope :-( That wouldn't say anything in regard to its practicality. It's used for talking about popular books, e. g. F. Nietzsche's Thus Spoke Zarathustra. – Yasir Arsanukaev Dec 26 '10 at 17:57
  • 3
    This expression is usually used figuratively, not referring to a literal book. If I say that Christopher Hitchens took a leaf out of Richard Dawkins' book, I would mean that he was imitating some aspect of Dawkins' behaviour, not that he was quoting The Selfish Gene. – PLL Dec 26 '10 at 21:59
  • @PLL: Can I say "People take a leaf out of some book" ? – Yasir Arsanukaev Dec 27 '10 at 16:20

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service, privacy policy and cookie policy

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.