Going for a song
Most of us are aware that to acquire something for a song means to pay a low price for it. A general example might be: Because of a glut in the market, these articles are going for a song. It is a phrase we often associate with the auctioneer’s gavel but where does it come from? The origin is not clear but it is certainly earlier than Tudor England. Then it was an ‘amount’ most people could make when they had nothing more to offer in payment, and for such a small price the object would be regarded as cheap. The theory is that it began when all a person had to pay in return for a small favour, was a song.