The origin of the second sense is from the practice of some Chinese restaurants which — for a fixed price — instruct the customer to make selections such as “one from Column A, two from Column B, one from Column C”, where the columns may contain, for example, a selection of soups, appetizers, and entrees.
The word is derived from a Greek word “toxikón”, which is a the arrow of type of bow.
It is thought that this word became our western world meaning of “poisonous” because of the story of Hercules.
Hercules’ second labor was to kill the nine-headed Hydra.
Once Hercules slayed the Hydra, he dipped his arrows in the Hydra’s blood. This made his arrows poisonous.
The link between buckets and death was made by at least 1785, when the phrase was defined in Grose’s Dictionary of the Vulgar Tongue:
“To kick the bucket, to die.”
Although there is not much evidence to support it, one theory as to why the phrase originates from the notion: people hanged themselves by standing on a bucket with a noose around their neck and then kicking the bucket away.
The Smoke Enema:
was used to push smoke into a drowning victim in order to warm the victim from the inside-out.
“…A rectal tube inserted into the anus was connected to a fumigator and bellows that forced the smoke into the rectum. The warmth of the smoke was thought to promote respiration, but doubts about the credibility of tobacco enemas led to the popular phrase “blow smoke up one’s ass.” Search on “tobacco smoke enema” for illustrations of the apparatus.”
The word is a Latin derivation from two words ‘venter’ and ‘loqui’ meaning ‘speaking from the stomach’.
Ventriloquists were almost like shamens in the early days. They would produce voices of spirits and ghosts that would possess their body, and speak from inside their stomach.
They did not become entertainers until a few hundred years later.