Chalk and Cheese
I know the difference between chalk and cheese. Between what is
worthless and what is valuable, between a counterfeit and a real
article. Of course, the resemblance of chalk to cheese has something to
do with the saying, and the alliteration helps to popularise it.
“This Scotch scarecrow was no more to be compared to him than chalk
was to cheese” —Sir W. Scott: Woodstock, xxiv.
I cannot make chalk of one and cheese of the other.
I must treat both alike; I must show no favouritism. They are no
more like than chalk is like cheese. There may be a slight apparent
resemblance, but there is no real likeness.
Source: Dictionary of Phrase and Fable, E. Cobham Brewer, 1894
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