Regency Words: Quiz

Cruikshank's Dandies

  Grose’s Classical Dictionary of the Vulgar Tongue, 1823 The term quiz didn’t start appearing in cant dictionaries until the 19th century. I found the usage of quiz to mean an odd fellow in a Maria Edgeworth book from 1806 (Moral tales for Young People). Chambers’s Etymological Dictionary of the English Language, 1904 Most etymological references cite this incident in Dublin as the origin: “According to B.H.Smart, … Expand

Regency Words: That’s the Ticket!

The Scottish Guardian. January to June 1872. Dictionary of Phrase and Fable, 1895 Words, facts, and phrases; a dictionary of curious, quaint, and … 1882 Apparently, there is rampant debate as early as the 1880s about the origin of the expression “That’s the ticket.”  In use, according to research, since at least the 1820s, it is meant to describe “the very thing” or “the right … Expand

Regency Words: Cuckold

A Classical Dictionary of the Vulgar Tongue, 1796 Derived from the Cuckoo bird’s habit of laying its eggs in other birds’ nests and leaving the other bird to rear its offspring, the word cuckold appears to originate in a poem from 1250.  Chaucer also used it to good effect in the 14th Century prose “The Miller’s Tale” and Shakespeare frequently employed the term. Meant to … Expand