Antedating of "Banana Republic"

Fred Shapiro fred.shapiro at YALE.EDU
Mon Nov 18 03:40:12 UTC 2002

The OED's first use of "banana republic" is dated 1935.  ProQuest
Historical Newspapers has this surprisingly early:

1912 _N.Y. Times Book Rev._ 7 Jan. 3  [O. Henry] had studied with his
quick, searching eye the rise and fall of certain banana republics.

Fred Shapiro

Fred R. Shapiro                             Editor
Associate Librarian for Collections and     YALE DICTIONARY OF QUOTATIONS
  Access and Lecturer in Legal Research     Yale University Press,
Yale Law School                             forthcoming
e-mail: fred.shapiro at     

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