Cock horse

Wilson Gray hwgray at GMAIL.COM
Mon Jun 26 13:05:55 UTC 2006

Thanks, Joel!


On 6/25/06, Joel S. Berson <Berson at> wrote:
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> Sender:       American Dialect Society <ADS-L at LISTSERV.UGA.EDU>
> Poster:       "Joel S. Berson" <Berson at ATT.NET>
> Subject:      Cock horse
> -------------------------------------------------------------------------------
> At 6/25/2006 02:24 AM, you wrote:
> >BTW, what is that "cock horse" that was ridden to Banbury Cross? Is it
> >an old term for "stallion" or something?
> >
> >-Wilson Gray
> [It is not clear whether 'cock-horse' was originally the name of a
> plaything, as it appears to have been by 1577, or whether the phrase
> 'on (a-)cock-horse' merely meant in a position (as e.g. on the knee)
> which was likened to that of being on horseback. The transferred
> sense evidently referred to the elation of a child in such a position.]
> So says OED2.  (Eudora says "cock [horse]' is likely to offend the
> average reader.)
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