More on Kemosabe

Sam Clements SClements at NEO.RR.COM
Fri Feb 15 21:43:01 UTC 2008


The "Kee-Mo Sa-Bee" part is pretty well solved, at least as far as the
origin of the application of the term to the Lone Ranger on the radio show
from 1932.  If you want to see where it, indeed, came from in a camp in
Michigan, then
http://books.google.com/books?id=GUVIAAAAIAAJ&pg=PA134&dq=%22kee-mo%22++date:1910-1950&lr=&num=50&as_brr=0
It meant, to them, "Scout Runner" which was a title bestowed upon a camp
member who took 9 tests.  There were other Indian sounding names awarded to
persons who passed certain tests.

I suppose it's possible that someone can read this book, analyze the Indian
names, and declare the origin.

As to "Tonto," that one's still up in the air, at least as far as boy's
camps in Michigan can help.

Sam Clements
----- Original Message -----
From: "Alan Knutson" <boris at TERRACOM.NET>
To: <ADS-L at LISTSERV.UGA.EDU>
Sent: Friday, February 15, 2008 4:10 PM
Subject: Re: More on Kemosabe


> How about   ┬┐Qui me sabe?
>
>
>
>
> -----Original Message-----
> From: American Dialect Society [mailto:ADS-L at LISTSERV.UGA.EDU] On Behalf
> Of Laurence Horn
> Sent: Friday, February 15, 2008 2:59 PM
> To: ADS-L at LISTSERV.UGA.EDU
> Subject: Re: [ADS-L] More on Kemosabe
>
>
> At 12:17 PM -0500 2/15/08, Mark Mandel wrote:
>>Is there any evidence for "kemo" = 'secret'?
>>
>>m a m
>
> You mean it's not chemosabe?
>
> LH
>
>>On Fri, Feb 15, 2008 at 11:59 AM, Joel S. Berson <Berson at att.net>
>>wrote:
>>
>>>  The following seems a pretty obvious speculation, but Cecil does not
>
>>> mention it.  There is in the OED "sabe n.  ...  slang (orig.U.S.)  =
>
>>> savvy n.  1872 B. Harte in Atlantic Monthly Mar. 352/2 Did n't hev no
>
>>> more sabe than to come round yar with sickness in the house and no
>>> provision.  1892 Kipling & Balestier Naulahka 273 You have been
>>> romping around for six months after something you hadn't the sabe to
>
>>> hold when you'd got.  1913 J. London Valley of Moon 311 We ain't got
>
>>> the sabe, or the knack, or something or other.
>>>
>>>  How about "kemosabe" = secret knowledge -- that is, someone who has
>
>>> knowledge of things not known to others?  A scout.
>>>
>>>  One might also speculate about the name Kamp Kee-Mo Sah-Bee:  Appeal
>
>>> to insiders -- we have special knowledge that you don't.
>>>
>>>  Joel
>>>
>>>
>>
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