Early(est) "Columbian" (adj) = 'American', 1738

Joel S. Berson Berson at ATT.NET
Fri Jul 11 02:28:18 UTC 2008

As I promised, there is an earlier example of "Columbian" (adj) =
'American' than the 1741 example I gave previously.

"There not long since arose a Quarrel of this Kind, between the
Lilliputians and Iberians, who contested the Limits of their
Columbian (or American) Acquisitions."

Gentleman's Magazine, June 1738, in the article "Appendix to Capt.
Lemuel Gulliver's Account of the famous Empire of Lilliput", page
[286], col. 2.  (The brackets are on the page.  This page number is
repeated later during the year, but without brackets.)

Antedates OED A. adj. 1757-.

This article introduced the reporting in the GM of parliamentary
debates as disguised via Lilliput.  Slightly earlier in this article
appeared the instance of "Columbia" (noun) = 'America' that I
reported previously.  The article may be by Samuel Johnson.  Benjamin
Beard Hoover's _Samuel Johnson's Parliamentary Reporting_ (1953), p.
19, wrote that "George Birkbeck Hill thinks that ... the initial
essay was certainly his," citing Hill's 1887 edition of _Boswell's
life of Johnson_, vol. I (I think), p. 502.


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