Trench Journals and Unit Magazines of the First World War

Jonathan Lighter wuxxmupp2000 at GMAIL.COM
Thu Oct 17 12:23:19 UTC 2013

Of the items suggested by Hugo, I prophesy that these will *not* be
antedated from the 1914-18 papers:

shit hits the fan
out of left field
egg in your beer

I have a 1942 "kitchen sink." I doubt that it can be found in print much

The best bets are "cootie" and "oojah." (The latter is British only.)

In spite of an ad hoc ex. from the Civil War, "the brass" is poorly
documented before WWII. There's no linguistic reason why it shouldn't have
existed in WW1 (because of the long established "brass hat.")

"Clobber" in the US sense offers a remote possibility.

Of course, *any* item with a known primary date before 1930 or so is a

"Klick" in particular (originally spelled "click") seems not to have
existed before the 1960s.

On Thu, Oct 17, 2013 at 4:47 AM, Stephen Goranson <goranson at> wrote:

> ---------------------- Information from the mail header
> -----------------------
> Sender:       American Dialect Society <ADS-L at LISTSERV.UGA.EDU>
> Poster:       Stephen Goranson <goranson at DUKE.EDU>
> Subject:      Re: Trench Journals and Unit Magazines of the First World War
> -------------------------------------------------------------------------------
> Maybe cootie (1917?), cooty (1916?), coot (1916?) and proposed etymology
> in ads-l archive posts.
> Stephen Goranson
> ________________________________________
> From: American Dialect Society [ADS-L at LISTSERV.UGA.EDU] on behalf of
> Shapiro, Fred [fred.shapiro at YALE.EDU]
> Sent: Wednesday, October 16, 2013 3:20 PM
> Subject: [ADS-L] Trench Journals and Unit Magazines of the First World War
> ProQuest is creating a digital collection of "Trench Journals and Unit
> Magazines of the First World War," covering more than 1500 periodicals.
>  Here is a description:
> "Produced, mostly unofficially, by every type of unit engaged in the war,
> the publications were principally distributed only to the members of the
> unit. The magazines were written and illustrated by the soldiers serving in
> a huge variety of units of all combatant nations including America,
> Britain, Canada, France, Australia, and New Zealand. Although the majority
> of journals that have survived originate from units based on the Western
> Front in France, there are also magazines from units serving on the Eastern
> Front, in Gallipoli, Palestine, Egypt, Italy, Australia, New Zealand,
> Canada, India, Britain and America."
> Can anyone (Jon Lighter?) suggest important terms that are likely
> candidates to be antedated by searching this archive?
> Fred Shapiro
> ------------------------------------------------------------
> The American Dialect Society -
> ------------------------------------------------------------
> The American Dialect Society -

"If the truth is half as bad as I think it is, you can't handle the truth."

The American Dialect Society -

More information about the Ads-l mailing list