Snake oil

Michael Quinion wordseditor at WORLDWIDEWORDS.ORG
Sat Jan 25 11:22:10 UTC 2014

Once again with World Wide Words I've trespassed on the territory of US
researchers, this time by looking into the history of snake oil:

A reader has this morning antedated my first example of "rattlesnake oil"
to the Royal Gazette of New York dated 21 February 1778. If anyone with
better research resources than mine can find other antedatings, I'd be
most grateful.

Michael Quinion
World Wide Words

The American Dialect Society -

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