[Ads-l] "old boy" = the devil, 1692; antedates OED3 [1737], 1782

Joel Berson berson at ATT.NET
Thu Sep 15 20:08:00 EDT 2016


This -- which I have not seen -- does supply a date for Nichals's deposition.  I wonder on what additional evidence.  However, I do think I've read that Rosenthal et al.'s work is well-reputed. 


Note that this places Lidia's deposition before Abigaille's June examination.  Which is not unreasonable, if Lidia was one of Abigaill's original accusers.

"Old nick" is slightly earlier than 1692 (OED).  


"Old cratten" is not in the online OED, and appears to be very rare.  Google Books has only this occurrence.  (The hit from "Fables Ancient and Modern; By John Dryden, Ovid, Geoffrey Chaucer, Giovanni Boccaccio, Homer" is a false positive -- the text is actually "old Gallen".)  One needs to try EEBO and ECCO, and for America EAI and EAN.

Joel


      From: Peter Grund <000005f26c70c747-dmarc-request at LISTSERV.UGA.EDU>
 To: ADS-L at LISTSERV.UGA.EDU 
 Sent: Thursday, September 15, 2016 4:20 PM
 Subject: Re: [ADS-L] "old boy" = the devil, 1692; antedates OED3 [1737], 1782
   
The new edition of the Salem documents (Rosenthal et al. 2009. Records of the Salem Witch-Hunt. CUP. pp. 194-195) puts the date of Nichols's deposition at April 19, 1692. Also, note the terms "old nick" and "old cratten" used later on in the same deposition.

Peter
      From: Hugo <hugovk at GMAIL.COM>
 To: ADS-L at LISTSERV.UGA.EDU 
 Sent: Thursday, September 15, 2016 2:53 PM
 Subject: Re: "old boy" = the devil, 1692; antedates OED3 [1737], 1782
  
---------------------- Information from the mail header -----------------------
Sender:      American Dialect Society <ADS-L at LISTSERV.UGA.EDU>
Poster:      Hugo <hugovk at GMAIL.COM>
Subject:      Re: "old boy" = the devil, 1692; antedates OED3 [1737], 1782
-------------------------------------------------------------------------------

This looks like a picture of the original manuscript:

http://salem.lib.virginia.edu/texts/tei/swp?term=Abigail%20How&div_id=n69.5&chapter_id=n69

http://salem.lib.virginia.edu/archives/ecca/medium/ecca1157r.jpg

This 1892 book precedes this testimony with:

---
Abigail was examined before the magistrates on June 29. At her trial
in September, the following testimony was given:-
---

https://babel.hathitrust.org/cgi/pt?id=chi.12794499;view=1up;seq=247

Hugo


On Wed, Sep 14, 2016 at 8:05 PM Joel Berson <berson at att.net> wrote:

> "lidea Nichals aged about 17 years testifieth and saith that about a yeare
> & halfe agoe I asked abigaille hobs how she darst lie out a nights in ye
> woods alone she told me she was not a fraid of any thing for she told me
> she had sold herselfe boddy & soule to ye old boy."
>
> Records of Salem Witchcraft, copied from the Original Documents.  Vol. 1.
> Privately printed for W. Elliot Woodward, Roxbury, Mass., 1864.  Page 177.
> Google Books, full view.
>
> Deposition assuredly 1692, but I cannot determine the month and day.
>
>
> Antedates OED3 "old boy" sense 4.  [1737], 1782--.
>
> Joel

------------------------------------------------------------
The American Dialect Society - http://www.americandialect.org


  

------------------------------------------------------------
The American Dialect Society - http://www.americandialect.org

   

------------------------------------------------------------
The American Dialect Society - http://www.americandialect.org


More information about the Ads-l mailing list