[Ads-l] No soap

Cohen, Gerald Leonard gcohen at MST.EDU
Mon Feb 20 21:59:15 EST 2017


I treated this in an article titled 'No Soap "Nothing Doing, No Go"' in:

Gerald Leonard Cohen: _Studies in Slang_, vol. 2 (= _Forum Anglicum_,

vol. 16), Frankfurt am Main: Peter Lang, 1989, pp. 150-151.


The gist of the article is that 'soap' is a cant term for 'money,' so 'No soap!' was

probably first said to someone wishing to borrow money, with the potential

lender firmly refusing.  Parallels are 'No dice!' to an unreliable gambler and

a similar 'No bottle' (I found one example of this), which would originally have been said

by a bartender refusing to serve liquor to a customer.  In the context I found it refers

to a trained thieving hen who wanted to steal money from a store's cash drawer,

'but that was no "bottle, " it was "screwed"[i.e., locked]...'


Gerald Cohen

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From: American Dialect Society <ADS-L at LISTSERV.UGA.EDU> on behalf of ADSGarson O'Toole <adsgarsonotoole at GMAIL.COM>
Sent: Monday, February 20, 2017 12:47 AM
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Subject: Re: No soap

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Mark Mandel enigmatically wrote:
> It's 404 now.

Are you looking for Michael Quinion's article about "no soap"? If you
are then you may execute the following Google search to find the
desired webpage:

"no soap" site:worldwidewords.org

One of the top results leads to the following webpage:

http://www.worldwidewords.org/qa/qa-nos1.htm

[http://www.worldwidewords.org/img/common/ogfacebook.png]<http://www.worldwidewords.org/qa/qa-nos1.htm>

World Wide Words: No soap<http://www.worldwidewords.org/qa/qa-nos1.htm>
www.worldwidewords.org
Where does the old Americanism 'no soap' come from?




Garson





> On Sep 4, 2016 12:04 PM, "Michael Quinion" <
> michael.quinion at worldwidewords.org> wrote:
>
>> On 04/09/2016 14:14, Jonathan Lighter wrote:
>>
>>> The "no soap" link doesn't work for me
>>>
>>
>> Apologies. It should of course have been http://www.worldwidewords.org/

[http://www.worldwidewords.org/img/common/ogfacebook.png]<http://www.worldwidewords.org/>

World Wide Words: Recently added<http://www.worldwidewords.org/>
www.worldwidewords.org
World Wide Words home page. Amost 3000 pages on the origins, history, evolution and idiosyncrasies of the English language worldwide. New words and words in the news are regularly featured.



>> qa/qa-nos1.html . (The final letter was printed as a capital 'I' instead
>> of a lower-case 'L'. On the font I'm using, the two are indistinguishable.)
>>
>>
>> --
>> Michael Quinion, World Wide Words
>> http://www.worldwidewords.org

[http://www.worldwidewords.org/img/common/ogfacebook.png]<http://www.worldwidewords.org/>

World Wide Words: Recently added<http://www.worldwidewords.org/>
www.worldwidewords.org
World Wide Words home page. Amost 3000 pages on the origins, history, evolution and idiosyncrasies of the English language worldwide. New words and words in the news are regularly featured.



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

American Dialect Society<http://www.americandialect.org/>
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Devoted to the study of English around the world.



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

[https://s0.wp.com/i/blank.jpg]<http://www.americandialect.org/>

American Dialect Society<http://www.americandialect.org/>
www.americandialect.org
Devoted to the study of English around the world.




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

[https://s0.wp.com/i/blank.jpg]<http://www.americandialect.org/>

American Dialect Society<http://www.americandialect.org/>
www.americandialect.org
Devoted to the study of English around the world.




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