[Ads-l] Antedating "strip tease"

Peter Reitan pjreitan at HOTMAIL.COM
Thu Aug 9 15:47:13 EDT 2018

In April 2014, Fred Shapiro posted an antedating for "strip tease" from Billboard Magazine in June 1931 (OED 1936).


There is an earlier example in Variety Magazine from October 1930:


Business still holding up big in San Francisco’s only burlesque house, and this week’s show is up to standard. . . . Rhodes has nice blues voice and goes over with a bang in her strip tease numbers.  Has a good looking figure and handles herself well.  Peggy Hill does a cute tease number, working to the boxes, and is a favorite with the bald heads.”


Variety, October 25, 1930, page 15.

Precursors include:

"Strip number", Variety, January 16, 1929, page 44, and "tease numbers", Courier-Journal (Louisville, Kentucky), Febreuary 25, 1929, page 5, and "strip and tease":


The runway outfit got the usual return of formal applause, but it becomes obvious week by week that the boys are going cold on that strip-and-tease.


Variety, January 30, 1929, page 42.

The alternate expressions, "tease strip" and "strip pleaser", appear a few times in a few places during the 1930s, but do not seem to have caught on.

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

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