[Ads-l] "shot" = 'hypodermic injection' (1889)

Ben Zimmer bgzimmer at GMAIL.COM
Wed Feb 17 16:11:47 EST 2021


Green's Dictionary of Slang has "jab" in the sense of 'an injection of a
narcotic drug' back to 1898 in US usage (HDAS/OED2 1914), with the verb 'to
inject drugs' from 1905 (HDAS 1908, OED2 1938). While it originated in the
US, the specific use for an inoculation or vaccination appears to have been
popularized in the UK military in World War II, which may explain the
term's current British tilt.

https://greensdictofslang.com/entry/i66n7hi
https://greensdictofslang.com/entry/j42sw5q

On Wed, Feb 17, 2021 at 3:31 PM Nancy Friedman <wordworking at gmail.com>
wrote:

> "Jab" was the UK-to-US word of the year for 2020 on Lynne Murphy's
> Separated by a Common Language blog.
>
> https://separatedbyacommonlanguage.blogspot.com/2020/12/2020-uk-to-us-word-of-year-jab.html
>
> The Times used it in headlines at least a couple times in December.
>
> Nancy Friedman
> Chief Wordworker
> www.wordworking.com
> http://nancyfriedman.typepad.com
> Medium <https://medium.com/@wordworking>
>
> tel 510 652-4159
> cel 510 304-3953
> twitter/instagram  Fritinancy
>
>
>
> On Wed, Feb 17, 2021 at 12:24 PM David Daniel <dad at coarsecourses.com>
> wrote:
>
> > I noticed today the NYT referred to a vaccination shot as a jab. This is
> > very common in the British press, but I had never seen it in a US
> > publication before. Or, at least I hadn't noticed it.
> > DAD
> >
> >
> > -----Mensagem original-----
> > De: American Dialect Society [mailto:ADS-L at LISTSERV.UGA.EDU] Em nome de
> > Ben
> > Zimmer
> > Enviada em: quarta-feira, 17 de fevereiro de 2021 16:30
> > Para: ADS-L at LISTSERV.UGA.EDU
> > Assunto: Re: "shot" = 'hypodermic injection' (1889)
> >
> > Slightly earlier:
> >
> > ---
> > https://www.newspapers.com/clip/71307468/rustling-for-a-shot/
> > Sacramento Bee, Jan. 12, 1889, p. 5, col. 2 Rustling For a Shot.
> > The gang of miserables who have acquired the terrible habit often have a
> > hard time to get money enough to buy "a shot" as they call a morphine
> > injection. Ten cents is enough to buy "a shot" but even this trifle is
> > often
> > beyond the reach of the most of them.
> > ---
> >
> >
> > On Wed, Feb 17, 2021 at 2:21 PM Ben Zimmer <bgzimmer at gmail.com> wrote:
> >
> > > A recent Washington Post column by John Kelly discusses OED researcher
> > > Jon Simon's hunt for antedatings for "shot" in the sense of
> > > 'hypodermic injection' (OED2 1904).
> > >
> > >
> > > https://www.washingtonpost.com/local/needle-shot-morphine-addiction/20
> > > 21/02/15/288282d2-6fa8-11eb-93be-c10813e358a2_story.html
> > >
> > > The earliest citation mentioned in the column is this one from 1889.
> > >
> > > ---
> > > https://www.newspapers.com/clip/71304687/the-hypo-gun/
> > > San Francisco Chronicle, Mar. 2, 1889, p. 5, col. 8 The Hypo-Gun. How
> > > Morphine Victims Are Fed The morphine victim is cared for there -- as
> > > long as he has money. In all the houses frequented by the "fiends" is
> > > a man or a woman who sells the drug and injects it for a small sum.
> > > This useful person is called the "gunner," the syringe is termed the
> > > "gun," and administers to the fiend an injection, that is "a shot,"
> > > for which he is paid 5 cents.
> > > ---
> > >
> > > --bgz
> > >
> >
> > ------------------------------------------------------------
> > The American Dialect Society - http://www.americandialect.org
> >
> > ------------------------------------------------------------
> > The American Dialect Society - http://www.americandialect.org
> >
>
> ------------------------------------------------------------
> The American Dialect Society - http://www.americandialect.org
>

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