Jan Ivarsson TransEdit transedit.h at TELIA.COM
Sat Mar 31 09:14:14 UTC 2001

Yes, you may well be right about the possibility that Robert's 1908 date is a misprint for 1918, but I am not completely convinced:
Grand Larousse Dictionnaire de la Langue Francaise (1975) under "jazz" also gives the date 1908 and as a reference cites Dietrich Behrens, Ueber englisches Sprachgut im Französischen (1927).
And even better:
The big Oxford English Dictionary (2d ed. 20 volumes) in volume VIII p 204 gives a very interesting reference for its date of 1909:
C. Stewart, Uncle Josh in Society (gramophone-record) "One lady asked me if I danced the jazz".
Someone with access to Congress Library's phono records really should verify this.

Jan Ivarsson, TransEdit
Translator, Subtitler
Storgatan 2
SE-27231 Simrishamn, Sweden
Tel. +46 (0)414 106 20
Fax +46 (0)414 136 33
jan.ivarsson at transedit.st

----- Original Message -----
From: "George Thompson" <gt1 at NYU.EDU>
Sent: Friday, March 30, 2001 10:03 PM
Subject: Re: jazz

> Jan Ivarsson has sent me on an interesting chase.  He wrote: "The French
> dictionary "Le Nouveau Petit Robert" (my ed. from 1993) gives under the
> word "jazz": - - - 1918; jazz-band 1908 "orchestre"- - -  They do not
> cite sources, and I do not have the big, 6 volume, Robert accessible,
> but it might be worth looking into."
> Indeed, it has been worth looking into.  The 1985 Robert (9 vols.)
> refers to Manfred Hofler, Dictionaire des Anglicismes, Larousse, 1982.
> This has under "jazz" ("musique d'origine negro-americaine. . . .") the
> following as French sources:
>     ***  Des <<blues>> et des <<Jezz>> [sic] executes par un quintette
> de saxophones m'ont paru tout particulierement remarquables.  (Le Matin,
> 25/8/1918, 2d.)
>     Les Americains reclament la paternite du Jazz, les Anglais aussi. .
> . .  Ce Jazz qui a tant fait jaser est une danse que l'on execute de
> preference sur les Musiques aux rythmes heurtes et syncopes.
> (Vade-mecum du partait danseur, 1920, 10)
>     J'aime egalement l'opera, le classique et le jazz.  (Cinemagazine
> 16/9/1921, 12b.)
> It has for "jazz-band" ("orchestre de jazz") the following as French
> sources:
> BAND (Le Matin, 3/2/1918, 4a.)]  [Glancing over Hofler's intro and list
> of abbreviations, I don't see an explanation for his use of [] here.  I
> assume that they signify that in this passage he regards the words "jazz
> band" and an unassimilated quotation from the American.]
>     CHANGEMENT DE PROGRAMME . . . CASINO JAZZ BAND  (Le Matin 28/6/1918,
>  4b.)
> 4a.)
>     Le theatre Apollo music-hall, transforme avec son agreable
> promenoir, son grand bar americain et son Jazz Band sensationnel, est
> immediatement devenu le lieu de rendez-vous a la mode. . . .  (Le Siecle
> 12/11/1918, 3c.)
>     Comment s'etonner apres cela que tous les impresarii songent a
> ouvrir de nouvelles salles aux revues a grand spectacle et aux
> Jazz-Band, au moment ou Paris est devenu la Babel du vingtieme siecle.
> (Le Siecle, 10/12/1918, 3c.)
> And another passage from 1919.  It seems that the date "1908" in Jan's
> posting is a typo for 1918.  I suppose that these passages refer to
> James Reese Europe's band?  I don't know who else could have been
> playing jazz in Paris in 1918 -- other than French imitators of Europe.
> Despite this, I wish my stock portfolio was as safe as Jerry Cohen's
> $100.
> George A. Thompson
> Author of A Documentary History of "The African
> Theatre", Northwestern Univ. Pr., 1998.

More information about the Ads-l mailing list