riding shotgun

Sean Fitzpatrick grendel.jjf at VERIZON.NET
Mon Apr 12 05:15:39 UTC 2004

Definitely current in Maryland suburbs of Washington, DC, in the early 1960s.  Tho the reference to the stagecoach guard seemed obvious at the time, I can't recall ever hearing "ride shotgun" in a movie.  Often encountered as "I got shotgun" to claim the front passenger seat.

Seán Fitzpatrick
               Time flies like an arrow.
                Fruit flies like a banana.
Chuck Yeager flies-like-airplanes.
----- Original Message ----- 
From: Barnhart 
Sent: Sunday, 11 April, 2004 10:41
Subject: riding shotgun

A New-York-City linguist asked me yesterday if "to ride shotgun" (meaning
to ride in the passenger seat of an automobile) was familiar.  It is
recorded in Chapman's revision of Wentworth and Flexner without regional
notation.  It is noted in DARE (under ride, def. 12b) but without
particular regional notations.  There are quotes from Seattle, Wisconsin,
"sId", an issue of AmSp "Trucker slang", and the DARE file.  My suspicion
is that because it is trucker slang, it would be fairly widely spread.  It
was unknown to the NYC linguist (a man in his 70's).  Any thoughts that
would help reveal some regional distribution would be gratefully received.


barnhart at highlands.com

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