Ofaginzy redux

Wilson Gray hwgray at GMAIL.COM
Tue Mar 27 19:24:47 UTC 2007

Speaking only for myself, of course, I have neither heard nor even
heard of this word till now. I took a look at the cite in HDAS and I
have nothing to add to it or to subtract from it. I'm a bit surprised
by seeing "ofay" described as having "primarily literary
distribution." OTOH, I must admit that I first learned the word by
reading it, ca.1947, and only several years after that, ca.1953, did
the use of this term become hip in our group, after having been
introduced by a college-grad buddy. Hm. That hardly constitutes a
refutation of the claim in HDAS. Oh, well.


On 3/27/07, Douglas G. Wilson <douglas at nb.net> wrote:
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> Sender:       American Dialect Society <ADS-L at LISTSERV.UGA.EDU>
> Poster:       "Douglas G. Wilson" <douglas at NB.NET>
> Subject:      Ofaginzy redux
> -------------------------------------------------------------------------------
> "Ofaginzy" is attested (sparsely, I think) as an elaborate form of "ofay" =
> "white [person]".
> Does anybody know the pronunciation of "ofaginzy", or whether there
> are/were other spellings?
> Is there any known early citation? [HDAS has 1946.]
> -- Doug Wilson
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