'olly olly oxen free' in Congress

Herb Stahlke hfwstahlke at GMAIL.COM
Fri Jun 14 01:50:11 UTC 2013

A Huff Post story at


quotes a congressman as follows:

"There was a phrase in that game called 'olly olly oxen free' -- meant you
could come out, you were safe, you no longer had to hide," Cotton argued.

I've never heard "hide 'n' seek" called that, but the phrase is now in the
Congressional Record.

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

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