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Wigwam for a gooses bridle

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Shanekelly
1314011.  Mon Feb 18, 2019 5:51 pm Reply with quote

what is a wigwam for a gooses bridle?
Whenever i asked my mother a question about something she was doing, she would always answer she was making a wigwam for a gooses bridle.
used to drive me crazy lol

 
'yorz
1314012.  Mon Feb 18, 2019 6:14 pm Reply with quote

Google and ye will find.

 
suze
1314013.  Mon Feb 18, 2019 6:17 pm Reply with quote

I hadn't heard this expression before. I discover that it is largely confined to Australia and New Zealand, and is by now rare. It means something like "Nothing that need concern you".

The phrase is actually first noted in British India in 1836, although back then it was a "whim-wham for a goose's bridle", where a whim-wham was similar to a thingamyjig or a watchamacallit. (Or in Polish, a wihajster. Not borrowed at all from German whatsoever, that one ...)

It was nonsensical. A whim-wham was a random nonsense object, and geese do not wear bridles. As for how whim-wham became wigwam, there are two theories.

1. Anything to do with Native Americans was cool, so why not borrow a word for a tent. That might have worked in the 1960s, but not in the 1860s.

2. Wigwam sounds a bit like like wog wand, which was a disparaging term for a pole used by Chinese poultry farmers in early Australia to guide their flocks. Parents didn't want to use that word to their kids, so they adopted one which sounded vaguely similar.

That pole - and that rather non-PC name for it - were real things, but there are still a few gaps in the explanation and it's a bit far fetched.

 
Prof Wind Up Merchant
1322600.  Fri May 24, 2019 2:07 pm Reply with quote

Hello Shanekelly.

 

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