Larry's Pretty Good Word of the Day (prettygoodword) wrote in 1word1day,
Larry's Pretty Good Word of the Day
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Thursday word: barbermonger

barbermonger (bar-bur-MON-gur) - n. (obs. slang) a fop.


Literally, one who frequents the barbershop for frequent haircuts. This is early Tudor Slang -- the Historical Thesaurus to the OED gives 1605 as the only year of use for this -- and the only reason it appears in unabridged dictionaries at all is that it's used in King Lear. Possibly it's a Shakespeare coinage that never took off? Regardless, his usage makes the best example -- from act II, scene ii, as Kent confronts Oswald:

Draw, you whoreson cullionly barber-monger, draw!

---L.
Tags: b, english, noun, slang
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