bampot n. a crazy person; a fool or dolt. Etymological Note: Most likely a form of barmpot. According to OED, barm, “the froth that forms on top of fermenting malt liquors; the head of a beer,” is used attributively as a formative to indicate a crazy or feeble-minded person or idea. This is, obviously, related to barmy or balmy ‘crazy.’ Thanks to Michael Quinion for the tip on bampot‘s etymology. Probably not related to the Irish Gaelic bambairne ‘dolt, stupid person, lout.’ In “Some Modern Irish loanwords describing people” (Celtica vol. 18, p. 53, 1986, School of Celtic Studies, Dublin) Mícheál Ó Siadhail connects bambairne to the old Spanish slang bambarria, which, according to the Velasquez Spanish and English Dictionary (1985, New Win Publishing) means ‘a fool; an idiot.’ Bambarria is glossed as “blockhead” in Carnoy, Albert. “Apophony and Rhyme Words in Vulgar Latin Onomatopoeias. American Journ. of Philology. vol. 38, no. 3. (1917) 271. (source: Double-Tongued Dictionary)

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1 Response

  1. Jeff says:

    This is an interesting word…

    My girlfriend is a bartender, and she told me that a bampot is what they sometimes call the bucket they pour the excess head off the beer into.

    It basically ends up as a bucket filled with a mixture of tons of different kinds of beer and who knows what else.

    Not a good thing, lets just say.

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