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Fossicking and Bandicooting

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To fossick meaning “to rummage about,” derives from the use of fossicking for the practice of literally digging about for gemstones in abandoned mining excavations, a hobby that’s particularly popular in Australia and New Zealand. There, such digging about is also known as bandicooting, a reference to a foraging marsupial, the bandicoot. The etymology of fossick is murky, although it appears to have originated in the United Kingdom, and may be related to a dialectal term fussock, meaning “to bustle about” or “to fidget.” This is part of a complete episode.

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