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Good Craic

Nick, an Englishman who divides his time between Ireland and Virginia, says his American friends were baffled when he described a convivial evening with them as good craic, pronounced just like English crack. The word craic is now associated with...

Nebby

The phrase to be nebby is heard particularly in Western Pennsylvania, and means to be “picky” or “gossipy.” Originally, it meant “nosy” or “snooping.” Nebby is a vestige of Scots-Irish, where the word...

Ham-and-Egger

A ham-and-egger job, meaning a weak effort or a dud, comes from boxing, where a ham-and-egger fighter doesn’t have much fight in him, it’s just someone doing it to earn a meal. The idiom goes as far back as at least 1918, when it showed...

Spizzerinctum

Do you have spizerinctum (or spizzerinctum) and huckledebuck? These terms for passion and energy, respectively, are fun examples of false Latin, meaning they replicate the look and mouthfeel of Latin words but aren’t actually Latin...