- hooch (n.)
- also hootch, "cheap whiskey," 1897, shortened form of Hoochinoo (1877) "liquor made by Alaskan Indians," from the name of a native tribe in Alaska whose distilled liquor was a favorite with miners during the 1898 Klondike gold rush; the tribe's name is said by OED to be from Tlingit Hutsnuwu, literally "grizzly bear fort."
As the supply of whisky was very limited, and the throats down which it was poured were innumerable, it was found necessary to create some sort of a supply to meet the demand. This concoction was known as "hooch"; and disgusting as it is, it is doubtful if it is much more poisonous than the whisky itself. [M.H.E. Hayne, "The Pioneers of the Klondyke," London, 1897]
- hoochy koochy (n.)
- also hoochie-coochie, hootchy kootchy, "erotic suggestive women's dance" (involving a lot of hip-grinding), 1898, of obscure origin, usually associated, without evidence, with the Chicago world's fair of 1893 and belly-dancer Little Egypt (who might not even have been there), but the word itself is attested from 1890, as the stage name of minstrel singer "Hoochy-Coochy Rice," and the chorus of the popular minstrel song "The Ham-Fat Man" (by 1856; see ham (n.2)) contains the nonsense phrase "Hoochee, kouchee, kouchee."
To-day, however, in place of the danse du ventre or the coochie-coochie we have the loop-the-loop or the razzle-dazzle, which latter, while not exactly edifying at least do not serve to deprave public taste. ["The Redemption of 'Old Coney,'" in "Broadway Magazine," April 1904]
- hood (n.1)
- "covering," Old English hod "a hood, soft covering for the head" (usually extending over the back of the neck and often attached to a garment worn about the body), from Proto-Germanic *hodaz (cognates: Old Saxon, Old Frisian hod "hood," Middle Dutch hoet, Dutch hoed "hat," Old High German huot "helmet, hat," German Hut "hat," Old Frisian hode "guard, protection"), from PIE *kadh- "to cover" (see hat).
Modern spelling is early 1400s to indicate a "long" vowel, which is no longer pronounced as such. Used for hood-like things or animal parts from 17c. Meaning "Foldable or removable cover for a carriage to protect the occupants" is from 1826; meaning "sunshade of a baby-carriage" is by 1866. Meaning "hinged cover for an automobile engine" attested by 1905 (in U.K. generally called a bonnet). Little Red Riding Hood (1729) translates Charles Perrault's Petit Chaperon Rouge ("Contes du Temps Passé" 1697).
- hood (n.2)
- "gangster," 1930, American English, shortened form of hoodlum.
- hood (v.)
- c. 1200, "to put a hood on;" c. 1400, "to furnish with a hood," from hood (n.1). Related: Hooded; hooding.
- hood (n.3)
- shortened form of neighborhood, by 1987, U.S. black slang.
- hooded (adj.)
- mid-15c., past-participle adjective from hood (v.).
- hoodie (n.)
- also hoody, slang shortening of hooded sweatshirt, attested by 1991; see hood (n.1). Earlier (1789) it was a familiar term for the hooded crow.
- hoodlum (n.)
- popularized 1871, American English, (identified throughout the 1870s as "a California word") "young street rowdy, loafer," especially one involved in violence against Chinese immigrants, "young criminal, gangster;" it appears to have been in use locally from a slightly earlier date and may have begun as a specific name of a gang:
The police have recently been investigating the proceedings of a gang of thieving boys who denominate themselves and are known to the world as the Hoodlum Gang. [San Francisco "Golden Era" newspaper, Feb. 16, 1868, p.4]
Of unknown origin, though newspapers of the day printed myriad fanciful stories concocted to account for it. A guess perhaps better than average is that it is from German dialectal (Bavarian) Huddellump "ragamuffin" [Barnhart].
What the derivation of the word "hoodlum" is we could never satisfactorily ascertain, though several derivations have been proposed; and it would appear that the word has not been very many years in use. But, however obscure the word may be, there is nothing mysterious about the thing; .... [Walter M. Fisher, "The Californians," London, 1876]
- hoodoo (n.)
- "one who practices voodoo," 1870, American English, probably an alteration of voodoo. Meaning "something that causes or brings bad luck" is attested from 1880. As a verb from 1886.
- hoodwink (v.)
- 1560s, "to blindfold, blind by covering the eyes," from hood (n.1) + wink (n.); figurative sense of "blind the mind, mislead, deceive by disguise" is c. 1600. Related: Hoodwinked; hoodwinking.
- hooey (n.)
- "nonsense, foolishness," 1922, American English slang, of unknown origin.
- hoof (n.)
- Old English hof "hoof," from Proto-Germanic *hofaz (cognates: Old Saxon, Old Frisian hof, Old Norse hofr, Danish hov, Dutch hoef, German Huf "hof"), from PIE *kop- "to beat, strike" (cognates: Sanskrit saphah "hoof," Polish kopyto "hoof;" see hatchet (n.)). For spelling, see hood (n.1).
A hoof differs from a nail or claw only in being blunt and large enough to inclose the end of the limb; and almost every gradation is to be found between such structures as the human nails, or the claws of a cat, and the hoofs of a horse or an ox. The substance is the same in any case, and the same as horn, being modified and greatly thickened cuticle or epidermis. [Century Dictionary]
Hoof-and-mouth disease is attested from 1887. Phrase on the hoof is from 1750 as "walking;" later it was cattlemen and butchers' slang for "not (yet) slaughtered."
- hoof (v.)
- "having hoofs (of a specified kind)," c. 1500 in compounds, from hoof (n.). Meaning "to walk" (as in hoof it) is from 1640s; slang meaning "to dance" is 1920, American English (implied in hoofer). Related: Hoofing.
- hoof-mark (n.)
- also hoofmark, 1812, from hoof (n.) + mark (n.1).
- hoofbeat (n.)
- also hoof-beat, 1821, from hoof (n.) + beat (n.).
- hook (n.)
- "bent or angled piece of metal or other substance used to catch or hold something," Old English hoc "hook, angle," perhaps related to Old English haca "bolt," from Proto-Germanic *hokaz/*hakan (cognates: Old Frisian hok, Middle Dutch hoek "a hook;" Dutch haak "a hook, angle, corner, cape," German Haken "hook"), from PIE *keg- "hook, tooth" (cognates: Russian kogot "claw"). For spelling, see hood (n.1).
Also the name of a fireman's tool for tearing into buildings, hence hook-and-ladder (1821). Meaning "holder for a telephone receiver" is from 1885 and continued in use after the mechanism evolved. Boxing sense of "short, swinging blow with the elbow bent" is from 1898. Figurative sense "that which catches, a snare, trap" is from early 15c. Meaning "projecting point of land" is from 1670s; in U.S. use probably reinforced by the Dutch word.
This name is given in New York to several angular points in the North and East rivers; as Corlear's Hook, Sandy Hook, Powles's Hook. [Bartlett, "Dictionary of Americanisms," 1848]
Off the hooks meant "disordered" (16c.), "unhinged" (1610s) and "dead" (1840). By hook or by crook (late 14c.) probably alludes to tools of professional thieves. Hook, line, and sinker "completely" is 1838, a metaphor from angling. Hook-nose (n.) is from 1680s; hook-nosed (adj.) from 1510s. Hook-and-eye as a method of garment fastening is from 1620s.
Hook and eye, a metallic fastening for garments, consisting of a hook, commonly of flattened wire bent to the required shape, and an eye, usually of the same material, into which the hook fits. Under the name of crochet and loop, this form of fastening was in use as early as the fourteenth century. [Century Dictionary]
- hook (v.)
- "to bend like a hook," c. 1200 (transitive); early 15c. (intransitive); see hook (n.). Specific meaning "to catch (a fish) with a hook" is from c. 1300; that of "to fasten with hooks" is from 1610s; figurative sense of "catch by artifice" is from 1800. Sense of "make rugs with a hook" is from 1882. Related: Hooked; hooking.
- hookah (n.)
- also hooka, 1763, via Hindi or Persian or directly from Arabic huqqah "small box, vessel" (through which the smoke is drawn), related to huqq "a hollow place." Extended in Urdu to the whole apparatus.
- hooked (adj.)
- Old English hoced, "shaped like a hook, crooked, curved;" past participle adjective from hook (v.). From mid-14c. as "having hooks;" 1610s as "caught on a hook;" 1925 as "addicted," originally in reference to narcotics. hooked rug is recorded from 1880.
- hooker (n.)
- "one who or that which hooks" in any sense, agent noun from hook (v.). Meaning "prostitute" (by 1845) often is traced to the disreputable morals of the Army of the Potomac (American Civil War) under the tenure of Gen. "Fighting Joe" Hooker (early 1863), and the word might have been popularized by this association at that time (though evidence is wanting). But it is reported to have been in use in North Carolina c. 1845 ("[I]f he comes by way of Norfolk he will find any number of pretty Hookers in the Brick row not far from French's hotel. Take my advice and touch nothing in the shape of a prostitute when you come through Raleigh, for in honest truth the clap is there of luxuriant growth." letter quoted in Norman E. Eliason, "Tarheel Talk," 1956).
One early theory traces it to Corlear's Hook, a section of New York City.
HOOKER. A resident of the Hook, i.e. a strumpet, a sailor's trull. So called from the number of houses of ill-fame frequented by sailors at the Hook (i.e. Corlear's Hook) in the city of New York. [John Russell Bartlett, "Dictionary of Americanisms," 1859]
Or perhaps related to hooker "thief, pickpocket" (1560s). But the word is likely a reference to prostitutes hooking or snaring clients. Hook in the figurative sense of "that by which anyone is attracted or caught" is recorded from early 15c.; and hook (v.) in the figurative sense of "catch hold of and draw in" is attested from 1570s; in reference to "fishing" for a husband or a wife, it was in common use from c. 1800. All of which makes the modern sense seem a natural step. Compare French accrocheuse, raccrocheuse, common slang term for "street-walker, prostitute," literally "hooker" of men.
The family name Hooker (attested from c. 975) would mean "maker of hooks," or else refer to an agricultural laborer who used a hook (compare Old English weodhoc "weed-hook").
- hookup (n.)
- also hook-up, "connection," 1903, from verbal phrase hook up, which is attested from 1825 in reference to yarn; 1925 as "establish a link with." The noun is from 1922 of radio sets, later of television broadcasts. Modern slang verbal sense of "to meet for sex" is attested by 2003.
- hooky (n.)
- also hookey, in the truant sense, 1848, American English (New York City), only in the phrase play hooky; from Dutch hoekje "hide and seek;" or else from hook it, attested since 14c. as "make off, run away," originally "depart, proceed."
- hooligan (n.)
- 1890s, of unknown origin, according to OED, first found in British newspaper police-court reports in the summer of 1898, almost certainly from the variant form of the Irish surname Houlihan, which figured as a characteristic comic Irish name in music hall songs and newspapers of the 1880s and '90s.
As an "inventor" and adapter to general purposes of the tools used by navvies and hodmen, "Hooligan" is an Irish character who occupies week by week the front of a comic literary journal called Nuggets, one of the series of papers published by Mr. James Henderson at Red Lion House. Previous to publication in London, "Hooligan" appears, I believe, in New York in a comic weekly, and in London he is set off against "Schneider," a German, whose contrainventions and adaptations appear in the Garland (a very similar paper to Nuggets), which also comes from Mr. Henderson's office. "Hooligan" and "Schneider" have been running, I should think, for four or five years. ["Notes and Queries," Oct. 15, 1898]
Internationalized 20c. in communist rhetoric as Russian khuligan, opprobrium for "scofflaws, political dissenters, etc."
- hooliganism (n.)
- 1898, from hooligan + -ism.
- hoop (n.)
- late 12c., "circular band, flattened ring," probably from an unrecorded Old English *hop, from Proto-Germanic *hopa- (cognates: Old Frisian hop "a hoop, band," Middle Dutch and Dutch hoep "hoop," Old Norse hop "a small bay").
As a child's plaything by 1792. In basketball from 1893. As something someone jumps through (on horseback) as a circus trick, by 1793; figurative use of jump through hoops is by 1917. As "circular band serving to expand the skirt of a woman's dress" from 1540s. They have been in and out of style over the centuries. Hoop-petticoat (one stiffened or expanded by hoops of ratan, whalebone, etc,) is attested from 1711; hoop-skirt in the same sense is from 1856, figurative of old-fashioned ways by 1893, when there was a general alarm at their rumored return to fashion. The U.S. Southern hoop snake (1784) is fabled to take its tail in its mouth and roll along like a hoop. Related: Hoops.
- hoop (v.)
- mid-15c., from hoop (n.). The surname Hooper "maker of hoops, one who hoops casks or tubs" is attested from early 13c. Related: Hooped; hooping.
- also hoop-la, 1877, hoop la, American English, earlier houp-la, exclamation accompanying quick movement (1870), of unknown origin, perhaps borrowed from French houp-là "upsy-daisy," also a cry to dogs, horses, etc. (see whoop).
- hoopoe (n.)
- 1660s, from Latin upupa, imitative of its cry (compare Greek epops "hoopoe," Polish dudek, Russian udodu).
If anybody smears himself with the blood of this bird on his way to bed, he will have nightmares about suffocating devils. [Cambridge bestiary, 12c.]
- see hurrah.
- hoosegow (n.)
- "jail," 1911, western U.S., probably from mispronunciation of Mexican Spanish juzgao "tribunal, court," from juzgar "to judge," used as a noun, from Latin judicare "to judge," which is related to judicem (see judge (v.)).
- "native or resident of Indiana," by c. 1830, American English, of unknown origin; newspapers in the 1830s published fanciful explanations, some still repeated, "none authenticated by evidence" [Century Dictionary]. Said to have been first printed Jan. 1, 1833, in the "Indianapolis Journal," in a poem, "The Hoosiers Nest," by John Finely, which poem was said to have been written in 1830 ["The Word Hoosier," "Indiana Historical Society Publications," vol. IV, No. 2, 1907], and to have been in oral use from late 1820s. Seemingly it originated among Ohio River boatmen; perhaps related to English dialectal (Cumberland) hoozer, used of anything unusually large [Barnhart]. For other theories, see the historical society article. The word also has been used generally for "country bumpkin."
- hoot (v.)
- "to call or shout in disapproval or scorn," c. 1600, probably related to or a variant of Middle English houten, huten "to shout, call out" (c. 1200), which is more or less imitative of the sound of the thing. First used of bird cries, especially that of the owl, mid-15c. Meaning "to laugh" is from 1926. Related: Hooted; hooting. A hoot owl (1826) is distinguished from a screech owl.
- hoot (n.)
- mid-15c., "cry of dissatisfaction or contempt," from hoot (v.). Meaning "a laugh, something funny" is first recorded 1942. Slang sense of "smallest amount or particle" (the hoot you don't give when you don't care) is from 1891.
"A dod blasted ole fool!" answered the captain, who, till now, had been merely an amused on-looker. "Ye know all this rumpus wont do nobuddy a hoot o' good--not a hoot." ["Along Traverse Shores," Traverse City, Michigan, 1891]
Hooter in the same sense is from 1839.
HOOTER. Probably a corruption of iota. Common in New York in such phrases as "I don't care a hooter for him." "This note ain't worth a hooter." [John Russell Bartlett, "Dictionary of Americanisms," 1877]
- hootenanny (n.)
- "informal session of folk musicians," 1940, American English, earlier "a gadget" (1927), of unknown origin, perhaps a nonsense word.
Another device used by the professional car thief, and one recently developed to perfection, according to a large Chicago lock-testing laboratory, is a "hootenanny," so-called by the criminals using it. ["Popular Mechanics," February 1931]
- hooter (n.)
- by 1823, "anything that hoots," especially an owl, agent noun from hoot (v.). Slang meaning "nose" is from 1958. Meaning "a woman's breast" (usually in plural hooters) attested by 1972. The Hooters restaurant chain began 1983 in Clearwater, Florida, U.S.
- cattle disease, 1840, from alternative past tense form of heave.
- proprietary name for a make of vacuum cleaner (patented 1927); sometimes used generally for "vacuum cleaner." As a verb, meaning "to vacuum," from 1926, in the company’s advertising.
- 1933, American English, from U.S. president Herbert C. Hoover (1874-1964), who was in office when the Depression began, + common place-name ending -ville. Earlier his name was the basis of Hooverize "economize on food" (1917) from his role as wartime head of the U.S. Food Administration.
- hooya (interj.)
- exclamation of triumph or approval, first attested c. 1992, perhaps originally U.S. military.
- hop (v.1)
- Old English hoppian "to spring, leap; to dance; to limp," from Proto-Germanic *hupnojan (cognates: Old Norse hoppa "hop, skip," Dutch huppen, German hüpfen "to hop"). Transitive sense from 1791. Related: Hopped; hopping. Hopping-john "stew of bacon with rice and peas" attested from 1838. Hopping mad is from 1670s.
- hop (n.1)
- usually hops, type of twining vine whose cones are used in brewing, etc., mid-15c., from Middle Dutch hoppe "the hop plant," from Proto-Germanic *hupnan- (cognates: Old Saxon -hoppo, German Hopfen), of uncertain origin origin, perhaps from PIE root *(s)keup- "cluster, tuft, hair of the head," for its "tuftlike inflorescence." Medieval Latin hupa, Old French hoppe, French houblon are from Dutch.
- hop (n.2)
- "opium," 1887, from Cantonese nga-pin (pronounced HAH-peen) "opium," a Chinese folk etymology of the English word opium, literally "crow peelings." Re-folk-etymologized back into English by association with hop (n.1).
- hop (n.3)
- "a small jump, a leap on one foot," c. 1500, from hop (v.). Slang sense of "informal dancing party" is from 1731 (defined by Johnson as "a place where meaner people dance"). Meaning "short flight on an aircraft" is from 1909. Hop, skip, and jump (n.) is recorded from 1760 (hop, step, and jump from 1719).
This word [hop] has always been used here as in England as a familiar term for dance; but of late years it has been employed among us in a technical sense, to denote a dance where there is less display and ceremony than at regular balls. [Bartlett, "Dictionary of Americanisms," 1848]
- hop (v.2)
- "treat with hops," 1570s (implied in hopped), from hop (n.1).
- hop-head (n.)
- also hophead, "opium addict," 1911, from hop (n.2) + head (n.) in the drug sense.
- hop-o-my-thumb (n.)
- "very small person," 1520s, Hoppe upon my thombe.
- hop-toad (n.)
- also hoptoad, 1827, American English, from hop (v.) + toad.
- hope (v.)
- Old English hopian "have the theological virtue of Hope; hope for (salvation, mercy), trust in (God's word)," also "to have trust, have confidence; assume confidently or trust" (that something is or will be so), a word of unknown origin. Not the usual Germanic term for this, but in use in North Sea Germanic languages (cognates: Old Frisian hopia, Middle Low German, Middle Dutch, Dutch hopen; Middle High German hoffen "to hope," which is borrowed from Low German). Some suggest a connection with hop (v.) on the notion of "leaping in expectation" [Klein].
From early 13c. as "to wish for" (something), "desire." Related: Hoped; hoping. To hope against hope (1610s) "hold to hope in the absence of any justifiction for hope" echoes Rom. iv:18:
Who against hope, beleeued in hope, that hee might become the father of many nations: according to that which was spoken, So shall thy seede bee. [King James Version, 1611]
The Wycliffite Bible (c. 1384) has this as "Abraham agens hope bileuede that he schulde be maad fadir of manye folkis."
- hope (n.)
- late Old English hopa "confidence in the future," especially "God or Christ as a basis for hope," from hope (v.). From c. 1200 as "expectation of something desired;" also "trust, confidence; wishful desire;" late 14c. as "thing hoped for," also "grounds or basis for hope." Personified since c. 1300. Related: Hopes.
Compare Old Frisian and Middle Dutch hope, Danish haab, Dutch hoop, all from their respective verbs. For forlorn hope, see forlorn.