fogy or fogie

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fogy or fogie

Post by Archived Topic » Wed Oct 13, 2004 12:15 pm

Where did the term "old fogy or fogie" come from?
Karen Oliver-Paull
Fort Mill, SC, USA
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fogy or fogie

Post by Archived Reply » Wed Oct 13, 2004 12:29 pm

.. I suggest you try any of the following >>>>
fogey : Merriam-Webster's Online Dictionary, 10th Edition
fogey : Encarta® World English Dictionary, North American Edition
fogey : Cambridge International Dictionary of English
fogey : The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language
fogey : Infoplease Dictionary
fo'gey, fogey : Dictionary.com
Fo'gey : Online Plain Text English Dictionary
fo'gey : Webster's Revised Unabridged, 1913 Edition
fogey : Rhymezone
Fo'gey : AllWords.com Multi-Lingual Dictionary
fogey : WordNet 1.7 Vocabulary Helper
fogey : LookWAYup Translating Dictionary/Thesaurus
Fogey : The Word Detective
.. just so that you don't consider that I am some kind of brilliant researcher I can assure it took me all of 5 seconds to prepare the above list by going to >>> http://www.onelook.com/ and typing in the word "fogey" .. try it .. it will scare the pants off you to find out what you CAN find out when you give-it-a-go ...
Wizard of Oz, Australia. 19/11/03
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fogy or fogie

Post by Archived Reply » Wed Oct 13, 2004 12:44 pm

Karen, The two spellings I found were ‘fogey’ and ‘fogy.’ It’s etymology is fairly confused and certainly not certain. (<:)

‘Fogy’ has several related meanings, which include: an old person; an old person far behind the times with outmoded, or outdated ideas and attitudes; an excessively conservative, old-fashioned, out-of-date or hidebound person, especially one who is intellectually dull; a fuddy-duddy The expression may also apply to a younger person who exhibits the same traits. The expression is often preceded by ‘old,’ which could be considered redundant if one assumes old age is already included in ‘fogy’ (may also occasionally see ‘fogy’ preceded by ‘young’). <”The New Right (or Old Fogies) has put significant pressure on this administration to halt the funding of Planned Parenthood clinics.”—‘Litchfield County [Connecticut] Times’ 4/11/86>

‘Fogy’ dates from the late 18th century and is likely of Scots origin, but the details are uncertain. It may derive from either of two obsolescent senses of ‘foggy,’ bloated (as flesh), or marshy (moss-covered). Another possibility is that the word is related to ‘foggie’ which is a brownish (moss-colored) bumblebee. It could also derive from the word ‘fogram/fogrum’ [Standard English, first appearing circa 1770 and still in use, but of unknown origin] and also meaning an old-fashioned person and also often preceded by ‘old.’ In addition, ‘fogy’ acquired specialized senses in the military and there are those who believe this is where it originated, where an ‘old fogy’ in the late 18th and early 19th centuries was an elderly or invalid soldier, and ‘fogy pay’ continuing into the 20th century, was longevity pay, which increased the longer one staid in the service. It is believed that this sense of fogy perhaps came from the French ‘fougeux,’ fierce, fiery, [seems contradictory at first glance] referring to the doughty fighting spirit of an invalid soldier, and thus another adjective definition of ‘fogy,’ fierce/fiery, found by the 1860s. Veteran soldiers were called ‘foggies’ in the late 1700s perhaps because they were regarded as moss-covered with age, ‘fog’ being Scots dialect for ‘moss.’

Many dictionaries (e.g. Random House Unabridged, Merriam-Webster’s Unabridged), avoid all of the above by saying ‘origin uncertain’ – maybe not a bad idea – but you were prewarned this wouldn’t be pretty! (<:)

(Barnhart Dictionary of American Slang, Cassell’s Dictionary of Slang, Wicked Words by Rawson)
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Ken G – November 18, 2003



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fogy or fogie

Post by Archived Reply » Wed Oct 13, 2004 12:58 pm

First line. Pardon my “it’s.”

Ken G – November 18, 2003

Reply from Ken Greenwald (Fort Collins, CO - U.S.A.)
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fogy or fogie

Post by Archived Reply » Wed Oct 13, 2004 1:13 pm

"...longevity pay, which increased the longer one staid in the service."

Nice Freudian slip, Ken!
Reply from Erik Kowal ( - England)
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fogy or fogie

Post by Archived Reply » Wed Oct 13, 2004 1:27 pm

Erik, There’s more where that came from. Hey, you’re not supposed to actually read this stuff! (<:)
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Ken G – November 19, 2003

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fogy or fogie

Post by Archived Reply » Wed Oct 13, 2004 1:41 pm

Ken and Erik are the prototypes for fogey.
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fogy or fogie

Post by Archived Reply » Wed Oct 13, 2004 1:56 pm

Archetypes would be better.
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fogy or fogie

Post by Archived Reply » Wed Oct 13, 2004 2:10 pm

Gosh, one had to be "Staid" to stay in the service. Please note this mote in the American Heritage Dictionary "[From obsolete staid, past participle of STAY1]." So maybe Ken wasn't too far off afterall!

Leif, (Proud to have "staid" in the USAF) WA, USA

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