from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia
- The parings of haberdine; also, any kind of fragments.
Sorry, no etymologies found.
And M.O.M., besides the problems you mentioned, the best one is where someone bores a hole in the stucco and then pulls some off so you see what was beneath and all the gubbings that made the facade and it just looks craptacular because no one will fix it.
We call the shavings of fish (which are little worth) gubbings; and sure it is that they are sensible that the word importeth shame and disgrace.