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Etymologies

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Examples

  • Fortunately, however, Mr Pyke confined himself to mere verbal smifligation, and they reached their box with no more serious interruption by the way, than a desire on the part of the same pugnacious gentleman to ‘smash’ the assistant box – keeper for happening to mistake the number.

    Nicholas Nickleby

  • Fortunately, however, Mr Pyke confined himself to mere verbal smifligation, and they reached their box with no more serious interruption by the way, than a desire on the part of the same pugnacious gentleman to 'smash' the assistant box-keeper for happening to mistake the number.

    Nicholas Nickleby

  • 'smifligate' a very old man with a lantern who accidentally stumbled in her way -- to the great terror of Mrs Nickleby, who, conjecturing more from Mr Pyke's excitement than any previous acquaintance with the etymology of the word that smifligation and bloodshed must be in the main one and the same thing, was alarmed beyond expression, lest something should occur.

    Nicholas Nickleby

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  • To my knowledge, this is a word first used in Charles Dickens' "Nicholas Nickleby." From what I can tell, it means to beat (or to be drunk/smashed).

    Excerpt:

    "At the theatre entrance there was more banging and more bustle, and there were also Messrs Pyke and Pluck waiting to escort her to her box; and so polite were they, that Mr Pyke threatened with many oaths to `smifligate` a very old man with a lantern who accidentally stumbled in her way--to the great terror of Mrs Nickleby, who, conjecturing more from Mr Pyke`s excitement than any previous acquaintance with the etymology of the word that smifligation and bloodshed must be in the main one and the same thing, was alarmed beyond expression, lest something should occur." (Nicholas Nickleby, Chapter 27)

    August 21, 2008