Friday, December 29, 2006

Today's Word: Yankee Dime

Well, I was thumbing through one of my favorite dictionaries just now, the Dictionary of Smoky Mountain English, when I came across the lovely expressions "Yankee nickel" and "Yankee dime," defined therein as, "A kiss, usu given to a child in return for a small favor such as doing a household chore." The earliest citation given is from 1984.

I got all excited about this, and started cruising the web looking for more -- only to discover that Grant's already written about it (and with a citation going back to 1846, along with a mention of "Dutch Quarters" and "Quaker nickels"). Waykewl.


Anonymous Jeanne said...

What is a "Quaker nickel?" Now you've got my interest because I'm a Quaker! I didn't know we had our own nickels. :-)

9:49 PM  
Blogger Martha said...

I think a Quaker nickel might be the same as a Yankee dime, Jeanne!

You folks also have great oats! (Of course, the first time you heard that one, you probably fell off your dinosaur, right?)

9:43 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Mom, coming from a good upstanding East Texas family made me think it was an insincere kiss, in the same grain as a kind word from a carpetbagger...

4:01 PM  

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