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Jingo

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Jingo

Postby Dr. Goodword » Fri Feb 21, 2014 11:22 pm

• jingo •


Pronunciation: jing-go • Hear it!

Part of Speech: Interjection, Noun

Meaning: 1. (Interjection) An emphatic exclamation as in, "We'll get the job done, by jingo!" 2. (Noun) A chauvinistic patriot, a militant and unfaltering booster of government policy, especially in support of wars.

Notes: Today's Good Word sounds a lot like jingle but is completely unrelated to this word (see Word History). The plural form requires an E: jingoes. The abstract noun that characterizes the idea and behavior of a jingo is jingoism. Several adjectival forms have been suggested: jingoish and jingoesque for "jingo-like", and jingodom for all jingoes taken collectively.

In Play: Many of us are waiting for the politician who says, "The jingoes will never lead us down the garden path to war ever again." However, I see no reason why we would have to restrict the use of this word to war boosterism: "Maury has been a persistent jingo for merging our business with McGready & Co. since the Board first suggested it as a possibility."

Word History: The exclamation, by jingo! is a euphemism that replaced by Jesus! in the middle of the 17th century. It is therefore in a class with by Jiminy! Gee-whiz! Gee whillikers!, and several others of that ilk. This phrase made its way into an 1878 British music hall song which had this chorus: "We don't want to fight, yet by Jingo! If we do, we've got the ships, we've got the men, and got the money too". Jingo was taken from this song in that same year as thousands of enthusiasts arose in support of Lord Beaconsfield's policy to send a British fleet to Turkey in support of Turkey's resistance to Russian aggression. After that incident, the word lingered on as a name for any highly enthusiastic political hawk. (Now it is time to thank the mysterious Klimt of the Alpha Agora in as unjingoesque a manner as possible for suggesting today's Good Word.)
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Re: Jingo

Postby Eileen Opiolka » Sat Feb 22, 2014 5:25 am

The adjectives suggested were interesting, but new to me. The only one I would use is jingoistic.
What do others use?
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Re: Jingo

Postby Perry Lassiter » Sat Feb 22, 2014 2:18 pm

Isn't this word also used frequently in relation to ethnic and racial slurs? The KKK could be called a jingoistic organization, or could it?
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Re: Jingo

Postby eberntson » Sun Feb 23, 2014 11:12 am

Blimey! Didn't know "jingo" maps to "redneck" so easily. Can't we just all be civil.
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Re: Jingo

Postby LukeJavan8 » Sun Feb 23, 2014 1:57 pm

I've never heard the term, that I can remember.
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Re: Jingo

Postby Perry Lassiter » Sun Feb 23, 2014 3:05 pm

Most words map to redneck pretty easily, but in surprising ways. Our favorite way to map, or give directions, is to reference houses and people who live there at least 30 years ago. An example might be you go down there about a mile and turn right by the old Smith place and go another couple of miles till – you know where Jake Jones had his old barn? – If you get there, You've gone too far. Come back a couple of hundred yards and turn by that broken down mailbox and you look like you're going across the field, but Bill's house is back up there under the trees.
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Re: Jingo

Postby Perry Lassiter » Sun Feb 23, 2014 3:05 pm

PS – Smith and Jones have both been dead for 20 years.
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Re: Jingo

Postby Slava » Sun Feb 23, 2014 3:18 pm

In answer to Eileen's question, I don't believe I've ever actually heard this word used. In print, yes, and only in the nationalistic sense.

As to the giving directions idea, some countries do this even today. They may not have an address system, so it's the third house on the right past the split oak tree after the boulder.
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Re: Jingo

Postby Philip Hudson » Wed Feb 26, 2014 12:15 am

The interjection "By jingo!' is current but not ubiquitous in the hinterlands. We have frequent occasion for interjections here.

Jingoists are ubiquitous in the Metroplex. En masse we call them the Tea Party. In the hinterlands, politics are decided by how your greatgranddaddy voted in nought-seven.
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Re: Jingo

Postby Perry Lassiter » Thu Feb 27, 2014 1:00 am

Not in Louisiana though. Not only our grandfathers but our fathers and we old men when we were younger all voted as Democrats. The reason was that there were so few Republicans, that your vote did not count. The Democratic primary was essentially the general election for governor. At some point, the legislature allowed all people to vote in the primaries, at which time half of Louisiana became Republican or independent.
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Re: Jingo

Postby misterdoe » Fri Mar 14, 2014 11:43 pm

Perry Lassiter wrote:The Democratic primary was essentially the general election for governor.

That's the way it is in my town with the mayor. I'll be 49 in a few months and I don't recall the last Republican mayor, or for that matter the names of any Republicans who ran over the years.

Back in the 80s I recall articles about the rise of patriotism and right-wing political messages in entertainment and in the media appearing in Rolling Stone and Spin magazines, both better known for music than politics. I don't recall which article was in which magazine, but one was titled "Jingo Bells," and the other was "Somewhere Over the Rambo."
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