humbug vs tosh what difference

what is difference between humbug and tosh

English

Etymology

Origin unknown; the Oxford English Dictionary (OED) states that “the facts as to its origin appear to have been lost, even before the word became common enough to excite attention”. It has been suggested that the word possibly derives from hummer ((slang) An obvious lie), or from hum ((dialectal and slang) to cajole; delude; impose on) + bug (a goblin, a spectre). In his Slang Dictionary (1872), English bibliophile and publisher John Camden Hotten (1832–1873) suggested a link to the name of the German city of Hamburg, “from which town so many false bulletins and reports came during the war in the last century”.

Hotten also said he had traced the earliest occurrence of the word to the title page of Ferdinando Killigrew’s book The Universal Jester (see quotations), which he dated to about 1735–1740. This dating has therefore been adopted by other dictionaries. However, the OED dates the word to about 1750, as the earliest edition of Killigrew’s work has been dated to 1754.

Pronunciation

  • (Received Pronunciation, Canada) IPA(key): /ˈhʌmbʌɡ/
  • (General American) IPA(key): /ˈhəmˌbəɡ/
  • Hyphenation: hum‧bug

Noun

humbug (countable and uncountable, plural humbugs)

  1. (countable, slang) A hoax, jest, or prank.
  2. (countable, slang) A fraud or sham; (uncountable) hypocrisy.
  3. (countable, slang) A cheat, fraudster, or hypocrite.
  4. (uncountable, slang) Nonsense.
  5. (countable, Britain) A type of hard sweet (candy), usually peppermint flavoured with a striped pattern.
  6. (US, countable, slang) Anything complicated, offensive, troublesome, unpleasant or worrying; a misunderstanding, especially if trivial.
  7. (US, countable, African American Vernacular, slang) A fight.
  8. (countable, US, African American Vernacular, slang, dated) A gang.
  9. (countable, US, crime, slang) A false arrest on trumped-up charges.
  10. (countable, slang, perhaps by extension) The piglet of the wild boar.

Descendants

  • Finnish: humpuuki
  • German: Humbug
  • Hungarian: humbug (perhaps in part through German)
  • Polish: humbug (perhaps in part through German)

Translations

Interjection

humbug

  1. (slang) Balderdash!, nonsense!, rubbish!

Verb

humbug (third-person singular simple present humbugs, present participle humbugging, simple past and past participle humbugged)

  1. (slang) To play a trick on someone, to cheat, to swindle, to deceive.
    • 1810, Henry Brooke, “Epilogue on Humbugging”, in Samuel Johnson and Alexander Chalmers, The Works of the English Poets, from Chaucer to Cowper; including the Series Edited, with Prefaces, Biographical and Critical, by Dr. Samuel Johnson: And the Most Approved Translations. The Additional Lives by Alexander Chalmers, F.S.A. In Twenty-one Volumes, volume XVII (Glover, Whitehead, Jago, Brooke, Scott, Mickle, Jenyns), London: Printed for J[ames] Johnson; [et al.], OCLC 460902446, page 428:
      Of all trades and arts in repute or possession, / Humbugging is held the most ancient profession. / Twixt nations, and parties, and state politicians, / Prim shopkeepers, jobbers, smooth lawyers, physicians, / Of worth and of wisdom the trial and test / Is—mark ye, my friends!—who shall humbug the best.
    • 1873 May 1, John F. French, “Farming—Present and Prospective”, in James O. Adams, New Hampshire Agriculture. Third Annual Report of the Board of Agriculture to His Excellency the Governor, Nashua, N.H.: Orren C. Moore, state printer, OCLC 659327991, pages 204–205:
      Then again farmers are shamefully, lamentably, sometimes almost ruinously humbugged. All classes it is true are humbugged to a certain extent, but farmers in my view suffer themselves to be fooled and swindled in this respect to a greater degree than any other class in the community. They are humbugged in seeds, humbugged in manures, humbugged in agricultural implements, humbugged by agents, humbugged by patent peddlers, humbugged by store-keepers, humbugged by politicians, humbugged by corporations, till finally, some of them are in danger of becoming little less than humbugs themselves.
  2. (US, African American Vernacular, slang) To fight; to act tough.
  3. (slang, obsolete) To waste time talking.

Usage notes

The spellings humbuging and humbuged exist, but are not nearly so common as humbugging and humbugged.

Derived terms

  • humbugger
  • humbuggery
  • humbugging (noun)

References

  • humbug in The Century Dictionary, New York, N.Y.: The Century Co., 1911.
  • John A. Simpson and Edward S. C. Weiner, editors (1989), “humbug”, in The Oxford English Dictionary, 2nd edition, Oxford: Clarendon Press, →ISBN.
  • humbug in Webster’s Revised Unabridged Dictionary, G. & C. Merriam, 1913.

Further reading

  • humbug on Wikipedia.Wikipedia

Hungarian

Etymology

From English.

Pronunciation

  • IPA(key): [ˈhumbuɡ]
  • Hyphenation: hum‧bug
  • Rhymes: -uɡ

Noun

humbug (plural humbugok)

  1. humbug

Declension

Interjection

humbug

  1. humbug!

Further reading

  • humbug in Bárczi, Géza and László Országh. A magyar nyelv értelmező szótára (’The Explanatory Dictionary of the Hungarian Language’). Budapest: Akadémiai Kiadó, 1959–1962. Fifth ed., 1992: →ISBN


English

Pronunciation

  • IPA(key): /tɒʃ/
  • Rhymes: -ɒʃ

Etymology 1

From 19th-century British thieves’ cant, of uncertain origin. Sense of nonsense possibly influenced by tush (nonsense! tsk tsk!) attested from 15th century.

Alternative forms

  • (nonsense) tush

Noun

tosh (countable and uncountable, plural toshes)

  1. (Britain, obsolete slang, uncountable) Copper; items made of copper
    • 1851, H. Mayhew, London labour and the London poor, II. 150/2
      The sewer-hunters were formerly, and indeed are still, called by the name of Toshers, the articles which they pick up in the course of their wanderings along shore being known among themselves by the general term ‘tosh’, a word more particularly applied by them to anything made of copper.
  2. (chiefly Britain, uncommon slang, uncountable) Valuables retrieved from sewers and drains
    • 1974, J. Aiken, Midnight is Place, v. 164
      I am present engaged in fishing for tosh in the sewers of Blastburn.
  3. (chiefly Britain, slang, uncountable) Rubbish, trash, (now especially) nonsense, bosh, balderdash
    • 1892 October 26, Oxford University Magazine, 26/1
      To think what I’ve gone through to hear that man! Frightful tosh it’ll be, too.
    • 1911, H. G. Wells, The New Machiavelli, ch. 5,
      Perhaps it helped a man into Parliament, Parliament still being a confused retrogressive corner in the world where lawyers and suchlike sheltered themselves from the onslaughts of common-sense behind a fog of Latin and Greek and twaddle and tosh.
    • 1997, J.K. Rowling, Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone, iv
      ‘Took yeh from the ruined house myself, on Dumbledore’s orders. Brought yeh ter this lot…’
      ‘Load of old tosh,’ said Uncle Vernon.
  4. (Britain, archaic school slang, countable) A bath or foot pan
    • 1881, Leathes in C.E. Pascoe, Everyday Life in our Public Schools, ii. 20
      A ‘tosh’ pan… is also provided.
    • 1905, H. A. Vachell, Hill, i
      We call a tub a tosh.
  5. (cricket, slang, derogatory, uncountable) Easy bowling
    • 1898 June 25, Tit-Bits, 252/3
      Among the recent neologisms of the cricket field is ‘tosh’, which means bowling of contemptible easiness.
  6. (Britain, humorous slang, uncountable) Used as a form of address.
    • 1954, E. Hyams, Stories & Cream, 175
      ‘Ere, tosh, you bin at Cha’ham?
Synonyms
  • See Thesaurus:nonsense
Derived terms
  • toshy, toshing
Translations

Verb

tosh (third-person singular simple present toshes, present participle toshing, simple past and past participle toshed)

  1. (Britain, obsolete slang) To steal copper, particularly from ship hulls
    • 1867, W. H. Smyth, Sailor’s Word-book
    • Toshing, a cant word for stealing copper sheathing from vessels’ bottoms, or from dock-yard stores.
  2. (chiefly Britain, uncommon slang) To search for valuables in sewers
    • 1974, J. Aiken, Midnight is Place, vi. 180
      You tend to the toshing, let Mester Hobday tend to the dealing.
  3. (Britain, archaic school slang) To use a tosh-pan, either to wash, to splash, or to “bath”
    • 1883, J.P. Groves, From Cadet to Captain, iii. 227
      Toshing’ was the name given to a punishment inflicted by the cadets on any one of their number who made himself obnoxious. The victim, dressed in full uniform, was forced to run the gauntlet of his brother cadets, who, as he passed, emptied the contents of their ‘tosh-cans’ (small baths holding about three gallons of water) over the wretched lad’s head.
    • 1903, J. S. Farmer & al., Slang, VII. 171/1
      He toshed his house beak by mistake, and got three hundred.

Etymology 2

Compare Old French tonce (shorn, clipped) and English tonsure.

Adjective

tosh (comparative tosher, superlative toshest)

  1. (Scotland, obsolete) Tight.
    • 1776, D. Herd, Ancient & Modern Scottish Songs
      Tosh, tight, neat.
  2. (Scotland) Neat, clean; tidy, trim.
    • 1794, J. Ritson, Scottish Songs, I. 99
      I gang ay fou clean and fou tosh
      As a’ the neighbours can tell.
  3. (Scotland) Comfortable, agreeable; friendly, intimate.
    • 1821, Blackwood’s Edinburgh Magazine, 10 4
      We were a very tosh and agreeable company.
Derived terms
  • toshy, toshly

Adverb

tosh (comparative more tosh, superlative most tosh)

  1. (Scotland) Toshly: neatly, tidily
    • 1808, J. Mayne, Siller Gun, i. 20
      Shouther your arms!—O! had them tosh on, And not athraw!

Verb

tosh (third-person singular simple present toshes, present participle toshing, simple past and past participle toshed)

  1. (Scotland) To make ‘tosh’: to tidy, to trim.
    • 1826 November, J. Wilson, Noctes Ambrosianae, xxix, in Blackwood’s Edinburgh Magazine, 788
      Hoo she wad try to tosh up… her breest.

Etymology 3

From 19th-century British slang tosheroon, from or alongside tusheroon, of uncertain derivation from British slang caroon (crown, a 5-shilling silver coin), from Sabir and (originally) Italian corona (crown). The term was either derived from or influenced by madza caroon, the British slang for the Sabir and Italian mezzo corona (half-crown), possibly under influence from tosh (copper items; valuables) above or from the half-crown’s value of two shillings, sixpence.

Alternative forms

  • tush

Noun

tosh (countable and uncountable, plural toshes)

  1. (Britain, obsolete slang, countable) A half-crown coin; its value
    • 1933, George Orwell, Down and Out in Paris and London, xxix
      ‘’Ere y’are, the best rig-out you ever ’ad. A tosheroon [half a crown] for the coat, two ’ogs for the trousers, one and a tanner for the boots, and a ’og for the cap and scarf. That’s seven bob.’
    • 1961, J. Maclaren-Ross, Doomsday Book, i. v. 63
      Here’s a tosh to buy yourself some beer.
  2. (Britain, obsolete slang, countable) A crown coin; its value
    • 1859, J.C. Hotten, A Dictionary of Modern Slang, Cant, and Vulgar Words
      Half-a-crown is known as an alderman, half a bull, half a tusheroon, and a madza caroon; whilst a crown piece, or five shillings, may be called either a bull, or a caroon, or a cartwheel, or a coachwheel, or a thick-un, or a tusheroon.
    • 1912, J.W. Horsley, I Remember, xii. 253
      Tush’, for money, would be an abbreviation of ‘tusheroon’, which in old cant, and also in tinker dialect, signified a crown.
  3. (Britain, archaic slang, uncountable) Any money, particularly pre-decimalization British coinage

References

  • Oxford English Dictionary. “tosh, n.1-5, adj. & adv., and v.1-2“. Oxford University Press (Oxford), 1913 & 1986.
  • Webster’s New International Dictionary of the English Language, rev. ed. “Tosh”. 1913.
  • A Dictionary of Modern Slang, Cant, and Vulgar Words. James Camden Hotten (London), 1859.
  • The Routledge Dictionary of Historical Slang. Routledge (London), 1961.

Anagrams

  • HOTs, Soth, Thos., host, hots, oths, shot

Uzbek

Etymology

From Proto-Turkic *tiāĺ.

Noun

tosh (plural toshlar)

  1. stone (small piece of stone)

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