Posted by Blackbyrd on May 17, 2003
In Reply to: Re: Googoo eyes - The meaning and origin posted by ESC on April 21, 2003
: : : : Hi,
: : : : I'm hoping to find out the meaning and origin of the phrase Goo Goo eyes.
: : : Meaning I can help with. To make googoo eyes at somebody (or equally to go all googoo-eyed over somebody) means to be infatuated with someone, presumably because one's eyes widen and shine brightly whenever the object of one's affections is seen or mentioned. The expression is both humorous and mildly dismissive. As to origin, it may have connections with "agog", and/or it may be a corruption of "goggle".
: : ?Goo? means ?oozy, sticky,? maybe from ?burgoo,? a word for stew. But there?s another meaning for goo ? ?maudlin sentimentality or sweetness.? First citation 1901. From ?Random House Historical Dictionary of American Slang, Volume 1, A-G? by J.E. Lighter, Random House, New York, 1994. Maybe that's the origin of "goo-goo eyes."
: Here's another entry from the same reference with an 1897 citation: "goo-goo eyes," "foolishly sentimental, romantic, or amourous glances."
I can't help with a citation, but I believe this phrase has something to do with the old comics character Barney Google, who had protruding eyes (I know, hardly a flattering version) called Googley eyes.