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Re: To smash to smithereens pre-1930?

Posted by Gary on June 24, 2005

In Reply to: To smash to smithereens pre-1930? posted by Baska on June 24, 2005

: Can anybody give me the origin of "to smash to smithereens" - I am particularly interested in whether it is pre-1930s, or not - I need it for a translation. Or can anyone suggest an alternative which would apply to - say - the Great War and "smashing a regiment into smithereens" - many thanks.

The OED has a reference to this from 1829 and suggests that the word comes from the Irish 'smidirín' meaning small parts.

G. GRIFFIN Collegians:

"A body would tink it hardly safe to stand here under 'em, in dread dey'd come tumblin' down, may be, an' make smiddereens of him, bless de mark!"