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Re: It don't mean jack

Posted by ESC on December 19, 2008 at 22:47

In Reply to: Re: It don't mean jack posted by ESC on December 19, 2008 at 22:35:

: : I wonder what does "it don't mean jack" means? There are a lot of phrases with "jack" word, Is there any specific meaning of jack?

: You're right. In one of my references, there are pages and pages of phrases with jack. And there are dozens of meanings of the word jack. For example, jack meaning a very small amount (16th century) and a farthing (17 to 18th century) and money (U.S., late 19th century). In the 20th century jack came to mean "nothing." "Jacksh*t" means worthless, useless, negligible (1990s). Various meanings for jack are: a man, the anus, horseflesh, hidden notes (cheat-sheets), a country man or rustic, syphilis, a fool, a native soldier. And on and on. "Cassell's Dictionary of Slang" by Jonathon Green (Wellington House, London, 1998). Page 647-651.

JACK - Money since 1859. But at first used to mean only a small coin or a small amount of money. English slang for a farthing since 1700. Page 103. Jock and jack have meant the penis since the 16th century (from the familiar names for John). Page 377. "Speaking Freely: A Guided Tour of American English from Plymouth Rock to Silicon Valley" by Stuart Berg Flexner and Anne H. Soukhanov (Oxford University Press, New York, 1997).