Charley Horse

Posted by Masakim on September 04, 2001

In Reply to: Charley Horse posted by Thomas S. England on September 04, 2001

: You know to what I'm refering: The painful cramping in the calf muscle of your leg. But does anybody know the origin?

: I've only just stumbled across this delightful site so please forgive me if this has been covered. I did try searching first, but didn't find a reference.

: Thomas S. England
: Decatur GA

Paul Dickson, in The New Dickson Baseball Dictionary , gives the "1st Use" and 9(!) origins:

Etymolgy/1st Use. 1886. "Joe Quinn is troubled with 'Charley-horse'" (Sporting Life, Sept. 15; Barry Popik).
"Charley horse" is one of those wonderful terms that fascinated many, all of whom seem to have come up with a different theory of its origins. ...