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Possum up a gum tree

Posted by R. Berg on June 14, 2003

In Reply to: Stuck up a gumtree posted by Chas Bald on June 14, 2003

: What is the origin of the saying stuck up a gum tree? I don't think that it is anything to do with trees and sap and animals getting stuck to the sticky sap. I think that it is something to do with the river Gomti in India and an English garisson being sieged

The closest saying I can find is "like a possum up a gum tree," in Eric Partridge, "A Dictionary of Catch Phrases American and British." Mr. Partridge says this:

"An Australian catchphrase applicable to a person exceptionally, or completely, happy: C20. . . . Clearly rural in origin, opossums being arboreal marsupials; and a gum tree being a eucalypt; and gum tree[,] this engaging creature's natural habitat."

See, the meaning and origin of the saying 'Up a gum tree'.