Posted by Smokey Stover on March 25, 2004
In Reply to: America's new language: Spanish posted by xx on March 24, 2004
: : : : I am compiling some of my grandmother's old sayings for my children's family album and, as always, very much appreciate your help. One of her favourites was, "Good riddance to bad rubbish!" Is this of British or Irish origin, and is there a similar American saying?
Good riddance! According to the OED, writers began using the word "riddance" as early as the 16th century, and from then on it appears often, sometimes as "clean riddance," then "happy" or "fair riddance," and with Dickens, in Dombey and Son (1847-48)we find, "Good riddance of bad rubbish." In 20th-cent. British and American writers it is usually "Good riddance TO bad rubbish," although Kurt Vonnegut sticks to "of". Perhaps the most interesting of the OED's citations is one from The (London) Times : "The American War of Independence ... can be seen, as George III consoled himself looking at it, as good riddance to bad rubbish."