Posted by James Briggs on May 01, 2001
In Reply to: Cousin Jack posted by Bruce Kahl on May 01, 2001
: : Anyone heard this one? If so would like to know meaning and origin..
: From Brewers:
: "Cousin Jack.
: So Cornishmen are called in the western counties."
: This is a UK thing, I guess, so someone from that part of the world will probably know more of the meaning and origin.
"Jack" is a name commonly used for men in general such as in "Jack of all trades" or "every man Jack of them". The origin of Jack goes back to French where the name for a peasant is Jacques Bonhomme in turn from Jacque a leather jerkin worn by peasants. The diminutive "jacket" lives on in English today.