Silly Sayings Day
Other Scottish Country Dances for this Day
Today's Musings, History & Folklore
Oct 13th is "Silly Sayings Day," a day to use funny or idiomatic expressions in the language.
"Fiddle Faddle" is what is known as a "reduplicated" or "richochet" word in the English Language. Reduplication in linguistics is a process by which the root or stem of a word or even the whole word is repeated exactly or with a slight change.
Reduplication is used to convey a grammatical function, such as plurality or intensification.
"Fiddle Faddle," meaning "trifling, foolish talk" first appears in print in 1593 and is the name of a well known traditional folk tune (and a popular toffee popcorn).
Here are some classic reduplicated words in English: ding-dong, flimflam, gewgaw, harum-scarum, higgledy-piggledy, hocus-pocus, hodgepodge, toity-toity, hotchpotch, hubble-bubble, hubbub, hugger-mugger, hullabaloo, hurdy-gurdy, hurly burly, itty-bitt, mishmash, mumbo-jumbo, namby-pamby, niminy-piminy, pall-mall, pell-mell, roly-poly, shillyshally, tittle-tattle, voodoo, willy-nilly, wishy-washy, and zigzag!
Scottish reduplicated words include: catter-batter, clitter-clatter, currie-wurrie, diddle-daddle, feery-farry, fick-facks, gilly-gawkie, haggerty-taggery, glim-glam, hikertie-pickertie, hiddie-giddie, hingum-tringum, hinkie-pinkie, hirrie-harrie, hish-hash, hockerty-cockerty, hodge-podge, hudderie-dudderie, hurry-burry, mixter-maxter, pitter-patter, snochter-dichter, tirr-wirr, too-hoo, trittle-trattle, and yiff-yaff!
If nothing else, they are very fun to say out loud!
Should the definitions of any of these Scottish reduplications be unknown to you, click the reduplicated Tweedledee and Tweedledum.