Resident of Queensland. The expression comes from the ridiculous idea (as seen in southern Australian states) that Queenslanders spend their time chewing bananas. Article from July 15, 1937 atQueenslandergives a forerunner to the expression when the queen asks the man what his occupation is:
- I'm a banana. To further enlighten her majesty, he explained that the bananas grew directly on the trees, so, just before they ripened, it was his job to climb up the ladder and with a deft twist of the wrist give the fruit a Greek look that was half. her charm.
The association of the banana with Queensland ("land of bananas") is based on the extensive banana production industry in tropical Queensland. It was called the Queensland borderBanana curtainand Brisbane were invitedBanana city.Banana lamp, referring to a Queenslander, was first recorded in 1940 and is still heard today.
1964 D. LockwoodBy trace: We are so close to Queensland that I think we should cross the border. How about a quick overview of banana ties?
2011The North Star(Lismore) July 11: Should Matilda [so] won last night or the Netball Diamonds were decided by New Zealand, Anna Bligh will no doubt argue that it was the result of Banana supremacy in the teams, or at least the result of a Gold Coast holiday at its best.
Shortly after the settlement of the whites in 1788, the letterrobber(name for an Indian mammalbandicoot predstave) was applied to several Australian mammals that had long pointed heads and somewhat resembled their Indian namesakes. In 1799, David Collins writes of "bones of small animals, such as possums . . . and bandicoots."
Since the 1830s, the wordrobberit was used in various characteristic Australian phrases as an emblem of destitution or desolation. In 1837 H. Watson onLecture on South Australiawrites: "The land here is mostly good. There is a small percentage that is not good for anything at all. to use a colonial phrase, 'an animal between a rat and a rabbit) would starve on it.'" Typical examples include:
- miserable as a bandit
- poor as a bandicoot
- bald as a bandicoot
- blind as a bandicoot
- gladan ko bandikut
Probably from the perception of the burrowing habits of the bandicoot, a new Australian verbkod bandicootaappeared at the end of the nineteenth century. It means "remove the potatoes from the ground and leave the tops undisturbed." Usually this activity is hidden.
1896BulletinDecember 12: It must be "taken off" from the grain - Or into the field!
in 1899Bulletin2nd December: 'Bandicooting'... is a familiar expression throughout Western Vic. potato Bandicoot goes at night to a field of ripe potatoes and carefully pulls the tubers from the roots without disturbing the tops.
bandicoot: you're a bandicoot
Extremely unhappy. Bandicoots are small marsupials with long faces and have been given a role in Australian English in similes suggesting misery or some form of deprivation (see above). Expressionmiserable as a banditfirst recorded in the 1820s.
1828Sydney GazetteJanuary 11: When she arrived here, she found him living with another wife, by whom he had several children, and from whom he was necessarily divorced, though not without a very frank warning from his wife, those present complained that it would made it as miserable as a bandit.
2005 R. SiemonTheThe eccentric Mr. Wienholt: I'm as miserable as a bandit sneaking home like this.
A large woody cone of manyBanksiagenre, originally as a character in children's stories.Banksiais the name of an Australian genus of shrubs and trees with about 60 species. It was named after the botanist Sir Joseph Banks, who was inTry outwith James Cook on his voyage of discovery in 1770. After flowering, many bangshis form thick woody cones, often of odd shapes. May Gibbs modeled her in just such grotesque formsbanksia aliandSnugglepot i Cuddlepiefrom 1918: "He could see the glittering sly eyes of Mrs. Snake and the shaggy heads of Banksia's bad men."
1927 K.S. PrichardSuggest me love:Louise: .. Look what I have in my pocket for you ...Account: (reaches into his coat pocket and pulls out a banksia cone) Banksia man. Oh mother!
1979 E. SmithA saddle in the kitchen: Hell lay beneath the well by the cow-path, deep and murky and inhabited by sodden and ragged men who hid there and waited for the unguarded to fall in.
A matter of great public interest, especially political. The term comes from the idea that an object is so interesting that it could stop the grilling process - and anything that could stop an Australian barbecue had to be very important! The term was coined by Australian Prime Minister John Howard in 2001 in the context of balancing work pressures with family obligations.The grill stopsit is now used in a wide variety of contexts. For an earlier discussion of the term, seeAugust 2007 Word of the Month article.
in 2007Sol-Messenger(Sydney) March 11: Controlled crying is a guaranteed barbecuing obstacle among Australian parents, more divisive than the old breast versus bottle debate.
2015Australian Economic Review(Sydney) April 1: Planning and zoning act as a barbeque stopper in leafy suburbs, where many residents and traders will defend to the last breath their quiet enjoyment and indoor markets.
The name Barcoo River in western Queensland has been used since the 1870s as a shorthand for the region's hardship, poverty and living conditions. Poor nutrition was common in remote areas, with little access to fresh vegetables or fruit, resulting in malnutrition-related diseases such asTo trune- a form of scurvy characterized by chronic ulcers - was common. Katharine Susannah Prichard wrote in 1946: "It was nothing compared to the tortures she then enduredrotting barkattack him. On his back, arms and legs, large ulcers grew: his lips were torn, sore and bleeding.' In a letter to her sister in 1864, Rachel Henning mocks her Irish servants' fear of scurvy, causing them to eat pig, "an ugly wild plant, but said to be exceedingly wholesome, chopped in vinegar or boiled." Another disease that was probably caused by poor nutrition wasBarcooova bolest(also calledBarku ormar op,- pita Barcoo, or simplyBelly), a condition characterized by vomiting. ''Bellyit was tight between the children and the officials at the station. attacks of vomiting, which lasted for days, came in succession'.
fortunately,Bellyit can also indicate more positive aspects of living abroad: improvised ingenuity—aboat passesit's a shepherd's rant that can be as simple as a can and a stick – or hard and clear: "A parrot's tongue would put bully Barcoo to shame."Bellyit can also characterize the laconic spirit of the bush. Patsy Adam Smith tells the following story: “I see you have learnedGood health" said Councilor Buln Buln Shire to the Duke of Edinburgh. "What is this?" said His Royal Highness, waving his hand again to keep the flies from his face. "That's it," said the bush man.
To give support or encouragement to (a person, group, etc.), usually by shouting a name, slogan, or encouragement. Some claimbarakcomes from Australian pidgin tobreak through the borax'that grandfather', but his origin is probably from Northern Irelandbarakprove? on a whim." On your ownbarakmeant "to mock" (and still does in British English), but the formbarracks forturned a sneer into a cheer in Australian English. It was first recorded in the 1880s.
in 1889Maitland MercuryAugust 24: The old father in his glory was there - it gave the old man joy to fight his way through the crowd and the barracks for his boy.
1971 D. WilliamsonDons fest:I suppose you're going to the Labor shack tonight?
2011Gympie TimesJanuary 28: He thought it was time to take the plunge and officially become an Australian, having played for our cricket team since 1955.
Opening the starting gate to start the race track. At the horse racesobstacleis the starting gate at the racetrack. Wordobstaclefound in a number of horse racing expressions in Australian English includingbarrier carpet(a heavy blanket placed over the flanks of a racehorse to calm it down when entering the stall at the start of a race)barrier testing(training race for young, inexperienced or restarted racing horses) iblock of garbage(a racehorse that regularly misbehaves when placed at the starting gate).The barrier is risingfirst recorded in the 1890s. For a more detailed discussion of this term, seeWord of the month article from October 2010.
in 1895Argus(Melbourne) March 11: Mr. W.R. Wilson's Merman colt, who, like Hova, was relatively unfriendly in raising his dam.
2011Shepparton NewsJune 27: The talented Norman-trained trotter Tsonga, also ridden by Jack, jumped the surface of the field on the barrier climb in front of the front row at Mobile - and has never been on the road since.
Wordfighterit has been in English for a long time. The word is a loanword from French in the Middle English period and literally meant "a person who struggles or struggles" and figuratively "a person who struggles against difficulties or does not give up easily". The equivalent English word wasFeohtanwhich gives us the modern English 'to fight'. English also borrowed the wordratThe French in the twelfth century; it is the same word as modern Frenchguerilla.
But the wordfighter, in the late nineteenth century, begins to take on some distinctive Australian overtones. For this reason he wears a guernseyAustralian National Dictionary.
1. Describes a person with few physical advantages, who works hard for little reward, who struggles to earn a living (and who shows courage in doing so).
Our first mention of it, unsurprisingly, comes from Henry Lawson andWhile Billy cooks(1896): "I attacked him very sharply for his claims, and paid him for all the protection he had afforded me ... and told him not to pretend before me any more that he was a fighter."
In 1941, Kylie Tennant writes: "She was a fighter, Snow admitted. sassy, tough, tough, and could take a 'kunk-back' as if it didn't matter and go to meet the next blow."
In this tradition, K. Smith wrote in 1965: "Everyone in Australia has a place. Broadly speaking, there are three types of people in this country: the rich, the middle class, and the struggling.
In the 21st century, the term was used in various political struggles such as this quote inAustralianof July 1, 2006 shows: "The Prime Minister, who has built his success on an appeal to Australia's warriors, will meet thousands more at his Bennelong headquarters in Sydney's north."
2. It was also used by an unemployed or irregular worker.
a: (in the countryside): a murderer or itinerant worker.
This feeling was first registered inBulletinIn 1898: "I found patch after patch damaged. Almost everyone I met blamed the unlucky 'fighter' and I put it down to some of Sydney's 'talents' until... I caught two Chows having a hard time destroying melon vines.
Again inBulletinin 1906 we find: "They were old, gray-bearded, travel-stained fighters."
The word is not used much in this sense now, but in 1982 Page & Ingpen iAussie BattlersWrite: "The image of the average Australian fighter seems to be that of Henry Lawson: a colonial bushwhacker, full of quartzite pot and boat, down on his luck, but still resourceful and cheerful."
b: (in an urban context): an unemployed person living off opportunism.
Frank Hardy insideBilly Yorker stories(1965) writes: "Any Footscray fighter could take a few bucks from Murphy, just to ask him."
S. Weller,Bastards I've met(1976) writes: "He was a fighter, every night on the spot and all the time just a jump in front of the bakkan."
3. A person who frequents racetracks in search of a daily wage, e.g. from punting. The word has been used in Australia in this sense since the late nineteenth century.
Cornelius Crowe in SinAustralian Snake Dictionary(1895) gives: "The fighters destroyed the horse fans that still remained in the game."
I 1925 A. Wright iThe boy from Bullaranotes: "He took his few shillings to the fighter's home - Randwick [Sydney Racecourse]."
In 1898 we find the codeBulletin: "The fighter is the lowest level of the human thing and is the bully of the house of tolerance... The fighter is female."
C. W. Chandler UnutraDarkest Adelaide(circa 1907) writes: "Prostitution, though most horrible and degrading in any shape or form, reaches its most forbidden form when married women find themselves fighting for money." And further: "I told him I wouldn't mind taking the pie myself - I prefer a very good fighter."
Meanings 2, 3 and 4 have now disappeared from Australian English and meaning 1 has become embedded in the language, especially in the sentencesmall Australian hunter. This is still the face of the tradition of Henry Lawson, who "with few natural advantages works hard and with little reward, fights for life (and shows courage to do so)". But maybe it isfighterin modern Australia they are more likely to pay off a big mortgage than work hard to put food on the table!
Berleyis a ground bait that an angler puts into the water to attract fish to the line or bait. Anglers use a variety of baits for berley, such as bread or fish heads and guts. Poultry mash and canned cat food make for more unusual burley material, though it pales in comparison.BulletinA 1936 article suggests "a kerosene bucket of rabbit carcasses boiled to a pulp" as the bestberleyfor Murray cod.BerleyAppears for the first time in 1852 as a verb -ja Berleyis to spread the bait. The writer notes that the natives lure the hunting ground ('burley-ing') with burnt fish. The first evidence for the noun appears in the 1860s. The origin of the word is unknown.
To show off or brag about one's wealth. to exaggerate one's importance, achievements, etc. The term was first recorded in the 1920s. in the 1950sgreat music man(later called abig note)was a person who handled or gambled large sums of money - large bills. In the days before decimal currency, the higher the denomination, the bigger the bill.Fantastic noteborn of the relationship between the flash of large sums of money and the show.
in 1941Courier mail(Brisbane) February 18: There was no indication that Coates had the revolver for any nefarious purpose. He admitted that it left "a lot of attention" in the eyes of the young woman and her parents.
2012 D. FosterA man of writers: He was never himself to any great extent.
A member of a biker gang.a bikefollows a very common pattern in Australian English by incorporating- dvs(-u) End. This suffix serves as an informal marker in the language. In early usea bikeoften refers to any member of a motorcycle (motorcycle) gang or club - often associated with youth culture. In recent times, the term is often associated with motorcycle gangs that operate on the edge of legality.a bikefirst recorded in the 1960s. For a more detailed discussion of the concept, seeWord of the month article from March 2014.
in 1967Kings Cross Whisper(Sydney) xxxii:a bike, a member of a gang or club of people interested in machines.
2015New Northern Territory(Darwin) May 28: We need to stop romanticizing the idea that bikes are basically good guys in leather vests. Certain chains procure, distribute and sell drugs through their "partners", who in turn sell them to children.
Thebilbyit is one of two Australian bandicoots, more precisely the rabbit-eared bandicootThe length of the rabbit, a marsupial that forages in the forests and plains of the drier regions of mainland Australia. The word is a loanword from Yuwaalaraay (an Aboriginal language of northern New South Wales) and neighboring languages. Thatbilbyis also known asdalgytein Western Australia andpinkin South Australia. Since the early 1990s, there have been attempts to replace the Easter BunnyEaster city of cars. It is now possible to buy chocolate for Easterslag.Bilbyfirst recorded in the 1870s.
in 1877Riverine Grazier(High) June 6: There is also a small animal in all this part of the country that burrows in the ground like a rabbit: it is called a bilby, and is found everywhere, almost up here, in great numbers.
2015Central lawyer(Alice Springs) April 10: Mining activity can also cause direct and indirect disturbance to stem-inhabited sites.
An arm of a river, made up of water flowing from the main stream (usually only in the flood season) to form a backwater, backwater, shoal, or, when the water level falls, a pool or lagoon (often of great extent); dry layer of such a formation.Billabongsthey often form when flood waters recede. The word comes from the southwestern New South Wales Aboriginal language Wiradjuri:it was"river" +powder(a suffix possibly indicating continuity in time or space or acting as an intensifier), the combination means a stream of water that flows only after rain. It was first recorded in the 1830s.
1861Burke & Will's Exploring Expedition: At the end of a very large water hole, it breaks up into billibongs, which continue to divide into sand channels until they are all lost in the earth's soil.
2015New Northern Territory(Darwin) 13 May: More activities will soon be available, including fishing at the nearby billabong, once the area is declared cricket-free.
A container for boiling water, making tea, etc. on an open fire. a cylindrical container, usually of pewter, enamel or aluminium, fitted with a lid and a wire handle. It comes from a Scottish dialect wordBilly-potmeans "cooking vessel". Possibly inducedcanned food(recorded in 1858 in Australia and 1852 in New Zealand, with variationsbully tinrecorded in New Zealand in 1849, but not until 1920 in Australia), an empty box that was preservedboiled beef"Bull calf", used as a cooking vessel. It is not connected, as is commonly believed, with an aboriginal wordbillabong.Batfirst recorded in the 1840s.
1859 W. BurrowsAdventures of a horseman in the Australian police force: A "bug" is a tin vessel, something between a pot and a kettle, always black except that it is constantly on the fire, and looks brown from the amount of tea usually seen in it.
in 2005Australian(Sydney) November 12: Green ants, we later learn, are a form of bush medicine that others choose to ingest by boiling the nests in a pool and drinking the strained and distilled contents.
Baby stroller on four wheels.Billycartis a shortened form of the Australian termgoat cardates back to the 1860s. Earlier, the term referred to a small cart, often on two wheels, pulled by a goat. thesehalf timethey were used for purposes such as home delivery and were also used in matches. The term was then applied to any house card.Billycartrecorded in the first decade of the 20th century.
1952. J.R. TyrrellOld books: As boys, Fred and I delivered books to Sydney in a wheelbarrow.
1991 T. WintonCloudstreet: Pieces of broken billiards and boxes litter the space beneath the loose clothesline.
Any of several plants with spiny fruits, especially herbs of a widespread genuscalls; the fruit of these plants.Close your eyesoften shortened tobindi, and can be written in several ways, i.efixed eyeiThe roof. The word comes from the Gamilaraay and Yuwalaraay Aboriginal languages of northern New South Wales.Close your eyesit is usually considered a weed when found on someone's lawn. Many children's games have been painfully interrupted by the sharp spikes of the plant that have a habit of digging into their soles.Bindy-eyefirst recorded in the 1890s.
in 1894Queenslander(Brisbane) August 11: Picture him after working a flock of sheep through a Bathurst Burr flock or doing a day's work in a paddock where the grass seed was bad and thick-eyed.
2015Australian(Sydney) January 3: You know it's summer when the frangipani blooms in its cheerful colors, when the eucalyptus flower offers a feast for the rosellas - and when your eyes in the grass tell you that you're walking barefoot.
Battle or skirmish. clash.Bingleperhaps it is from the Cornish dialectbing"a blow or blow". Most of the other words derived from the Cornish dialect of Australian English were originally associated with mining, includingpetrified. The word is often used to refer to a traffic accident.Binglefirst recorded in the 1940s.
1966 R. CarrSurfing: There was a metal-on-metal collision and both cars went down the embankment and we almost went into bingle.
2015Daily Telegraph(Sydney) April 12: In fact, some of Hughesy and Kate's listeners are laughing so hard they have to stop in their cars or risk a fight on the way home from work.
Mixture. A dog (or other animal) is made up of a bit of this and a bit of that. This concept is common today, but whenbitserFirst appearing in the 1920s, it referred to any machine or vehicle that was built from spare parts or had odd parts added.Bitserstands for 'bits and pieces' and was first recorded in the complex sense in the early 1930s.
in 1934Advertiser(Adelaide) May 14: "So what kind of dog is that?" asked. The girl thought to herself. "I think it should be a little bit of everything. My friends call him 'bigger,'” she replied.
in 2005Gazette of Sun(Melbourne) November 27: We had lots of cats and dogs. My favorite was a gnat named Sheila.
Theblack trunkof Australian myth first appears in the late 19th century and is a fictional marker on the border of a settlement. Everywhere, everywherebehind the black trunkis outside the culture, deep in the background, while somethingthis side of the black stumpbelongs to the known world. Although the towns of Blackall, Coolah and Merriwagga claim to own the originalblack trunk, it is unlikely that the source of this phrase is a diary. It is more likely that the burnt and blackened tree stumps, ubiquitous in the background and used as markers when giving directions to travelers, are the origin - this senseblack trunkhas been recorded since 1831.
in 1898Launceston ExaminerNovember 5: The failure of the past has been the fragmented and colorful nature of our public works policy. They became railways that do not start and end anywhere, roads were built randomly, bridges to which no road led, railways ended at the famous black stump.
1967 J. WynnumI'm Jack, okay: Burke is far behind. Behind the black trunk. It is not even visible on gas station maps.
in 2003Sydney Morning HeraldJuly 29: Our wine writer, Huon Hooke, doesn't know the wine but suspects it comes from the area between Bandywallop and Black Stump.
A very non-perceptive person. such a guy. This expression often appears in a sentenceeven blind Freddy could see it.Although the term may not have originated with an actual person, early commentators associate it with the blind character or characters of Sidney. Australian lexicographer Sidney Baker wrote in 1966 that "Legend has it that in the twenties of the last century there was a blind falconer named Freddy in Sydney, whose blindness did not prevent him from moving freely in the central part of the city." Other commentators have suggested that the character who frequented various sporting venues in Sydney in the early decades of the 20th century could be the original Freddy. The term itself was registered for the first time in 1911.
1911Athlete from SydneyJuly 19: Billy Farnsworth and [Chris] McKivatt seem to fit together as a pair of halves, but then Blind Freddie couldn't help but collect Chris' passes.
2013 S. ScourfieldWhile the river flows: Blind Freddie could see that Emerald Gorge was a natural dam.
blood: your blood deserves to be bottled
You are a precious person! You are a faithful friend! This is one of many Australians, along with terms such as "digger", "Anzac" and "Aussie", which appeared during or immediately after the First World War. It was about a person with a big heart who showed courage, loyalty and camaraderie. Now used in many contexts - "Those firemen - their blood is worth spilling!"
Beat (the opponent) by a very small margin. narrowly win. This verb is derived from a nounblousemeans "silk jacket worn by a jockey". As the origin of the word indicates, many elements come from horse racing. First recorded in the 1980s. For a detailed discussion ofblousesee oursWord of the month article from November 2009.
in 2001Gazette of Sun(Melbourne) June 22: Four years ago on this ground - Mark Taylor's last one-day appearance for Australia - England smashed 4-253 to crush Australia in a typically good belt.
2015Kalgoorlie rudarMarch 2: The Meryl Hayley-trained speedster, chasing four wins in a row, was beaten in a thrilling finish by Cut Snake by a second head in third-placed Danreign.
This word has survived from British slangfilth, which means "pimp whore". The word is ultimately an abbreviation ofmen.Umen(not surprisingly) it was a staff carrying person "a short strong stick or club". It appears in a mid-nineteenth-century dictionary of English slang as a term for "a low thief who does not hesitate to use violence".
In the 1880s, the "pimp whore" feeling.filthfound in Australian sources. In itDictionary of Sydney Slangfrom 1882landslidedefined as "robbers in the company of prostitutes". Cornelius Crowe, in hisAustralian Snake Dictionary(1895), defines afilthas "a thief who will use his bosom and live on the earnings of immoral women."
Sofilthcame to mean "one who lives on the earnings of a harlot". It retained this meaning until the middle of the 20th century. I saw Dorothy Hewett in her workPremotati(1959) writes: "And what about slander?" "There's a name for a man who lives off women!" "Can't it sting you if you call a man brass?" But this concept is now outdated.
By the beginning of the twentieth century it had morphed into a more general term of abuse, especially when applied to a person who appears to live off the labor of others (as a pimp lives off the earnings of a prostitute). At that time, it denoted a person engaged in non-physical work - a white-collar worker. This sense appears as early as 1910, but its typical use is represented by this passage from the work of D. WhitingtonLand tax(1957): 'Bludgers' translated them early, for in his language anyone who did not work with his hands was a bludger.'
And then it came to mean "idle, one who makes little effort." In the war newspaperAck Ack NewsIn 1942 we find: "Who said our swordsmen were fools?" In the 1950s, it could be used by animals that were not feeling well. J. Cleary andJust leave me aloneHe writes: “Everything I supported ran like I wouldn't get away. I had four receipts, and the thieves were so far behind that the ambulance almost brought them home.
And from there the person who does not contribute fairly to the cost, work, etc. cage". Written by D. NilandShiralee(1955): 'Give me tea-nuts, sugar and tobacco in his usual manner. The biggest con man in the land." In 1971, J. O'Grady wrote: "When it's your turn, yell back. Otherwise, word will spread that you're a 'banger' and there's nothing worse."
The conceptdown the blood(meaning "one who takes advantage of the unemployment benefits system by avoiding paid work") first appeared in the 1970s. An early example fromBulletinthe epitome of a pejorative tone: "A real slob, a very literate young man ... he explained that he was no longer looking for work because he was sick of being treated like a slob" (1976). From next year we have a report indicating the reaction to the use of the term:Grower(Rockhampton) "Young people are being forced to leave their rural homes because of a lack of jobs and the only response from these so-called political protectors is to label them as aliens."
Throughout the history of the word, most people havelandslideappears to have been a man. Concepttimeappeared briefly during the first decade of this century - "Lately lovers, police say, women are crazy" (1908)TruthSeptember 27) – but it took some time.
Wordbluehas multiple meanings in Australian English. The most common boat (i.e. a collection of belongings and daily necessities carried by a person traveling, usually on foot, in the bush) is so named because the outer covering of the cup was traditionally a blue carpet (also calledblue). The first evidence forblueas swag is from 1878, where it isblueishumpbackas it was the traveling laborer who stepped on itwallaby sporin the works of writers such as Henry Lawson and Banjo Paterson.
This image (the Australian stereotype) is embodied in the following quote from 1899 by Frblue:
There is an eternal piece with blue on its back, jumping into the sunset on the Never-Never track. W.T. God,Success! Scythian! and Jingles
Union swaggie ibluecontinues with more recent information about the term:
Sugi suddenly appeared from the bush, unshaven, wild, haunted eyes, blue-green in color and a billican on his back. Z. Stavros,George and Widda-Wife(1981)
Alreadybluelater it is mostly carried in luggage, which is perhaps not surprising in an urban society that romanticizes its 'bush' tradition:
where are you blue No luggage? J. Duffy,Outside the pub(1963)
And Tasmania, hrbluetheTasmanian blueis:
a coarse coat of blue-grey wool, worn by those who work outdoors in bad weather.Canberra Times(November 19, 1982).
The word used to refer to another item of clothing - work jeans or coveralls - but reference evidence shows (the last mention was in 1950) that this usage is no longer current.
Its use is better knownbluefor a description of the call, specifically for a traffic violation (originally printed on blue paper):
Imagine my shock when I returned to bluey at the end of the day.Choice(April 2, 1986)
Perhaps he uses it the most in Australiablueis its odd use to describe a redhead (first recorded in 1906):
1936. A.B. Patterson,Shearerov Colt: "Blue", as the audience called him, found another winner. (All redheaded men in Australia are called 'Blue' for a reason.)
1978 R.H. Conquest,Dusty distances: I later found out he was a native of New South Wales, called Blue because of his red hair - typical Australian logic.
A more literal use of itbluein Australian English it is applied to fauna whose names begin with the color blue and which are predominantly blue in color:
in 1961BulletinMay 31st: We call them blue martins...Ornithologists call them some kind of wood swallows...They are all "blue" to us.
There are two meanings of the wordbodiin Australian English, both are probably derived from an older (now obsolete) wordbomba.
Obsoletebombaprobably comes from a British dialectBukkake"doing clumsily". In Australian English in the 1940s and 1950sbombait meant: "Something (or occasionally someone) that is false, fake, or worthless." The noun was also used as an adjective. Typical applications:
1950 F. Hardy,Power without glory: This involved adding as many "bodger" voices as possible.
in 1954from coast to coast1953-54: Well, we stuck together the whole war - we were under big names.
1966 S. Baker,Australian language: Earlier underground and military use of bodger for something false, worthless, or bad. For example, a fake certificate or a fake name.. is a bodger. so is a useless piece of hardware sold by a door-to-door salesman.
Wordbombachanged tobodi, and this is now the default form:
1975 Latch and couplings,Hr: In order to avoid any doubts in the case of taking them over in the Transport Administration, it was decided... to bring a 'wagon' bill for the tires.
1978 O. White,Silent Reach: This bunch is hot - why else did they put it over the original white duco with body panels?
in 1984Canberra TimesAugust 27: He complains .. about the accumulation of branches and the use of hundreds of "carrier" members in the electorate.
In the 1950s, a different sense of itbodicome up. The word was used to describe a young man characterized by his adherence to certain fashion trends in dress and larrikin behavior. analogous to the British "teddy bear":
in 1950Sunday Telegraph(Sydney) May 7: Weird 'body' outfit - belted velvet jacket, light blue sport coat with no tie, brown ankle trousers, Cornel Wilde shaggy haircut.
in 1951Sydney Morning HeraldFebruary 1: What with "bodgies" who grow their hair long and wear satin tops and "wogs" [see widgie] who cut their hair short and wear jeans seems to be causing gender confusion among some Australian teenagers.
That feelingbodiappears to be an abbreviation of the wordbombawith the addition- dvs (-u) suffix. An explanation for the development of the young larrikin's senses is offered inYes(Melbourne) 1983.:
Sir. Hewett says his research shows the term 'bodgie' originated around the Darlinghurst area of Sydney. It was shortly after the end of World War II, and rationing caused the black market in American textiles to flourish. "People tried to pass inferior drugs off as American, when they really weren't: that's why they called him 'bodgie,'" he says. "When some of the young men started speaking in an American accent to make themselves speak in a high pitch, they called them 'bodgies.'
That feelingbodibelongs mainly to the 1950s, butbodimeaning "false, bogus, inferior, worthless" is alive and well in Australian English.
Uncultured and unpretentious person. misplaced and abnormal person. Early evidence is mostly limited to teenage slang.
Some lexicographers suspect that the term may come from the Bogan River and western New South Wales area, but this is far from certain and seems more likely to be an unrelated coinage.
The term became popular after it was used by the fictional schoolgirl 'Kylie Mole' in the TV series in the late 1980sThe Comedy Company. yes that oneDaily Telegraph(November 29, 1988) in an article titled "Same name a real bogan," a real schoolgirl named Kylie Mole "thinks it's very sux" [ie. he thinks it's terrible] to have the same name as a TV character.
andDolly magazineThe October 1988 "Dictionary to Kylie [Mole]" has the following Kyliesque definition:boganSomeone you just don't care about. A person who wears socks incorrectly or has the same number of holes on both legs of the socks. A complete loser.”
The first evidence we could find of the term is in a surfing magazinePiecesSeptember 1985: "So what if I have mochas and wear Dr Martens (boots for all you ignorant bogans)?"
In recent years, the termboganit has become more widespread and is often found in contexts that are neither pejorative nor negative. The term has also spawned a number of other terms, includingbogan chicken,boganisme, icash-in bogan (CUB).
in 2002Yes(Melbourne) July 16: Campbell, 25, didn't grow up a bogan chicken. She grew up in a quiet middle-class family in Box Hill, where she attended a private all-girls school.
2006Canberra TimesAugust 9: We enjoy booze, pork, tank tops and no common sense or good taste... Our geographic reach is flexible. Residents of Taree and similar communities, for example, can easily qualify for Boganhood, usually with little or no cumbersome paperwork.
2013Sydney Morning HeraldDecember 7: Douglas' salvo sparked a semantic debate over the use of the word "bogan", with Palmer and others arguing that the once derogatory term had become funnier. Comprehensive. Full of love, even... "We're all mons. I'm a bogan because I'm overweight." The titular leader of his party backed it up, quickly asserting that he had "spent most of [his] life as a bogan." "All I can say is that I like crisps," Mr Palmer said. "I wear Ugg boots and drive four wheels."
2015Sunday Times(Perth) January 25: WA's mining boom has given rise to a new breed of bogan - the CUB, or cash-in bogan.
For further discussions onbogansee oursArticle about the word of the monthfrom November 2008 and an article from 2015"Bogan: From Obscurity to Australia's Most Prolific Word"in our newsletterOzwords.
Swim or bathe.Duhis a loanword from the Aboriginal language of Sydney. The earliest records show the term being used in Aboriginal Pidgin English:
in 1788Historical Records of New South Wales II: I was bathing, or I was bathing... Bogie d'oway. Those were Colby's words as he emerged from the water.
1830 R. Dawson,Current state of Australia: "Top bit, masa, boya", (he washed himself) and threw himself into the water.
By the 1840s it had naturalized into Australian English:
1841Australian Historical Records: I suppose you want your ship, sir. Yes, said Mr. Dixon. Well, said Crump, I think we should worry about that. Yes, said Mr. Dixon, you can both swim.
In Australian English a noun meaning 'swimming or bathing'. bath was formed from the verb:
1847 A. Harris,Settlers and convicts: In the cool evening he had a "bogie" (bathing) in the river.
1869 W.M.Howell, Diggings and Bush: Florence was having a lot of fun one afternoon and asked her if she (Flory) would go down in the water to get the "breast". Florrie was very confused until she discovered that "babe", in the colonial language, means bath.
in 1924Bulletin: The two of us spotted a bog boar in a 16,000 yard tank about five miles from the river.
1981 G. Mackenzie,Aurukun calendar: Breast is a final Queensland word meaning bath or bath.
Ubuild init is a "swimming or bathing hole." The verb is now rare in Australian English. To the earlier discussion aboutduhsee oursArticle Word of the month from February 2010.
A wave that forms over a submerged reef or rock sometimes (in very calm weather or at high tide) simply swells, but in other conditions it breaks strongly and creates a dangerous section of broken water. The word is now commonly used for the reef or rock itself.
1994 P. HorrobinA guide to Australia's favorite fish(ed. 7): Like most inshore saltwater predators, salmon prey around rocky headlands, offshore islands, and bobbers [etc.].
boboraprobably derived from the aboriginal language of Sydney, where it may have specifically referred to present-day Dobroyd Head, Port Jackson. The term is mainly used in New South Wales, where there are many of thembombalong the coast, often near cliffs. The term was first recorded in 1871 and is now often used in the context of surfing and fishing with the abbreviationbumibumis common: "After a day of fat waves we decided to go to the pub" (2001)PiecesAugust).
Bondi Tram: Rides like a Bondi Tram
It is used suggestively to indicate a quick departure or quick action. Bondi is a suburb of Sydney world famous for its surfing beach. The expression (first recorded in 1943) probably derives from the fact that two trams left the city together for Bondi, the first express tram to 'run' from Darlinghurst to Bondi Junction. Trams last ran the line in 1960, but the expression has remained part of Australian English.
2014Wimmera Mail Times(Horsham) April 14: The book is aimed at the young and the young at heart... "It took off like the Bondi tram," he said.
Bonzeris an adjective meaning 'extremely good, excellent, excellent'. The word is also used as a noun meaning "something (or someone) admired because it is unusually good of its kind" and as an adverb meaning "beautiful, wonderful".Bonzerprobably a corruption of the now obsolete Australian wordAnimals(with the same meaning), which may ultimately come from a British dialectbouncer"anything very large of that kind."Bonzermay also be influenced by Frenchmy dear"good" and the United StatesLook at them. In early records the spellingstripalternates withdali,Bonza, igood afternoon. Adjective, noun and adverb have been recorded since the beginning of the 20th century:
(noun) 1903Morning fast(Cairns) June 5: The Little Pony Outlaw throws his bases incredibly fast. Yuong Jack Hansen took it upon himself to take him down, but failed in every attempt. Jack states that he once got a "bonza for lunch" when he was kicked.
(surname) 1904Argus(Melbourne) July 23: Python sheds his skin... "I say, Bill, isn't his noo skin bonza?"
(pril.) 1914 B. kabelΜε Blow and kiss: He returned smiling broadly, with the conviction that [sc.rain] came down 'Bonzer'.
A fool or a simpleton? stupid man; abnormal person.Boofheadcomes fromthe head of a bison"having a head like a buffalo" (OED) ithe head of a bison'stupid, silly, silly fellow' (OED).Buffleheadhas disappeared from standard English but survives in its Australian formcephalocephalus. It spread through its usecephalocephalusas the name of a dimly lit cartoon character invented by R.B. Clark and imported to SydneyDaily mailMay 1941. For an earlier discussion of the word chArticle Word of the month from December 2009.
in 1943Australian Women's Weekly(Sydney) January 16: Several times, as his round head nodded sagely at the sergeant's explanations, the sergeant was tempted to think, "I don't think the buffet knows what I'm talking about."
2015Daily Telegraph(Sydney) April 23: For those who think we should follow the Kiwis on taxation, feel free to move over there. We take theirs so they can have theirs.
Boomerangis an Australian word that has been translated into international English. The word was borrowed from an Aboriginal language in the early years of European settlement, but the exact language is still uncertain. Early evidence suggests that it is borrowed from languages in Sydney or south of Sydney.
While you spellboomerangis now standard, in the early period the word had several different spellings:bomerang,bommerang,payment ring,boomerang,quickly,boomerang[itd].
Australian Aboriginesboomerangis a crescent-shaped wooden tool used as a projectile or club, in hunting or war and for recreational purposes. The most famous speciesboomerang, which is primarily used for recreation, can be circled in flight and returned to the wheel. Althoughboomerang- Similar objects were known in other parts of the world, and the earliest examples and greatest variety of designs were found in Australia. Conservation specimenboomerangit was found in Wyrie Swamp in South Australia and has been dated to 10,000 years old.Boomerangthey were not known throughout Australia, being absent from western South Australia, the northern Kimberley region of Western Australia, northeastern Arnhem Land and Tasmania. In some areas, boomerangs are decorated with drawings that are painted or carved into wood.
A very early Australian English expressionboomerangused figuratively and metaphorically, especially in reference to something returning to its author or retracting. These senses are now part of International English, but it is interesting to see early Australian evidence of the transfer process and figurative use:
1846Boston Daily AdvertiserMay 5: Like a strange missile thrown by an Aussie, your verbal boomerang hits you in the nose.
in 1894Bulletin(Sydney) July 7: The argument that there should be paid industrial work in prisons is a backfire boomerang.
1911Review of shepherdsMarch 15: Labor socialism legislation is boomerang legislation, generally having a negative effect and hitting those it is not intended for.
1850sboomerangalso developed as a verb in Australian English meaning 'boomerang (of someone or something). to throw (something) in the same way as a boomerang'. By the 1890s, the verbal meaning had developed another meaning: 'to return like a boomerang'. dissuade (the author); refuse." The first signs of this feeling appear in Brisbanei worknewspaper of May 16, 1891:
Australia is a big country
Sloboda humps blue
And Freedom is in Wallaby
oh you don't hear her
The boomerang is just beginning
He wants to beat the tyrants stupid.
On November 13, 1979Canberra Timesreported that "Greg Chappell's decision to send England on the road seemed to backfire".
These verbal senses of hisboomerangthey are also translated into international English. For further discussion onboomerangsee the article"Boomerang, boomerang, spirit of Australia!"in oursOzwordsbulletin
bottle: full bottle
Connoisseur, Expert - "Does Robbo know anything about cobbles? Yeah, man, it's a full bottle." The likely source of the term is a 19th century British termwithout a bottle"not good" (which is probably short for rhyming slangwithout bottle and glass'we don't have classes'). In Australiaa full bottlecame to mean "very good" and then "very good at, know (something)". Often used negatively -not a full bottlemeans "I'm not good (at something)" or "I'm not fully informed". The phrase was first recorded in the 1940s.
in 1946Western Australia(Perth) January 12: B.M. he made sure that the superior of the service had a full bottle of the art of honoring drunken generals.
in 2005Daily Telegraph(Sydney) December 8: Since her cousins are princesses in real life, Makim should master the art of pouring and drinking tea like a lady.
down the harbor
Tax avoidance scheme. At the end of the 1970s, a large numberdown the harborprograms that work in corporate Australia. The schemes involved buying a company with a large tax liability, converting the assets into cash and then "hiding" the company, for example by selling it to a bogus buyer. So the company (and often its records) disappeared completely - figuratively sent to the "bottom of the harbor" (originally Sydney Harbour) - with an unpaid tax bill. The term is usually used effectively.
in 1983Sydney Morning HeraldAugust 13: The federal government's introduction of the Unpaid Income Tax Act last year is expected to recover about $250 million in unpaid tax from downstream participants.
2006 A. Hylanddiamond due to: The Dock Cutter was a wonderful creature - part lawyer, part farmer - caught up in a tax evasion scheme at the bottom of the docks.
An employee responsible for the maintenance of the (external) enclosures of the station or the public fence against pests. That feelinglimited riderit has been recorded since the 1860s, but in recent years this occupation has become relatively rare as a result of changes in technology and modes of transportation. Since the 1980s, the term has been used for a boundary umpire in Australian rules football, a cricketer in a field near the boundary and a roving reporter at a sports match. For a more detailed discussion of its original meaninglimited riderand the later athletic senses see usArticle Word of the month from December 2010.
in 1885Illustrated Australian News(Melbourne) September 30: A border rider's duties mainly consist of riding around the fences every day, checking that everything is in order, blocking any boards that might break, removing strangers (ie runaway cattle) and, in fact, he does all he can to keep his master's stock in his own country, and all others out of it.
2012. i K. McGinnisThe path to the north: Mechanization has finally reached the open space. There were no more pumpers or marginal riders.
Bradbury: lav en Bradbury
Become an unlikely event winner. win the event coming from behind. The term is named after Steven Bradbury, who won the gold medal in speed skating at the 2002 Winter Olympics after his rivals fell. For a detailed discussion of this term, see our blog"Doing a Bradbury: An Australian Expression Originated at the Winter Olympics"(which includes a video of Bradbury's famous victory), and oursWord of the month article from August 2008.
in 2002Sydney Morning HeraldFebruary 19: Maybe Doing a Bradbury will become a common saying in Australian sport [:]Succeed only because everyone else has failed. The Socceroos need some of that luck.
2014Gazette of Sun(Melbourne) July 10: Someone would one day do a 'Bradbury' and finish third or fourth in the Brownlow Medal, but be crowned the winner.
The practice of improperly increasing the membership of a local branch of a political party in order to secure the preselection of a particular candidate. The term is a specific usagedepartmentmeans "local division of a political party". While the practice he describesstabilan brancheshas been around for a long time, the word itself was first recorded in the 1960s.
in 1968Sydney Morning HeraldNovember 6: Blaxland's banks and constituencies are building on each other and what people making the appeals say is that there has been a large-scale "crowding" of branches.
in 2002Illawarra Mercury(Wollongong) October 7: The Labor Party will crack down on branch hoarding by forcing all members to be on the electoral rolls before taking part in by-elections.
bride's nightgown: take off as a bride's nightgown
He leaves immediately. Hasty departure; at full speed. It is possible that this term was first used in horse racing to refer to a horse that has exited the starting gate too quickly. The expression plays with two different meanings of the verbI'm walking: 'must be removed' and 'move quickly'. It was recorded for the first time in the sixties of the last century.
1969 C. BrayFlower: 'Come on guys!' cried. - We walked like a bride in a nightgown!
in 2005Canberra TimesMarch 18: The irony, of course, is that their CEO is the least loyal person in the company. The first sign of a better offer, which is like a bride's nightgown.
bring a plate
An invitation to bring a plate of food to share at a social gathering or fundraiser. There are many stories of newcomers to Australia being misled by the instructionsbring a plate. As locals know, one dish does not cut itself. In recent days, requests have become more frequentladies plate, sometimes after thatgentlemen donation. It was first recorded in the 1920s.
in 1951Advocates of the sunMarch 22: Mrs. Gum offered her home on Saturday, April 14, for a social evening. Ladies bring a plate.
2013The North Star(Lismore) July 16: A visit from our friends from Tasmania. 13.00 start of the match. Please bring a plate. All welcome.
Bronco. The story of wild horses in the Australian countryside is brought vividly to life in Banjo Paterson's 1890 poem "The Man from Snowy River": "There was a commotion at the station, for word came/ That the foal of old sorrow had gone ,/ And joined the wild horses.' These "herds of wild bush" were known asbrumbiesin Australia from the early 1870s.
The origin of this term is still disputed.E.M. Creep inAustralian race(1887) donorantennameans "wild" in the language of the Pitjara (or Pidjara or Bidjara) people of the area at the headwaters of the Warrego and Nogoa rivers in south-west Queensland. This is the general view of the older evidence, but the linguistic evidence was not subsequently confirmed. This derivation was popularized by Paterson in the introduction to his poem 'Brumby's run' printed in 1894. It is a common suggestion thatsmellyderived from a proper nameBrumby. This theory was also recorded by E.E. Morris in Australian English 1898: "Another origin, however, is given by an old resident of New South Wales, a lady named Brumby, namely, "that in the early days of that colony, Lieutenant Brumby, who was on the staff of one of the governors introduced some very fine horses, and that some of their descendants, which were allowed to run wild, became the ancestors of the wild horses of New South Wales and Queensland.' Over the years the Brumbys have been regarded as a source. Recently, Dymphna Lonergan has suggested that the word derives from an Irish wordbrom, the plural of a young horse or foal. For a more detailed discussion of the origin of the termsmellysee the article"Wild horses run wild"in oursOzwordsbulletin
1871Maitland MercuryOctober 10: A pasture, lightly wooded, and from which a tenant would expect to extract a thousand pounds for his good will, without a hoof upon it, from a singular form of crossing, suddenly turns into a mass of brush, suitable for a mob of "Brumbies."
2010. i K. McGinnisWildhorse Creek: The earth is rotten with humus.
Disappointed hope. without perspective. Often abbreviated toBuckleys.One explanation for the origin of the term is that it comes from the name of convict William Buckley, who escaped from Port Phillip in 1803 and lived for 32 years with Aboriginal people in southern Victoria. Another explanation links the phrase to the Melbourne firm of Buckley and Nunn (founded 1851), suggesting that the pun developed on the "Nunn" part of the company name (with "none") and that this led to the sentence 'there' are only two chances, Buckley's and none." This second explanation appears to have arisen after the original sentence was established. For an earlier discussion of the origin of the phraseBuckley's optionsee the article'Bucley's'in oursOzwordsbulletin
in 1887Melbourne PunchSeptember 22: In our sports sections, the Fitzroy team highlights his nameferns. It should beBuckley.Olympushe explains that he changed it because he didn't want Fitzroy's people to have "Buckley's chance".
2015Australian Economic Review(Sydney) March 7: If I lose this job, I have Buckley's chances of getting another.
A pair of men's swimming trunks made of elastic fabric. The Australian term is probably a variant of International Englishgrape smugglersfor such clothes.Parrot Smugglersis one of a number of Australian words for this garment (others includebathing,i,speedos,swimmers, iReceived).budgieis an abbreviation ofparrot -from Kamilaroi (an Aboriginal language of northern New South Wales and southern Queensland), and refers to a small green and yellow parrot that has become a popular cage bird. The term is a humorous allusion to the appearance of clothing.Parrot Smugglersfirst recorded in the late 1990s. More about the word chArticle Word of the month from December 2013.
in 2002Gazette of Sun(Melbourne) November 23: Nothing stands between you and a continent made entirely of icebergs except the Southern Ocean. That, and a tight pair of Speedos so tight you can see every last bit of hair we brown boys know - not so fondly - as parrot smugglers!
2015Sydney Morning HeraldMarch 30: Real estate types joined investment bankers on Sunday as they swapped costumes with parrot smugglers to raise more than $600,000 and raise awareness for cerebral palsy.
A type of fine dirt or dust dust often found in inland Australia. Roads or paths coveredbikovska asksit can pose a danger to animals and vehicles that can get stuck in it. It's called enoughbikovska asksbecause it resembles the soil that the cattle pumped in the pens. The word can also be used as a polite way of expressionshit. Both meanings of the word were first recorded in the 1920s.
in 1929News-Subscription to pictures(Adelaide) December 7: Crossing Lake Eyre... This "bull" dust can be about two meters deep and thickened on the surface making penetration difficult.
1954 J. ClearyA climate of courage: "I'm seventy-five percent Irish," said Mick. "You're seventy-five percent wimps," Joe said.
2011 M GrovesOutback liv: When some of the loose dust looked too intimidating, Joe fired up the engine and drove at a speed that didn't give us time to descend.
bull's roar: not within a bull's roar
Not close - "The club is not ready to win the Premier League this season." A bull's roar can be heard quite a distance away, so that's itnot within the bull's roaris to be at a great distance. The phrase is sometimes used without the negative word - to bein the midst of a bull's roarmeans you are not too far. A much finer unit of measurement is expressed by a similar Australian terminside the bird the bee. The phrase was first recorded in the 1930s.
in 1936Chronicle(Adelaide) September 3: Knew horse, trainer and rider were fine and sensed danger in intervention. I told him that nothing would go into Agricol's "bull's roar" to upset him, and that's what happened.
in 2005Western Australia(Perth) April 18: Again, through no fault of the sometimes very helpful McGuire, no recent entrants have managed to win a serious amount.
Incapacitated, exhausted, broken (as in 'calve cork'). It comes frompowdermeans "death" in the Yagara Aboriginal language of the Brisbane area. It found its way into 19th-century Australian pidgin, where the expressiongo wrongit meant "to die". The expression is often found in this phrase, where it now has many meanings: "to be financially bankrupt, to be useless. to fail, to break down, to break." These metaphorical meanings of itorappeared at the end of the 19th century.
in 1885Souvenir of Australian printers: He was forced to quit when his musical talent was probably "affected" by too much of a confectionery occupation.
2006Australian(Sydney) April 27: Sydney lad Scott Reid was a name on every recruiting list but was rushed to hospital with a sprained ankle.
An amphibious monster that supposedly inhabits inland waterways. His descriptions vary widely. Some give him a terrible human head and an animal body. Many descriptions emphasize its danger to humans and intense flowering at night. Inhabits inland rivers, swamps and billabongs. The word comes from the Wathaurong Aboriginal language in Victoria.Bipfirst recorded in the 1840s. For a more detailed discussion of this word, see the article"Bunyip is close to us and gets on his tail"in oursOzwordsbulletin
1845Sydney Morning HeraldJuly 12: On the bone he showed an intelligent variety, immediately recognizing it as belonging to the "Bunyip" he said he had seen.
2015News of the Southern Highlands(Bowral): Everyone knows that rabbits live in Wingecarribee Marsh, the problem is that there are quite a few different theories about this elusive animal, all of which seem to revolve around how bad visitors had it in the marsh before they heard the distinctive roar .
burl: give me burl
Dare to try. try something. This is an Australian variation of a standard English phraseAttempt.Knotcomes from a dialectal English verb (especially Scottish and Northern English).united'spin' or 'spin' and the corresponding noun 'quick turn'.Give him a chancefirst recorded at the beginning of the 20th century.
1978 Mullally & SextonLibra and Capricorn: There should be fish there, I say. We'll give him a fight, shall we?
2006Hermes(Hobart) January 13: I've never been on a boat trip. We wanted to try it out and see how it goes. We would do it again.
bush week: what do you think it is, bush week?
Do you think I'm stupid? An exasperated response to someone who thinks you're stupid - “You're going to charge mehow much? What do you think this is, patron week?'Bush weekIt is the time when people from the countryside come to the city, originally where the products from the bush etc appeared and it is also a celebration in the town or city with products, activities etc. These sensesbush weekdate from the beginning of the 20th century. The phrase originally implied the idea that country folk were easily fooled by more sophisticated stars. The speaker resents being mistaken for a cottage. The phrase was first recorded in the 1940s.
1949 L. GlassopLucky Palms: Every minute of the day I get clever quips like you're trying to throw one at me. What do you think it is? Bush Week?
2012 J. MurrayLullaby for DEPARTURE: They have already warned them about breastfeeding ... 'What do you think it is?' The owner said as she glared at them all. "Bloody Bush Week or something? Hit it, you two!"