‘a safe pair of hands’: meanings and origin

UK, 1921—someone who is capable, reliable or trustworthy in the management of a situation—1854: originated in cricket, with reference to skill and reliability in catching a ball—later applied to rugby players (1894) and to goalkeepers in soccer (1899)

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Australian terms referring to left-handedness

left-handed: ‘molly-handed’, ‘mauldy’, ‘molly-dooked’—a left-handed person: ‘molly-hander’, ‘mauldy’, ‘molly-dook’—‘molly’ and ‘mauldy’ may derive from ‘mauley’, denoting the hand or fist; ‘dook’ is ‘duke’, denoting the hand or fist

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‘dinnyhayser’: meanings (and origin?)

Australia, 1878—a knockout blow; anything of exceptional size or force—allegedly alludes to a boxer called Dinny Hayes—but no evidence supports this allegation

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‘segocia’: meaning and origin

a pal, a mate, a good friend—Ireland, 1917—perhaps an anglicised form of Irish ‘Seo Dhuitse’ (‘Here you are’) or perhaps an anglicised form of French ‘Mon cher gosse’ (‘My dear child’)

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‘butterfingered’ | ‘butterfingers’

‘butterfingered’, adjective, 1615: having a tendency to let things fall or slip from one’s hands—also (English, regional) unable or unwilling to handle hot items with one’s bare hands—‘butterfingers’, noun, 1835: a butterfingered person, a person with a tendency to let things fall or slip from his or her hands

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‘every Preston Guild’: meaning and origin

UK, 1892—very rarely—refers to the fact that Preston Guilds are held only once every twenty years—Preston is the administrative centre of Lancashire, a county of north-western England, on the Irish Sea

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