Skip To Content
    Sep 25, 2014

    21 Delightful Obsolete Terms For "Drunk" It's High Time We Revived

    I'm off to get well and truly pifflicated.

    1.

    Twitter: @craptaxidermy / Via Oxford Dictionary Of Modern Slang / Drunktionary.

    1930s.

    2.

    Twitter: @craptaxidermy / Via Oxford Dictionary Of Modern Slang / Drunktionary.

    1700s.

    3.

    Via Oxford English Dictionary / Drunktionary.

    1700s.

    4.

    Twitter: @craptaxidermy / Via Oxford English Dictionary

    1800s.

    5.

    books.google.co.uk / Via Word Origins...And How We Know Them: Etymology for Everyone

    1800s.

    6.

    Twitter: @craptaxidermy / Via Jedburgh Justice and Kentish Fire: The Origins of English in Ten Phrases and Expressions

    1800s. Refers to the centuries-old English tradition of "mop fairs", which started out as opportunities for domestic staff to offer themselves up for hire, but gradually became associated with boozy debauchery.

    7.

    Twitter: @craptaxidermy / Via Dictionary of American Slang

    1800s.

    8.

    Twitter: @craptaxidermy / Via Oxford English Dictionary

    1700s.

    9.

    Twitter: @craptaxidermy / Via Jedburgh Justice and Kentish Fire: The Origins of English in Ten Phrases and Expressions

    1800s. Bungay is a market town on the Norfolk-Suffolk border, and "go to Bungay!" may once have been a variant on 'Go to hell!", but no-one knows for sure.

    10.

    Features in the immense list of synonyms for drunk that Benjamin Franklin wrote for the Pennsylvania Gazette in 1737. Other phrases in the list include "His head is full of bees", and "Been among the Philistines".

    11.

    Twitter: @craptaxidermy / Via A Dictionary of Victorian Slang / publicdomainreview.org

    1800s.

    12.

    13.

    Twitter: @craptaxidermy / Via Jedburgh Justice and Kentish Fire: The Origins of English in Ten Phrases and Expressions

    1700s. Another one from Benjamin Franklin's Drinker's Dictionary. One explanation is that pharaoh is a misinterpretation of "faro", which was a popular form of Belgian beer at the time.

    14.

    Twitter: @craptaxidermy / Via A Dictionary of Slang and Unconventional English / books.google.co.uk

    1800s.

    15.

    Twitter: @craptaxidermy / Via Jedburgh Justice and Kentish Fire: The Origins of English in Ten Phrases and Expressions

    1600s. The origin is mysterious, but may have been a reference to someone drunk on French wine or brandy.

    16.

    17.

    18.

    Twitter: @craptaxidermy / Via Word Origins...And How We Know Them: Etymology for Everyone

    1800s.

    19.

    20.

    Twitter: @craptaxidermy / Via Jedburgh Justice and Kentish Fire: The Origins of English in Ten Phrases and Expressions

    1940s. Originally a nineteenth century hunting term meaning fully armed and equipped, this phrase found its way into the gambling world before coming to refer to drunkenness.

    21.

    Twitter: @craptaxidermy / Via The Dictionary of American Slang / Drunktionary

    1900s.

    Photos via CrapTaxidermy, the blog which is now a book, called Much Ado About Stuffing.

    Post inspired by Jedburgh Justice and Kentish Fire: The Origins of English in Ten Phrases and Expressions, the forthcoming book by Paul Anthony Jones.

    BuzzFeed Daily

    Keep up with the latest daily buzz with the BuzzFeed Daily newsletter!

    Newsletter signup form