Dictionary of the Vulgar Tongue – Day 135

The Dictionary of the Vulgar Tongue was first published at the end of the eighteenth century, and given that the current health crisis is giving too much time to read books, I thought I’d pick a daily word from it until I got bored….


This is a lovely word that I’ve heard before, but I never knew its meaning. It’s defined by the dictionary as “a nickname for an apothecary”, although today it means a small pot which is used by apothecaries and that was its original meaning as well. The word origin is thought to be middle English and around the fifteenth century, simply a combining of the words ‘galley’ and ‘pot’, with galley being in reference to the boats which brought them over from where they were produced in the Mediterranean.

There’s a Gallipot Inn in Hartfield, which is on Gallypot Street, and I rather like that pub name.