Dictionary of the Vulgar Tongue – Day Twelve

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

Bang Up

This phrase is defined by the dictionary as meaning “Quite the thing, hellish fine. Well done. Compleat. Dashing”, which is interesting perhaps as it’s almost the sort of term that could be used today in modern slang. Indeed, there are still references made to “bang up good”, although I’m not sure whether that’s a continuation of the older term or by chance it has been reintroduced. I like the idea that it’s a phrase that has been in use for centuries though.