Skedaddle

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9 comments on this post.
  1. Yobgod Ababua:

    “I can’t think of an instance of an entire phrase (such as “Let’s get out of here”) being slurred into a single word.”

    As I was growing up, the canonical example of a Philly accent was usually given as the following exchange:

    “Djeet yet?” “No. Djoo?”

  2. sandi sue:

    Thank you for the info on skedaddle. My Irish grandmother used this expression when chasing my brother and I out of the kitchen when we were in her way. Am working on the geneaology and you were very helpful with an explanation of the derivation. Great web site. Love your sense of humor. Thank you

  3. MarkB:

    Regarding the commenters reference to ‘Djoo?’

    In Annie Hall, Woody Allen tells his friend about an encounter with an acquaintance who is an ‘anti-Semite.’ When asked if he had eaten lunch, the man had answered “No, ‘Jew?” ;-)

  4. GlynA:

    “I can’t think of an instance of an entire phrase (such as “Let’s get out of here”) being slurred into a single word.”

    How about “goodbye” as a contraction of “God be with you”?

  5. admin:

    Good point.

  6. Casey Collins:

    In Uncle Remus XVIII Brer Rabbit loses, through subterfuge, the race (and the $100 purse) with the terrapin: “en sho nuff, Brer Tarrypin tie de pu’s ‘roun his neck and skaddle* off home.” Joel Chandler Harris posits that “It may be interesting to note here that in all probability the word “skedaddle,” about which there was some controversy during the war, came from the Virginia negro’s use of “skaddle,” which is a corruption of “scatter.” The matter, however, is hardly worth referring to.”

  7. Ken:

    I ran across this site and word while web surfing. I am from an old southern family and have a reasonable theory about this word although I don’t recall ever having heard anyone say where it came from. My Scotch-Irish family used this word occasionally and my English/German/Cherokee family much less so. I have always heard it used in a tongue-in-cheek context even among less eloquent speakers. It was also usually used contextually as “gather up your things and skedaddle”. My guess is it is from a Gaelic double-time march cadence such as Clee Deasil “Left Right ” OR Clee Da “Left Two ” with the boot step sound in the pause making the “ddle” sound.

  8. Ken:

    My previous comment should have “pause pause” after the Clee Deasil and Clee Da – I put the pause in brackets and for some reason the type interface left it out. Anyway, whatever the etymology of “Skedaddle”, I believe it was considered slang from the beginning such as “Jiggy” in modern usage.

  9. German:

    it’s exactly the way I figured it out to…Thanks Yobgod!

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