Linguistic and Anthropological Journeys

Here to answer questions on the fields of Anthopology and Linguistics

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Word Origin of the Week 3: Dude
Linguistics Timothy Patrick Snyder Anthr
wickedknightx asks:

What is the origin of the word "dude?"
The first usage of dude was in 1873, making it a fairly recent term.  It first showed up in writing in 1876, and slowly changed in meaning and usage.  Originally it was New York slang meaning a fastidious man, some sources even implied homosexuality.  It had to do with a man from the city who would act as if he was better than others.  Later when these types of people would do work in the country areas, expanding the meaning of dude.

When wealthy city-slickers, or dudes, wanted to go and experience the country life, Dude Ranches came about.  Then it became important in the California surfing societies, and after that, it became common in most American dialects.  It still is supposed to refer to males, though there is a greater degree of gender neutrality in the term.  In fact the two feminine forms, dudine and dudess, both of which fell out of usage, were replaced by the pseudo-French Dudette.
 T. Patrick.

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It's such a beautiful sounding word. What might the origins of "Anonymous" be?

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