Monday, March 22, 2010

The Origin Of The Word Boogie

Was taking a wander through The Straight Dope and came across the origin of the word boogie (in its terpsichorean meaning).

Working backward, boogie comes from the shortening of "boogie woogie". Boogie woogie was coined as music made by black people ("bogeys"). Bogey was a name given to black people because they were equated with bogeys — in the "bogeyman" sense of the word. Before a "bogey" had a more supernatural connotation, it was "bugger" — in the sodomy sense. Before bugger was used to define sexual deviance, it was used to define spiritual deviance, in the French "bougre", a 14th century word for heretic: at the time there was a heretical cult called The Boulgres. The Boulgres were from a place that the Romans called Bulgarus... Bulgaria.

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