hobbledehoys

hobbledehoy

[hob-uhl-dee-hoi]
noun
an awkward, ungainly youth.

Origin:
1530–40; variant of hoberdyhoy, alliterative compound, equivalent to hoberd (variant of Roberd Robert) + -y2 + -hoy for boy (b > h for alliteration; see hob2)

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World English Dictionary
hobbledehoy (ˌhɒbəldɪˈhɔɪ)
 
n
archaic, dialect or a clumsy or bad-mannered youth
 
[C16: from earlier hobbard de hoy, of uncertain origin]

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Word Origin & History

hobbledehoy
"clumsy or awkward youth," 1540, first element is probably hob in its sense of "clown, prankster" (see hobgoblin), the second element seems to be M.Fr. de haye "worthless, untamed, wild," lit. "of the hedge."
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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