follow Dictionary.com

Today's Word of the Day means...

gandy dancer

[gan-dee] /ˈgæn di/
noun, Railroads Slang.
1.
a member of a railroad section gang that lays or maintains track.
Origin
1915-1920
1915-20; dancer apparently in reference to the rhythmic movements characteristic of such work; gandy is unexplained; the existence of a Gandy Manufacturing Company, which supposedly produced tools used by section gangs, has not been substantiated
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
Cite This Source
British Dictionary definitions for gandy dancer

gandy dancer

/ˈɡændɪ/
noun
1.
(slang) a railway track maintenance worker
Word Origin
C20: of uncertain origin
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
Cite This Source
Word Origin and History for gandy dancer
gandy dancer
"railroad maintenance worker," 1923, Amer.Eng. slang, of unknown origin; dancer perhaps from movements required in the work, gandy perhaps from using tools from the Gandy Manufacturing Co. of Chicago, U.S.A.
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
Cite This Source
Slang definitions & phrases for gandy dancer

gandy dancer

noun phrase
  1. A railroad track worker (1915+ Hoboes, railroad & lumberjacks)
  2. Any manual laborer, esp a pick-and-shovel digger (1940s+ Loggers)
  3. A seller of novelties (1930s+ Carnival)

[origin unknown; a 1935 source says that the third sense was ''mentioned by George Borrow in his descriptions of early nineteenth-century street fairs'']


The Dictionary of American Slang, Fourth Edition by Barbara Ann Kipfer, PhD. and Robert L. Chapman, Ph.D.
Copyright (C) 2007 by HarperCollins Publishers.
Cite This Source

Word of The Day

Difficulty index for gandy dancer

Few English speakers likely know this word

Word Value for gandy

0
0
Scrabble Words With Friends