A paper of tea and a loaf of bread I found in a higgledy-piggledy mixture of clothes, books and papers.
All his old values had been kicked into higgledy-piggledy confusion.
I have heard, by roundabout channel, that Herschel says my book "is the law of higgledy-piggledy."
Here we disembarked, higgledy-piggledy, just as we had embarked.
She plumped into it higgledy-piggledy and curled up, an unsightly, humpful excrescence upon its suave surface.
The result was that when it was finished it presented a sort of 'higgledy-piggledy' appearance.
And here's a Noah's Ark, full of higgledy-piggledy animals—why, what are you doing here?
Among the many industries the higgledy-piggledy Shop boasted was that of laundering fine linen and laces.
The effect would be ludicrous, and give the beds a higgledy-piggledy appearance.
She went in the front door of a cheap boarding house not far from the higgledy-piggledy Shop.
"confusedly, hurriedly," 1590s, a "vocal gesture" [OED] probably formed from pig and the animal's suggestions of mess and disorder. Reduplications in the h-/p- pattern are common (e.g. hanky-panky, hocus-pocus, hinch(y)-pinch(y), an obsolete children's game, attested from c.1600).
Edward Moor, "Suffolk Words and Phrases" (London, 1823), quotes a list of reduplications from Ray's "Collection of English Words" (1768), all said to "signify any confusion or mixture;" the list has higgledy-piggledy, hurly-burly, hodge-podge, mingle-mangle, arsy-versy, kim-kam, hub-bub, crawly-mauly, and hab-nab. "To which he might have added," Moor writes, crincum-crankum, crinkle-crankle, flim-flam, fiddle-faddle, gibble-gabble, harum-scarum, helter-skelter, hiccup-suickup, hocus-pocus, hotch-potch, hugger-mugger, hum-drum, hum-strum, hurry-scurry, jibber-jabber, prittle-prattle, shilly-shally, tittle-tattle, and topsy-turvy. Many of them seem to date to the 16th century.
Confused; chaotic; messy: I was walking in dark corridors that were all higgledypiggledy
[1598+; origin uncertain; perhaps fr the disorderly herding configuration of pigs]