linsey woolsey


noun, plural linsey-woolseys.
a coarse fabric woven from linen warp, or sometimes cotton, and coarse wool filling.
a garment made from this.
Archaic. any mixture that is incongruous or of poor quality; jumble: That last speech was a linsey-woolsey of stale platitudes.
Also called linsey.

1425–75; late Middle English lynsy wolsye literally, linen cloth, wool cloth, equivalent to lyn (Old English līn; see linen) + -sy, variant of say cloth (< Old French saie; akin to Medieval Latin sagia kind of weave, Latin sagum cloak) + wol wool + -sye, variant of say Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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World English Dictionary
linsey-woolsey (ˈlɪnzɪˈwʊlzɪ)
1.  a thin rough fabric of linen warp and coarse wool or cotton filling
2.  a strange nonsensical mixture or confusion
[C15: probably from Lindsey, Suffolk village where the fabric was first made + wool (with rhyming suffix -sey)]

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 10th Edition
2009 © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
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Word Origin & History

late 15c., originally a cloth woven from linen and wool, the words altered for the sake of a jingling sound. Linsey is attested from mid-15c., apparently meaning "coarse linen fabric."
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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