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mossback

[maws-bak, mos-] /ˈmɔsˌbæk, ˈmɒs-/
noun
1.
Informal.
  1. a person holding very antiquated notions; reactionary.
  2. a person living in the backwoods; rustic.
2.
an old turtle.
3.
Angling. a large and old fish, as a bass.
4.
a wild bull or cow.
Origin
1870-1875
1870-75, Americanism; moss + back1
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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British Dictionary definitions for mossback

mossback

/ˈmɒsˌbæk/
noun (US & Canadian)
1.
an old turtle, shellfish, etc, that has a growth of algae on its back
2.
(informal) a provincial or conservative person
Derived Forms
mossbacked, adjective
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
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Word Origin and History for mossback
n.

"conservative," 1874, especially of poor whites from Carolina, originally (1872) in reference to those who hid out to avoid service in the Confederate army (and would have stayed out till the moss grew on their backs); from moss + back (n.).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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Slang definitions & phrases for mossback

mossback

noun

A very conservative person; fogy: The real mossbacks will vote for the governor

[1878+; said to have been a description of a group of poor white Carolina swamp dwellers who had lived among the cypresses until the moss grew on their backs]


The Dictionary of American Slang, Fourth Edition by Barbara Ann Kipfer, PhD. and Robert L. Chapman, Ph.D.
Copyright (C) 2007 by HarperCollins Publishers.
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Word Value for mossback

18
21
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