And so reported The New York Times in an 1877 book review about 17th-century scoundrel James II of England.
Given a choice between the scoundrel and the scold, who might the people go for?
As Samuel Johnson wrote, “patriotism is the last refuge of a scoundrel.”
If patriotism is the last refuge of a scoundrel, then maybe talk radio is the first refuge of felon.
Having just been burned by a scoundrel, I naturally was skeptical, and I Googled the caller and his resort.
I'll go straight to Mr. Mellish, and tell him what you've said, you scoundrel!
That scoundrel Corney has been about some mischief—damn him!
It was thought the scoundrel had sailed for England under an assumed name.
Glendenning turned round and shouted, 'What do you mean by that, you scoundrel?'
Well, personally I fail to see why Fagin is any more of a scoundrel than some of these other fellows in gilt epaulets.
1580s, skowndrell, of unknown origin. One suggestion is Anglo-French escoundre (Old French escondre) "to hide, hide oneself," from Vulgar Latin *excondere, from Latin condere "to hide" (see abscond). The main objection to this theory is that hundreds of years lie between the two words.