This is another re-post, from way back in 2011…and I couldn’t resist sharing it again now, given that the most famous use of fiddle de dee is undoubtedly from Gone with the Wind, and I’m currently editing my upcoming novel, Dreams of Savannah that has a very similar setting. 😃 So on to the words!
Everyone knows what a fiddle is, right? Or what it means to fiddle. It’s a Violin. More, it’s a colloquial use (that usually denotes the rural or country or south) at this point. Why? Interestingly, the word fiddle has been used since the late 14th century (!!!), so it’s a perfectly legitimate use. Why the connotation? (Let’s keep in mind that I LOVE what has become termed
“”fiddling.” I like the more formal Violin too, but the fiddle is so much
Interestingly, it’s been
relegated to such use largely because of the other words containing fiddle that mean “nonsense.” Funny, huh? We’ve got fiddle-faddle used
since 1610 for “nonsense.” Fiddlesticks has meant the same since 1620.
Fiddlededee combines the nonsensical with contempt and has since 1784.
From what I can tell, there’s no particular reason why “fiddle” got used in all these words, but it’s certainly had an effect on the root word.
Fiddle now has associations with nonsense.
Maybe that’s why I like it so well. 😏

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