Thursday, February 03, 2005


Pronunciation: 'ji[ng]-(")gO-"i-z&m
Function: noun
: extreme chauvinism or nationalism marked especially by a belligerent foreign policy

Example sentence:
Albert Einstein found German jingoism in the 1930s so objectionable that he left his homeland never to return.

Did you know?
"Jingoism" originated during the Russo-Turkish War of 1877-1878, when many British citizens were hostile toward Russia and felt Britain should intervene in the conflict. Supporters of the cause expressed their sentiments in a music-hall ditty with this refrain:

"We don't want to fight, yet by jingo if we do,
We've got the ships, we've got the men,
We've got the money, too!"

Someone holding the attitude implied in the song became known as a "jingo" or "jingoist," and the attitude itself was dubbed "jingoism." The "jingo" in the tune is probably a euphemism for "Jesus."

No comments: