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When was the term "dude" was first used in speech?

Tags: money, education, science
Asked by Vikram, 15 Aug '09 03:18 pm
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Answers (1)


Originally it was applied to fancy-dressed city folk who went out west on vacation. In this usage it first appears in the 1870s. The origin of the word is not known, but a number of other cowboy terms were borrowed by early settlers from American Spanish. 1883, "fastidious man," New York City slang of unknown origin. The vogue word of 1883, originally used in ref. to the devotees of the "aesthetic" craze, later applied to city slickers, especially Easterners vacationing in the West (dude ranch first recorded 1921). Surfer slang application to any male is first recorded c.1970. Female form dudine (1883) has precedence over dudess (1885). For a lightweight word denoting attention to fashion and a devotion to "cool," "dude" has proven remarkably durable. After cruising through the 1960's and 70's as a low-level slang term, "dude" hit the big time again in the 1980's courtesy of the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, and is still going strong today.
Answered by Rupa Swaroop, 15 Aug '09 03:30 pm

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