Date: Wed, 27 Sep 1995 22:03:30 -0500


Subject: ? Phrase: "Johnny at the rathole" (fwd)

---------- Forwarded message ----------

Date: Wed, 27 Sep 1995 10:28:29 -0700 (PDT)

From: Serra Coop. Library System serra[AT SYMBOL GOES HERE]CLASS.ORG

To: Stumpers-list Stumpers-l[AT SYMBOL GOES HERE]CRF.CUIS.EDU

Subject: ? Phrase: "Johnny at the rathole"

We have another colloquial expression for which the patron wants to know

the *origin*!!!! We know the meaning; _Dictionary of Contemporary Slang_

defines it as meaning "an exceptionally enthusiastic, greedy person".

DCS cites Runyon, Damon. _Runyon on Broadway_ (Constable, 1950, no page #)

which we do not own.

Wall/Words & Phrases Index has references to _Dialect Notes_ 3:545+, 1911

and 5:167, 1922, which we do not have access to either at our library or

the two university libraries locally.

Patron heard as a child and still uses it. Her parents were of Irish

ancestry and she grew up in Ohio & Oklahoma; she thought it might relate

to the potato famine. Does anyone have access to the above sources or

something else that might help us out? TIA

Judy Swink/serra[AT SYMBOL GOES HERE]