Stephen Goranson has provided verifiable evidence from 1884: an antedating of two years.
A ‘gangster’ is somebody who is part of a criminal gang. Despite such gangs having been around for a very long time, this word for an individual member […]
Hugooooo provided verifiable evidence from 1977.
When the OED added its entry for ‘party animal’, meaning ‘an exuberant reveler’, in 2005, the earliest quotation we were able to include was from 1982, but we knew that the term could almost certainly […]
Slightly earlier evidence from 1985 was supplied by ‘hugooooo’ and ‘hb1616’.
‘Blues and twos’ is a British slang term referring to the blue flashing lights and two-tone siren of a police car or other emergency vehicle which is […]
Bryn supplied an example from 1947.
‘Rock paper scissors’ is the most common English name for this game of symbolic hand gestures, but according to the OED’s current evidence, it isn’t the earliest one. Scissors paper stone (1932), […]
Gary Phillips provided information that enabled us to find verifiable evidence from 1970.
Now familiar from police procedurals and television crime dramas, the term ‘SOCO’ (scenes of the crime officer) originated in the jargon of Scotland Yard. The first example in OED’s entry is from […]
Hugo provided verifiable evidence from 1966.
This colloquialism for ‘extremely easy’ was added to the dictionary in 2002. OED editors posted an appeal for earlier evidence in our print newsletter back then, and we haven’t given up. We’re…