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Gadzooks

[gad-zooks]
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interjection Archaic.
  1. (used as a mild oath.)
Also Odzooks, Odzookers.

Origin of Gadzooks

1645–55; perhaps representing God's hooks (i.e., the nails of Christ's Cross); cf. Gad
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Examples from the Web for gadzooks

Historical Examples

  • Well, this Mr. Summerfield is a brave Fellow, Gadzooks he is.

    The City Bride (1696)

    Joseph Harris

  • Gadzooks, Jenny, will I never get sense or liberality into your head?

  • The poor fish claps his hand to his forehead and cries 'Gadzooks!

  • Gadzooks, a most ingenious contrivance—if we were to go through with it.

    Love for Love

    William Congreve

  • Gadzooks, neighbors, but I shouldn't be a whit surprised if that old party is a duke in disguise!

    The Frontiersmen</p>

    Charles Egbert Craddock


British Dictionary definitions for gadzooks

gadzooks

interjection
  1. archaic a mild oath

Word Origin

C17: perhaps from God's hooks (the nails of the cross); see Gad 1
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012

Word Origin and History for gadzooks

1690s, from some exclamation, possibly God's hooks (nails of the cross) or even God's hocks. Cf. godsookers (1670s). The use of Gad for God (cf. egad) is first attested 1590s. Among other similar phraseological combinations (all from 17c.) were gadsbobs, gadslid, and gadsniggers; in all of which the second elements are sometimes said to be mere fanciful syllables.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

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