beloved one; darling; sweetheart.
The common noun jo, “darling, sweetheart,” is Scots, a variant of joy. Jo occurs in many noted Scots authors, including Robert Burns’s “John Anderson my jo!,” Sir Walter Scott, and Robert Louis Stevenson’s “Just twa o’ my old joes, my hinny dear” (“Just two of my old sweethearts, my honey dear”). Jo entered English in the first half of the 16th century.
… her ne’er-do-well jo had provided her with a rope-ladder during the forenoon service, by which she had descended into his arms when she believed the house to be all at rest …
John Anderson, my jo!
excessively decorative and sentimental, as the pictures or designs on some boxes of chocolate candy; prettified: decorous, chocolate-box paintings of Victorian garden parties.
The compound noun chocolate box dates from around 1865 and has the literal meaning “a package, box, or tin filled with chocolates.” Such packages or boxes are typically decorated in a showy, gaudy, sentimental style. By the end of the 19th century, the compound noun acquired the function of an attributive adjective, hyphenated as chocolate-box, meaning “excessively decorative and sentimental.”
It works best when everyone stops worrying about conjuring a chocolate-box version of the past and allows the duo’s raw talent to shine through.
But if it’s verdant folds, chocolate-box villages and a taste of eternal England that you want, try East Kent ….
the quality that makes a thing what it is; the essential nature of a thing.
Quiddity, with its conflicting senses, “the essential nature of a thing” and “a trifling nicety of subtle distinction,” ultimately comes from the Medieval Latin noun quidditās (stem quidditāt-), literally “whatness,” formed from the Latin interrogative pronoun quid “what” and the abstract noun suffix –itās, the source via Old French –ité of the English suffix –ity. Quiddity entered English at the end of the 14th century.
… that gift for creating idioms may be a clue to the quiddity of his genius.
If, argues he, we could only find out exactly what humour is ‘in its quiddity,’ we could keep ourselves humorous, or at any rate bring up our children to be so.
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