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by hook or by crook

This etymology really needs to be cleaned up and simplified. And I also really hope it's not a copyright violation. ---> Tooironic 13:34, 11 July 2011 (UTC)

  • More to the point, it's complete bollocks. I would ditch it all and just say "origin unknown". Ƿidsiþ 13:52, 11 July 2011 (UTC)
EtymOnline says "By hook or by crook (late 14c.) probably alludes to tools of professional thieves". Equinox 14:05, 11 July 2011 (UTC)
Does Crystal's By Hook or by Crook language travelogue have some coverage? DCDuring TALK 14:58, 11 July 2011 (UTC)
Wikipedia provides this link, which provides credence for the etym, at least as a theory. Also this one (see under "common of estovers"). Several sources refer to Wycliffe's Controversial Tracts as the earliest usage (c.1380) - though the first link above says otherwise. — Pingkudimmi 16:25, 11 July 2011 (UTC)


Etymology unknown

Take Our Word For It says haw < hey or hayte, but Random House Dictionary says haw < hawen or hawian. There is no hàwian on Wiktionary but it's cognate to cavere. Are there Germanic cognates? Webster's Online Dictionary says nothing for haw for horses, but has hühott, hu, huhau, and hue, at gee. Are these the same haw or are they whoa, from ho? Lysdexia 21:50, 11 July 2011 (UTC)


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