Jack Frost

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Jack Frost on the cover of a piece of sheet music called Little Jack Frost Quadrilles (1863).[n 1]

From Jack (placeholder or conventional name for any man) + frost.[1]


Proper noun[edit]

Jack Frost

  1. A personification of frosty weather or winter.
    Synonym: Old Man Winter
    • 1740, “Of Mirth and Jollity, Christmas Gambols, Eating, Drinking, Kissing, and Other Diversions of the Holydays”, in Round about Our Coal-fire, or Christmas Entertainments [...], London: [] J. Roberts [], OCLC 29305613; republished as Christmas Entertainments: [], London: Field & Tuer, Ye Leadenhall Presse; Simpkin, Marshall & Co.; Hamilton, Adams & Co., 1883, OCLC 29026761, page 6:
      This time of Year being cold and frosty generally speaking, or when Jack Frost commonly takes us by the Nose, the Diversions are always within Doors, either in Exercise or by the Fire-side.
    • 1818, Isaac Taylor, “Lapland. 10. Lapland Witch Selling a Wind.”, in Scenes in Europe, for the Amusement and Instruction of Little Tarry-at-home Travellers, London: [] J. Harris, [], OCLC 156117741, page 11:
      Well, and the inside is all lined with skins, warm enough; and there's a fire in the middle; [...] Jack frost may whistle out doors if he pleases, but he can hardly get his nose in here.
    • 1870, George Wise, “Falls Church, Upton’s and Munson’s Hills”, in History of the Seventeenth Virginia Infantry, C.S.A., Baltimore, Md.: Kelly, Piet & Company, OCLC 1514671, page 47:
      December's severely cold nights made dreadful havoc with the soldiers[’] toes on the out posts, where for six long hours without fire or aught to shield from Jack Frost’s intrusion, they trod their lonely beat, dreaming of home and friends far away.
    • 1901 June 1, Maynard Matthews, “District Reports”, in The Agricultural Journal and Mining Record, volume IV, number 7, Pietermaritzburg, Natal Province: Times Printing and Publishing Company, published 7 June 1901, OCLC 18228020, pages 196–197:
      Autumn has given way to winter once more, and happily the late and heavy rains fattened the ripening crops now reaping; and left everywhere through this district a thick growth of grass, for winter grazing; long enough, generally, to shield from Jack Frost, by its ample tops and seed heads, a bite of succulent stalk above the roots.
    • 1932, Laura Ingalls Wilder, Little House in the Big Woods, New York, N.Y.: Harper, published 2016, →ISBN:
      Ma said that Jack Frost came in the night and made the pictures, while everyone was asleep. Laura thought that Jack Frost was a little man all snowy white, wearing a glittering white pointed cap and soft white kneeboots made of deerskin.
    • 1945, Mel Tormé and Bob Wells (lyrics), Mel Tormé (music), “The Christmas Song: Merry Christmas to You: S.A.T.B. with Incidental Soprano Solos and Piano Accompaniment”, New York, N.Y.: E. H. Morris, published 1946, OCLC 38019191:
      Chestnuts roasting on an open fire / Jack Frost nipping at your nose / Yuletide carols being sung by a choir / And folks dressed up like Eskimos
    • 2006, Sally Schweizer, “Celebrations: ‘She’s Crying for Joy!’”, in Well, I Wonder: Childhood in the Modern World: A Handbook for Parents, Carers and Teachers (Bringing Spirit to Life), Forest Row, East Sussex: Sophia Books, →ISBN, page 169:
      Winter is damp, dark and cold, but the new year makes me hopeful of the spring and summer to come, [...] Animals need extra care, logs are brought in to unfreeze by the fire, the ice is scraped off the car. Jack Frost paints glorious pictures on (single-glazed) windows.
    • 2013, Marci Alborghetti, “December 15: Jack Frost … and Friends”, in It’s Beginning to Look a Lot Like Christ’s Mass, Collegeville, Minn.: Liturgical Press, →ISBN, page 15:
      Elves, flying reindeer, wood sprites, talking snowmen, and even Jack Frost, or Grandfather Frost in Russia, are all out and about during Advent. [...] Jack Frost, as those of us who live in northern climates well know, can be an annoying sprite who will make winter icy or stormy on a whim.


See also[edit]


  1. ^ Arthur Henry Brown ([1863]) Little Jack Frost Quadrilles, London: B. Williams, OCLC 220814516.


  1. ^ Jack Frost, n.”, in OED Online Paid subscription required, Oxford, Oxfordshire: Oxford University Press, March 2018; “Jack Frost, n.”, in Lexico, Dictionary.com; Oxford University Press, 2019–present.

Further reading[edit]