Uriah Heepishness

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English[edit]

Etymology[edit]

From Uriah Heepish +‎ -ness: From the Dickens character Uriah Heep, noted for his cloying humility, obsequiousness, and insincerity, the stereotypical yes man.

Noun[edit]

Uriah Heepishness (uncountable)

  1. Fawning, cloying servility and obsequiousness.
    • 1887, Rev. Compton Reade (editor), Charles Reade, Dramatist, Novelist, Journalist: A Memoir Compiled Chiefly from His Literary Remains, Volume 1 (Chapman and Hall, 1887) p. 122
      To a man, the other candidates, imagining the College expected them to glorify Uriah Heepishness, proceeded on the old trite track to decry ambition as one of the devastating forces of humanity.
    • 1970, Authur Scheshinger Jr., "The City Politic: Scammon and Wattenberg vs. Lubell", New York Magazine (Dec 7, 1970) p. 9
      One must agree that the formulas they commend to Democratic politicians as a means of distancing themselves from student unrest and so on are crude; and the Uriah Heepishness of Hubert Humphrey's American Bar Association speech (apparently written by Wattenberg) was hardly attractive.
    • 2014, Daphne Athas, Entering Ephesus (Open Road Media, 2014) p. 187
      Deceit, lying, putting things over on people, bringing people down without their knowing it, stabbing in the back, hitting and running, obsequiousness, underhandedness, stealing, Uriah Heepishness.