beyond the black stump

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English[edit]

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Etymology[edit]

Origin and development contested; possibly from the use of fire-blackened tree-stumps when providing directions to people, or from a particular black stump: see Wikipedia. Attested since the 20th century, and possibly developed in the 19th century.

Prepositional phrase[edit]

beyond the black stump

  1. (Australia, informal, idiomatic) In an extremely isolated place, remote from populated areas; in the middle of nowhere. Typically used to refer to outback areas.
    • 2002, John Perry, Quick and the Dead: Stawell and Its Race Through Time, page 118:
      While Millard did not shift from log cabin to White House, he did transport himself from beyond the Black Stump to strike it rich at Stawell.
    • 2004, Leon F. Williams, Rubies of Mogok, Trafford, page 104:
      “Just don't go gettin' serious,” Frank warned. “We don't want any trouble. We're gonna be beyond the black stump out there, not at the bloody Lennox Hotel.”
    • 2004, John Leonard Spencer, Waving Goodbye to a Thousand Flies, page 241:
      Kimberly, his eldest daughter who we love dearly, is very pregnant with our great grand daughter, the father of whom I have never met and who has shot through to the outback far beyond the black stump.

Synonyms[edit]