From dog + -s- + body. 1818, British navy slang, originally derogatory reference to unappetizing pease pudding (compare dog's breakfast), as if it were made of mashed dog meat. In 20th century applied to low-ranked sailors, thence menial servants in wider usage.
- (UK) IPA(key): /ˈdɒɡz.bɒ.dɪ/
- (US) IPA(key): /ˈdɔɡz.bɑ.di/, /ˈdɑɡz.bɑ.di/
Audio (US) (file) Audio (AU) (file)
dogsbody (plural dogsbodies)
- (Britain) A person who does menial work, a servant.
- 1976, “Anarchy in the U.K.”, performed by Sex Pistols:
- 'Cause I, I wanna be anarchy! / No dogsbody!
- 1994, Blackadder:
- That's just Baldrick, my dogsbody.
- 1995, Paul Kussmaul, Training The Translator, John Benjamins Publishing Co, p. 146:
- Furthermore, there are still rather backward opinions in our society about the role of a translator. A translator is often regarded as a linguistic dogsbody.
- To act as a dogsbody, to do menial work:
- 1989, Tim Parks, Family Planning:
- Perhaps because, having been brought up in all those different countries and languages, and then studying economics of all things for just a year, followed by four years dogsbodying for a haulage company, he had never got any serious reading done.