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Alternative forms[edit]


house +‎ boi


houseboi (plural housebois)

  1. A domestic manservant, particularly colonial.
    • 1922, Stephen Piero Sergius Rudinger de Rodyenko, Small Me: A Story of Shanghai Life, The James A. McCann Company, page 36:
      “‘Dear Chief: The bearer of this letter, Chow Lan Chu, my houseboi, is a great thief and steals whatever he can lay his hands on. [] ’”
    • 1969, Louis Johnson, “The Way to Train a Dog” (poem), reprinted in Louis Johnson (poet), Terry Sturm (editor), Selected Poems, Victoria University Press (2000), →ISBN, page 101:
      [] While still a pup, / You put him in a sack, then beat it / With a stick. When howls and yelpings die, / You send the houseboi out to set him free.
    • 1992, Angelika Fremd, The Glass Inferno[1], University of Queensland Press, →ISBN, pages 123–4:
      [] he seduces his houseboi’s wife, his Mary, and fires the houseboi. [] ¶ “You’ve got no authority over my private life. What about your wife, she’s a bit on the dark side, isn't she?” ¶ “I didn’t steal my wife from my houseboi. And we’re legally married.”
    • 2007, Anne Dickson-Waiko, “Colonial Enclaves and Domestic Spaces in British New Guinea”, in Kate Darian-Smith et al., editors, Britishness abroad: transnational movements and imperial cultures, Melbourne University Press, →ISBN, page 222:
      For most colonial wives, the houseboi, the domestic servant, was the first real contact with a native.

Related terms[edit]