View Full Version : Hi Jack!

15-01-2007, 13:13:46

There are two folk etymologies:

* That it arose from someone wanting a lift on a truck calling "Hi, Jack" (the exclamation plus the name), until this was used often as a trick by robbers.
* That it comes from seamen who were robbed by prostitutes in former centuries in London. Prostitutes would call out "Hi, Jack" to passing sailors. Instead of receiving the services they expected, some sailors were instead robbed by an accomplice.

Would it really be that simple an explanation?

15-01-2007, 13:21:43
google also gives:

It is first recorded in 1923 and is thought to be a back formation of highjacker, formed from high(way) + jacker. Jacker refers to "one who holds up or robs". There are several possibilities for jackerís origins, but from 1841 we have jacker meaning "one who hunts or fishes at night with a jack light", and in about 1860 we have highjack lowjack, a game of cards. Any or both of these terms might have influenced the formation of hijack.

frankly that sounds a lot more convincing

15-01-2007, 13:24:11
It comes from a celegrated robber in the 19th century in France who was specifically targeting british tourists on the Riviera. He was called "Grand Jacques" ou "Jacques le haut".

Mr. Bas
15-01-2007, 13:26:04
KG's explanation sounds the most likely to me.

15-01-2007, 13:28:21
Jagues le haut------Jagues le hau-------Jaques leau(silent h) ----- Jaques Lo -------Alo Jaques---------Hi Jack

15-01-2007, 13:33:57
It refers to a longforgotten Czech called Pavel Hajicek. He invented the boxcutter, THE weapon of choice for hijackers

15-01-2007, 15:50:05
Originally posted by maroule
celegrated robber

but WHO would ever want to rob grated celery???????

15-01-2007, 15:54:40
question: does your mother laugh about your jokes?