Bryson’s dictionary for writers and editors. 2013.

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  • higgledy-piggledy — confusedly, hurriedly, 1590s, a vocal gesture [OED] probably formed from PIG (Cf. pig) and the animal s suggestions of mess and disorder. Reduplications in the h /p pattern are common (e.g. hanky panky, hocus pocus, hinch(y) pinch(y), an obsolete …   Etymology dictionary

  • Higgledy-piggledy — Hig gle*dy pig gle*dy, adv. In confusion; topsy turvy. [Colloq.] Johnson. [1913 Webster] …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • higgledy-piggledy — ► ADVERB & ADJECTIVE ▪ in confusion or disorder. ORIGIN probably with reference to the irregular herding together of pigs …   English terms dictionary

  • higgledy-piggledy — [hig′əl dē΄ pig′əl dē΄] adv. [redupl., prob. from PIG] in disorder; in jumbled confusion adj. disorderly; jumbled; confused …   English World dictionary

  • higgledy-piggledy — [[t]hɪ̱g(ə)ldi pɪ̱g(ə)ldi[/t]] ADJ GRADED If you say that things are higgledy piggledy, you mean that they are very disorganized and untidy. [INFORMAL] Books are often stacked in higgledy piggledy piles on the floor. Syn: jumbled, untidy ADV… …   English dictionary

  • higgledy-piggledy — adverb Etymology: origin unknown Date: 1598 in a confused, disordered, or random manner < tiny hovels piled higgledy piggledy against each other Edward Behr > • higgledy piggledy adjective …   New Collegiate Dictionary

  • higgledy-piggledy — 1. adjective ˈhɪɡəldiˌpɪɡəldi/ In utter disorder or confusion; mixed up. I cant find your memo since my desk is all higgledy piggledy. Syn: disordered, disorderly, hugger mugger, jumbled …   Wiktionary

  • higgledy-piggledy — hig|gle|dy pig|gle|dy [ˌhıgəldi ˈpıgəldi] adj [Date: 1500 1600; Origin: Perhaps from pig; because pigs gather closely together in groups] things that are higgledy piggledy are mixed together in an untidy way >higgledy piggledy adv …   Dictionary of contemporary English

  • higgledy-piggledy — adjective things that are higgledy piggledy are mixed together in an untidy way higgledy piggledy adverb …   Longman dictionary of contemporary English

  • higgledy-piggledy — /hig euhl dee pig euhl dee/, adv. 1. in a jumbled, confused, or disorderly manner; helter skelter. adj. 2. confused; jumbled. [1590 1600; rhyming compound of uncert. orig.] * * * …   Universalium

  • higgledy piggledy — Synonyms and related words: all over, all over hell, anarchic, arsy varsy, ass backwards, balled up, bollixed up, capriciously, chaotic, chaotically, confused, erratically, every which way, fouled up, galley west, harum scarum, helter skelter,… …   Moby Thesaurus

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