Why is it called a hobby horse?

Horses

What is the origin of the word hobby?

The word hobby is glossed by the OED as “a small or middle-sized horse; an ambling or pacing horse; a pony.” The word is attested in English from the 14th century, as Middle English hobyn. Old French had hobin or haubby, whence Modern French aubin and Italian ubino. But the Old French term is apparently adopted from English rather than vice versa.

What is a hobby horse called?

A hobby horse (or hobby-horse) is a child’s toy horse. Children played at riding a wooden hobby horse made of a straight stick with a small horse’s head (of wood or stuffed fabric), and perhaps reins, attached to one end.

Who invented the hobby horse?

In 1818, a London coach-maker named Denis Johnson began producing an improved version, which was popularly known as the “hobby-horse I can remember as a young child in Oakland Beach, Warwick, RI, my family use to walk down to the water area to ride the “dobby horses”.

Why is it called a dobby horse?

It’s more likely, however, that your family meant “Dobby horse,” which is an old English term for what we would call a “hobby-horse,” a wooden replica of a horse, today usually just a horse’s head on a stick used in play by children.

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What does the phrase’hobby-horse’mean?

What’s the meaning of the phrase ‘Hobby-horse’? A favourite topic that one frequently refers to or dwells on; a fixation. What’s the origin of the phrase ‘Hobby-horse’? The first things that were referred to as hobbies were in fact horses, of a breed that was popular in Ireland in the Middle Ages and is now extinct.

Why is it called a hobby?

It is the ‘favourite pastime’ version of the name, what we now call simply ‘a hobby’, that was adopted as a figurative expression meaning ‘a fixation; a thing one keeps coming back to’, that is, similar to having a bee in one’s bonnet. So, a hobby is really a hobby-horse.

What is the origin of the hobby horse?

In 1818, a London coach-maker named Denis Johnson began producing an improved version, which was popularly known as the “hobby-horse”. The artistic movement, Dada, is possibly named after a French child’s word for hobby-horse. The word hobby is glossed by the OED as “a small or middle-sized horse; an ambling or pacing horse; a pony.”

How big is the head of a hobby horse?

Types of hobby horse. The head is attached to a stick about 1 m (3 ft) long. The person acting the creature is covered by a cloth attached to the back of its head; he (or, rarely, she) bends over forwards or crouches, holding the head in front of their own and resting the other end of the stick on the ground.

What is the difference between a hobby horse and a barrel horse?

The hobby horse was replaced in the 16th century by the barrel horse, which consisted of a circular log supported by four legs and adorned with a fake horse head. Crude in nature, this toy mimicked the back of a horse better than a hobby horse.

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Why is it called a hobby horse?

From the term “hobby horse” came the expression “to ride one’s hobby-horse”, meaning “to follow a favourite pastime”, and in turn, the modern sense of the term hobby. The term is also connected to the draisine, a forerunner of the bicycle, invented by Baron Karl von Drais.

What was the Hobby Horse of 1817?

The Hobby Horse: 1817 – Karl Drais and his running machine. While modern versions of Drais’ meat grinder are still in use in countless butcher shops and households today, the invention that made him famous in 1817 is the Laufmaschine (running machine) – the ancestor of the bicycle.

What is a hobby horse made of?

A hobby horse (or hobby-horse) is a child’s toy horse. Children played at riding a wooden hobby horse made of a straight stick with a small horse’s head (of wood or stuffed fabric), and perhaps reins, attached to one end. The bottom end of the stick sometimes had a small wheel or wheels attached.

What was the first toy horse made of?

Ancient Greeks and Romans also had terra cotta toy horses and chariots made of clay. The ancient Greeks used “stick” horses, the precursor to the “Hobby Horse”. These hobby horses was just a crude horse’s head on a stick but continued to be popular toys well into Medieval Times. In the 16th century, hobby horses developed into the “barrel” horse.

What is a Dobbin horse?

Another familiar form of the same Christian name, Dobbin has also become a generic name for a cart-horse. Samuel Johnson, Dictionary of the English Language, 1755, glosses “A strong, active horse, of a middle size, said to have been originally from Ireland; an ambling nag.”

Why are they called “Darby horses”?

“Darby” is a common alternate pronunciation and spelling of “Derby” in England, so it’s possible that your family was using the term “Darby horses” based on the racing motif of carousels.

What does “Dobby” mean in English?

“Dobby” is itself an old English dialect term (a variant of the name “Robbie,” as is “hobby”) for a simple, silly person, perhaps of the sort to be amused by such a contraption.

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What is the meaning of on hobby horse?

Uh oh, sounds like Janet is on her hobbyhorse again about the need for healthcare reform. on (one’s) hobby-horse Frequently or incessantly talking about a subject, topic, or issue in which one is excessively interested. “Hobby-horse” can also be spelled as a single word.

What is a hobby horse dance?

A dance, similar to the stage antics of the mummers’ horses: Richard Lassels, The Voyage of Italy, circa 1668 – “Women like those that danced anciently the Hobby-horse in Country Mummings.” A favourite pursuit or pastime – later shortened of course just to hobby:

What is a pedestrian hobby horse?

A velocipede, on which the rider proceeded by pushing the ground with each foot alternately; also called a ‘Dandy-horse’: The Gentleman’s Magazine, February 1819 – “A machine denominated the Pedestrian Hobby-horse… has been introduced into this country by a tradesman in Long Acre.”.

Where did the phrase’hobby horse’originate?

What’s the origin of the phrase ‘Hobby-horse’? The first things that were referred to as hobbies were in fact horses, of a breed that was popular in Ireland in the Middle Ages and is now extinct. The Scottish poet John Barbour referred to them as hobynis, in the narrative poem The Bruce, 1375.

What is a hobby-horse?

So, a hobby is really a hobby-horse. If by any chance you occupy your spare time studying 13th century Irish livestock, your hobby-horse might just be a Hobby horse.

Is the hobby horse still used today?

Children would place the stick between their legs and “ride” the horse around. These toys can still be found today. The hobby horse was replaced in the 16th century by the barrel horse, which consisted of a circular log supported by four legs and adorned with a fake horse head.