snarky
Posted: 05 November 2007 07:21 AM   [ Ignore ]
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I have seen this word with some frequency lately in newspapers—but I don’t believe it is very old.  Any evidence for earliest usage?

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Posted: 05 November 2007 07:38 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 1 ]
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I hadn’t thought it old myself, but surprisingly

snarky, Irritable, short-tempered, ‘narky’.
1906 E. NESBIT Railway Children ii. 49 Don’t be snarky, Peter. It isn’t our fault. 1913 J. VAIZEY College Girl xxiv. 326 ‘Why should you think I am “snarky”?’ ‘Because{em}you are! You’re not a bit sociable and friendly.’ 1953 E. COXHEAD Midlanders x. 247 I’ve known you were the soul of kindness, under that snarky way. a1974 R. CROSSMAN Diaries (1976) II. 627 We also have to overcome something else{em}the stream of anti-government propaganda, smearing, snarky, derisive, which comes out of Fleet Street.

The verb has an earlier cite

snark, 2. intr. and trans. To find fault (with), to nag.
1882 Jamieson’s Sc. Dict. IV. 314/2 To Snark,..to fret, grumble, or find fault with one. 1904 E. NESBIT Ph{oe}nix & Carpet x. 185 He remembered how Anthea had refrained from snarking him about tearing the carpet.

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Posted: 05 November 2007 09:45 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 2 ]
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I’d always assumed it was a cross between sarcastic (sarky) and narked. I’ve used it since childhood and I now you come up with the Nesbit cite I think that’s probably where I got it from, was a bit of a fan of those stories as a child.

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Posted: 05 November 2007 09:59 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 3 ]
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What is narked?

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Posted: 05 November 2007 10:30 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 4 ]
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I’d have said a mash of sarcastic and snide.
Does The Hunting of the Snark figure in this? Carroll’s chortle is said to be from chuckle and snort.

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Posted: 05 November 2007 10:50 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 5 ]
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I’ve long thought that Carroll’s beast contributed to the development of the sense, but the OED2 derives the adjective from the verb snark (to snore or snort; to find fault with or nag) and not from the noun (Carroll’s use).

If you get so snarky with someone that they softly and silently vanish away, have you been boojumy?

narked = irritated, put out.  From the verb nark, to annoy or exasperate.

Curiously, “nark” meant “a police informer” or “to act as an informer” all the way back in the mid-1800s, apparently quite unrelated to narcotics enforcement.

[ Edited: 05 November 2007 11:04 AM by Dr. Techie ]
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Posted: 05 November 2007 02:13 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 6 ]
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The Big List

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Posted: 05 November 2007 08:24 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 7 ]
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Dave Wilton - 05 November 2007 02:13 PM

The Big List

Oh, bless you Dave.

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Posted: 06 November 2007 01:43 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 8 ]
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And at least one previous discussion from 2003 which links back to another, long gone.

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Posted: 06 November 2007 09:21 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 9 ]
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Thanks Eliza.  I can never remember threads past a few weeks back.

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