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Zippy

noun;
zero; nothing A nonce creation playing off the word ‘zip,’ often used to stand for zero. The author of the review using it simply wanted to rhyme a term meaning ‘zero’ with the word ‘nippy;’ he arrived at the word above, as no existing word fit while maintaining the integrity of the structure.
 
SOMETHING WICKED THIS way comes! As we roll into the final week of October, the weather is nippy, the World Series was lost four to zippy and the most anticipated Broadway show in years comes to town.
Etymology : How ‘zip’ came to mean zero is unknown, other than that the word took on this definition around 1900. It is possible it occurred in a pattern similar to that of cockney rhyming slang; instead of substituting rhyming words, perhaps those involved used instead words beginning with the same letter or sound. The ensuing substation of ‘zip’ would then have been one of the words of the time to retain its meaning and stay in the language. If this is the case, the parent word is the original ‘zip,’ which is though to have been created through onomatopoeia—“representing the sound a zipper makes.’
Source : Newpaper Review http://www.houstonvoice.com/2005/10-28/locallife/nightlife/nightlife1028.cfm
Last modified: 10 June 2008


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