From Tim Evanson (in Cleveland OH) on Facebook this morning:

Whew, it’s muggy out here….

I’ll get to the weather in Cleveland in a little while, but first, about the word muggy.

The word muggy sounds like a portmanteau, suggesting mucky, buggy, misty, foggy, drizzly (and maybe some other relevant words). But historically, it’s just an adjective in –y from a noun mug. From NOAD:

adj muggy: (of the weather) unpleasantly warm and humid: it was a hot, very muggy evening. ORIGIN mid 17th century: from dialect mug ‘mist, drizzle’, from mug ‘to drizzle’, probably from Old Norse; compare with Icelandic mugga ‘to snow in calm weather’, Norwegian mugga ‘to drizzle’.

The weather in Cleveland. On Facebook, responding to Tim Evanson:

— Bill Schlemmel: You can cut it with a knife!

— TE > BS: Like getting hit in the face with a hot, wet kleenex.


2 Responses to “muggy”

  1. Robert Southwick Richmond Says:

    “Today will be muggy, followed by tueggy, weggy, and thurgy.” I don’t remember when I learned that, but it was at least fifty years ago. I found multiple recent citations online.

  2. Michael Warhol Says:

    The weathermen’s repartee reminds me of a scene from Conrad’s “Typhoon”:

    “The weather’s awful. It would make a saint swear. Even up here I feel exactly as if I had my head tied up in a woollen blanket.”

    Captain MacWhirr looked up. “D’ye mean to say, Mr. Jukes, you ever had your head tied up in a blanket? What was that for?”

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