Entries linking to corn-dodger
"grain," Old English corn "single seed of a cereal plant; seeds of cereal plants generally; plants which produce corn when growing in the field," from Proto-Germanic *kurnam "small seed" (source also of Old Frisian and Old Saxon korn "grain," Middle Dutch coren, German Korn, Old Norse korn, Gothic kaurn), from PIE root *gre-no- "grain."
The sense of the Old English word was "grain with the seed still in" (as in barleycorn) rather than a particular plant. Locally understood to denote the leading crop of a district. It has been restricted to the indigenous "maize" in America (c. 1600, originally Indian corn, but the adjective was dropped), usually "wheat" in England, "oats" in Scotland and Ireland, while Korn means "rye" in parts of Germany.
Maize was introduced to China by 1550, it thrived where rice did not grow well and was a significant factor in the 18th century population boom there. Corn-starch is from 1850. Corn-silk is attested from 1852.
1560s, "one who dodges or evades" in any sense, especially "one practiced in artful shifts," agent noun from the literal or figurative (especially underworld) senses of dodge (v.).
The U.S. meaning "corn cake" is recorded from 1831 (usually as corn-dodger) and is perhaps a different word: Compare Northern English dialectal dodge "lump, large piece" (1560s).
The Artful Dodger (Jack Dawkins), so called for his skill in picking pockets, leader of a gang of child criminals, is from Dickens' "Oliver Twist" (1837-39).
The U.S. baseball club the Dodgers, originally based in Brooklyn, N.Y., was so called from 1900, from trolley dodgers, a Manhattanites' nickname for Brooklyn residents, in reference to the streetcar lines that then crisscrossed the borough.
updated on April 05, 2018