For some time now, some of my on-line friends have advised me to provide a version of CassidySlangScam without the invective aimed at Cassidy and his supporters. In response to that advice, I am working on providing a glossary of the terms in Cassidy’s ludicrous book How The Irish Invented Slang with a short, simple and business-like explanation of why Cassidy’s version is wrong.
Cassidy says that the word bozark is a carnival term for a wrestling or boxing match between women. He claims that the word derives from basóg, diminutive of bas meaning palm of the hand.
Firstly, bozark looks to me like a portmanteau word combining Ozark and berserk. In other words, mountain women going crazy.
Secondly, basóg is a pre-reform variant of the modern boiseog (pronounced bwishogue). Which version sounds more credible for a savage fight between carnival women, a word which implies mountainy women going berserk, or an Irish word for a slap around the face?