What Does “Quit Joshing Around” Mean and Where Did the Expression Come From?

Joshing means joking or kidding around, usually at someone else’s expense.

It comes from the writings of the great American humorist Josh Billings, whose caustic humor took on the establishment big shots during the nineteenth century.

As America’s first best-selling author, he was so widely read that his name became synonymous with deflating pompous egos.

So to josh someone took on the meaning “to make fun of.”

About Karen Hill

Karen Hill is a freelance writer, editor, and columnist. Born in New York, her work has appeared in the Examiner, Yahoo News, Buzzfeed, among others.

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