Thursday, December 22, 2011

Why is Horse = GG?

GG-horse In British cryptic crosswords, GG is often used as an abbreviation for 'horse'.

FT 13588 (Orense): Move from side to side in horse riding trick (6) WIGGLE
GG (horse) riding i.e. being carried by WILE (trick)

GG or gee-gee is a word for horse used by children or in colloquial speech in UK. The internet provides different explanations for its etymology. Wikipedia says that the term "Gee-Gee" is taken from horse-racing where a Gee-Gee is the first horse out of the starting gate. Other sources say that GG is short for the command given to horses to go: "gee up". I'm not sure which is the actual origin of the word, comments that can shed light on this are most welcome.

In any case, for solving cryptic clues, it is sufficient to know that horse = GG and that the term is mostly used by children.

Have a go at these clues that use horse = GG:

Independent 7746 (Anax): Pushes horse in front over (4, 2)

Guardian 24635 (Enigmatist): Less diminutive horse in nursery found in the final frame (6)

Guardian 25476 (Boatman): Startling horse eaten by naughty goblin (8)

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11 comments

Kishore said...

E(GG)S ON<-, nose=front
BI(GG)ER, bier, final frame, for coffin
BO(GG)LING*

Luckily, it was not much of a

Conflict for including horse in road law (8)

Bhavan said...

Independent 7746 (Anax): Pushes horse in front over (4, 2) E(GG)S,ON<-

Guardian 24635 (Enigmatist): Less diminutive horse in nursery found in the final frame (6) BI(GG)ER

Guardian 25476 (Boatman): Startling horse eaten by naughty goblin (8) BO(GG)LING*

raghunath said...

1. {E(GG)S-ON} <-

2. BI(GG)ER. GG in coffin.

3. BO(GG)LING*

Venkatesh said...

1) E(GG)S ON<- GG in NOSE<-
2) BI(GG)ER GG in BIER
3) BO(GG)LING* GG in GOBLIN*

Wayne Jones said...

Anax clue: EGGS ON (GG in NOSE rev.)

Enigmatist: BIGGER

Boatman: BLOGGING

raju umamaheswar said...

GG: The etymology is for gee, gee to spur a horse in a race or a carriage or a rodeo show to speed up or get a move on.

One must have heard giddeyap or giddap in western novels by Max Brand or Zane Grey etc or movies
featuring Humphrey Bogart, Jack Palance or John Wayne or TV shows like Pondorossa etc.

Those wild west novels and movies were popular in the 60s and TVshows of the 70s.

Cryptic crosswords have kept such words alive .

Thanks for taking me back to my college days, when I used to gorge on such Wild West novels and movies.

sreelakshmi said...

I got an idea from one of the clues mentioned in this blog!

Diamonds hidden in country? Quite the opposite!(5)

Shuchi said...

INDIA?

But for that, the clue would need another 'in' - Country hidden in [IN DIAmonds].

roderick starns said...

if a horse runs really fast people exclaim gee whizz!

Scarlett Smith said...

GG - Gentle Giant

Anonymous said...

Hungry Horse in 4 letters = MTGG