One of the mysteries of the English language finally explained.
Informal (originally US). A woman who defies expected or approved standards of conduct, especially one who behaves in a wild, rebellious, or sexually provocative manner.
Mid 19th century; earliest use found in Dubuque (Iowa) Daily Herald. From bad + girl, with (humorous) allusion to the noun phrase bad girl in the general sense ‘ill-behaved female child’.
bad girl/ˈbad ɡəːl/
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