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1A formidable fighter; a feisty, spirited, or quick-tempered person. Usually in plural.
2historical A nickname for: a soldier from Delaware (frequently in plural with the, as the nickname of a particular regiment or company composed of these soldiers) (now historical). Later more generally: (a nickname for) a native or inhabitant of Delaware.
3More fully "Blue Hen State". A nickname for: the state of Delaware.
Early 19th century; earliest use found in Robert Henry (1718–1790), Church of Scotland minister and historian. From blue + hen.
blue hen/ˈbluː hɛn/
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The definitions of ‘buddy’ and ‘bro’ in the OED have recently been revised. We explore their history and increase in popularity.