One of the mysteries of the English language finally explained.
A gang of boisterous, often badly behaved young men, particularly in an urban area.‘these youth gangs can be traced back to the cabbage-tree mobs of the 1850s’‘inadequate policing of the streets enabled the cabbage-tree mob to roam at night assaulting people’
- ‘He dates back to the cabbageites and the cabbage-tree mobs of the early nineteenth century.’
- ‘The Cabbage Tree Mob were distinctive in their Cabbage Tree hats.’
- ‘They were constantly worried about crime and the disrespectful behaviour of Cabbage Tree Hat mobs, larrikin pushes and bodgie gangs.’
- ‘There was a cabbage-tree mob in Sydney given to assaulting people at night and in the 1920s.’
- ‘A gang of larrikins in Sydney in the 1870s were known as the 'Cabbage-tree Mob' because of their distinctive headgear.’
Mid 19th century: from cabbage tree + mob. The gangs wore cabbage-tree hats as a badge of identity.
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