One of the mysteries of the English language finally explained.
nounIrish English, Scottish
As a form of address: my dear. Now chiefly in "Mother Machree", expressing (usually ironically) a stereotyped conception of Celtic or Irish identity.
Late 17th century; earliest use found in Irish Hudibras. From Irish mo chroí (Scottish Gaelic mo chridhe) my heart, my beloved from mo my + croí (Scottish Gaelic cridhe) heart from Early Irish cride heart, cognate with heart [interjection, adverb].
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