One of the mysteries of the English language finally explained.
1Worthless material; rubbish.
refuse, waste, garbage, litter, discarded matter, debris, detritus, scrap, drossView synonyms
- ‘At left centre I can just be seen in a yellow helmet dumping a barrow load of mullock over the side of the heap.’
- 1.1Australian, NZ Rock which contains no gold or from which gold has been extracted.
- ‘On the surface the miners' labours are marked by constructed mountains of mullock; hillsides stripped bare of trees for props and fuel; and streams diverted and often polluted by the wastes from sedimentation and flotation processing.’
- ‘During the years of the gold rush in Australia the Chinese were well known for industriously working their way through the mullock heaps (the heaps where the other miners discarded the material they had scoured for gold).’
- ‘The massive pile of mullock and slag towers over the city like the walls of Mordor in Lord of The Rings.’
- ‘Rem and I had been exploring this beach and the one south, all the while observing a great many wondrous things, including holes and mullock heaps left by historical gold miners.’
- ‘The current proposal is to use this mullock for road construction on top of the Powers Gully tailings dumps.’
- 1.2Australian, NZ Worthless information; nonsense.
- ‘A sudden drop in number might suggest the loss of a batch of posts which could possibly include something of value; as it is, one can safely assume that the items removed were just mullock and spilth.’
poke mullock at
informal Ridicule (someone).
make fun of, poke fun at, chaff, make jokes about, rag, mock, laugh at, guy, satirize, be sarcastic aboutView synonyms
- ‘Some sections of the media may be (in Showas words) ‘needlessly adept at taking pleasure in poking mullock at hapless members of the public’.’
- ‘Henrys just poking mullock at the boy, who he remembers blew out fifteen candles the night of the Leigh House Christmas social.’
Late Middle English: diminutive of earlier mul ‘dust, rubbish’, from Middle Dutch.
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