One of the mysteries of the English language finally explained.
A type of legging or gaiter worn to protect the legs from being spattered with mud, water, etc. Compare "spatterdash". Chiefly in plural.
Late 16th century; earliest use found in Thomas Nashe (d. c1601), writer. From Middle French gamache, by haplology from Spanish guadamecí kind of leather made in Ghadames (1207; also † guadamecil, † guadamecin, etc.; compare Portuguese guadameci, also guadamecil, guadamecim) from Arabic ġadāmasī of or relating to Ghadames from Ġadāmas, the name of a town in Libya (English Ghadames), where a highly esteemed kind of leather was made.
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