One of the mysteries of the English language finally explained.
A beer jug or mug in the form of a stout old man wearing a three-cornered hat.
- ‘Jonathon Horne, a ceramics specialist, said: ‘You will pay between £700 and £1, 500 for a nice 18th century toby jug now.'’
- ‘It's like having to report the theft of one's collection of toby jugs.’
- ‘For them, he was just an honoured toby jug, like Sun Yat Sen.’
- ‘Too much Affordably Good Design made me want to go straight to a novelty shop in Devizes to buy a toby jug of a grinning trawlerman's head sporting a yellow sou'wester.’
Mid 19th century: pet form of the given name Tobias, and said to come from an 18th-century poem about Toby Philpot (with a pun on fill pot), a soldier who liked to drink.
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