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People who were considered self-righteously or piously virtuous began to be called 'goody-goodies' from around the turn of the 20th century.

"goody two-shoes" translation into Polish

There are a few examples of people's behaviour being called 'goody-goody' from onwards. The first example that I've found of someone being described as 'a goody-goody' comes from - in the Wisconsin newspaper The Racine Daily Journal , July , in a piece with the heading A Goody-Goody :. The childish exclamation of delight 'goody, goody' may derive from Goody Two-Shoes , although it could just as easily just be a form of 'oh good'. The children's phrases ' goody gumdrops ' and ' goody, goody gumdrops' began life in the mid 20th century.


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Goody gumdrops! Lovely grub! Home Search Phrase Dictionary Goody two-shoes. So the squire asked his friends to excuse him for a moment, and came out and said, "Well, Goody Two Shoes, my good girl, what is it? The squire saw there was not a moment to lose, so he went back and told his friends the news he had heard. They all said they would stay and help him take the thieves. So the lights were put out, to make it appear as if all the people in the house were in bed, and servants and all kept a close watch both inside and outside.

Sure enough, at about one o'clock in the morning the three men came creeping, creeping up to the house with a dark lantern, and the tools to break in with. Before they were aware, six men sprang out on them, and held them fast. The thieves struggled in vain to get away. They were afterward sent out of the country, where they had to work in chains on the roads; and it is said that one of them behaved so well that he was pardoned, and went to live at Australia, where he became a rich man. The other two went from bad to worse, and it is likely that they came to some dreadful end.

For sin never goes unpunished. But to return to Goody Two Shoes. One day as she was walking through the village she saw some wicked boys with a raven, at which they were going to throw stones. To stop this cruel sport she gave the boys a penny for the raven, and brought the bird home with her. She gave him the name of "Ralph," and he proved to be a very clever creature indeed. She taught him to spell, and to read, and he was so fond of playing with the large letters, that the children called them "Ralph's Alphabet.

Adam Ant - Goody Two Shoes (HD)

Some days after Goody had met with the raven, she was passing through a field, when she saw some naughty boys who had taken a pigeon, and tied a string to its legs in order to let it fly and draw it back again when they pleased. Goody could not bear to see anything tortured like that, so she bought the pigeon from the boys and taught him how to spell and read. But he could not talk. And as Ralph, the raven, took the large letters, Peter, the pigeon, took care of the small ones.

So Margery Meanwell was now a schoolmistress, and a capital one she made. The children all loved her, for she was never weary of making plans for their happiness. The room in which she taught was large and lofty, and there was plenty of fresh air in it; and as she knew that children liked to move about, she placed her sets of letters all round the school, so that every one was obliged to get up to find a letter, or spell a word, when it came their turn. This exercise not only kept the children in good health, but fixed the letters firmly in their minds.

The neighbors were very good to her, and one of them made her a present of a little skylark, whose early morning song told the lazy boys and girls that it was time they were out of bed. Some time after this a poor lamb lost its dam, and the farmer being about to kill it, she bought it of him, and brought it home to play with the children. Soon after this a present was made to Miss Margery of a dog, and as he was always in good humor, and always jumping about, the children gave him the name of Jumper. It was his duty to guard the door, and no one could go out or come in without leave from his mistress.

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Goody Two-Shoes - The Meaning and Origin of This Idiom

She soon proved that she was a most sensible woman, and Sir Charles Jones was so pleased with her, that he offered her a large sum of money to take care of his family, and educate his daughter. At first she refused, but afterwards went and behaved so well, and was so kind and tender, that Sir Charles would not permit her to leave the house, and soon after made her an offer of marriage. The neighbors came in crowds to the wedding, and all were glad that one who had been such a good girl, and had grown up such a good woman, was to become a grand lady.

Just as the clergyman had opened his book, a gentleman, richly dressed, ran into the church and cried, "Stop! Great alarm was felt, especially by the bride and groom, with whom he said he wished to speak privately. Sir Charles stood motionless with surprise, and the bride fainted away in the stranger's arms. For this richly-dressed gentleman turned out to be little Tommy Meanwell, who had just come from sea, where he had made a large fortune. Sir Charles and Lady Jones lived very happily together, and the great lady did not forget the children, but was just as good to them as she had always been.

She was also kind and good to the poor, and the sick, and a friend to all who were in distress. Her life was a great blessing, and her death the greatest calamity that ever took place in the neighborhood where she lived, and was known as. This work was published before January 1, , and is in the public domain worldwide because the author died at least years ago.


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  • For works with similar titles, see Goody Two-Shoes. The edition of a children's story by an anonymous author, first published in The fable tells of Goody Two-Shoes, the nickname of a poor orphan girl named Margery Meanwell, who goes through life with only one shoe. When she is given a complete pair by a rich gentleman, she is so happy, that she tells everyone that she has two shoes.

    What Does Goody Two Shoes Mean?

    Later, Margery becomes a teacher, and marries a rich widower. This earning of wealth serves as proof that her virtuousness has been rewarded, a popular theme in children's literature of the era.


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