- Bogey (also spelt bogie) is a borrowing into Australian English from Dharuk, the Aboriginal language of the Sydney region, where it meant 'to bathe or swim'. The earliest records show the term being used in the pidgin English of Aborigines: 1788 Historical Records of New South Wales II: I have bathed, or have been bathing... Bogie d'oway. These were Colby's words on coming out of the water. 1830 R. Dawson, Present State of Australia: 'Top bit, massa, bogy,' (bathe) and he threw himself into the water. By the 1840s it was naturalised in Australian English: 1841 Historical Records of Australia: I suppose you want your Boat, Sir; Yes, said Mr Dixon; well, said Crabb I suppose we must bogey for it. Yes, said Mr Dixon, any two of ye that can swim. In Australian English a noun meaning 'a swim or bathe; a bath' was formed from the verb: 1847 A. Harris, Settlers and Convicts: In the cool of the evening had a 'bogie' (bathe) in the river. 1869 W.M. Howell, Diggings and Bush: Florence was much amused the other evening by her enquiring if she (Flory) was going down to the water to have a 'bogey'. Flory was much puzzled till she found out that a 'bogey', in colonial phraseology, meant a bath. 1924 Bulletin: A boar was discovered by two of us having a bogey in a 16,000-yard tank about five miles from the river. 1981 G. Mackenzie, Aurukun Diary: A bogey is the Queensland outback word for a bath or bathe. A bogey-hole is a 'swimming or bathing hole'.
Australian idioms. 2014.