Student Dictionary

One entry found for hodgepodge.
Main Entry: hodge·podge
Pronunciation: primarystresshäj-secondarystresspäj
Function: noun
Etymology: an altered form of hotchpotch, from Middle English hochepot "mixed stew," derived from early French hochepot (same meaning), from hochier "to shake" and pot "pot, container"
: a confused mixture : JUMBLE
Word History Hodgepodge and its older form hotchpotch are part of a group of words that rhyme all by themselves. Hobnob and willy-nilly are others. In the case of hodgepodge and hotchpotch, the rhyme is not an accident. These words came to English from early French in the form hochepot. The spelling was changed to make the second half of the word rhyme with the first. In French hochepot was a stew of many foods cooked together in a pot. Perhaps the pot was shaken instead of stirred since hochepot was formed from hochier, meaning "to shake," and pot, which had the same meaning in early French as it does in English now. Before long hotchpotch and hodgepodge were used not just for a mixture of foods cooking in a pot but for any mixture of different things.

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