Reference > Brewer’s Dictionary > Hoity-toity.

 Hoist.Hoky or Hockey Cake. 
CONTENTS · BIBLIOGRAPHIC RECORD
E. Cobham Brewer 1810–1897. Dictionary of Phrase and Fable. 1898.
 
Hoity-toity.
 
(1) Hoity-toity spirits means high spirits, extremely elated and flighty. Selden, in his Table Talk, says: “In Queen Elizabeth’s time gravity and state were kept up … but in King Charles’s time there was nothing but Frenchmore [French manners] … tolly-polly, and hoit-comme-toit,” where hoit comme toit means flightness.   1
   (2) As an exclamation of reproof it means, Your imagination or spirits are running out of all bounds; hoit-a-toit! hity-tity! “Hoity-toity! What have I to do with dreams?” (Congreve.)   2
   We have the verb “to hoit” = to assume; to be elated in spirits, and perhaps hoity-toity is only one of those words with which our language abounds; as, harum-scarum, titty-totty, namby-pamby, hugger-mugger, fiddle-faddle, and scores of others.   3
 


 Hoist.Hoky or Hockey Cake. 

 
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