a Jew. The term appeared in Britain in the early 19th century when it did not necessarily have the offensive racist overtones it acquired in the 20th cen-tury. Many possible etymologies have been proposed for sheeny: the three most plausible are the German word schon (beautiful) as applied either to their children or to merchandise by Jews, the 'sheen' of dark hair or skin as perceived by Anglo-Saxons, or the Yid-dish phrase a miesse meshina ('an ugly fate or death'), a phrase supposedly common among Jews.

Contemporary slang . 2014.

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Look at other dictionaries:

  • Sheeny — Sheen y, a. Bright; shining; radiant; sheen. A sheeny summer morn. Tennyson. [1913 Webster] …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • sheeny — or sheenie [shē′nē] n. pl. sheenies [also S ] Slang a Jewish person: a somewhat old fashioned term of disparagement or contempt …   English World dictionary

  • sheeny —    An offensive name for a Jew, in slang use since the nineteenth century. It has other slang meanings, such as ‘pawnbroker’, ‘tramp’, and ‘a mean person’. The origin of the word is obscure, but it is highly unlikely, as Eric Partridge suggests… …   A dictionary of epithets and terms of address

  • sheeny — 1. noun /ˈʃiːni/ A Jew. Shylock chimes with the jewbaiting that followed the hanging and quartering of the queen’s leech Lopez, his jew’s heart being plucked forth while the sheeny was yet alive 2. adjective /ˈʃiːni/ having a sheen; glossy …   Wiktionary

  • sheeny — sheen ► NOUN ▪ a soft lustre on a surface. DERIVATIVES sheeny adjective. ORIGIN from obsolete sheen «beautiful, resplendent»; apparently related to SHINE(Cf. ↑shine) …   English terms dictionary

  • sheeny — adjective see sheen III …   New Collegiate Dictionary

  • sheeny — sheeny1 /shee nee/, adj., sheenier, sheeniest. shining; lustrous. [1615 25; SHEEN + Y1] sheeny2 /shee nee/, n., pl. sheenies. Slang (disparaging and offensive). a Jew. Also, sheeney, sheenie. [1810 20; orig. obscure] * * …   Universalium

  • sheeny — sheen·y || ʃɪːnɪ adj. shiny, brilliant, glossy, lustrous …   English contemporary dictionary

  • sheeny — sheeny1 adjective (sheenier, sheeniest) having a sheen; lustrous. sheeny2 noun (plural sheenies) N. Amer. informal, offensive a Jewish person. Origin C19: origin unknown …   English new terms dictionary

  • sheeny — I. /ˈʃini/ (say sheenee) adjective shining; lustrous. {sheen + y1} II. /ˈʃini/ (say sheenee) noun British Colloquial (derogatory) (racist) a Jewish person. {19th century; ? of Slavic origin} …  

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