Dutch, AfrikaansShow more Dutch, bosch bush + diminutive suffix -je (Afrikaans bossie, bos bush + diminutive suffix -ie), ‘little bush’. Cf. bosch.
1822W.J. BurchellTrav.I. 23A small number of the more remarkable indigenous plants are sometimes admitted to the honor of a place in their gardens:..and it is a curious fact, that, among the colonists, these have not even a name, but, when spoken of, are indiscriminately called bosjes (bushes).
1880N. Mansvelt inCape Monthly Mag.III. 147The well-known Cape Flats, which..offer to the traveller nothing but the monotonous aspect of the almost unvarying ‘bossies.’
1905H. Bolus inC.A. SmithCommon Names (1966) 159The knee-high boschjes of the Western Province.
1940V. PohlBushveld Adventures 24No other weapon than the full-leafed branch of a melkbossie might be employed on the attack, and more often than not your bossie was smashed on your own head before the enemy had been subdued.
1972Star 1 Apr. 7Watch the dawn dribble pink over the bossies.
1973O.H. Spohrtr. ofF. Krauss’s Trav. Jrnl 12It was a pleasure to botanise along the slopes of Table Mountain and Devil’s Peak among the flowering bushes (bosjes).
1988O. OberholzerAriesfontein to ZuurfonteinFrom here one could see bossies and stones scattered amongst open patches of ground. Just the occasional ‘doringdraad’ fences cut their loneliness.
1991J. Coulter inWeekend Post 4 May (Leisure) 3This they did by bending saplings from the bosje (bush) and then covering them with thatching grass collected by the women.
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