Jim Fish, noun phrase

Unknown; perhaps adaptation of U.S. Jim Crow, see Jim.
derogatory, offensive
1930 L. Barnes Caliban in Afr. 121Dr. E.G. Malherbe refers to ‘the business man who sits at his office desk and rings the bell for Jim Fish, who is working in the yard, to bring him his spectacles, which lie just a little beyond his reach on the desk’.
1931 Nat. Geog. Mag. Apr. 412Umtata’s bunga,..under whose dome ‘Jim Fish’ (which is Afrikander for Jim Crow) sits among his gaily blanketed yellow councillors, debating territorial questions.
1943 D. Reitz No Outspan 199I was taken to a cinema show for the local natives that evening [in 1934]...The fool of the piece was called Jim Fish. His role was to do everything in the wrong way in order to teach the others how to do it correctly.
1951 R. Farran Jungle Chase (1957) 114I like Jim Fish, and he likes me. Duff him up when he is cheeky, give him a kind word when he does well and never treat him injustly.
1951 E. Davis in B. Sachs Herman Charles Bosman (1971) 222Safely ensconced in Bloomsbury, he (sc. Roy Campbell) could be as offensive as he pleased to any South African who displeased him. And we all displeased him, from Jan Smuts to Jim Fish.
1975 J. McClure Snake (1981) 83Good God, at the rate we’re going, I’m likely to find myself working with Jungle Jim alongside of me!..Jungle Jim?..O, my mistake! Jim Fish — that’s it, isn’t it?
1979 W. Steenkamp in Cape Times 18 JulyThose who believed that the average guerilla, in the immortal words of an overly sanguine soldier in the early days, was just ‘Jim Fish with a knife’.

Visualise Quotations

Quotation summary