The Origin of the Phrase ‘Goody Two-Shoes’

Interesting Literature

Where did the expression ‘Goody Two-Shoes’ come from? Its history is, in part, a literary one…

The History of Little Goody Two-Shoes was a story, published anonymously in 1765, about an orphan girl who goes through life wearing only one shoe. However, this wasn’t where the expression ‘goody two-shoes’ originally came from: the phrase is even older than that 1765 story. For instance, it’s found in Charles Cotton’s 1670 Voyage to Ireland in Burlesque:

Mistress mayoress complained that the pottage was cold;
‘And all long of your fiddle-faddle,’ quoth she.
‘Why, then, Goody Two-shoes, what if it be?
Hold you, if you can, your tittle-tattle,’ quoth he.

But it seems unclear exactly where the phrase originated.

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