Two Misses and Theother

U 18.879: Miss This Miss That Miss Theother

This is yet one more instance that demonstrates Joyce's insistence on authentic language in Ulysses, and his intention to document the collective verbal inventiveness of his age through his characters. There is evidence of this phrase being used from at least the 1830s as a humorous twist to this, that, and the other (along the lines of Tom, Dick, and Harry), as we find it at 12.483-4: "... new Ireland and new this, that, and the other."

I was shown Miss this, of Chesnut-street, Miss that, of Fourth-street, and Miss the other, of some square.

New-York Mirror (1832) 7 July

Haymarket Theatre. There have been of late strange proceedings at this house. Instead of hearing the smart sayings of Lady this, the Hon. Tom that, and pretty Miss theother, the audience are nightly surprised by such classic phrases as ‘Avast heaving’, ‘Welsh anchor’,…and similar idiomatic expressions.

The Times (London, England) (1837) 20 Nov 20, p. 3

... but she kept these daring opinions to herself, and proceeded to make such remarks as she felt were suitable to Lady Moffat's understanding; gossip about mutual acquaintances, criticisms on bonnets and mantles, sly little hits at Mrs. This and Miss The-other.

Charlotte Eliza L. Riddell, The mystery in Palace gardens (London: 1880), p. 76

Half the wives in Brooklyn are nagging their husbands with stories of the fine gowns of Mrs. This, the diamonds of Mrs. That and the fine house of Mrs. The Other ...

William Cadwalader Hudson, J. P. Dunbar: a story of Wall street (1906), p. 59

All four examples suggest that Ms This, Ms That and Ms Theother, like Miss Kearney and friends, have higher, albeit superficial, aspirations.

Harald Beck

Search by keyword (within this site): Phrases