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#58724 02/26/02 04:44 PM
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I was reading the Straight Dope and was mildly amused at the question about a flea circus. Somehow this reminded me of a flea market - a place where entrepreneurs set up tables to sell their wares.

What is the origin of the word flea market? What other names do people from your part of the world use for this concept? The only one I can think of right now is bazaar - I know it's stolen from Turkish - but I know it to mean a sale, in a gymnasium or outdoors, where ladies (from a church, say) sell crafts and baking to raise money for something.


#58725 02/26/02 05:21 PM
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Dear Bean: here is URL with definition of "flea market".
http://ask.yahoo.com/ask/20010709.html
It is a disparaging term referring to
low quality and dubious origin of the merchandise. My wife and I used to enjoy going to them
because we often did find real bargains. I still have in my desk a ream of top quality legal
typewriter paper I got for two bucks. I occasionally use it for letters on which I want to add
diagrams, or a handwritten P.S. I got three dozen excellent jack-knives for a buck apiece,
which made very acceptable presents for ten years. The flea market covered perhaps six acres.
You could spend all day there and not see it all. Most of it was junk, but interesting to browse
through. Admission was a buck per head.


#58726 02/26/02 05:45 PM
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Dear Dr. Bill,

They seem to have a flea market on Sundays at the mall, after the stores are closed (which they are at about 5:00pm on Sundays). People set up tables there and sell either homemade or second-hand stuff. We ran across it by accident after a movie once.

Edit: I don't know if I trust the fact that the Yahoo answer person got their answers from the Web. I had looked at Quinion's site first, then decided to post it here.


#58727 02/27/02 04:53 AM
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Hereabouts we have "carpark markets", "tailgating" - (ie selling from the tailgate of your car, not following too closely) and "car boot sales" - we use "boot" where you'd use "trunk" for the rear compartment of a car.

There's also "trash n treaure" markets and "garage sales" - the latter held in your own driveway.

stales


#58728 02/27/02 11:02 AM
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I think I've mentioned before the English propensity to gather in throngs at car boot sales. Outside Wellybro there's an area called the "Mad Mile" (don't ask; I dunno) where car boot sales are held every week or fortnight on a Sunday morning, starting at an unconscionably early hour. People buy junk and people sell junk. Not all of it, of course, but a goodly proportion of it. I allus go to them to buy small electrical items like plugs, extensions, bulbs, etc. Much cheaper than the official market in Wellybro market square, three times a week. Probably all off hijacked rigs, I suppose.



The idiot also known as Capfka ...
#58729 02/27/02 11:31 AM
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We have garage sales, but they're also sometimes called yard sales. Or rummage sales. (That one sounds American to me.) Or white elephants (again there is somehow a church connection in my mind for that one).


#58730 02/27/02 01:14 PM
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re:Probably all off hijacked rigs, I suppose

Here abouts, such things are described as Falling off the back of a truck or alternately, It fell off...

some people are defined as being the kind of person who always around when things are fall of the back of truck.




#58731 02/27/02 05:22 PM
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We had a yard sale recently (because we don't have a garage!), and I remember going to lawn sales and garden parties to get all sorts of nifty stuff when I was little.

Curiously (at least to me), I've seen marche (accent aigu needed there) des puces in French and Flohmarkt in German - I wonder which language's flea-term came first?!


#58732 02/28/02 02:52 AM
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"Flohmarkt"...floh -> flotsam? That would be apropos.


#58733 03/03/02 06:46 PM
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>okay, TEd, I gave ya your chance<

Flea market, of course, has to do with the flea trade...has anybody seen any cheap fleas, lately? If so, I'll take a dozen...fried.


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