ragtag and bobtail

(redirected from ragtag-and-bobtail)

ragtag and bobtail

The lowest social class; the common people. You must be joking—a person of my social status can't eat with the ragtag and bobtail at a fast food place!
See also: and, bobtail

ragtag and bobtail

Low-life, riffraff. This expression dates back to the seventeenth century, when ragtag meant a ragged lot of people and bobtail a horse whose tail had been cut short (“bobbed”) and was considered valueless. Samuel Pepys in his Diary turned it about a bit: “The dining-room was full of tag rag and bobtail, dancing, singing, and drinking” (1658–59). The expression is not heard much any longer, however, at least not in the United States.
See also: and, bobtail
References in periodicals archive ?
Now, some six decades later, she is still at the forefront, working and mentoring in her Vermont redoubt while the ceramics parade, vastly bigger, continues--a ragtag-and-bobtail conglomeration of floats bearing makers of all persuasions: from sedate mugsters to flamboyant divas, academics pontificating from palanquins, seekers and makers of various grails, not to mention pierced and tattooed stilt-walkers juggling web-site management, relationship scenarios, bills, teaching responsibilities and 'studio time'.