cat's pyjamas

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A highly sought-after and fancy example of something, usually referring to inanimate objects.

Etymology:

  • A slang phrase coined by Thomas A. Dorgan. The phrase became popular in the U.S. in the 1920s, along with the bee's knees, the cat's whiskers. In the 1920s the word "cat" was used as a term to describe the unconventional flappers from the jazz era. This was combined with the word pyjamas to form a phrase used to describe something that is the best at what it does, thus making it highly sought and desirable.
  • A report in the New York Times of a publicity stunt by an unknown woman in 1922, in which she paraded along 5th Avenue clad in yellow silk pajamas and accompanied by four cats similarly dressed, may indicate the phrase was already current by that date, as the "cat's meow" certainly was.
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Submitted on September 01, 2009

Additional definitions for 'cat's pyjamas':

cat's pyjamasThat new car was really the cat's pyjamas.
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Nearby phrases

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How to pronounce this phrase?

  1. Alex
    Alex
    US English
    Daniel
    Daniel
    British
    Karen
    Karen
    Australian
    Veena
    Veena
    Indian

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"cat's pyjamas." Phrases.com. STANDS4 LLC, 2020. Web. 31 Mar. 2020. <https://www.phrases.com/phrase/cat's-pyjamas_2807>.

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