Letter: Maori insult

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Sir: The final word on "toe-rag" (Letters, 19 June) should come from Eric Partridge. His dictionary of historical slang defines it as a "beggar", dating from 1909, with a possible derivation from "toe-ragger", an Australian and New Zealand expression of opprobrium. The nastiest term of contempt in Maori was "tua rika rika", meaning "slave".

ALAN LEWIS

Helensburgh, Dunbartonshire

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