The Etymology of the Term "High Jingo" by Author Robert "Dr. Watson" Sadler Retired Dallas PD

October 21, 2017
Los Angeles, California

One of my favorite newly discovered words of late has been the term, “High Jingo.”

It was first introduced to me through the writings of one of my favorite mystery authors, Michael Connelley in several of his HARRY BOSCH novels.

My good friend, Robert J. Sadler, also an accomplished mystery writer, and Dallas P.I., knowing how much I liked and have used the term, sent me the following etymology via email yesterday. Very impressive and I wanted to share his summary with you. Enjoy.

This evening the word (Jingo) came into my mind. Curiosity sent me to one of my favorite little books: “Word Origins and their Romantic Stories”. Where I found the
treatise on “Jingoism”. Which then let me to the OED, with its rather long and well-researched entries… and… at the end there is Harry Bosch! I hope you find this

Click below for PDF on High Jingo.

High Jingo RJS   pd


Robert J. Sadler Author Website






  1. r rowley on October 22, 2017 at 10:02 pm

    Yes, thanks for the word etymology!
    A few days ago I came across in a (new)bookstore a (brand?) new book on the Dahlia Case.
    Book is by Piu Eatwell (must be a nom de plume!).

    It’s entitled Black Dahlia, Red Rose.

    I quickly skimmed a bit of it and the author, who seems to be a Brit, likes Leslie Dillon as the culprit.

    Her treatment of your (to my mind all-but-established) hypothesis about GHH is, as you would imagine, negligible. She focuses on two elements: the captured confession of GHH “Supposin’ I did kill the Black Dahlia…” and GHH’s familiarity with Beth Short.

    Naturally, I think that these two elements are, at best, minor elements in the case against GHH
    but I don’t expect people offering alternate hypotheses to be ‘fair’ to rival hypotheses.

  2. Hillary Nelson on October 26, 2017 at 1:38 am

    Hi Steve, I just read the post on facebook about the book Piu wrote about the black dahlia murder and that Dillon was the killer. I asked my dad about the murder years ago when I was a teen because he was an L.A.P.D. officer from 1947 until 1969. Maybe you knew him, his name was Ralph Green. He was a good man and a good police officer. He didn’t lime to tell me gruesome stuff. We lived in San Gabriel then. So do you think it was Dillon or do you still think it was your father? Was L. A. P.D. really that corrupt then? Why do you think your father was a serial killer? My husband and I also like the Bosch novels and the show on Amazon. My son is a police officer where we live now. Thanks for your time. Hillary.

  3. José on November 2, 2017 at 10:09 am

    Sounds oddly
    similar to 20’s slang
    for high jinx. Don’t think
    I’d be worried about my
    career mind, these days
    a person of interest is far
    removed from what it used
    to be ????

  4. Mike Goldweber on December 21, 2023 at 9:30 am

    Thanks for publishing your research on “high jingo”. I smiled when I saw the Harry Bosch reference because I was listening to The Closers, book 11 of the Bosch series on Audible this morning and heard the term. Not being familiar with it, I had to look it up and came across this blog post. I really appreciate your help understanding the term, its usage, and history.

    • Steve Hodel on December 23, 2023 at 11:30 pm

      Mike G:
      Yes, I like the term. GHH definitely qualified for sure.
      My research that became “The Early Years” books 1920s and 1930s really underscored that reality.

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