Fossick this!

New word day! Fossick. Was stumped by this one when it came up in John Man’s The Gutenberg Revolution. Man uses it for the act of searching through a library. Apparently it’s a bit of Australian or New Zealand slang originally referring to looking for gold or gems by picking over abandoned mine workings. Its more general meaning is to search for by rummaging around. “Rummage” actually has a strange etymology as well, having its roots in a Middle English word for the stowing of cargo.

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