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badger


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The verbal sense of badger to mean ‘repeatedly and annoyingly ask someone to do something’ probably originates from badger-baiting, a sport in which dogs draw a badger from its sett and kill it, illegal in the UK since 1830.

In Kenneth Grahame's The Wind in the Willows (1908), Mr Badger is the taciturn but authoritative leader of the group of animals who reform the boastful Toad (see toad).

Badger State an informal name for Wisconsin.


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