from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • Strolling ballet-singers and -dancers who go about at the beginning of the new year.


Sorry, no etymologies found.



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  • The Century definition addresses the origin of the term manzai but does not explain its contemporary application:

    Manzai (漫才?) is a traditional style of stand-up comedy in Japanese culture.

    Manzai usually involves two performers (manzaishi)—a straight man (tsukkomi) and a funny man (boke)—trading jokes at great speed. Most of the jokes revolve around mutual misunderstandings, double-talk, puns and other verbal gags.

    We gaijin in our way can try:

    Remember that hoary standby

    And be not averse

    To "Who is on First"

    As an instance of Yankee manzai.

    January 1, 2017