Sooky Sooky: A Proposed Etymology

Copyright 2008 Richard Stoney of Orleans, CA

The object of this treatise is to show that the phrase sooky sooky now has a close relationship with human sexuality and The Beggar's Opera. At its online website, offers the original definition of sooky sooky now as "any sound made when the penis enters and exits an [orifice] such as the vagina or anal cavity". This definition eventually evolves into "to refer to someone in the third party in the sexiest way sexually, expressing interest in sex". also lists the slightly-different phrase sookie sookie now, "expression of admiration or satisfaction in regards to the shape and beauty of a female". There is a quote, "A beautiful girl with a tight body walks by and you look at her and say, 'Ahhhh! sookie sookie now'". In a related vein, we come to Part II, Scene IV of The Beggar's Opera, in which Macheath is talking to several ladies: the charming Mrs. Coaxer; the amorous and coquettish Dolly Trull; the witty and spirited Mrs. Vixen; and the prim and demure Jenny Diver. Then Macheath refers to Suky Tawdry, whose name is italicized in at least one edition: "Everything she gets one way, she lays out upon her back. Why, Suky, you must keep at least a dozen tally-men". Cf. the word tally-man, originally meaning "a counter" but eventually "a concubine". Cf. slang sooky, "to have sex with all the women you know"; slang sukie, "slut".

Now it is my contention that the above passage regarding Suky Tawdry is just one example of many Sanskrit-based wordplays in The Beggar's Opera. Confer the following Sanskrit words:
-- sukhi, "lover of pleasure"; or sukhi, "causing pleasure or happiness". See next paragraph for more related info;
--ta, "she, that one, such a one";
--a-dhri, "irresistable". Additional examples of similar wordplay will be shown later.

There is also the song, "Groove Me" by King Floyd. The first line of its lyrics is "Uhh! Awww, sookie sookie now" and the song then continues by mentioning that he is in love because she looks so fine and makes him feel good inside when she grooves him.

The two forms of sukhi mentioned above are from the root sukh, "please, make happy", which is derived from sukha. According to A Sanskrit-English Dictionary, sukha is said to be made of two words, #5 su, "excellent", and #3 kha, "any orifice of the body", but it originally meant "having a good axle-hole" [sic!]. Well, also lists another definition of sooky sooky now, "telling someone to fuck you while you are taking a shit".

And finally here are a few of the many examples of Sanskritic wordplay in The Beggar's Opera, based on some of the characters' names:
--Suky Tawdry: Skt. s'ukii, "bright one", which can be used to refer to clothing and turbans; Eng. tawdry, "flashy", originally used to refer to lace but later to clothing.
--Betty Doxy: Skt. betii, "prostitute"; Eng. doxy, "prostitute".
--Diana Trapes: 1) Skt. dhyaana, "insensibility, dullness, meditation" from root dhyai, "to let the head down"; 2) Eng. traipse/trapes, "to walk trailinglyz", in that the word trail can mean "to hang down as to drag along the ground; move slowly in careless or wearisome fashion; utter slowly." Both words imply torpor.
--Macheath: Skt. mach, "cheat"; Skt. eth, "cheat". The word cheat can refer to something which is stolen. He steals for a living.
--Jenny Diver: In one particular line, Macheath refers to her as highbred and sanctified. Cf. Skt. jenya, "highbred"; Skt. daiva (pronounced "dye-vuh"), "sanctified".


Gay, John. The Beggar's Opera, two publishers.
Monier-Williams, Monier. A Sanskrit-English Dictionary.
Oxford English Dictionary, second edition