I want to buy bread-and-butter, hoop-skirts and waterfalls for some person of the female persuasion during life
Source: Harper's Weekly, September 2, 1865
Why on earth did he just not say girl/woman/lady/female? For example,
... for a lady during life.
Was this, per chance:
- a tongue in cheek expression;
- an attempt at humour, or;
- a way of making the advertisement stand out from the others in the lonely hearts column?
I am sure that I have heard this expression elsewhere, but, for the life of me, I can not remember where. I think that I have heard Person of the X peruasion, where X could be some other character defining attribute, but not female... it is an odd expression, as one can't really be persuaded to be a female, one either is, or is not.
Presumably waterfalls are a type of clothing or some other type of accoutrement, that, at that time, a gentleman would gift to the lady in his life, and not an actual physical waterfall? If the writer does actually means real cascading waterfalls, then surely the whole sentence is rather tongue-in-cheek?