The origin of this British colloquial word for rubbish or nonsense is unclear but there are several theories. The most popular one is that it derives from Hiram Codd who was involved in the bottling of carbonated soft drinks during the 19th century. In 1876, he designed and patented a bottle that was sealed with the help of a glass ball in the neck. The pressure of the fizzy drink forced the ball up against the rubber washer of the bottle cap thereby affecting a seal. Beer drinkers were dismissive of Codd’s soft drinks and called them Codd’s wallop, wallop being British slang for any alcoholic beverage but especially beer. The only problem with this story is that the word wallop in connection with alcohol is first recorded in the early 20th century, long after Codd’s death. Furthermore, no citations for Codd’s wallop spelt with two ds have ever been found. The mystery deepens with the first ever appearance of codswallop in print in 1959! During the 19th century, the word cod was North Country slang meaning to string or kid someone along. It was also slang, dating from the 19th century for sham or hoax. See Cod. This sounds quite promising but leads no further. There are simply too many etymological loose ends and the regrettable conclusion is that the origin of codswallop remains unresolved. See also Wallop.