<iframe src="//www.googletagmanager.com/ns.html?id=GTM-K3L4M3" height="0" width="0" style="display:none;visibility:hidden">


Is the Wuhan coronavirus really that deadly?

7 February 2020

10:00 PM

7 February 2020

10:00 PM

Mumbo jumbo

The Prime Minister called opposition to imports of US-produced food ‘mumbo jumbo’. The expression was introduced to the English language in 1795 by Mungo Park in his Travels in the Interior of Africa. It was his way of writing down ‘Maamajomboo’ — the name used by the Mandinka people of West Africa for a pagan god, played by a male dancer, who was sent to intercede in disputes between the multiple wives of local men.

Already a subscriber? Log in

Subscribe for just $2 a week

Try a month of The Spectator Australia absolutely free and without commitment. Not only that but – if you choose to continue – you’ll pay just $2 a week for your first year.

  • Unlimited access to spectator.com.au and app
  • The weekly edition on the Spectator Australia app
  • Spectator podcasts and newsletters
  • Full access to spectator.co.uk

Unlock this article


You might disagree with half of it, but you’ll enjoy reading all of it. Try your first month for free, then just $2 a week for the remainder of your first year.


Don't miss out

Join the conversation with other Spectator Australia readers. Subscribe to leave a comment.

Already a subscriber? Log in