I’ve understood the meaning of the word doozy from the Is a "doozy" a good or bad thing? question. But what does this here sentence mean?

It’s going to be a doozy of a black eye.

Is this a metaphorical expression of some sort? If so, what’s the metaphor? How do we analyse this construction syntactically?


2 Answers 2


Literal meaning. "Something exceptional or special"

It means "That is going to be an exceptional black eye".

A "black eye" is the bruising you get when you are hit in the face. (It is the skin around the eye that looks dark or black, not the eye itself). Having a black eye is a bad thing (it suggests that someone punched you in the face) And so "A doozy of a black eye" is "exceptionally bad".

On the other hand "a doozy of an idea" means an exceptional idea. Since ideas are "good" this must be exceptionally good.


In fact, this is a metaphor.

According to Etymonline:

doozy also doozie, 1903 (adj.) "excellent, splendid," 1916 (n.), "an excellent of splendid thing or person," perhaps an alteration of daisy, or from popular Italian actress Eleonora Duse (1859-1924). In either case, reinforced by Duesenberg, the expensive, classy make of automobile from the 1920s-30s.

So calling something a doozy (or a daisy) is saying it is or shares some aspects of, metaphorically, that thing (flower, actress, or luxury car) that is outstanding in some way. That is, it's pretty great.

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