Story: English language in New Zealand

'I'm absolutely buggered' (1st of 2)

In 1956 All Black Peter Jones earned himself a place in history, not just for his rugby playing, but for words uttered after a test match win over South Africa's Springboks. Straight after the game, Jones told a radio journalist – in true Kiwi bloke form – 'I'm absolutely buggered.' Jones didn't realise that his words were being broadcast live to the nation, in an era when 'buggered' was not a word to be used in such a public setting. The All Black's victory shielded him from criticism, though it did cause a flap in the halls of the New Zealand Broadcasting Service. Listen to Jones's immortal words, recalled decades later in cartoon form by Murray Webb.

Using this item

Alexander Turnbull Library
Reference: H-474-001
Cartoon by Murray Webb

Permission of the Alexander Turnbull Library, National Library of New Zealand, Te Puna Mātauranga o Aotearoa, must be obtained before any re-use of this image.

Sound file from Radio New Zealand Sound Archives Ngā Taonga Kōrero. Any re-use of this audio is a breach of copyright. To request a copy of the recording, contact Sound Archives Ngā Taonga Kōrero (Peter Jones, 1956/Reference ID23252).

All images & media in this story

How to cite this page:

Dianne Bardsley, 'English language in New Zealand - Characteristics of New Zealand English', Te Ara - the Encyclopedia of New Zealand, http://www.TeAra.govt.nz/en/speech/40316/im-absolutely-buggered (accessed 27 January 2020)

Story by Dianne Bardsley, published 5 Sep 2013