Green’s Dictionary of Slang

hayseed n.

also grass-seed, hayneck, hayseeder
[naut. phr. he hasn’t got the hayseed out of his hair]

a farmer, a simple peasant, a novice.

[US]Melville Moby Dick (1907) 33: Ah, poor Hay-Seed! how bitterly will burst those straps in the first howling gale!
[US]Highland Wkly News (Hillsboro, OH) 30 Apr. 2/7: He swore that John Hayseed might die in the furrow / Before he would sell him a plow.
[US]Sedalia Wkly Bazoo (MO) 10 Apr. 2/2: Hayseed’s eye will follow the marked card instinctively when I pick them up to shuffle.
[US]Phillipsburg Herald (KS) 13 Dec. 2/5: ‘Yes, Mrs hayseed, the ign’rance of city folks about country life is just amusin’’.
[US]J. Hawthorne Confessions of Convict 71: Hayseeds – Crooks in general evince a bitter aversion to prisoners from the bucolic districts.
[Aus]Truth (Sydney) 18 Mar. 1/8: A lady champion of the teetotal cause ran against a bad snag not long ago in the shape of an old hayseed from the Hunter River.
[Aus]H. Lawson ‘The Bush Beyond the Range’ in Roderick (1967–9) II 194: The Bush seems run by Buff’lo Bills / And Hayseeds from the States.
[UK]E. Pugh City Of The World 271: What you want to look like is [...] a Farmer Hayseed, or else a nice old benevolent party.
[US]S. Lewis Main Street (1921) 211: He thought she was a hayseed, she worried.
[Aus]Townsville Daily Bull. (Qld) 25 Feb. 14/3: Jimmy Grass-seed gets a hearing after a lengthy silence.
[US]‘Goat’ Laven Rough Stuff 39: You can always get five dollars or more from a ‘hayseed’ (country chump).
[Aus]Townsville Daily Bull. 24 May 5/1: The old hayseed, face a purplish blue, / Eyes glarin’ yells, ‘You git you loafin’ cur .
[UK]N. Streatfeild Grass in Piccadilly 252: They’re rather like you and me, two country hayseeds transplanted to London.
[Aus]D. Stivens Jimmy Brockett 22: Find me a hefty young hayseed about sixteen stone stop don’t send me a half-wit. [Ibid.] 103: I’ve got that big grass-seed hanging by his neck for five and a half minutes.
[US]W.R. Burnett Little Men, Big World 43: Things were coming to a pretty pass when a hayneck like this . . . !
[US]W. Murray Sweet Ride 141: The hayseed was reaching for the dice again.
[UK]P. Theroux Picture Palace 273: It was hard to reconcile the hayseed and crackerbarrel image.
[UK](con. WWII) S. Hynes Flights of Passage 21: Hayseeds, he said, with cow shit still on their shoes.
[UK]Indep. Rev. 30 July 13: Cosmopolites in American cities snickered at the film’s Texas hayseeds.
[US]N. Tosches Where Dead Voices Gather (ms.) 280: A hayseed-hokum master of ceremonies by the name of Martin Malloy.
[US]N. McCall Them (2008) 45: She was not about to let some citified hayseed imply she shared his backward views.
[UK]K. Richards Life 131: Wisbech Corn Exchange [...] July 1963 [...] All these hayseeds literally chewing on straw.