Green’s Dictionary of Slang

bah! excl.

[somewhat defunct in general use, but taken up in 1990s+ by US teenagers]

an excl. of contempt.

[UK]Dekker Shoemakers’ Holiday III:iv: Away she flung, never returned, nor said bih nor bah.
[UK]Byron Beppo xxxi: Dreading the deep damnation of his ‘bah!’.
[UK]Dickens Christmas Carol (1868) 5: ‘Bah,’ said Scrooge. ‘Humbug!’.
[US]‘Ned Buntline’ G’hals of N.Y. 198: Bah! [...] when they heard that I had become a professional thief, did it affect or touch me?
Waterford News 9 Oct. 4/1: Could I but paint them? / ’Twould be right enough could I reproduce them. Bah! Michael the Angel could only traduce them!
[US]W.H. Thomes Bushrangers 96: ‘You served me a mean trick last night. It’s your skull I should crush for it.’ ‘Bah! Talk such nonsense to the marines.’.
[US]B. Harte Gabriel Conroy III 12: Bah!—she was divorced!
[Aus]Bulletin (Sydney) 21 Mar. 12/1: The Christian Churches pray to God for the preservation of a band of men whose only mission […] is the wholesale murder of true patriots who are fighting for their freedom, their homes, and their country. Bah! God, if He is just, will think twice before He will harken to this kind of hypocrisy.
[US]‘Oliver Optic’ Fighting Joe (1911) 75: Bah! You know what I mean.
[UK]Boy’s Own Paper 20 Oct. 36: ‘Bah!’ he exclaimed.
[UK]Marvel 5 Feb. 8: ‘Bah!’ he cried.
[Aus]‘Henry Handel Richardson’ Aus. Felix (1971) 13: ‘Oh, bah!’ said the lad, when he found that the jug held only water.
[UK]Wodehouse Clicking of Cuthbert 13: Bah! I spit me of zem all.
[Aus]D. Stivens Tramp and Other Stories 64: ‘You know what he is like with women,’ she said. ‘Bah!’ he muttered, ‘a few housemaids from the farm!’.
[UK]P. Larkin letter 10 Apr. in Thwaite Sel. Letters (1992) 182: So you preferred Cambridge to Oxford, did you? Bah.
[UK]G. Kersh Fowlers End (2001) 273: Who picked you literally out of the gutter, you and your tin of herrings? Bah!
[US]N.Y. Times 17 Dec. n.p.: ‘Bah, humbug,’ Senator Alan K. Simpson, a Wyoming Republican, said [R].
[UK]Indep. on Sun. 20 Feb. 28: Valentine’s Day – Bah! Humbug!