Nobody knows where the word hornswoggle came from. It popped up mysteriously in America in 1829, came to England, and was still being used by The Sunday Times as recently as 1970.
Hornswoggle meant to embarrass, bamboozle or cheat. It survives today, if it can be said to survive at all, as the stage-name of a small professional wrestler, who also likes to be called Little Bastard.
I feel hornswoggle should be reclaimed by the non-wrestling community. Saying the word aloud is almost as delicious a sensual pleasure as wamblecropt.
Try it. Go on.