A Guide to Eighteenth-Century
BAGGAGE —An insulting term for a woman, like “hussy.”
1811 DICTIONARY OF THE VULGAR TONGUE.
BUCKISH SLANG, UNIVERSITY WIT,
BALLOCKS. The testicles of a man or beast; also a vulgar
nick name for a parson. His brains are in his ballocks,
a cant saying to designate a fool.
BUM BAILIFF. A sheriff's officer, who arrests debtors; so
called perhaps from following his prey, and being at their
bums, or, as the vulgar phrase is, hard at their a-ses.
Blackstone says, it is a corruption of bound bailiff, from
their being obliged to give bond for their good behaviour.
CAT'S FOOT. To live under the cat's foot; to be under the
dominion of a wife hen-pecked. To live like dog and cat;
spoken of married persons who live unhappily together.
As many lives as a cat; cats, according to vulgar
naturalists, have nine lives, that is one less than a woman.
No more chance than a cat in hell without claws; said of
one who enters into a dispute or quarrel with one greatly
above his match.
CODS. The scrotum. Also a nick name for a curate: a rude
fellow meeting a curate, mistook him for the rector, and
accosted him with the vulgar appellation of Bol--ks the
rector, No, Sir, answered he; only Cods the curate, at
DOWDY. A coarse, vulgar-looking woman.
GIGG. A nose. Snitchel his gigg; fillip his nose. Grunter's
gigg; a hog's snout. Gigg is also a high one-horse
chaise, and a woman's privities.
To GIGGLE. To suppress a laugh. Gigglers; wanton women.
MAWKES. A vulgar slattern.
RASCAL. A rogue or villain: a term borrowed from the
chase; a rascal originally meaning a lean shabby deer, at
the time of changing his horns, penis, &c. whence, in the
vulgar acceptation, rascal is conceived to signify a man
without genitals: the regular vulgar answer to this reproach,
if uttered by a woman, is the offer of an ocular demonstration
of the virility of the party so defamed. Some derive
it from RASCAGLIONE, an Italian word signifying a man.
without testicles, or an eunuch.
RIFF RAFF. Low vulgar persons, mob, tag-rag and bob-tail.
SH-T SACK. A dastardly fellow: also a non-conformist.
SH-T-NG THROUGH THE TEETH. Vomiting. Hark ye,
friend, have you got a padlock on your a-se, that you sh-te
through your teeth? Vulgar address to one vomiting.
WRINKLE. A wrinkle-bellied whore; one who has had
a number of bastards: child-bearing leaves wrinkles in a