Green’s Dictionary of Slang

mourning n.

SE in slang uses

In compounds

mourning shirt (n.) [such a shirt needs less regular washing, ref. to the custom of wearing the same clothes through the immediate period of mourning]

a flannel shirt.

Fuller Pisgah Sight of Palestine (1869) 521: As we say mourning shirts, it being customary for men in sadness, to spare the pains of their laundresses .

In phrases

butcher’s mourning (n.) [the normal mourning hat was black, but butchers apparently disliked the colour]

a white hat with a black band.

K. Meadows Heads of the People 365: Hats off —down there! — you in the white hat and crape — you in butcher's mourning — bonnet him!
[UK]Hotten Sl. Dict.
[UK]Sl. Dict. 105: Butcher’s Mourning a white hat with a black mourning hat-band. Probably because, under any circumstances, a butcher would rather not wear a black hat. White hats and black bands have, however, become genteel.
[UK]F.W. Carew Autobiog. of a Gipsey 410: A curly-brimmed white beaver hat with a black band – known in sporting parlance as ‘butcher’s mourning’.
dress it in mourning (v.)

(US) of a white male, to have sexual intercourse with a black female.

[US]J. Conroy World to Win 192: I ain’t never dressed it in mourning yet. Not while they’s a single white woman left, even if she’s a hundred years old.
full suit of mourning (n.) (also suit of mourning)

a pair of black eyes.

[UK]‘One of the Fancy’ Tom Crib’s Memorial to Congress xix: [note] No pugilist can be considered worth anything, till he has had his peepers taken measure of for a full suit of mourning, or in common language, has received a pair of black eyes .
[UK]Egan Life in London (1869) 111: [note] In being turned out of the panny, got her ogles took measure of for a suit of mourning.
‘The Mill’ British Minstrelsy 110: There’s a wap on his tater-trap – he’s made his box o’ dominoes chatter. [...] Baker shows first claret and a graper – he’s taking measure of his eyes for a suit of mourning.
[UK] ‘The Mill’ Museum of Mirth 45/1: [as 1827].
[UK]Hotten Sl. Dict.
[UK]Sl. Dict.
[UK]Post (Lanarks) 23 Apr. 6/3: Full suit of mourning — two black eyes.
in mourning (also full mourning) [the wearing of black as a sign of mourning; the SE adj. mourning, visibly bruised, is SE from 18C]

1. having a black eye; thus have one’s eyes in mourning, to have a pair of black eyes.

J.H. Reynolds Fancy 37: Her eyes were all sweetly in mourning .
[US]N.-Y. Enquirer 15 Apr. 2/4: The Pink’s left peeper, closed; both the Coalman’s in mourning.
[UK]S. Warren Diary of a Late Physician in Works (1854) III 86: His left eye was sent off into deep mourning, which threatened to last for weeks.
[UK]G. Kent Modern Flash Dict. 24: Ogles in mourning – black eyes.
[Aus]Bell’s Life in Sydney 10 June 2/4: [His] light plastered hair contrasted strangely with the mourning into which one of his eyes liad been thrown by the successful application of Mr. Keough’s boots to the optic.
[UK]Flash Dict. in Sinks of London Laid Open [as cit. 1835].
[Aus]Bell’s Life in Sydney 4 Oct. 1/3: Hayes had caught Master Ned on the right eye, which seemed inclined to follow suit with the left, already in deep mourning.
[US]Matsell Vocabulum 127: in mourning. The eyes blackened and closed up.
[UK]H.D. Miles Tom Sayers 33: Nat [...] showed his left peeper in deep mourning.
[US]J. O’Connor Wanderings of a Vagabond 270: The victorious Jimmy, with two teeth knocked out and one eye in mourning, not to mention the general appearance of his ‘mug,’ was congratulated by his numerous friends.
[UK]H. Nisbet ‘Bail Up!’ 155: Followed by his brother in affliction, with his mourning eyes.
[UK] ‘The Rocks Push Eisteddfod’ in Bird o’ Freedom (Sydney) in J. Murray Larrikins (1973) 88: There was not a Rocks lad who was not a mass of bumps, / Whose eyes were not ‘in mourning’, and whose nose was not in lumps.
[Aus]Truth (Sydney) 31 Aug. 8/3: And one heye, my heye, that optick / It were dressed in black, to mourn.
[US]Van Loan ‘The Fresh Guy’ in Big League (2004) 28: One of his eyes was still in mourning.
[US]Wood & Goddard Dict. Amer. Sl.
[US]H.C. Witwer Classics in Sl. 32: A brief visit at a barber’s, which paints the deep mournin’ off of one my eyes.
[[US]T.A. Dorgan in Zwilling TAD Lex. (1993) 117: Listening to the guy with the mourning glim tell how he got it].
[US]A.J. Pollock Und. Speaks 43/1: Full mourning, two black (discoloured) eyes.

2. (W.I./Jam.) dirty.

[UK]C. Rampini Letters from Jamaica 87: Very dirty spectacles are ‘glasses in mourning for their grandmothers.’.

3. in fig. use.

[UK]Egan Anecdotes of the Turf, the Chase etc. 67: Never again [...] could he put the ogles of the Ring in mourning.

4. (UK society) having dirty fingernails, edging the hands like the black border of mourning paper; thus (20C+) you’re in mourning for the cat, you have dirty fingernails.

[UK]Partridge DSUE (1984) 758: from ca. 1880.
[UK]G. Melly Rum, Bum and Concertina (1978) 69: His nails were, as my mother said, ‘in mourning’.
[Ire]R. Doyle Paddy Clarke Ha Ha Ha 5: Look at your hands, she said – Your fingernails! My God, Patrick, you must be in mourning for the cat.