Green’s Dictionary of Slang

balls n.

[the shape]

1. the testicles; occas. in sing.

[Scot]Dunbar ‘Flyting of Dunbar & Kennedy’ in Laing Poems (1834) II 69: Haill, forever senyeour! thy bawis hingis throw thy breik.
[UK] ‘The Cuckoo’s Commendation’ in Rollins Pepys Ballads (1929) I 95: The nimble fingered barber / That to your chamber comes / To washe your heade and trim your bearde / With water and sweet perfumes: / The while that he’s from home, / His wyfe a freinde may finde, / With balls and casting bottles / For to content hir minde.
[UK]Motteux (trans.) Gargantua and Pantagruel (1927) II Bk V 677: And my sweet wife shall hold the combat Long as my baws can on her bum beat.
[UK]N. Ward ‘A Walk to Islington’ Writings (1704) 73: And why with two Balls? ’Cause it’s very well known, / A Pair pleases Ladies much better than One.
[UK]S. Centlivre Wonder! II i: violante: Ha! Exceedingly merry! Had you treats and balls? lissardo: Oh! Yes, yes, Madam, several!
[UK]Dialogue between a Married Lady and a Maid 16: Underneath, hangs in a Bag, or Purse, two little Balls, pretty hard, and the harder the better.
[UK] ‘The Maid’s Lamentation’ Tom-Tit Pt 2 6: If you chance to miss the Mark / Pray load again like a valiant Spark; / Ram down your Charge with a Brace of Balls.
[UK]G. Stevens ‘A Fore-Castle Song’ Songs Comic and Satyrical 97: Our Organs are twenty-four pounders [...] And as to our Balls they’re forc’d-meat.
[UK]Nunnery Amusements 5: His hairy purse hung with a grove below, / And two plump balls made every bosom glow.
[Scot]Burns ‘Duncan Davidson’ Merry Muses of Caledonia (1965) 144: O go he east, or go he west, / His balls will no be dry today.
[Scot]Bugger’s Alphabet in Bold (1979) 42: E is the eunuch with only one ball.
[UK]Pierce Egan’s Life in London 21 May 547/1: The Captain was a fam’d crack shot, and ere he left for Erin, / The Old Hats pigeon-shooting corps, as private did appear in / [...] / [...] they’ll pigeon kill with ball, Sir.
[UK] ‘Sam Swipes’ Cuckold’s Nest 21: She twigged his long musket, and could not stand mute, / He primed it so quickly, and it came to pass, / That he banged his musket balls against Sally’s ---.
[UK] ‘The Night Squall’ Nobby Songster 4: For over her a--- his huge b---s swing, / And his j--- is gulphed in a virgin q--m.
[US]Whip & Satirist of NY & Brooklyn (NY) 1 Jan. n.p.: Sam Smith is a capital hand at a stroke with the balls, and, we take it, he always plays for the pocket with the Widow Thwaites.
[UK] ‘Miss Bounce Of Cock-Lane’ Nobby Songster 34: Mr. Balls I’m told you, ladies odd jobs can do, / For you are a man of great parts, sir.
[US]Life in Boston & N.Y. (Boston, MA) 8 Oct. n.p.: To the best family edition of ‘Fanny Hill,’ with illustrations after original designs by Huge Balls.
[UK] ‘The Mysteries of London’ Rakish Rhymer (1917) 24: And how is it ladies make so many calls? / Why, they’re attracted by his jolly great — balls.
[UK]Pearl 1 July in Bold (1979) 169: Eve played with his balls, and thought it no harm.
[UK]Sins of the Cities of the Plain 14: A priapus nearly ten inches long [...] underhung by a most glorious pair of balls.
[UK] ‘The Bastard King of England’ in Bold (1979) 22: He was lousy and dirty and covered in fleas / And the hair on his balls hung down to his knees.
[US]‘Bob Sterling’ Town-Bull 17: Playing with my prick and balls.
[UK]Lustful Memoirs of a Young and Passionated Girl 44: She felt of the bag too, and the two balls it contained.
[UK]Proc. Old Bailey 2 Apr. 283: Smith then became very violent and [...] said, ‘If you don't let me go I’ll kick your b——y f——g b——s out,’ and he kicked at me in that direction.
[US]T. Hampson diary 22 Jan. 🌐 An Englishman and a Yank in a railway compartment. The Englishman took down his suitcase, and on opening it some mothballs rolled out onto the floor. Yank: ‘Say stranger, what are those?’ Englishman: ‘Mothballs.’ Yank: ‘Gee, some moth.’.
[UK] ‘Rangy Lil’ in Bold (1979) 191: Till over the hill from Dragarse Creek / Came a short-shit fucker called One-ball Pete.
[US]H. Miller Tropic of Cancer (1963) 158: A man like that has no balls, and if he has, then he ought to be castrated.
[US](con. 1944) N. Mailer Naked and Dead 161: Mah balls would git to itchin’ when Ah’d look at her.
[Ire](con. 1940s) B. Behan Borstal Boy 47: I’ll show you a knee in the balls.
[US]H. Selby Jr Last Exit to Brooklyn 16: I’ll break ya balls ya rotten bastard, trying to kick him in the groin.
[UK]A. Salkey ‘Is the lan’ I want’ Jamaica (1983) 99: White suit, / brown-an’-white shoes, / watch chain, / plenty gol’ teeth, / plenty self, / always feelin’ him balls, / Panama Man.
[UK]Flame : a Life on the Game 99: Take him by the balls when he’s giving you one, and pull them.
[Ire]P. Howard The Joy (2015) [ebook] Birds migrate in the winter to some place where they’re not gonna be freezing their balls off.
[Aus]P. Temple Bad Debts (2012) [ebook] Come in or I’ll shoot your balls oiff.
[UK]N. Cohn Yes We have No 28: These pimps [...] they worthy to have their balls cut off.
[UK] (ref. to 1971) F. Dennis ‘Old Bailey’ Homeless in my Heart 183: Where the lags can make you a cutter [...] Where screws are as thick as a plank, / And the cries of a man as he begs / While they cut his balls with a shank.
[UK]S. Kelman Pigeon English 51: Round and round go my smalls / A lovely hammock for my balls.
[Aus]C. Hammer Scrublands [ebook] He gives his balls a tug.
[Aus]C. Hammer Opal Country 167: ‘[H]is balls are black and blue—the size of oranges’.

2. (US) the female breasts.

[UK]Beaumont & Fletcher Philaster III i: Are not her breasts two liquid Ivory balls?’.
J. Bancroft Edward III II ii: Those Lilly white snow-Balls.
[US]T.I. Rubin Sweet Daddy 35: Wow, could I use her now. Biggest balls you ever saw [...] great big ones that stick out in points.

3. (also big balls) courage, bravery, resilience; supposedly quintessential male qualities, but now as often applied to women.

[US]B. Schulberg What Makes Sammy Run? (1992) 225: I watched you a long time. You got balls. You’re OK with me.
[US](con. 1920s) ‘Harry Grey’ Hoods (1953) 163: He’s got balls. Plenty of character.
[US]H.S. Thompson letter 1 Jan. in Proud Highway (1997) 365: There is nobody here with any balls.
[US]E. Torres Carlito’s Way 3: Heart like the Jews, soul like the Blacks, balls like the Italians.
[US]E. Torres Q&A 19: ‘Two guns, eh? [...] Big Balls,’ Valentin said, forming semicircles with his curled thumbs and index fingers’.
[UK]A. Bleasdale No Surrender 78: Where’s y’ bravery, where’s y’ balls?
[US]W.D. Myers Fallen Angels 174: [of a woman] ‘It takes balls for a chick to propose to a guy’.
[US]Pileggi & Scorsese Goodfellas [film script] 24: They had no balls.
[US]T. Jones Pugilist at Rest 9: It took a certain amount of balls to lie to them.
[UK]N. Cohn Yes We have No 200: The immorality is lack of self-pride and lack of balls.
[UK]N. Griffiths Grits 355: They ant got the balls t’do what I’ve done and fuck it all off an find a space whir ey can be truly emselves.
[US]C. Hiaasen Nature Girl 270: What colossal balls, marveled Honey.
[Scot]L. McIlvanney All the Colours 189: ‘Don’t lie down to her, Norman [...] show a bit of balls, that’s all. What can she do?’.
[UK]K. Richards Life 214: She had the balls to break the ice and say fuck it.
[US]D.R. Pollock Devil All the Time 187: ‘Look, if you ain’t got the balls for it anymore, just say so’.
[Scot]I. Welsh Decent Ride 6: A researcher at the network coined his catchphrase: ‘Business takes balls’.
[Ire]L. McInerney Glorious Heresies 122: Joseph is on Paul Street, busking. That lad has balls, like.
[Aus]T. Spicer Good Girl Stripped Bare 86: ‘You should do some stories for the program [...] Girls like you have got balls’.
[Scot]G. Armstrong Young Team 86: ‘Me n Azzy didnae fuckin start this but we’ve git the fuckin baws tae end it’.
[US]D. Winslow ‘The San Diego Zoo’ in Broken 151: Chris doesn’t have the balls to go back there yet.
[Ire]Breen & Conlon Hitmen 84: They ’hadn’t the balls’ to go up against the biggest drug dealers.
[Aus]P. Papathanasiou Stoning 231: He’d been threatened [by] rapists, paedophiles and murderers, though they never had the balls to follow through.
[US]Rayman & Blau Riker’s 403: She got some balls.
[UK]R. Milward Man-Eating Typewriter 232: ‘You’ve got balls, Raymond I’ll give you that much’.
X 29 Nov. 🌐 I nicknamed him ‘big balls Boris’, I thought this is the guy who’s going to help us...But we got lied to again.

4. rubbish, nonsense.

[US]O. Wister Philosophy 4 18: ‘If I were to stop thinking about you, you’d evaporate.’ ‘Which is all balls,’ observed the second boy, judicially, again in the slang of his period.
[Scot]Hole in the Elephant’s Bottom in Bold (1979) 111: My manager says it’s all balls, / He claims that my acting is rotten.
[Ire]Joyce Ulysses 130: All balls! Bulldosing the public!
[US]E. Hemingway letter 19 Aug. in Baker Sel. Letters (1981) 418: It is all balls.
[UK]P. Larkin letter 23 June in Thwaite Sel. Letters (1992) 16: What is truth? Balls. What is love? Shite.
[WI]S. Selvon ‘Calypsonian’ Foreday Morning (1989) 148: Every day he there by the tailorshop, sitting down on a soapbox and talking balls whole day.
[UK]K. Amis letter 21 May in Leader (2000) 680: There was a party the other day for his new bundle of balls.
[UK]A. Burgess Enderby Outside in Complete Enderby (2002) 297: She’s going on about you being a dangerous criminal, which sounds to me like a load of balls.
[UK]P. Theroux Family Arsenal 139: What a lot of balls you talk.
[UK]M. Amis London Fields 164: Awful old load of old balls.
[UK]Guardian G2 27 Aug. 7: Raymond, don’t talk balls.
[UK]J. Hawes Dead Long Enough 119: I know it’s all balls.

5. (orig. US) nothing, absolute zero.

[US]H. Roth Call It Sleep (1977) 271: Balls you’ll ged.
[US]M. Levin Citizens 37: ‘What can they do to me?’ he raged. ‘Balls they can do to me.’.
[US]R. Mende Spit and the Stars 76: But what does the customer give him for a tip? Balls.

6. (US) constr. with the, a superlative, either good or bad according to context.

[US]E. De Roo Go, Man, Go! 70: Are we gonna have the balls!
[US]Baker et al. CUSS 76: Balls, the = Nuts, the.
[US]Eble Campus Sl. Oct. 5: the balls – the best.
D. Lehane Sacred 231: ‘You need to tell me it’s okay for us to call you back later. Say around seven.’ ‘Okay? Shit, it's the balls, man’.

7. substance, power, strength.

L.M. Irwin Golden Hammock 366: Not one of all the men I married had the balls to be free.
[US]B. Schulberg On the Waterfront (1964) 29: Runty Nolan, when he had enough balls in him, he could really give out with Galway Bay.
[US]H.S. Thompson letter 8 Dec. in Proud Highway (1997) 242: The GM, by the way, had real balls.
[UK]J. Osborne Déjàvu Act I: Some cunning French play I expect. All bombast and logic and no balls.
[US]T. Fontana ‘The Routine’Oz ser. 1 ep. 1 [TV script] If an inmate survives Oz he’s got balls on the street. I want to take some of the glamour away from that.
[UK]Guardian 23 July 17: We’re waiting to see if the new government has the balls to throw them out.

8. synon. with arse n., e.g. work one’s balls off, put one’s balls on the line.

[US](con. 1910s) ‘Harry Grey’ Hoods (1953) 40: I thought of the coming cold weather [...] I’ll bet I freeze my balls off.
[US]H.S. Thompson letter 25 Oct. in Proud Highway (1997) 406: He can write the balls off of every punk who did – including me.
[US](con. 1970) J.M. Del Vecchio 13th Valley (1983) 421: I’m freezin my balls off.
[US]Simon & Burns ‘Ebb Tide’ Wire ser. 2 ep. 1 [TV script] I’m freezin my balls off.
[US]R. Price Lush Life 231: I’m freezing my balls off just looking at you guys .
[US]Codella and Bennett Alphaville (2011) 200: The two of you [...] either sweating your asses off or sweating your balls off.

9. effrontery, gall, audacity.

[US]H.S. Thompson letter 18 Sept. in Proud Highway (1997) 540: I don’t have the crazy balls to say, ‘No, I’ll refuse to let you publish it’.
[US]J. Wambaugh Choirboys (1976) 139: She had the most balls. Took every dime I had.
[US]R. Price Breaks 166: He had the absolute balls to show up for this rap session in a black T-shirt, dungarees [...] and a gold Cartier wristwatch.
[US]T. Williams Crackhouse 87: Do you believe the balls on this son of a bitch?
[UK]Guardian Rev. 31 Mar. 3: I didn’t have the balls to finish it!
[US]C. Stella Jimmy Bench-Press 23: He had the balls to threaten our friend with thias information.
[Scot]T. Black Gutted 70: I don’t know [...] where he got the balls to harass me like this, but I wasn’t in the mood for any of his shite.

10. (US black) something excellent, wonderful; one’s preference [on bad = good model].

[US]Ebonics Primer at 🌐 ballz Definition: cool, nice; appealing to one’s desires. Example: DJ S: Yo J, I gotz outside seats to tha Lakaz!! J: Ballz!

11. see balls-up n.

In derivatives

ball-less (adj.) [sfx -less]

weak, emasculated; thus ball-less wonder n., an especially weak individual.

B. Conrad Death of a Matador 196: For the love of your mother and your dead father stick it out, don’t run, don’t sway back, stick it out, you ball-less wonder.
[US]A. King Mine Enemy Grows Older (1959) 26: On my left, there lived an altogether ball-less wonder [...] He was pop-eyed and froggy-faced.
D. King Brave and Damned 82: All right, you bunch of ballless recruits [HDAS].
‘Luke Rhinehart’ Dice Man (1998) 79: [...] He’s another ball-less masturbator.
A. Innaurato Transfiguration of Benno Blimpie in Yale/theatre 6: He ain’t normal because he takes after you! He got no balls either. Your father is ball-less, you is ball-less. And your kid is ball-less.
S. Zelitch Confession of Jack Straw 194: Listen to old prophet Ball, the ball-less prophet!
[US]J. Ridley What Fire Cannot Burn 185: The more he stood, the more ball-less he looked.
ballsy (adj.)

1. tough, courageous; despite ety., used of either gender.

Plays for a New Theatre 113: [...] ballsy chaps shoving a white hot poker up King Richard's skinny old rump.
[US]N. Mailer Advertisements for Myself 416: He is tart as a grand aunt, but in his way he is a ballsy little guy, and he is the most perfect writer of my generation.
[US](con. 1940s) M. Dibner Admiral (1968) 240: A salty swashbuckling ballsy pirate.
[US]M. Braly On the Yard (2002) 213: Six years ago I was still pretty ballsy.
[US]G.V. Higgins Friends of Eddie Coyle 171: That Scal, he’s a ballsy guy, you know.
Liz Bolen N.Y. mag. 29 May n.p.: I want to show ballsy women who get laid—or who can say, ‘No, I don’t want to’ [R].
[US]R. Price Breaks 193: It was exciting to me that she had been a ballsy student.
[UK]A. Higgins ‘The Bird I Fancied’ in Helsingør Station and Other Departures 159: Sir Harry Secombe got up in a blue blazer stood before the Wells Choir and the ballsy guys in blue blazers sang lustily ‘The Fires of Love Die’.
[UK]J. Green It 193: [W]hat I was trying to do was show him that I was a cool ballsy woman who could not be intimidated.
[US]C. Hiaasen Lucky You 114: JoLayne figured nobody would be ballsy enough to go there three times in a row.
[Aus]R.G. Barrett Wind & Monkey (2013) [ebook] She was a ballsy little girl for her size.
[UK]Observer Screen 5 Mar. 7: The actress is less ballsy than the real thing.
[US]J. Ridley What Fire Cannot Burn 260: She swore at Tashjian for being ballsy enough to call her bluff.
[UK]Eve. Standard 10 May13/1: [headline] Will Fayed’s successor be as ballsy?
[US]D. Winslow Border [ebook] Hidalgo makes his play straight off. It’s ballsy.
[UK]Guardian 16 July 🌐 ‘That’s pretty fucking ballsy, that is’.

2. absurd, ridiculous.

[UK]Indep. on Sun. Real Life 20 June 5: The sight of ballsy Ruby stumbling in chains.
[UK]K. Sampson Powder 141: Each ballsy gig in Haverfordwest or Skye, was bringing them closer to their calling.

3. in ironic use of sense 1, cheeky, showing off.

H. Acosta ‘Doing the Job’ in ThugLit Dec. [ebook] ‘[W]ondering if some drunk is going to get ballsy and jump the barrier to come at me’.

In compounds

ball-bag (n.) (also ballsack, baw-bag, baw-sack) [SE bag/bag n.1 (1a)]

the scrotum; also as a term of abuse.

[UK]‘Walter’ My Secret Life (1966) VI 1261: My balls stuck to her buttocks [...] so much had our spendings spread over bum and ball bag.
[UK](con. WWII) B. Aldiss Soldier Erect 251: My ballbag was a little hard wrinkled thing.
[UK] ‘The Sailor’s Farewell’ in Bold (1979) 199: And lice as large as lobsters / Into your ballbag eat.
[US]Maledicta IV:2 (Winter) 196: The scrotum that contains the nuts is rarely mentioned. Ball bag and bag are uncommon terms in themselves, though the last survives in the phrase last shake of the bag, meaning ‘one’s youngest child’.
[UK]A. Bleasdale On the Ledge 26: You’re not coming back at all – unless it’s in another life, y’pair of little ball-bags.
[NZ]P. Shannon Davey Darling 22: Davey was starting to hitch up his own pants and put his own hairy old ballbag and dick away.
[Scot]T. Black Gutted 228: ‘...Well fuck ye!’ ‘...Homo!’ ‘...Fucking bawbag!’.
[UK]L. Thomas Twitter 22 Dec. 🌐 2011 politics prediction: Gillian McKeith to join coalition government in new role as Secretary of State for Being A Total Ballbag.
[UK]E. Bryce-Perkins on Twitter 17 Aug. 🌐 So far, I've started at the baw bags and willy each time #habit.
[US]E. McNamara ‘Redline’ in ThugLit Jan. [ebook] ‘Why are you just hanging around like a ballbag, doing nothing?’.
[US]T.M. Simmler ‘Suicide Chump’ in ThugLit July [ebook] ‘Nobody lives like this [...] Looking like an ironed ballsack’.
[UK]Guardian 25 Aug. 🌐 Who are these people? Well, in general, they are limp-dick – as we say in Scotland, bawbags – who hide behind the anonymity.
[Scot]Twitter 5 July 🌐 Just piss of with the rest of the cowards, you repugnant wee baw-sack.
[UK]in Guardian 9 July 🌐 How can a so called liberal rag like this favour an unelected /undemocratic bunch like the EU Ballbags.
Twitter 12 July 🌐 Tangerine Bawbag Arrives in UK. Orange Coloured Wank Pheasant Lands in Britain. Everybody is Annoyed.
[Ire]P Howard Braywatch 141: [M]y friend’s – I can’t think of the right medical term, so I’ll just say ball bag?
anti-war banner in Glasgow on Twitter 4 Mar. 🌐 Oi Putin! / Oan yer trolley / Ya glakit lookin huffy wee / bawbag!

see separate entries.


see separate entries.

ball-catchers (n.)

(Aus.) male underpants.

[Aus](con. 1943) G.S. Manson Coorparoo Blues [ebook] He’d just dropped his strides to put on a clean pair of ball-catchers.
ball-clanker (n.) [SE clanker]

(US) a man who boasts, prob. groundlessly, of his sexual prowess.

[US]J. Kirkwood There Must Be a Pony! 16: The only men you’re ever exposed to are such big-mouthed, crude ball-clankers.
D. Porter Howard Hughes 338: Pat was a big ball clanker most of the time. But around Howard or Lucky [Luciano], he became the court eunuch.
ball-crusher (n.)

1. a dominating woman who ‘emasculates’ her partner, usu. a husband.

[UK]London Mag. 59/1: Every woman is a ball crusher. He is obsessed with proving his virility .
[Scot]I. Rankin Knots and Crosses (1998) 33: He disliked ballcrushers.
[UK]T. Blacker Fixx 168: Germaine Greer’s The Female Eunuch (a sort of Highway Code for ballcrushers).
V. Groocock Changing Our Lives 174: I am not interested in their egos, I am not there to reassure them and [...] I am accused of being a ball crusher.
B. Rees Oscar’s Tale 139: She was a ball-crusher, of course, and he was fully aware of the fact. But his masculinity had never let him down yet.
R. Dukes Bob the Blob 143: It is sound advice to stay away from the girls [...] who have nicknames like Ball Crusher.

2. anything that is excessively hard or frustrating, or impressive; thus ball-crushing adj.

E. Schiddel Scandal’s Child 75: More ball-crushing, like [...] one more American Mom.
[US]New York Mag. 1 68/1: He is, beyond argument, the great ball-crushing Mother of Us All.
[US]H. Crews Feast of Snakes 9: Those beautiful ball-crushing breasts she’d had two years ago now hung like enormous flaps down the front of her body.
[US]J. Langone Life at the Bottom 75: It’s a real ball-crusher.

3. a sexually voracious woman who exhausts her partner’s virility.

Biala 19: I’m not a ball-crusher. You shouldn’t divide women into ‘ball-crushers’ and ‘prick- teasers.’.
ball-cutter (n.)

(US) a nagging, domineering or demanding woman.

[UK]G. Lambert Inside Daisy Clover (1966) 196: It’s strong American women who drive men queer, because they’re ball cutters.
[US]K. Kesey One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest 57: She’s a bitch and a buzzard and a ball-cutter, and don’t kid me, you know what I’m talking about.
ball-faced (adj.)

a general term of derision, lit. ‘testicle-faced’.

[Scot]I. Welsh Trainspotting 20: No intros are made, but that’s the prerogative of my baw-faced icon, Mike Forrester.
[Scot](con. 1980s) I. Welsh Skagboys 84: Goagsie is a bit ay a baw-faced cunt.
ball-gripper (n.)

(Aus.) something amazing, excellent.

[UK]J. McClure Snake 40: Good, hard stuff. News ed said it was a ball-gripper of a story.
ball-licker (n.)

the tongue.

[US]G. Hayward Corruption Officer [ebook] Ch. 28: An Officer orders an inmate to ‘open ya cock sucker (mouth) and stick out ya ball licker (tongue)!’.
ball naked (adj.)

see separate entry.

balls-ache (v.)

to nag, to whinge; thus balls-aching adj., nagging, demanding; also balls-achingly adv.

P. Toynbee Prothalamium 78: And what high-fallutin’ cock it is, what balls-aching crap!
R. Hardy Sword of God 263: ‘It’d be better to stop this balls-aching and leave us alone or we’ll...’ He suddenly became embarrassed and sat down.
[UK] letter in Oz 4 3/4: I am not one to balls ache about what other people do, let alone print.
[UK]J. McClure Spike Island (1981) 95: If only they knew the ball-aching enquiries involved.
[UK]Observer Rev. 7 May 20: I’m a balls-achingly, tooth-grindingly, butt-clenchingly loyal apparatchik.
[UK]M. Rowson Stuff 93: An eternity of utter, balls-aching, mind-crushing, soul-destroying boredom.
ball slap (v.)

of a man, to have sexual intercourse.

Pete Altieri ‘Brutality Report’ at 🌐 I dish out some hardcore sex as this dude pounds the crap out of some hooker’s pussy, shoving her knees up into her face while ball slapping her sweaty ass cheeks.
balls naked (adj.)

see separate entry.

balls out (adv.) [the implication is that one is willing to risk injuring the genitals]

at full tilt, absolutely committed, all out; thus as adj.

[UK] in Campbell & Campbell War Paint 92: [aircraft nose art] ‘Balls Out’.
[US]T. Wolfe Electric Kool-Aid Acid Test (1969) 88: The trip [...] was a risk-all, balls-out plunge into the unknown.
CBer’s Handy Atlas/Dictionary 9/2: balls-out - An extreme effort. (‘He’s making a balls-out run for Motor City by nightfall.’).
[US]W.C. Anderson Bat-21 135: This is a balls-out invasion.
[US]P. Munro Sl. U. 27: Michelle, we’re late. It’s a yellow light — balls out!
[US](con. 1986) G. Pelecanos Sweet Forever 94: He didn’t have the same kind of balls-out courage as the white cop.
[UK]T. Fontana and S. Whitesell ‘Famous Last Words’ Oz ser. 4 ep. 16 [TV script] You played balls-out in both those games.
[Aus](con. 1960s-70s) T. Taylor Top Fellas 85/2: The giddy limit of balls-out no-brow rock n’ roll.
Twitter 18 Mar. 🌐 I'm also pretty strong (lol, I'm balls out brilliant) on European material culture.
ball-tearer (n.)

1. anything spectacular or notably impressive.

J. Cantwell Never a Closing Door 46: You should have been there, mate. Had me an absolute ball-tearer of a time.
H. Brenton Epsom Downs 71: Then I sweep down, curving to the left, to the real ball-tearer, a vicious left-hand corner.
[Aus] J. Dingwall Sun. Too Far Away 30: Phew, she’s a ball-tearer of a day.
[Aus]R. Aven-Bray Ridgey-Didge Oz Jack Lang 14: ‘That was a balltearer,’ the lank-haired Charlie Wheeler enthused.
[Aus]C. Bowles G’DAY 63: When a player makes a good play it’s a ball-tearer, unless he’s one of the opposition, in which case it’s pure arse.
This Swirling Sphere 9 Oct. 🌐 First the single, next the album – which by all accounts is a ball-tearer and has some wise old men of the industry sitting up in surprise.
[Aus]Bug (Aus.) 1 Apr. 🌐 A ball-tearer of an idea......Did you cop a gobful of that bullshit relationships piece that some tired old slapper wrote in one of Australia’s quality mainstream dailies or the Courier-Mail the other day?
Dan’s JP3 Page 🌐 They honeyed me with sweet words, and they said things like, uh, ‘we want you back, Sam, because this is going to be an absolute ball-tearer’, that’s a term I learnt in Melbourne, and I understand very well now.

2. (Aus.) a violent person.

[Aus]J. McNeil Chocolate Frog 25: I mean you bein’ pinched for street-fightin’ [...] yer must be a real litle ball-tearer.

3. (Aus.) a physically demanding task.

H. Brenton Epsom Downs 71: Then I sweep down, curving to the left, to the real ball-tearer, a vicious left-hand corner.
[UK]Partridge DSUE (8th edn) 43/1: 1960s.
B. Heard Those Men Well Done 36: The rocket launcher was OK, but grenade throwing was what was commonly called a ball-tearer.

4. an admirable individual.

I. Chappell Chappelli Laughs Again 7: As he reached me, he slapped me on the back and, without dropping the fag, said: ‘You fucken ball tearer mate!’.
J. Clanchy Breaking Glass 91: Fucking ball-tearer, O’Hara. Best rover I ever had.
[Aus]C. Hammer Silver [ebook] ‘Martin fucking Scarsden! What a ball-tearer’.

5. (Aus.) a major problem, an exasperation.

[Aus]Sydney Morning Herald 26 Mar. 2/6: The result in the city shows that corruption is a ball-tearer in the city [AND].

6. (orig. US) usu. of a woman, esp. a wife, a nag.

B. Garlick et al. Stereotypes of Women in Power 148: Today, the Oxford dictionary tells us that the virago is a shrew, a scold, a ‘turbulent’ woman (‘ball-tearer’ in slang usage).
[Aus]T. Spicer Good Girl Stripped Bare 249: The audience is unaccustomed to tough-talking women on air. The default setting is to label them a ‘bitch’, ‘ball-tearer’ or ‘strident’.

In phrases

all balls (and bang-me-arse) (n.)


[UK](con. 1912) B. Marshall George Brown’s Schooldays 112: It’s all balls and bang-me-arse because nobody need ever drown because everybody can learn to float.
H. Tracy Beauty of World 110: Once more the Meteor fearlessly exposes... [...] The British People has the right to expect... ‘That's all balls and bang me arse,’ the editor interrupted.
C. Cockburn Ballantyne’s Folly 105: Harrogate spoke heartily [...] ‘You're damn right. It's all balls and bang-me-arse’.
[UK]Partridge DSUE (8th edn).
[US]H. Rawson Dict. of Invective (1991) 31: Ballocks, which is British for nonsense or rubbish, synonymous with balls or all balls, used on both sides of the Atlantic.
P. McCutchan Halfhyde for the Queen 24: The admiral feels, and so do I, that cloak-and-dagger pretences are all balls and bang-me-arse.
as balls (adv.)

(US) in lit. or fig. use, a general intensifier.

[US]New Yorker 25 Dec. 99/3: [He] couldn’t stop himself from wondering how much his cold-as-balls breakup had contributed to her present fucked-upness.
[US]Eble Campus Sl. Nov. 1: as balls – to a great degree: It’s cold as balls today.
[US]Z. Martin Players 396: It’s cold as balls outside now and I can see my breath crystallise in the air when I speak.
[US]H.-M. Bertino Safe as Houses 11: If you believed the sky, you would think it was warm outside, but it is cold. It is cold as balls.
[Ire]L. McInerney Rules of Revelation 70: ‘You’re giddy as balls’.
balls and all

(orig. US) a general intensifer; everything; completely.

‘Esther Williams — Get a Li'l Like the Fishes Do’ in 🌐 I feel like I could slip balls and all in.
[US](con. 1900s) in Randolph & Legman Ozark Folksongs and Folklore (1992) II 763: Waltz the hall, remember my call. / Ruby can take it, balls and all.
[US](con. 1920s) ‘Harry Grey’ Hoods (1953) 93: He fell for it, balls and all.
[UK]Scaffold ‘Lily the Pink’ 🎵 Now Mrs. Brown, she had her problems, / Couldn’t satisfy at all; / So she drank she drank she drank six bottles of Compound --- / Now she takes them...balls and all.
[US]‘Troy Conway’ Cunning Linguist (1973) 13: And it looked very very much like I was about to be tossed into the front lines again. Balls and all. 🌐 Kiss is about balls and all action and it has a nice freaky plot to go along with it.
balls deep (adv.)

absolutely committed or involved, either lit. in the throes of sexual intercourse or in a fig. sense .

[US]R. Jessup Sailor 449: I found her ass high and balls deep into a guy , and that ripped it [...] I took my lumps and backed off .
[US]D. Baldwin Hunk! 56: Thad was all over him , balls deep in the tight confine of the cherry ass.
[US]R.L. Hill Evil that Men Do 302: Some of the Viet generals who were balls deep in the heroin thing are up there.
[US]J. Logan Slocum and the Railroad Baron 28: [B]urying himself balls deep in her yearning interior.
D. Hamill 3 Quarters 102: ‘The whole peninsula is balls deep in cops’.
D. Hamill Throwing 7s 244: He had to be balls deep in this McCoy-Chung-Kronk mess.
[US]P. Sheridan Under the Pale Moonlight 116: I was balls deep in pussy and face deep in the big tits.
[US]K. Squires The Way I Feel [ebook] The rest of them only wanted themselves balls deep in you .
[US]T. Pluck Boy from County Hell 76: LeFer had caught him balls deep in a whorehouse.
balls it (v.)

(UK drugs) to hide drugs beneath the scrotum.

[UK]Guardian Society 13 July 🌐 You balls it [i.e. a package of drugs] which means you just put it in between your balls.
balls to the wall(s) [seen as a coarse version of SE back(s) to the wall; but actually from US Air Force sl.: see article by Jesse Sheidlower at]

1. all-out, at maximum speed, with one’s greatest effort; as a general exhortative phr. but also as an adv. and adj.

[US]W.C. Anderson Adam M-1 79: That’s the attitude, Captain [...] No more anxieties. Balls to the wall!
[UK]D. Poyer Med 150: Balls to the wall for some big event, then spend the next two weeks with your thumb up your ass.
[US]R. Marcinko Rogue Warrior (1993) 265: We will train the same way we will fight—balls to the wall.
[US]C. Cook Robbers (2001) 64: Soon the Caddy was purring balls to the wall down the highway at eighty with the wind whistling over the windshield.
[US]D.H. Sterry Chicken (2003) 179: Sunny’s is jive jumpin’ buzz humpin’ packed to the gills, tits to the wind and balls to the wall.
[US]J. Ridley What Fire Cannot Burn 358: People want action [...] guns coughing, muzzles flashing [...] Balls-to-the-walls action.
[US]T. Dorsey Riptide Ultra-Glide 131: ‘The dude knows no limits!’ ‘Non-stop balls to the walls!’.
[US]D. Winslow Border [ebook] He stuck with the older, slower Jackson, which was a balls-to-the-wall, hard-core loyal thing to do.

2. (US campus) of a situation or period of time, tense or frantic.

[US]Eble Campus Sl. Mar. 1: balls to the walls – a frantic time [...] From now till the end of the month, it’s balls to the walls!
P. Blauner Casino Moon 207: Frank Diamond had me in a true balls-to-the-wall situation. If Elijah didn’t put up the fight of his life tonight, I was a dead man.
[US]Eble Sl. and Sociability 41: Examples of rhyme from college slang are balls to the walls ‘a tense if not frantic time or situation that requires the ability to fight back’.

3. (US campus) drinking with the intention of getting drunk.

[US]Eble Campus Sl. Nov. 1: Out of control but enjoyable drunkenness: I’m going balls to the wall on Halloween.
balls-to-the-wind (adv.)

(US) at top speed.

‘J. Cain’ Dinky-Dau 139: Drop it and fly balls-to-the-wind to his assistance [HDAS].
bang the balls off (v.)

(US) to attack, to intimidate violently.

[US]B. McCarthy Vice Cop 46: ‘You didn’t have to do anything overtly illegal to get put on a pad. All you had to do was go out and bang the balls off of whomever the hierarchy identified’.
bet one’s balls (v.) (also bet one’s hairy balls)

(Aus./US) to be very certain.

[US]J. Jones From Here to Eternity 126: If you’d of decided to punch for Dynamite you would of got that rating. You can bet your balls.
[Aus](con. 1940s–60s) Hogbotel & ffuckes ‘The Road to Gundagai’ in Snatches and Lays 51: You bet your balls he’ll ride her.
[Aus](con. 1941) R. Beilby Gunner 13: You can bet your balls it wasn’t her own crowd strung her up.
[US]N. Proffitt Gardens of Stone (1985) 223: You can bet your hairy balls they’ll be on the horn to the military police.
B. Halsey Magnificednt Strangers 190: Well, I hope it’s good, because you can bet your balls that Cuomo will make you pay for it.
[NZ]McGill Reed Dict. of N.Z. Sl.
G. Guy Only Eagles Fly 209: Check that later... be bloody false, bet your balls on it.
blue balls (n.)

1. a feeling of intense sexual frustration, manifested as actual physical pain; also attrib.; thus blue-balled, have blue balls, of a man, to be very sexually frustrated; cite 1956 used of a woman.

[US]H.N. Cary Sl. of Venery.
[US] in Randolph & Legman Ozark Folksongs and Folklore (1992) II 619: B for blue balls in your groins grow.
[US] in E. Cray Erotic Muse (1992) 184: He had blue balls and the seven-year itch. / He had the clap and the syphilis too.
[US]Speckled Red ‘Dirty Dozens’ 🎵 Now your mammy got the blue balls, your sister got the pox, / Grandma got a dirty rag tied right roun’ her cock.
[US]F. Exley Fan’s Notes 158: [S]educing a ‘nice’ girl was hard work. [...] One huffed and puffed [...] meeting convulsive, furious hands all the way. [. . .] and if one was not too drunk or hadn't developed ‘blue balls’ (like a fierce hand squeezing the genitalia purple), one went miraculously on.
[US](con. 1950s) H. Junker ‘The Fifties’ in Eisen Age of Rock 2 (1970) 102: He, of course, was always horny. (Blue balls).
[US]B. Rodgers Queens’ Vernacular 34: Know what the sure cure for blueballs is? Scratch them until they’re red!
[US]P. Munro Sl. U. 40: Harold said he has blue balls; he was with Priscilla last night.
[US]T. Willocks Green River Rising 197: ‘Ten thousand years without a fuck.’ [...] ‘Believe it [...] Lotsa blue balls out there.’.
[SA]K. Cage Gayle.
[US]D. Winslow Winter of Frankie Machine (2007) 62: ‘I’ve got blue balls [...] They hurt.’ ‘When we’re engaged [...] I’ll jerk you off’.
Forget Her [manga] at 🌐 You don’t deserve any blue balls, hon.
[US]F. Bill Donnybrook [ebook] ‘Just a whiff of her swagger make you feel like your balls was blued’.
[US]P. Beatty Sellout (2016) 69: Dry-humping the TV [...] Punctuating his blue-balls roll call with increasingly violent thrusts.
[Aus]D. Whish-Wilson Old Scores [ebook] ‘You feel blue-balled now, but you’ll be right after a cold shower’.
[Ire]L. McInerney Blood Miracles 82: [W]ith significant sympathy for the blueish tint in Parallel Ryan’s Parallel Balls.

2. a venereal bubo.

[US] in E. Cray Erotic Muse (1992) 70: She gave me the shankers, likewise the runners too. / And in about ten days the blue balls was in view.
[US]in E. Cray Erotic Muse (1992) 407: She gave me the clap and the blue-balls too. / The clap doesn’t hurt but the blue-balls do.
[US] in E. Cray Erotic Muse (1992) 185: He had the clap and the seven-year itch. / He had the syph and the blue-balls too.
[US]R.A. Wilson Playboy’s Book of Forbidden Words.
[US](con. 1910s) F.M. Davis Livin’ the Blues 37: To avoid ‘blue balls,’ a dose, or sores with a strange broad you used either a Fish Skin or a thin rubber called a Merry Widow.

3. (US) gonorrhoea.

[US]R. Perryman ‘The Dirty Dozen’ in Oliver Screening the Blues (1968) 240: Now your mammy got the blue-ball, your sister got the pox.
[US]H. Miller Tropic of Capricorn (1964) 232: Before the week was out I had a discharge, and after that I figured it would be blueballs or rocks in the groin.
[US]C. Willingham End As A Man 252: They were talking about syphilitic spots when Wintermine interrupted to describe an odd disease known as the blue balls.
[US] in E. Cray Erotic Muse (1992) 328: For I have been to Roble, and screwed a Roble whore, / And that’s why my balls are blue and the end of my cock is sore.
[US]C. Bukowski Erections, Ejaculations etc. 73: You’ve given out more blue balls than a silver Christmas tree in Disneyland.
break one’s balls (v.) (also bust one’s balls)(orig. US)

1. to make a great effort; to work very hard, esp. at a physically demanding task (cf. bust a nut under nut n.3 ).

[US]R. Graziano Somebody Up There Likes Me (1956) 51: I’m busting my balls to be a wise guy.
[US] in T.I. Rubin Sweet Daddy 14: Looking up to a broad and busting your balls keeping her happy.
[US]H. Selby Jr Last Exit to Brooklyn 256: Why should I break my balls for some Jew for a lousy couple of bucks a week.
[US]B. Malamud Tenants (1972) 107: How seriously? Like you have to break your balls to be a writer?
[US]J. Wambaugh Choirboys (1976) 64: You think the sergeants care we bust our balls?
[UK]S. Berkoff West in Decadence and Other Plays (1985) 126: I break my balls that you should not go short.
[Ire]P. Howard Miseducation of Ross O’Carroll-Kelly (2004) 207: The poor fockers have been breaking their balls in training.
[US]N. Walker Cherry 122: I’d just been following his lead. And he had about wiped out sliding down the berm. But nobody would bust his balls over it.

2. to meet with disaster.

(con. WWII) E. Brown Locust Fire 106: Or, let’s not bust our balls on the mountains, men. It costs the government ten thousand dollars to turn a mammal into a bird [HDAS].
break someone’s balls (v.) (also bust someone’s balls)(orig. US)

1. (also break balls) to attack verbally, to persecute, to harass.

A. Hayes All Thy Conquests 183: Don’t tell me how to drive and don’t break my balls.
[US](con. 1920s) ‘Harry Grey’ Hoods (1953) 134: Let the shise in the legal department break his balls with it.
[US](con. 1950s) McAleer & Dickson Unit Pride (1981) 54: Probably wrote that to bust my balls.
[US]L. Bruce Essential Lenny Bruce 278: They didn’t really break your balls, but they hurt them.
[US]D. Ponicsan Last Detail 3: C’mon, man, don’t break my balls, I’m just trying to get along.
[US]E. Grogan Ringolevio 149: What do you do, you come here to bust my balls!
[US]E. Torres After Hours 61: Damn hoodlums [...] out in the street breakin’ balls.
[UK](con. 1975) W. Sherman Times Square 327: ‘C’mon,’ Joe ranted. [...] ‘What’re ya breakin’ my balls for?’ the attendant shot back.
[US]C. Hiaasen Skin Tight 97: Somebody who used to work for me is [. . .] trying to bust my balls.
[Ire]J. O’Connor Secret World of the Irish Male (1995) 228: ‘You breakin’ this guy’s balls here?’ he murmurs.
[UK]N. Barlay Curvy Lovebox 32: Decidin’ the universe. An’ bustin’ everyone’s balls.
[US]J. Ridley Love Is a Racket 27: And the bartenders don’t break balls; they just pour drinks.
[US]N. Green Angel of Montague Street (2004) 30: Domenic was annoyed, but he didn’t let it show. It was just Antonio, breaking his balls.
[US]K. Huff A Steady Rain I i: Shits bust my balls day and night with this pasta basta wap shit.
[Scot]T. Black Gutted 86: The man who wants to bust my balls [...] for a murder I didn’t commit.
[US](con. 1973) C. Stella Johnny Porno 87: I got a headache [...] and now you wanna break my balls about something else.
[US]Codella and Bennett Alphaville (2011) 97: They were good guys, didn’t bust balls (mine or anyone else’s) unjustifiably.
[US]D. Winslow Border [ebook] ‘How’s Gina?’ ‘Well, she hasn’t stopped bustin’ balls, that’s what you’re asking,’ Angie says.
[Aus]C. Hammer Opal Country 394: ‘I’m not going to bust their balls [...] I want to thank them’.
[Aus]A. Nette Orphan Road 103: ‘Hey, I’m just breaking balls, isn’t that what you guys say all the time?’.

2. to attack physically.

[US]Hal Ellson Golden Spike 76: I’m going to bust your balls for you.
[US]R. Graziano Somebody Up There Likes Me (1956) 86: You going to bust his balls, huh Rocky?
[US] in H.S. Thompson Great Shark Hunt (1980) 363: We’ll break their balls!
[US]W. Diehl Hooligans (2003) 18: You came here to bust this Tagliani’s balls, right or wrong?
posting at 8 Oct. 🌐 Just let him know if he hurts you I’ll break his balls.

3. (also break balls) to complain to someone, to nag someone.

[US]H. Selby Jr Last Exit to Brooklyn 16: Go tell ya troubles to Jesus and stop breakin my balls.
[US]T. Whitmore Memphis-Nam-Sweden 156: What the hell are you breaking balls about?
[US]H. Selby Jr Song of the Silent Snow (1988) 69: All she wants to do is break my balls.
[US](con. 1986) G. Pelecanos Sweet Forever 106: Hey, Marcus, what are ya gonna do, bust my balls forever?
[UK]Guardian Guide 6–12 Nov. 4: The cantankerous boss who was always breaking his balls about how the mayor’s office is all over his arse [...] and whining on about improper arrest procedures.
[US]J. Stahl Plainclothes Naked (2002) 162: If we’re going to work together, you gotta stop busting my balls.

4. to exhaust sexually.

[US](con. c.1900) J. Thompson King Blood (1989) 21: Nigger wenches [...] could bust the balls on a dozen big bucks and still be hankerin’ for more!

5. to exhaust physically.

[US]L. Heinemann Paco’s Story (1987) 109: Guadalcanal about broke my fucking balls.
de-ball (v.) (also de-balls) [SE pfx de-]

to castrate, lit. and fig.; thus deballed adj.

[US]J. Blake letter 8 Sept. in Joint (1972) 222: Instead of dumping the sonovabitch after he de-balled you, you bring him around to bleed reproachfully all over me.
[US]‘Iceberg Slim’ Mama Black Widow vi: Black men [...] who have been and who will be niggerized and deballed by the white power structure.
[UK]N. Cohn Awopbop. (1970) 206: They so deballsed it as to make it almost meaningless.
[US]C. Hiaasen Stormy Weather 123: Deballed grizzly bears!
do one’s balls (v.)

(Aus.) to gamble, the implication being to lose.

[Aus]J.J. DeCeglie Drawing Dead [ebook] A dingy four walls [...] and a couple of felt tables where you did your balls.
do one’s balls on (v.)

of a man, to fall obsessively in love with.

[UK]Partridge DSUE (1984) 317/2: late C.19–20.
dry balls (n.)

(US) an impotent man [i.e. they have ‘dried up’].

[[UK]‘Capt. Samuel Cock’ Voyage to Lethe n.p.: Subscribers Names Littleton Drycock, of the Inner-Temple].
[US](con. 1920s) J.T. Farrell Judgement Day in Studs Lonigan (1936) 540: There’s plenty of old boys [...] in training to become bald-headed dryballs.
[NZ]A. Duff State Ward 35: What, you a dryballs or sumpin’?
get one’s balls in an uproar (v.)

to become excited or agitated.

[US](con. 1944) N. Mailer Naked and Dead 616: You don’ wanta be gettin’ your balls in an uproar.
[US](con. 1920s) ‘Harry Grey’ Hoods (1953) 131: Don’t get your balls in an uproar.
[UK](con. WWII) G. Sire Deathmakers 175: Now look, Grandpa [...] don’t get your balls in an uproar.
[US](con. 1969) M. Herr Dispatches 201: I didn’t mean nothin’ [...] Don’t go gettin’ your balls in an uproar.
[US]E. Bunker Little Boy Blue (1995) 207: That’s Hank . . . with his balls in an uproar.
[US]R. Campbell Alice in La-La Land (1999) 121: Hey, what’re you getting your balls in an uproar, babe?
[US]R. Campbell Sweet La-La Land (1999) 99: Take it easy [...] Don’t get your balls in an uproar.
J. del Monte Death Had a Yellow Thumb 122: ‘Don’t get your balls in an uproar.’ The veins in Noor’s brow began to show.
get one’s balls in a knot (v.)

to become angry or emotional (cf. get one’s tits in a twist under tit n.2 ; have one’s nuts in a knot under nuts n.2 ).

[Aus](con. WWI) A.G. Pretty Gloss. of Sl. [...] in the A.I.F. 1921–1924 (rev. t/s) n.p.: balls in a knot. (to get) To lose one’s temper.
L. Clancy Collapsible Man 153: ‘Have you done any work lately?’ ‘Not much.’ ‘What's the matter? Have you still got your balls in a knot over your girl?’.
[Aus](con. 1941) R. Beilby Gunner 199: It’s no good gettin’ ya balls in a knot.
C. Pais Blood in Maize Fields 62: Nothing has happened yet Mitchell, so don’t get your balls in a knot.
R. Caron Bingo! 96: One of the screws [...] got his balls in a knot when somebody in the crowd swiped his cigar, and threatened blue murder if he didn't get it back.
get one’s balls off (v.)

(orig. US) of a man, to achieve orgasm.

[US]B. Rodgers Queens’ Vernacular.
[US]‘DJ Quik’ ‘I Useta Know Her’ 🎵 Buzzin off the kamikaze that I consumed / Talk, kiss, grind tryin’ to get my balls off first / She said nigga can you take my draws off first.
have balls (on one) like a scoutmaster (v.)

(Can./N.Z.) to have large testicles.

[US]R.A. Wilson Playboy’s Book of Forbidden Words 26: Balls Like a Scoutmaster. Said of a suspected homosexual, ‘He has balls like a scoutmaster.’.
[UK]Partridge DSUE (8th edn) 45/1: from ca. 1930.
[NZ]McGill Reed Dict. of N.Z. Sl. 98: have balls on him like a scoutmaster Large and active balls, as scoutmasters were supposed to have from rampant homosexual predation, in the 1930s perception when the catchphrase was most popular.
have one’s balls in the fire (v.)

1. (US) to be in serious trouble.

[US]‘Iceberg Slim’ Pimp 287: I had played the hick coppers cheap and here I was with my balls in the fire.

2. (US) to take a major risk.

R. Beck Death Wish 8: Alright, I’ll risk my balls in the fire ’cause you’re my friend.
A.L. Antunes Fado Alexandrino 215: I put my balls in the fire for you, I'm not going to do it again for anyone else.
have one’s balls twisted (v.)

to be stupid but outspoken.

[US]Maledicta 1 (Summer) 14: If he is particularly ignorant or foolish, and proves it by talking loudly or a lot about things [...] he’s got his balls twisted, and his ass is sucking blue mud.
have one’s balls under one’s chin (v.)

(US) to be terrified.

E. Hemingway To Have and Have Not 170: Quit stalling, he said to himself...Where’re your balls now? Under my chin, I guess, he thought.
(con. WWII) S. Linakis In Spring the War Ended 29: He had his balls under his chin, and it took nerve for him to cross a room.
have someone/something by the balls (v.) (also have someone/something by the ass, the ballocks, the bollix, the bollocks, the cobblers, the crotch, the knackers, …by the left tit, the leg, the nuts, …by the screws, …by the seat/slack of their pants, hold by the balls)

to have someone at one’s mercy, at a complete disadvantage.

[US]Congressional Record 9 Apr. 3556/1: To use the language imputed to the President [Cleveland], ‘the banks have got the country by the leg’ [DA].
[US]J. London Smoke Bellew (1926) 167: You’ve sure got the world by the slack of it’s pants. They’s millions in it.
[Aus]Sport (Adelaide) 20 Sept. 5/3: Who are the boys that the Tanunda girls have got by the leg .
[US](con. 1918) J.J. Niles Singing Soldiers 61: [illus.] Alabama Soldiers Has Got You By The Seat Of Your Pants.
[UK](con. 1916) F. Manning Her Privates We (1986) 151: Once we’re in the army, they’ve got us by the balls.
[UK]J. Curtis Gilt Kid 178: They got us by the cobblers.
[UK]J. Curtis There Ain’t No Justice 201: It looks like I got you by the knackers, don’t it?
[US]H. Miller Tropic of Capricorn (1964) 93: If you let them get you by the balls you’re an idiot.
[US]B. Schulberg What Makes Sammy Run? (1992) 140: They’ve got you by the balls.
[US]I. Shulman Cry Tough! 84: They had him by the crotch. He was a banker. And he had the cash.
[UK]P. Larkin letter 26 Jan. in Thwaite Sel. Letters (1992) 157: I had been wondering what you were doing & am sorry to hear life has had you by the balls.
[US]J.P. Donleavy Ginger Man (1958) 303: ‘Tone, pride has you at its mercy.’ ‘Has me by the very ballocks.’.
[UK]G. Kersh Fowlers End (2001) 23: Make a bruise an’ the Society Prevention Cruelty to Animals ’as got you by the left tit.
[UK]J. Quirk No Red Ribbons (1968) 327: They think they’ve got me by the balls.
[US]M. Braly On the Yard (2002) 215: If he had us by the balls, he’d start pulling.
[US]N. Giovanni ‘A Revolutionary Tale’ in King Black Short Story Anthol. (1972) 29: I knew I now had them by the ass.
[US]B. Malamud Tenants (1972) 3: Levenspiel wants him out of the building so he can demolish it and put up another but Levenspiel he holds by the balls.
[US](con. 1960s) D. Goines Whoreson 288: I guess you know we have got you by your balls.
[UK]C.E. Palmer Wooing of Beppo Tate 86: An’ ’member, I got you deeper’n deeper. I got you by the screws. You now a gal chaser an’ chicken thief.
[US]E. Bunker No Beast So Fierce 150: You’ve got the world by the nuts.
[US]W. Diehl Sharky’s Machine 341: We were right on it [...] Scardi’s connection here. We had it by the ass.
[Aus]D. Maitland Breaking Out 332: We’ve got ’em by the bloody balls now.
[UK]S. Berkoff Decadence in Decadence and Other Plays (1985) 35: This geezer’s got me by the balls.
[US]J. Ellroy Brown’s Requiem 144: In a small way, you have life by the ass and I salute you.
[SA]P. Slabolepszy Sat. Night at the Palace (1985) 34: She really has got you by the balls.
[Aus]B. Humphries Traveller’s Tool 113: Parky’s got the old chat show game by the balls and he knows every wrinkle in the business.
[US]C. Stroud Close Pursuit (1988) 151: ‘He wore a wire against his own.’ ‘Yeah. He did. They had him by the balls.’.
[Aus]R.G. Barrett Boys from Binjiwunyawunya 15: He’s got me by the nuts.
[Ire]R. Doyle Van (1998) 373: My Jaysis, tha’ young one has you by the bollix alrigh’.
[UK]D. Jarman diary 26 June Smiling in Slow Motion (2000) 155: The Sisters of Perpetual Indulgence has its saints by the balls.
[Scot]I. Welsh Filth 15: The Chief Super’s got me by the bollocks.
[US]E. Bunker Mr Blue 280: Oh man, for a twenty-three-year-old, state-raised convict, I had life by the balls.
[UK]J.J. Connolly Layer Cake 18: The important thing was we’d both got the other guy firmly by the bollocks.
M. Wanskasmith ‘The Twig’ 30 Jan. 🌐 What a shit week for me! I keep end up being annoyed and unmotivated. The krunk has me by the balls and it’s applying the pressure. Whatever that means.
have someone’s balls (for a game of pool) (v.) (also have someone’s balls for a bow tie, have someone’s balls for breakfast, have someone’s balls sautéed, have someone’s butt on a biscuit for breakfast)

to treat very harshly, to punish comprehensively.

[US] in E. Cray Erotic Muse (1992) 124: When news of this foul, dastardly deed / Reached fair Windsor Hall, / The king swore by the royal whore / He’d have the Frenchman’s balls.
[US]N. Proffitt Gardens of Stone (1985) 257: Where’s Wildman? If that sad sack is ghosting again, I’ll have his butt on a biscuit for breakfast.
[US]W.J. Caunitz One Police Plaza 193: The Powerhouse wanted his balls sautéed and left on the altar as penance.
[UK]S. Armitage ‘8 p.m. and Raining When Robinson’ in Kid 63: Mention us again and [...] we’ll have your balls for a bow tie.
[Scot]I. Welsh Trainspotting 102: Sheila’ll huv ma baws fir a game ay pool if ah cancel oot.
[UK]K. Waterhouse Soho 181: Christ on crutches, she’ll have your balls for breakfast!
his balls are bigger than his brains (also more balls than brains)

said of a man who rushes into situations without thinking.

[UK](con. WWII) B. Aldiss Soldier Erect 87: Your sergeant’s got more balls than brains, if you ask me.
[Aus]Hackworth & Sherman About Face (1991) 201: I had more balls than brains; I was a reckless buccaneer.
‘David 19’ ‘The Tribes’ Eunuch Archives 🌐 I warned him not to cross you. But, his balls were bigger than his brains and he made the stupid move.
knock someone’s balls off (v.)

to astonish, to amaze.

[US]Baker et al. CUSS 76: Balls, knock your — off Astonished.
man with the fuzzy balls (n.) [note the theory that fuzz n.1 derives from this]

1. (US black) a white man.

[US]E. Folb Runnin’ Down Some Lines 66: The fuzz (said to derive from the expression the man with the fuzzy balls, the man in power).

2. (US) an expert, an accomplished person.

[US]L. Uris Battle Cry (1964) 246: Now there’s a man with right fuzzy balls.
no sweat off one’s balls

see under sweat n.

old balls (n.)

a man, not always pej.

[Ire](con. 1890s) S. O’Casey Pictures in the Hallway 15: Get a holt of that oul’ balls, Tim Healey, who’s as good as yous can get at th’ moment, an’ lift him into th’ place of honour.
one-ball (adj.)

(US gang) of a man, weak, worthless.

[US]S. Yurick Warriors (1966) 99: She called him a one-ball, half-cock, stupid man.
on someone’s balls (adj.)

(Uk black teen) scolding, pressurizing.

[UK]J. Cornish Attack the Block [film script] 17: DENNIS Tia’s movin’ to you Moses. PEST She’s on your balls cuz!
put balls on (v.) (also put hair on)

to make more emphatic, more effective.

[US]Chapman NDAS.
put someone’s balls in a knot (v.)

(Aus.) to discomfit, to embarrass, to irritate.

[UK]Partridge DSUE (8th edn) 939/2: since ca. 1930.
put someone’s balls in the fire (v.)

(US) to agitate or excite someone.

[US]‘Iceberg Slim’ Pimp 52: It hadn’t been Oscar’s Bible that had put the dummy’s balls in the fire.
put/have someone’s balls in one’s pocket (v.)

(US) to have someone in one’s absolute control; to ‘have by the balls’.

P. Blauner Casino Moon 125: ‘‘This is unbelievable, Jackie. You think you can come in here and put my balls in your pocket?’.
[US](con. 1962) J. Ellroy Enchanters 238: ‘I’ve got your balls in my pocket’.
swing on someone’s balls (v.)

(US black) of a woman, to be sexually obsessed with a man.

[US]Ebonics Primer at 🌐 swingin Definition: when a dirty ass ho is wantin yo dick; she is ‘swingin’ from yo balls’ Example: That fuckin bitch is swinging from my bizz-alls and she gots to fuckin chill, cause I ain’t wantin any of her skank ass poontang.
to the balls (adv.)

(US) completely, to the utmost.

J.H. O’Hara BUtterfield 8 sic capped up BU281: Most of my friends, my men friends, they say, ‘I was stewed to the balls last night’.
[US]W. Eastlake Castle Keep (1966) 164: We’re fed up to the balls with spies.
[US]G. Radano Stories Cops Only Tell Each Other 43: He follows him around until he catches Mack stewed to the balls.
D. Hamill Long Time Gone 208: Father McBride, stewed to the balls, used to absolve him.
twist someone’s balls (v.)

(US) to irritate, to anger.

[US]R. Cea No Lights, No Sirens 140: The further Billy twisted my balls, the longer I was staying out there.
wear someone’s balls for a necktie (v.)

used as a threat of violence, e.g. try that again and I’ll wear...

E. Behr Getting Even 16: I’ll have your balls for a necktie.
[UK]Partridge DSUE (8th edn) 1313/2: [...] since ca. 1920.