Green’s Dictionary of Slang

perish v.

[late 19C+]

1. (orig. S.Afr.) to suffer a state of deprivation.

2. (Aus.) to cadge.

3. (mainly Aus.) to attack, to punish, to kill.

In exclamations

perish me! (also perish me blind! ...pink!)

[mid-19C–1900s] a general excl. of surprise, shock, amazement.