1. [early 19C+] (US, also big bird) a loud, derisive noise, imitative of a fart.
2. [20C+] one who deserves ridicule.
3. [1900s] (Aus.) one who has been dismissed from a job.
4. [1920s+] any form of ridicule or derision.
5. in non-theatrical sense, an act of rejection, e.g. of courtship.
6. [1960s+] (US) usu. as the bird, an obscene gesture of dismissal, mockery; usu. in v. phrs below.
see under dead adj.
1. [1950s+] to make an obscene gesture by raising the middle finger from the otherwise clenched fist.
2. [1980s] in fig. use.
1. [early 19C+] esp. theatrical use, to be jeered, mocked etc .
2. [late 19C+] to be dismissed, usu. from a job.
1. to express one’s disapproval vocally, esp. by hissing; also in fig. use.
2. to raise the middle finger as a gesture of derision.
3. to reject, to dismiss.
[1980s] (US) to become very angry.
[1960s+] (orig. US) to make a mocking, derisory gesture by clenching the fist and raising the middle finger.