Green’s Dictionary of Slang

jive v.1

[jive n.1 ; Burley, Orig. Handbook of Harlem Jive (1944), suggests that the original use of jiving was as a synon. for the dozens n.]
(orig. US black)

1. to engage in sexual intercourse.

[US]R. Fisher Walls Of Jericho 144: Jivin’ a dickty gal now.
[US]B. Jackson Get Your Ass in the Water (1974) 108: Now I jived this little broad and carried her to the East / and when my dough got low, boy, this was her beef.
[US]D. Jenkins Semi-Tough 227: Like when you’re really jivin’. Heard any good audibles lately?
[US](con. 1970) J.M. Del Vecchio 13th Valley (1983) 242: Honky’s fag. You jive with them cocksuckers in Fag Hilton.
[UK]J. Morton Lowspeak.

2. (also jibe, jive up) to talk nonsense, to deceive, trick or flatter by apparently empty chatter; thus jive about with, give some jive, to play with, to mess around.

[US]Edith Johnson ‘Good Chib Blues’ 🎵 Don’t try to jive me, sweet talk can’t make me stay.
[US]A.E. Duckett ‘Truckin ’round Brooklyn’ in N.Y. Age 21 Nov. 7/1: Where did you jive up the 35¢ Butch?
[US]Flash! (Wash., D.C.) 21 Feb. 11/1: jive—Sometimes spelled jibe; meaning to dwell intently upon an effusive exhortation along some particular line minus sincerity.
[US]Cab Calloway ‘Hep Cat’s Love Song’ 🎵 You may say that I’m jivin’, / But it’s you that I’m thinkin’ of, / It’s not imagination or infatuation.
[US]W. Fisher Waiters 220: You can’t jive the jiver [...] I back cap all plays.
[US]Life 14 Apr. 131: Don’t jive me up.
[US]N. Heard Howard Street 138: That was last night and I was jivin’, woman [...] you know a man’ll say anything in bed.
[US]E. Torres Carlito’s Way 66: You know I ain’t ever jived you, Carlos.
[UK]A-Team Storybook 5: ‘Don’t you try jivin’ me!’ he growled.
[US]N. McCall Makes Me Wanna Holler (1995) 27: Most of the time they were jivin’, lying to girls about how much they liked them.
[US]F. Kellerman Stalker (2001) 518: You aren’t in any position to jive me, so cut the crap and answer me.
[US](con. 1962) J. Ellroy Enchanters 287: Don’t jive me on the brothers [...] Fuck their philanthropies.

3. to play or dance to jive music, thus to live hedonistically.

[US]N.E. Williams His Hi De Highness of Ho De Ho 35/2: ‘Jiving’, meaning to improvise.
[US]‘Digg Mee’ ‘Observation Post’ in N.Y. Age 15 Mar. 9/5: Our girls [...] drink and smoke amd cheat and cuss raising cain, all kinds of fuss [...] they have no claim to fame but love that jiving game.
[WI]L. Bennett ‘Applicant’ in Jam. Dialect Poems 3: Yuh haffe lively up yuhself, / An jive, yuh know dem way? [Ibid.] 12: Jive is de Kin’ston way fe dance.
[UK]S. Jackson An Indiscreet Guide to Soho 106: A boy [...] known as ‘Snake-eyes,’ does a little jiving by himself in the corner.
[US]H. Simmons Corner Boy 59: That babe don’t jive.
[UK]P. Larkin ‘Breadfruit’ in Coll. Poems (1988) 141: This makes them join (the boys) the tennis club, / Jive at the Mecca, use deodorants.
[US]G. Underwood ‘Razorback Sl.’ in AS L:1/2 62: jive [...] 2: vi Go out on the town, have a good time.
[US]McKee & Chisenhall Beale Black & Blue 7: Soon all three were jiving, clapping hands, hamboning, scatting—making music out of nothing.
[UK]Guardian Rev. 9 Oct. 5: I smashed my mum’s best vase while jiving in the lounge.

4. to tease, to make fun of.

[US]AS XIII:4 317: To jive around.
[WI]L. Bennett ‘Belly-Full’ in Jam. Dialect Poems 28: Wen dem get hot an mad yuh, / Dem crack sweet joke an jive.
F. Weismantel ‘Big Ten-inch Record’ 🎵 Last night I tried to tease her / I gave her a little pinch / But she said, ‘Now stop that jivin’ / And get out that big ten-inch . . . Record.
[US]Ragen & Finston World’s Toughest Prison 805: jive – Small talk; to josh.
[US]A. Brooke Last Toke 83: You jivin’ me, girl?
[US](con. 1982–6) T. Williams Cocaine Kids (1990) 91: What was once called ‘jiving’ and heard only in pool halls, on street corners, in school yards, game rooms and juke joints has become a new musical-linguistic form.

5. to converse, to talk.

[US]D. Maurer Big Con 285: Criminal narcotic addicts [...] talk or jive incessantly in their own argot.
[US]‘Hal Ellson’ ‘Tell Them Nothing’ in Tell Them Nothing (1956) 2: Them two is jiving each other about the job.
[US]H. Huncke ‘Beware of Fallen Angels’ in Huncke’s Journal (1998) 54: We all three jived for a few seconds – and I departed.
[US]R. De Christoforo Grease 71: He was snapping his fingers and shaking his hips as he circled the car, laying his jive on us.

6. to saunter, to swagger, to dodge.

[US]D. Burley N.Y. Amsterdam News 22 Mar. 13: He jived through the slammer like a sidewalk flim-flammer.
[US]J. Kramer Instant Replay 177: He kept jiving up and down the aisle, showing off his rug and shades.
[US]B. Malamud Tenants (1972) 145: Also lots of people who jived around in my mind just laid down and died when I wrote them in language.
[US]L. Heinemann Paco’s Story (1987) 8: Shucking and jiving, juking and high-stepping, rolling his eyes and snapping his fingers in time.

7. to idle, to loaf about.

John Horton ‘Time and cool people’, in Trans-action 4 11/1: The dudes could be found when they were ‘laying dead’—hanging on the corner, or shooting pool and ‘jiving’ (‘goofing’ or kidding around) in a local community project.
[US]B. Seale Seize the Time 25: A whole big crowd of cats jiving and watching me cuss him out.
[US]C. McFadden Serial 50: Jiving around drinking beer.
[US](con. 1970s) G. Pelecanos King Suckerman (1998) 30: Got to jive to stay alive.
[US]W.D. Myers Cruisers: A Star is Born 64: Sometimes they would show up ready and sometimes they would be jiving around.

In phrases

high-jive (v.) (also high-gyve)

(US) to tease, to provoke.

[US]Chicago Defender 12 Oct. 9/5: If ‘Dig that high-jivin’ chick layin’ her racket over at my crib, with those conked rug-cutters’ isn’t Harlemese for ‘Look at that ritzy miss trying to make an impression in my home with those slick-haired ballroom dancers’ then sue the fellow who told me it was.
[US]New Yorker 12 Mar. 36: Don’ high-gyve Boo.
[US]Mezzrow & Wolfe Really the Blues n.p.: [dedication] To the sweet-talkers, the gumbeaters, the high-jivers, out of the gallion for good and never going to take low again. (You got to make it, daddy.).
[US](con. 1948) G. Mandel Flee the Angry Strangers 33: Those junkies, they’ll bring you down, Dinch, they’ll highjive you till you get hooked with them.
[US]T. Southern Blue Movie (1974) 122: Teasing, cajoling, flattering and high-jiving the enchanted Pamela.
jive and juke (v.) [juke v.3 ]

(US campus) to have a very good time .

[US]G. Underwood ‘Razorback Sl.’ in AS L:1/2 62: jive and juke v phr Have an exceptionally good time.
jive around (v.)

1. to tease, to make fun of, to fool around.

[US] ‘Sl. among Nebraska Negroes’ in AS XIII:4 Dec. 317/1: Some verbal usages among Nebraska Negroes are to [...] jive around, to cat around. They are used with a rather indefinite meaning, perhaps ‘to fool around.’.
[US](con. 1953–7) L. Yablonsky Violent Gang (1967) 28: Oh, man, we just jive around with that stuff.
[US]J. Wambaugh Choirboys (1976) 83: I don’t know why the fuck I let you jive me around like this.
[US] in Delacoste & Alexander Sex Work (1988) 57: You musta been jivin’ roun’ smokin’ weed wid the other bitches!

2. to tell lies, to deceive.

[US]N. Heard Howard Street 162: Ain’t no jivin’ around, ’cause bein’ happily married is what they always dreamed about.
[US]A. Brooke Last Toke 76: Foo youself into another humbolt if y’all keep jivin’ ’round with them tricks.
[US]W.D. Myers Outside Shot 165: ‘Every brother that’s out there playing gets jived around when one brother blows’.
[US]W.D. Myers Handbook for Boys 174: [He] had seen all the ways that people could get themselves jived around.
jive (someone) out of (v.)

to deceive, to trick, to cheat.

[US]‘Iceberg Slim’ Mama Black Widow 213: You’re not smart enough to jive me out of a nickel.
jive up (v.)

(US black) to ruin, to make a mess of.

[US]W.D. Myers It Ain’t All for Nothin 115: Then I can [...] go on to jail and you can run to church and thank God that I ain’t jiving up your life’.

SE in slang uses

In compounds

jive bomber (n.) [play on SE jive, to dance/dive-bomber]

(US teen) a good dancer.

[US]Yank (Far East edn) 24 Mar. 18/2–3: Some of today’s teen-agers – pleasantly not many – talk the strange new language of ‘sling swing.’ In the bright lexicon of the good citizens of tomorrow [...] A fancy dancer is a ‘jive bomber’ or a ‘cloud walker’.