1. a woman, spec. a prostitute.
|Squire of Alsatia I i: What ogling there will be between thee and the blowens!|
|Sheppard in Egypt 21: Then to the Sable Spectre in Accents mild, / The Cause requests, who had his Arm beguil’d, / Bl-w-n in Transport crys W--d, W--d, W--d.|
|Life and Adventures.|
|Classical Dict. of the Vulgar Tongue ms. additions n.p.: Blowen. the Mistress of a Gentleman of the Scamp.|
|‘The Irish Robber’s Adventure’ Irish Songster 3: My bloan she cries and tears her hair.|
|Life’s Painter 134: his blowen, a female ballad-singer, now joins him.|
|‘A Pickpocket’s Song’ in Confessions of Thomas Mount 20: I and my blowen to the gaff / Straightway did repair.|
|Song No. 19 Papers of Francis Place (1819) n.p.: The Blowens all adozine [?] him and say he is the Pippin O.|
|Lex. Balatronicum n.p.: blowen. A mistress or whore of a gentleman of the scamp. The blowen kidded the swell into a snoozing ken, and shook him of his dummee and thimble; the girl inveigled the gentleman into a brothel and robbed him of his pocket book and watch.|
|‘Pickpocket’s Chaunt’ (trans. of ‘En roulant de vergne en vergne’ in1829) IV 259: As from ken to ken I was going, / Doing a bit on the prigging lay / Who should I meet, but a jolly blowen.|
|‘The Spring Bedstead’ in Knowing Chaunter 18: And the blowen so alert, / Had nibbled all my money.|
|‘Sarah’s A Blowen’ in Nobby Songster 18: Young Sarah’s a blowen: / Vot does the thing neat; / She’s kept by a Gent, / Who hundreds has spent, / On Sarah the blowen.|
|Bell’s Life in Sydney 25 July 1/3: Marian Silver, a dashing blowen, charged a private knight of Lombardy named Smith with having illegally disposed of a gold ring which she had left as security for a bob he had advanced.|
|Mysteries of London II (2nd series) 276: I went straight away to my blowen – that’s Pig-faced Polly, as she’s called.|
|Yokel’s Preceptor 3: By private blowens, we mean those apparently modest women, who, notwithstanding their being blessed with honest, hard working husbands, do a little pleasant whoredom on the sly. Two ladies of this description reside in Back-hill, Clerkenwell; the house is situated at the corner of a gateway opposite Hatton Garden, and has a very convenient back door by which a gallant can make a safe exit, should the husband arrive unexpectedly.|
|Leaves from Diary of Celebrated Burglar 44/1: He had had a quarrel with his ‘blowen,’ and she was on the point of ‘turning him up’.|
|Bury & Norwich Post (Suffolk) 1 Feb. 2/6: The stalwart, flaunting, audacious ‘blowen’ who holds a foolish ‘fast’ man [...] while her pal knocks him on the head and rifles his pockets.|
|Deacon Brodie III tab.V i: Did I insult the blowen?|
|Londinismen (2nd edn) vi: So from hartful young dodgers, / From waxy old codgers, / From the blowens we got / Soon to know wot is wot.‘Sl. Ditty’|
|City Of The World 154: They will have money in their pockets [...] and ‘fags’ between their lips, and maybe a Cockney blowen on their arm.|
|Intelligent Woman’s Guide to Dirty Words.|
2. as blowen of the ken, a landlady, a ‘mistress of the house’.
|‘Flash Lang.’ in Confessions of Thomas Mount 18: Mistress of the house, blowen of the ken.|
3. (UK Und.) the pretended wife of a shoplifter.
|Classical Dict. of the Vulgar Tongue (3rd edn) n.p.: blowen. The pretended wife of a bully, or shop lifter.|
4. a mistress.
|Paul Clifford I 30: ‘I ’as heard as ’ow Judith was once blowen to a great lord!’ said Dummie.|