Green’s Dictionary of Slang

bush n.1

[SE bush]

1. [late 16C–early 17C] (UK Und.) the place where thieves defraud their victim [the imagery reflects the world of hunting].

2. as pubic or facial hair.

(a) [17C+] the pubic hair of either sex.

(b) [20C+] (Aus./US) a moustache, a beard.

(c) [1960s–70s] (Aus.) in fig. use of sense 2a, a young woman, seen in a purely sexual context.

(d) [1970s] a hairstyle in which normally short, curly black hair is allowed to grow out around the head.

3. [late 19C] the cat-o’-nine-tails [resemblance].

4. a distant place.

(a) [1910s] (US) the countryside, the small towns.

(b) [1930s+] (Aus.) the suburbs.

5. in drug contexts, as a plant.

(a) [1940s+] (drugs) marijuana.

(b) [1980s] (W.I.) second-rate marijuana.

(c) [1980s+] cocaine.

(d) [2000s] phencyclidine.

In compounds

bush-beater (n.) [SE beater + pun on SE phr. beat around the bush]

[mid-17C–late 19C] the penis.

bush-buzzer (n.) [SE buzzer]

[1980s] (Aus.) a vibrator.

bush dinner (n.)

see separate entry.

bush-faking (n.) [fake v.1 (3)]

[late 19C] sexual intercourse.

bush-fighting (n.)

[late 18C-mid-19C] sexual intercourse.

bush-head (n.)

see separate entry.

bush-licker (n.)

[2000s] (S.Afr. gay) a lesbian.

bush patrol (n.)

1. [1960s] (US) sexual foreplay.

2. [1960s] (US) sexual intercourse.

3. see also under SE compounds below.

bushwhacker (n.)

see separate entries.

In phrases

bush under the hill (n.)

[mid-19C] the female pubic hair (and genitals).

dipping in the bush (n.)

[1970s+] cunnilingus.

dive in the bushes (v.) (also go into the bushes)

[1920s+] (US) to perform cunnilingus.

free of the bush (adj.)

[late 19C] sexually intimate with a woman.

go bush-ranging (v.)

[19C] to have sexual intercourse.

push in the bush (n.) [push n. (1a)]

[1920s+] sexual intercourse.

shoot in the bush (v.) [shoot v. (1b)]

[1950s+] to have sexual intercourse.

SE in slang uses

In derivatives

bushitis (n.)

1. [1910s–50s] (Aus./US) mental deterioration due to over-prolonged residence in the bush.

2. [1920s] (Aus.) emotional succour gained from quitting the city for the bush.

In compounds

bush ape (n.)

see under ape n.

bush baby (n.)

[1960s] (Aus.) one whose overlong stay in the desert has driven them mad.

bush-bash (v.)

[1960s+] (Aus.) to travel in the bush, either on foot, a bicycle or in a four-wheeled off-road vehicle; also as n.

bush chook (n.)

1. [1980s+] (Aus.) a (young) emu; also used for various other conspicuous ground birds.

2. [2000s+] (Aus., also bushie, chook) Swan Brewery’s Emu Bitter or Emu Export brand beer; a can or bottle of this beer.

bush-cove (n.) [cove n. (1); their sleeping under hedges]

[early 19C] a gypsy.

bush dinner (n.)

see separate entry.

bushfire blonde (n.) [the flames of the bushfire]

1. [1940s+] (Aus.) a red-headed woman, occas. man (see cite 1941).

2. [2000s] cherry brandy and lemonade.

bush hog (n.)

[1980s] (US) a peasant.

bush parole (n.) (also bush pass)

[1920s+] (orig. US prison) an escape.

bush patrol (n.)

1. [1950s+] (US prison) an escape.

2. see also sl. compounds above.

bushpig (n.) [1980s+]

1. (US campus) an extremely ugly woman [note acronym c. 1986 T.T.B.B.R.: ‘turn that bush pig round’, used when a woman thus described enters a public house].

2. (Aus.) a general insult, irrespective of sex; also attrib.

3. (Aus. prison) a female prison officer.

bush radio (n.) (also bush wireless, jail wireless)

[1930s+] (orig. Aus.) a network of gossip and rumour that brings news, often inaccurate, before the official sources.

bushranger (n.) [weak use of SE bush-ranger, a highwayman]

1. [mid-19C] (UK Und.) a low class prostitute.

2. [20C+] (Aus.) a petty swindler; one who takes unfair advantage of others.

bush rat (n.)

[1930s–40s] (US) a peasant, a hillbilly.

bush-scrubber (n.)

1. [late 19C] (Aus.) a boor, a bumpkin [SAusE scrubber, one who lives in the scrub; also bush scrubber, a second-rate, under-nourished cow].

2. [1940s+] a rural prostitute [scrubber n. (4a)].

bush telegraph (n.)

see separate entry.

bush week (n.) [the image of the rural ‘bush’ dwellers coming innocently to town]

[1940s+] (Aus.) a fig. ‘week’ when dubious deals may be proposed and confidence tricks carried out; usu. in phr. What do you think this is? Bush Week?, used to fend off what is considered a dubious suggestion.

6. (Aus.) to live in the bush.

In phrases

go bush (v.) [SE bush, uncleared or untilled areas that are still in a state of nature] [20C+] (Aus.)

1. to go wild, to go mad.

2. to seek the solitude and privacy of the bush.

3. of farm animals, to run free.

4. to escape from prison and vanish.

5. to get away from routine.

make bush (v.) [one escapes into the bushes]

[20C+] (US prison) to escape.