1. UK Und. uses, in senses of using a lit. or fig. hook.
(a) to steal, to pilfer, esp. by cutting a hole in a shop window and ‘fishing’ for its contents with a hook on a string.
|Albumazar III iii: Is not this brauer then sneake all night in danger, Picking of lockes, or hooking cloathes at windowes?|
(b) to steal, to rob; to pick a pocket; thus hooked adj., stolen.
|The Jolly Beggars in Works (1842) 11/2: For monie a pursie she had hooked.|
|Camden Commercial Courier (SC) 24 June 3/1: ‘I told Paul all about ketching you in that ere nasty trick; about hookin that ere Poetry last week’.|
|Peter Ploddy and Other Oddities 163: I know’d he’d hook your money!|
|Paved with Gold 69: S’elp me! if a mauley like that there ain’t worth a jemmy a day to a kenobe at wiring. Why, they’re just made for hooking a fogle out of a clye.|
|Brisbane Courier (Qld) 5 Feb. 4/5: ‘To hook’ is to steal, and here again the gravity of the crime is glozed over by the fantastic synonym.|
|Night Side of N.Y. 38: He has already suffered the loss of his pocket-book [...] which was ‘hooked’ from him by some small thief.|
|Old Hunks in Darkey Drama 5 44: Buy? ha, ha! Hook it more like, when de hen ain’t lookin’.|
|Leaves from a Prison Diary I 114: It was quite easy to fix the attention of the victim by pointing out the excellencies of a picture or statue with one hand, while ‘hooking’ with the other.|
|Truth (Sydney) 5 May 5/6: Carrie Asprey and Lizzie were all ‘hooking’ (slang for pocket-picking).|
|Tom Sawyer, Detective 31: When he wasn’t looking I hooked it [i.e. a screwdriver].|
|Little Citizens 204: I know where we can hook a banana. And the Ginney’s asleep.|
|Truth (Melbourne) 17 Jan. 10/4: [headline] Skvarehead’s Splosh. Hayes Charged With Hooking Hahn’s Hoot.|
|Beef, Iron and Wine (1917) 267: Throw a fit, and while the charitable lady runs to get you a glass of water, hook the photo.‘Pics’ in|
|Pulp Fiction (2007) 353: She left a ten dollar bill on the bureau in her bedroom. Someone hooked it.‘Perfect Crime’ in Penzler|
|Bits of New York Life 8 Nov. [synd. col.] The hooked towels in hotels in a month if stretched end to end would reach from New York to Chicago.|
|Limey 220: He showed her a letter he’d hooked from her room.|
|Man with the Golden Arm 171: I never let the same guy hook me twice.|
|Parole Chief 244: Half the time they don’t even know [...] whether they’ve been hooked or just spent the dough.|
|Midnight Cowboy (1968) 155: While you was buying the underwear, I could have hooked the socks.|
|Digger’s Game (1981) 136: I’m going back and hook the Vette.|
2. in senses of SE hook, to ensnare.
(a) to fool, to practise a confidence trick upon, to swindle.
|Country Spy 40: Having thus hooked the Chub, I said [...] I desire no Recompense [HDAS].|
|Sporting Mag. Sept. VIII 316/2: He never did a favour that proved barren to his own design [...] All his kindnesses are artificial flies! if nothing is caught they are pocketed again. ‘Hook him or hang him,’ is a favourite maxim.|
|Comic Almanack Apr. 223: None of your gammon; you’re not going to hook me.|
|Dick Temple I 199: I [...] have been hooking the flats as easy as ketching tittle-brats.|
|Sydney Sportsman (Surry Hills, NSW) 2 Jan. 4/1: What puazzled me was, who the spielers expected to ‘hook’ in the crowd of sharks that were making for this tricky trysting place.|
|Confessions of a Con Man 40: The grafters hook some rich, old, country sport.|
|Bulletin (Sydney) 16 July 36/3: To each and every flathead who has been ‘hooked’ a cunningly worded epistle is despatched, stating that the recipient has been selected on account of some special qualification or other[...]. And here the mugs fall in.|
|Two & Three 10 Jan. [synd. col.] A boxing bug gets taken for a long walk and pays double fare the the privilege. He gets hooked six or seven times with the same bait and never gets a nibble.|
|Let Tomorrow Come 33: He’d hook his mother, that guy!|
|Brain Guy (1937) 60: If they aren’t friends of yours we can hook them.|
|All Sports Feb. [Internet] He has hooked the natives for all the dough that he will need for some time.‘There’s Hicks In All Trades’ in|
|DAUL 100/2: Hook, v. [...] 2. To swindle; to trick.et al.|
|In This Corner (1974) 26: They thought I’d be hooked and sign some cockeyed contract that might not protect me at all.in Heller|
|Tattoo of a Naked Lady 6: Once I’ve hooked a live one into thinking he can take me for a ride, that’s when I nail him.|
(b) (US) to arrest, to catch in a crime.
|Hist. of the remarkable Life of John Sheppard 54: I thought once of taking the Windsor Coach for my self John Sheppard, by the Name of Crook – but fearing to be Hook’d in before my Journey’s End, I stept into Hedge-Lane.|
|‘The Righteous Peeler’ in James Catnach (1878) 210: Housebreakers, too, I hook, / And with ’em I makes slaughter.|
|Biglow Papers 1st ser. 1: The sarjunt he thout Hosea hedn’t gut his i teeth cut [...] so he cal’lated to hook him in, but Hosy woodn’t take none o’ his sarse.|
|Truth (Brisbane) 19 Oct. 3/2: One of [the girls] had been hooked and sent to the Repormatory.|
|Nightmare Town (2001) 115: The average suspect tries to talk himself out of being arrested [but] if he’ll talk to you, and you play your cards right, you can hook him.‘Zigzags of Treachery’ in|
|This Gutter Life 285: One o’ the ugliest bogeys from the Yard has got his gig-lamps on me! If I don’t hike – I’m hooked.|
|Lady in the Lake (1952) 165: It could be coincidence that George Talley was hooked for drunk-driving just when he was working on it [i.e a criminal case].|
|DAUL 100/2: Hook, v. [...] 3. To arrest, with conviction almost certain.et al.|
|Howard Street 239: We don’t want to hook you with something you didn’t do.|
|Cogan’s Trade (1975) 43: Then I got hooked and they try me.|
|Rat on Fire (1982) 9: Clinker didn’t last long. I’ll say that for him. [...] How long was he on the street, he got hooked gain? A week?|
(c) to attract, esp. into marriage.
|‘All England Are Slanging It’ Universal Songster I 40/1: Young ladies [...] with their ogles flash away, / In hopes to hook some nob.|
|N.Y. in Slices 78: Here [...] he allows himself to be importuned by ‘cotton’ mothers and fascinated by irresistible young Iadies. [...] Were there but one, he would be hooked in a fortnight – he is so good-natured.|
|in House Scraps (1887) 24: They tried to hook him, but the plot miscarried.|
|Adventures of Philip (1899) 356: Some hanged adventurer, thinking you were to get money from me, has hooked you for his daughter, has he?|
|Life and Adventures of a Cheap Jack 303: This young Irish Don Juan was continually in love with some girl or another, until at last Mary MacDonald hooked him.|
|‘’Arry on Marriage’ in Punch 29 Sept. 156/1: You’ve ’eard ’Arry was ’ooked after all, and engaged to old Suddlewig’s gal?|
|Soldiers Three (1907) 132: Gaddy’s hooked at last!‘The Story of the Gadbsys’ in|
|Sporting Times 3 Nov. 1/4: That’s how Corinna hooked him for her husband, don’cherknow.‘Corinna’s Courage’|
|Sydney Sportsman (Surry Hills, NSW) 23 Jan. 3/6: It’s a story of a gell, as / In a fortune teller’s drum, / Hooked a parson.|
|Indoor Sports 28 Aug. [synd. cartoon] Hello Mr Watts. Waitin’ for Norma? Pop says she hooked you fine. Did it hurt much?|
|Bits of New York Life 4 Dec. [synd. col.] What is more, she hooked a ‘live one.’.|
|Ulysses 122: Daughter engaged to that chap in the inland revenue office with the motor. Hooked that nicely.|
|Wide Boys Never Work (1938) 61: In this rain, and with the blister I got on me heel, I couldn’t hook a drunk Welshman.|
|(con. early 1930s) Harlem Glory (1990) 87: I nevah seen any colored people more African than you all. I don’t know how come I got mahself hooked by one.|
|Jimmy Brockett 55: Strike me pink, what comes over some blokes when a sheila hooks them?|
|Groucho Letters (1967) 50: Women always seem so much more joyous than men when another schlepper gets hooked.letter 4 Aug. in|
|Howard Street 64: I ain’t thinkin’ about that tramp. Don’t no broad hook me.|
|Only Fools and Horses [TV script] I remember the last time she hooked him.‘The Second Time Around’|
(d) to attract, to catch the eye of.
|Bushranger’s Sweetheart 199: She had managed to hook her sea-captain.|
|Islanders (1933) 100: When ye find women hookin’ men they never were given any licence to mix with, down the public street ...|
|Walk on the Wild Side 60: He didn’t want to lose a rookie, but he didn’t want to hook a lemon.|
|Pimp 134: I saw her round black ass hook a white trick in a black Hog.|
|Dear ‘Herm’ 147: His advertising is what hooks people: ‘Buy Your Car from Carmichael!’.|
|Hooked on You [blues lyrics] I’m goin’ hooked on you / Hooked on you.|
|Iced 129: Nodding to and hooking all the pussy we could bag.|
(e) to (over)charge.
|TAD Lex. (1993) 45: Tell him what the taxi man hooked you for.in Zwilling|
|Down These Mean Streets (1970) 201: If you get a hold of some cat that is strung out and you can hook him for more on a bag, the difference is yours.|
(f) (drugs) to make someone addicted to drugs.
|AS IV:1 20: My observations have led me to believe that the drug addict is ‘hooked’ by ‘dope’ talk as well as by the ‘dope’ itself.|
|Man with the Golden Arm 165: I seen the way he hooked a couple of them [...] kids onto the needle.|
|DAUL 100/2: Hook, v. 1. To make a narcotic addict of.et al.|
|(con. 1950s) Man Walking On Eggshells 167: She hooked him, she had him snakebit.|
|(con. WWII) Hollywoodland (1981) 106: They wouldn’t have let Horse loose in the Barrio, hooking young kids.|
|(con. 1964–8) Cold Six Thousand 608: Me bossman. I run Can Lao. We share lab space. I no hook GIs.|
(g) (US black) to cost.
|Pimp’s Rap 141: The coat hooked (cost) me for $425.00.|
3. (also hook it) in senses of SE hook, move with a sudden twist or turn.
(a) to run off, to escape.
|Songs of Independence (1973) 78: It scared me so I hooked it off.‘The Yankee’s Return From Camp’ in|
|‘A Rum-Un to Look At’ in Libertine’s Songster in Spedding & Watt (eds) I 136: Her charms folks may hook at, / She’s a rum-un to look at.|
|‘The Man About Town’ in Nobby Songster 22: So I hooked it to my poll, who received me with open arms.|
|Swell’s Night Guide 61: Hook it, you gonniff, cross kid – hook it scarper, speel!|
|Melbourne Punch 20 Nov. 3/1: Proposals for a New Slang Dictionary [...] ABSQUATULATE.—Originally written Absquostatulate. Verb neuter: To clear, to vamos, to mizzle, to cut one's stick, to hook it, to slide, to bolt to break out, etc.|
|Tales of College Life 28: Hook it! the Peeler’s a-coming!|
|Bell’s Life in Sydney 11 May 3/3: [He] ordered Jones to produce evidence of good character before he was discharged; which being done, Jones ‘hooked it‘.|
|Ravenshoe II 163: They all begins to get a bit noisy and want to fight, and so I hooked it.|
|Five Years’ Penal Servitude 246: When one or other of us gets tired we can hook it.|
|Newcastle Courant 16 Sept. 6/5: We’ll have to hook the shlowery and cushion; we’ll have to go by the first train.|
|My Secret Life (1966) VI 1240: Now hook it smart you bitch.|
|Soldiers Three (1907) 53: He’s been hookin’ out av Purgathory to kape company wid Mrs. Bragin ivry evenin’ for the last fortnight.‘The Solid Muldoon’ in|
|[perf. Marie Lloyd] Don’t Laugh [lyrics] But eat your dinner, peas and lamb / And lovely tarts of strawberry jam / [...] / Then hook it!|
|Truth (Sydney) 4 Mar. 1/3: And yet two British legions, sent to rook it, / Were forced, by half-armed savages, to hook it.|
|Sporting Times 1 Apr. 1/2: The noble fellow grinned when he saw that he had sinned, / And ‘hooked it’.|
|Gem 16 Sept. 12: ‘Better hook it!’ muttered Melchior.|
|Secret Adversary (1955) 91: ‘Mrs Vandermeyer is trying to hook it’.|
|Truth (Wellington) 14 July 5/4: The other joker, not having a police record as a spieler and guesser [...] was told to hook it.|
|Age Of Consent 85: I made up my mind then and there I’d hook it out of town that very night.|
|Tarry Flynn (1965) 207: ‘Hook it, now,’ said the priest.|
|Lore and Lang. of Schoolchildren (1977) 213: Hook it, make yourself scarce.|
|Billy Bunter at Butlins 39: ‘Hook it!’ grunted Johnny Bull.|
(b) to go about one’s own business.
|Sam Sly 28 Apr. 3/1: We advise the beauty of Ship-street, Mrs. D—es, to be rather more circumspect in her conduct[...] it is high time you either reformed or hooked it.|
|(con. 1840s–50s) London Labour and London Poor (1968) I 25/2: Aye! that’s the way the harristocrats hooks it. There’s nothing o’ that sort among us.|
|Blackbirding In The South Pacific 42: Can’t you see I am sleeping? And I want more; so hook it.|
|Hooligan Nights 43: The inspector told me I could ’ook it.|
|Bulletin (Sydney) 26 Nov. 44/1: I stays there a week while they fixes me thinker up, an’ then they fires me. Sez they: ‘We can’t keep a cove till the end of his little finger grows again; so ’ook it.’.|
|Capricornia (1939) 287: Pack your traps and get ready to hook it first thing mornin’ time. D’ you hear? If I find you on the run tomorrer mornin’ I’ll belt you.|
|Inside the Und. 40: George then hooked it for three hours.|
(c) (US) to play truant.
|DN II:i 41: hook, v. To absent one’s self from class.‘College Words and Phrases’ in|
|Of Minnie the Moocher and Me 15: I hooked school and hustled in the streets.|
|Stud Buds and Dorks 2: To not go to class...hook, hookey, play hookey [HDAS].|
|Makes Me Wanna Holler (1995) 33: Hook school and go shoot some pool.|
4. in senses of grabbing or grasping.
(a) (US, orig. tramp) to steal a ride on a train or other vehicle, to hitchhike.
|Amer. Tramp and Und. Sl. 102: Even the boys who catch rides on the back of drays and wagons referring to the practice as ‘hooking’ a ride.|
|(con. 1940s) Tattoo (1977) 51: Once a clumsy kid, Bobby Scrovis, had hooked a freight with them and been swept off the ladder [...] His head was crushed under the wheels.|
|It (1987) 939: He had somehow found his way out to Route 2 and had hooked a ride to the home place.|
(b) to catch a train, a bus etc.
|Homeboy 77: Hook a bus, hook a freight, anything making southward smoke.|
(c) (US campus) to engage in love making.
|Campus Sl. Mar. 5: hook – to kiss passionately.|
|Campus Sl. Nov. 5: hook/hook up – [...] engage in sexual activities. ‘I hear that Dave hooked with three different chicks from that mixer.’.|
|OnLine Sl. Dict. 5 Jan. [Internet] Last night I hooked him.|
(d) (US black) to search for.
|cited in Juba to Jive (1994).|
(e) (US campus) to help.
|Campus Sl. Mar. 5: hook someone – do a favor, help someone.|
(f) (US drugs) to find or obtain something.
|Crackhouse 149: hooking locating or finding something desirable.|
5. (drugs) to inject narcotics.
|Junkie (1966) 92: You’ve been hooking that spot so much it’s about to get infected.|
the criminal world of thieving, confidence trickery etc.
|BS].Magill Sept. n.p.: His [...] were the politics of the stroke, the fixer, the parish pump, of graft, hookery, crookery and whatever you’re having yourself [|
|Out After Dark 7: Others, less favoured, muttered peevishly that there was no justice, that hookery paid, and honesty was an also-ran.|
1. (US) to get introduced to or put in touch with, to entice.
|Works (1801) V 349: Pastry-cooks should [...] To sell their tarts and pies; Put in their shop some pretty Lass, To hook in passing eyes.‘Orson and Ellen’|
|Biglow Papers (1880) 1: So he cal’lated to hook him in.|
|Guardian Rev. 25 Feb. 14: It was the anger and poetry which hooked me in.|
2. to associate oneself with.
|‘’Arry on ’appiness’ in Punch 3 Jan. 4/1: And so because I’m out of luck, and that differ has landed the chink, / She ’ooks into him, like a bat to a belfry, Sir!|
|diary 27 Sept. [Internet] Sure enough we had orders to get ready to go to the support of a Division to the eastward which was being pressed. After hooking in and being all ready we didn’t go after all.|
3. (Aus./US) to get involved in.
|Gangster Girl 43: He’s hooked in wit’ Tamm’ny an’ he’s no pushover.|
|Guardian Media 21 June 5: Suppose those magazines are no longer hooked into women’s lives?|
see sense 3 above.
(US) to play truant.
|Dict. Americanisms (4th edn).|
|Partners of the Tide 70: The boy ‘hooked Jack’ for a whole day, because he wouldn’t wear the things to school.|
|‘Gatherings From Newspapers’ in DN IV:iv 305: hook Jack, n. phr. = hookey.|
see separate entries.
1. (Aus./N.Z.) to escape, to run off.
|Love and Chiffon 233: Look slippy, buddies. Hook your muttons for an extra.|
|N.Z. Sl. 53: To hook one’s bait or mutton, to depart (a variant of the English sling one’s hook).|
|I Travelled a Lonely Land (1957) 234/1: hook your bait (hook your mutton) – go away.|
|Holy Smoke 51: He decides he’ll run a grouter on the Lord, and hook his bait.|
|Dict. of Kiwi Sl. 57/2: hook your mutton clear out.|
|Reed Dict. of N.Z. Sl. [as cit. 1988].|
2. (N.Z.) to dance with someone.
|Reed Dict. of N.Z. Sl. 104: hook one’s bait/mutton [...] 2. Engage a partner in a dance. [...] 1920s ANZ.|
1. (US) to enter into a relationship, e.g. marriage.
|True Bills 36: Horace often suspected that some of them hooked up merely to get a Whack at the Finery. But then, Horace was a regular old Cynic.‘The Fable of What Horace Stood For’ in|
|Indoor Sports 4 Apr. [synd. cartoon] What did I get when I got hooked up — a bum lamp.|
|Campus Sl. Mar. 6: hook-up – to date seriously.|
|Cherry Pie [ebook] He and Chloe had hooked up a few months before.|
2. (US) to become involved in, e.g. an argument.
|McClure’s Mag. Mar. 36/1: Then him an’ the guy it was for hooked up in a tur’ble row.‘Life on Broadway’ in|
3. to meet.
|(con. 1990s) One of the Guys 43: She became gang-involved when she ‘hooked up with’ another gang member in a residential facility.|
|(con. 1980s) Skagboys 213: Alexander had left a message sayin he wanted tae hook up.|
4. (US drugs) to establish a professional relationship with.
|Alphaville (2011) 69: Arthur’s plan [is to] redistribute the material to the dealers he’s hooked up in Brooklyn.|
1. engaging in theft.
|Marvel 21 Apr. 352: A ’cute kid that, if yer could once get ’im on the ’ook.|
|Sporting Times 9 May 1/3: The presence close at hand / Of two feminines, the housemaid and the cook / Gave the game away sufficiently to make us understand / Why they chanced to be so handy on the ‘hook’.‘Significant Strains’|
|Letters from the Big House 57: He’s on the hook orl right. Collidge, engineer, diploamers, stiffkits, letters arter ’is name, but on the hook.|
|Criminal Sl. (rev. edn).|
2. (US) playing truant.
|inLittle Nemo 71: And other desperadoes, who / Had been on many ‘hooks,’ / Now came to school in model style, / Each bringing all his books.|
|Call It Sleep (1977) 246: He’s onna hook.|
|Amboy Dukes 72: Your mom’s found out about you going on the hook?|
|Tough and Violent 126: Nothin’ Brown is also on the hook from school today.|
3. see hooked adj.2
1. under control.
|A Pink ’Un and a Pelican 210: Ball had a rare job to keep Shillin’ton on the hooks after that.|
2. in debt to, whether actual or fig.; under the influence of.
|Corruption City 63: You were on the hook to a couple of the bigger boys.|
|All Looks Yellow to the Jaundiced Eye 57: I had him on the hook.|
|Inside the Und. 109: I never thought that day would come when I should get a gentleman like So-and-So on the hook.|
SE in slang uses
to swallow, usu. in the context of drugs.
|Kandy-Kolored Tangerine-Flake Streamline Baby (1966) 6: Hopping himself up with good old amphetamine [...] then hooking down more alcohol.|
|Electric Kool-Aid Acid Test (1969) 47: Kesey and his circle would be hooking down something that in the entire world only they and a few avant-garde neuropharmacological researchers even knew about.|
1. (US) to finish, to bring to a conclusion.
|Homeboy 213: A Chowhall guard [...] ordered them to hook it up.|
2. see hook up (with) v. (13)
1. to attach oneself to someone, to follow about.
|Morn. Post 18 Dec. 3/3: I hooks on a covey, so smilin’ and smug / Vich Bill comes behind and puts on the hug.|
|Bulletin (Sydney) 22 Aug. 12/3: All this reminds us that once in the whirl of a giddy age we endeavoured to hook on to something symmetrical inside a black satin skirt and a seal-skin jacket.|
|‘’Arry on the ’Oliday Season’ in Punch 16 Aug. 74/1: ’Ardly know which is lummiest, swelp me! It’s nuts to ’ook on to a swell.|
|Bulletin (Sydney) 7 July 15/1: I can shake a loose leg, so I hooked on to a fine gal – a reg’lar stunner. She went for me and I began serously [sic] to think of makin’ her Mrs. Muggins.|
|Eve. Post 26 Nov. 6/4: ‘Does yer maw know you’re aht?’ says the girl. ‘Not ’arf’ retorts the gay Lothario; and they hook on forthwith.|
2. to discover.
|Dock Rats of N.Y. (2006) 8: Remember you’re nobody’s child, and I’ve hooked on to the secret.|
see hook up (with) v.
see separate entries.