Green’s Dictionary of Slang

sauce n.1

1. a venereal disease.

[UK]Vanbrugh Provoked Wife IV iii: I hope your punks will give you sauce to your mutton.

2. vaginal fluids.

[UK]Whores Rhetorick 138: Hiding themselves under her Petticoats, to raise their decayed appetites by the warm sauce to be found under those Robes.
[US]Cab Calloway ‘Good Sauce from the Gravy Bowl’ 🎵 I like good sauce in the gravy bowl, / Must be sauce about ninety days old! / Good sauce, good sauce from the gravy bowl!

3. money.

[UK]Smollett (trans.) Adventures of Gil Blas I 11: I have a delicate trout; but those who eat it must pay for the sauce [...] After having paid sauce for a supper, which I had so ill digested, I went to the muleteer.

4. semen.

[UK]Crissie 15: ‘You’d better keep your sauce for the green bit o’ goods [...] in the next room’.

5. (US) petrol, gasoline.

[US]E.V. Rickenbacker Fighting Flying Circus (2009) [ebook] Sauce, petrol or gasoline. Virage. A bank or circle in the air.

6. (orig. US) alcohol, (rarely) drugs.

[US]Cab Calloway ‘Jitter Bug ‘ 🎵 Now, here’s old Father, a wicked old man, / Drinks more sauce than the other bugs can, / He drinks jitter sauce every morn, / That’s why jitter sauce was born.
[US]M. Prenner ‘Drunk in Sl.’ in AS XVI:1 Jan. 70/2: liquor [...] sauce.
[US]‘William Lee’ Junkie (1966) 134: The first thing you have to do is cut down on the sauce and build up your health.
[UK]Wodehouse Jeeves in the Offing 155: He most fortunately walked into the River Thames while under the influence of the sauce.
[US]G.V. Higgins Friends of Eddie Coyle 145: Beating the hell out of the sauce and everything.
[Aus]B. Humphries Complete Barry McKenzie 11: He looks like Crocodile Dundee’s grandfather after a session on the sauce.
[US]S. Morgan Homeboy 50: Soon after, the sauce killed her.
[Ire]P. Howard PS, I Scored the Bridesmaids 196: You want to lay off the sauce, man.
[US]D.R. Pollock ‘The Fights’ in Knockemstiff 194: ‘You’ll never stay off the sauce’.
[US]D.R. Pollock Devil All the Time 187: [He] sometimes read real books when he was trying to stay off the sauce.
[UK]P. Hensher Missing Ink 50: He gave up the sauce in his early thirties.
[Aus](con. 1943) G.S. Manson Coorparoo Blues [ebook] [A] line of kegs gushing forth the sauce.
[Ire]L. McInerney Blood Miracles 56: ‘I’ve had a couple of drinks,’ Ryan mutters. ‘Ah yeah, blame the sauce’.
[US]S.A. Crosby Razorblade Tears 44: ‘I’ll lay off the sauce’.

7. (US campus) beer.

[US]Eble Campus Sl. Mar. 3: sauce – beer, not other alcoholic beverages.

8. (US gay) semen.

[US]B. Rodgers Queens’ Vernacular.

9. (UK black/gang) blood.

[UK]T. Thorne (ed.) ‘Drill Slang Glossary’ at Forensic Linguistic Databank 🌐 Sauce - blood.

In derivatives

sauced (adj.)

(US) drunk.

[US]D. Remnick in New Yorker 18 Feb. 🌐 Trump resembled an over-sauced guy [...] facing three likely options in the near term: a) take a swing at someone, b) get clocked by someone else, or c) pass out.
Young M.A. ‘OOOUUU’ 🎵 This Henny got me, oh, it got me sauced.

In compounds

In phrases

hit the sauce (v.)

(orig. US) to drink to excess.

[US]J.H. O’Hara Pal Joey 63: He almost began hitting the sauce.
[US]R. Starnes Grant’s Tomb 15: ‘[B]efore he began to hit the sauce, this guy was a damn good reporter’.
[US]‘Iceberg Slim’ Mama Black Widow 235: I left Mama and hit the sauce.
[US]Bernstein & Woodward All the President’s Men 300: ‘He’s resigned to the likelihood that he’s going to jail. [...] He hits the sauce every once in a while, but nothing serious’ .
E. Damerson in Dusted Mag. at 🌐 Dragging on a charge has never been as troublesome or habit-forming as hitting the sauce.
on the sauce

(orig. US) drinking heavily and consistently.

[US]R. Starnes Grant’s Tomb 50: ‘He really went on the sauce, then?’ ‘Yes’.
[US]L. Rosten Dear ‘Herm’ 301: Makes you wonder if they are on the sauce as well as ladeling it out (If you know what I mean).
[US]J. Ellroy Brown’s Requiem 11: When I was on the sauce, he felt he had the upper hand.
[US]R. Campbell Wizard of La-La Land (1999) 223: There’s no booze in it, just water. It’s my beard when I’m pretending to be on the sauce.
[Ire]P. Howard Curious Incident of the Dog in the Nightdress 231: They’re all hammered [...] On the sauce all day.
[UK]Guardian 26 Mar. 🌐 One Nation’s James Ashby says he was ‘on the sauce’ when seeking $20m from NRA .