Green’s Dictionary of Slang

split v.

1. [mid-17C; 19C+] to have sexual intercourse (with).

2. in lit. or fig. senses of departure [the fig. split or ‘tear’ in a group that such a departure makes].

(a) [late 18C–mid-19C] (also take a split for it) to walk or run at great speed.

(b) [mid-19C+] to leave, to depart.

(c) [1960s] (US black) to die.

3. in senses of disclosure [to split or break a confidence].

(a) [late 18C+] to betray, to inform against; usu. split on/split upon.

(b) [early 19C] to believe.

(c) [mid-19C+] to disclose, to reveal secrets.

4. [mid-19C+] to quarrel with someone, to break off relations, to reject; thus split out adj., no longer friends; rejected.

5. [20C+] (orig. US, also split the blanket, ...sheets) to divorce.

6. [20C+] to share out profits or proceeds.

7. see split a gut

In derivatives

splitsville (n.) [-ville sfx1 ]

1. [1960s+] (orig. US) the end of a relationship, a divorce etc.

2. [2000s] the state of departure.

In phrases

split a gut (v.) [var. on bust a gut under gut n.]

1. [mid-19C+] (also split) to laugh hysterically.

2. [1940s+] to become very angry.

3. [1950s+] (US) to exert maximum effort.

split fair (v.)

[mid–late 19C] to tell the truth.

split out (v.)

1. [mid-19C+] to separate.

2. [1930s+] (US) to part company, to take one’s leave.

3. [1970s] (US prison) to escape.

split the blanket (v.)

see sense 5 above.

split the breeze (v.)

[1950s+] to depart, to travel, to run fast.

split the cup (v.)

[1970s] (US black) to deflower a virgin.

split the sheets (v.)

see sense 5 above.

split up (v.)

[1940s+] (orig. US) to become divorced.

turn split (v.) [sense 3a above]

[early 19C] to become an informer, to inform against someone.

SE in slang uses

In compounds

split apricot (n.)

[late 17C–19C] the vagina.

split arse/-arsed

see separate entries.

split-ass (adj.)

see separate entry.

split-cause (n.) [the profession’s reputation as splitters of legal hairs]

[late 17C–early 19C] a lawyer.

split crow (n.) [supposed resemblance]

[late 18C–early 19C] the public-house sign of the spread eagle.

split fig (n.)

1. [late 17C–early 19C] a grocer.

2. [late 19C–1940s] the vagina [note synon. Ital. fica].

split finger (n.)

[1930s–40s] (US prison/Und.) a (prison) clerk.

split kipper (n.)

[1990s+] the vagina.

split mutton (n.)

see separate entry.

split ’un (n.)

[1930s+] (Aus.) a banknote that has been divided in halves.

In phrases

make all split (v.)

[late 16C–early 17C] to cause a disturbance, to make a commotion.

split-arsed one (n.)

see separate entry.

split-arse mechanic (n.)

see separate entry.

In exclamations

split me! (also split my wig! ...my windpipe! splice my extremities!)

[late 17C–mid-19C] an oath used by contemporary upper-class dandies.