1. in senses meaning ‘head’.
(a) [mid-16C+] (also top nut) the head of the penis.
(b) [mid-19C+] the head.
(c) [late 19C+] brains, intelligence.
(d) [1940s+] the head, as used to butt someone in a fight.
(e) [1990s+] (Aus.) in a game of two-up, the head side of the coin.
2. [early–mid-19C] an action that is intended to give pleasure, something positive [the pleasant flavour of a nut or nuts n.1 (1)].
3. with ref. to a person [ext. use of sense 1, often with an implied pun on ‘tough’, i.e. tough nut to crack].
(a) [mid-19C+] a person, a fellow .
(b) [late 19C+] a daredevil.
(c) see knut n.
4. [late 19C+] (Aus.) a horse that is hard to break in [abbr. hard nut n.].
5. with ref. to money [SE nut, as being the heart of the fruit; such money is at the heart of a project, a relationship etc.].
(a) [20C+] (US, orig. entertainment) the initial outlay, overheads, expenses; the break-even sum, as in a theatre production or film, after which profit starts.
(b) [20C+] (US) any required sum, a pay-off.
(c) [1920s+] (US Und.) protection money paid to corrupt policemen.
(d) [1970s+] the sum of money actually borrowed, as opposed to the interest that accrues on it.
see separate entry.
see separate entries.
[1960s+] (Aus.) one who deliberately ignores a friend in the street.
[late 17C] a weapon, prob. a bludgeon.
[2000s] a head-butt.
[1910s+] (Aus.) one who works out ways of avoiding hard work; thus ext. as a white-collar worker.
to become furious.
[1910s+] to lose one’s temper, to lose emotional control, to get worked up.
[1940s+] to drive someone mad.
1. see below nod the nut
2. see duck v.1 (2)
[2000s] (UK Und.) to get a sight of.
[2000s] to tease, to ‘wind up’.
[late 19C+] to go mad, to lose emotional control.
[20C+] to lose emotional control; to act without thinking.
[1950s+] (US) to achieve a target, to have a sufficiency.
1. [1930s+] (Aus./N.Z., also duck the nut, ...the scone, ...the skull, give it the nod, nod one’s head, ...the head, ...the scone, ...the skull) to plead guilty.
2. [1910s-40s] (Aus., also nod one’s head) to place a bet with a bookmaker on credit.
1. [1910s+] (Aus.) to think it over, to work out.
2. to notice (someone).
1. [20C+] to attack physically; to abuse verbally.
2. [1960s–70s] (also nut up) to ignore; to be silent.
[1960s+] (US black) to go mad, whether literally or metaphorically.
[late 17C] pustules indicating a case of venereal disease.
[1970s+] to lose one’s temper completely, to go berserk.
3. infatuated, obsessive, very enthusiastic.
[1930s+] (US) free from debt; into profit.
[mid-19C] (UK Und.) on one’s own.
1. in debt, out of pocket.
1. [1930s+] crazy.
2. [1960s+] intoxicated, either through drink or, later, drugs.
[1960s] (Irish) to headbutt.
[mid-19C+] to hit with one’s head.
[1930s+] to think, to act intelligently, to work things out.
SE in slang uses
[1940s–50s] (US prison) to threaten or intimidate, physically and/or verbally.