Green’s Dictionary of Slang

burster n.1

also buster
[SE burst]

1. a loaf of bread; thus as twopenny burster, a twopenny loaf [i.e. it fills one’s stomach].

[UK]W.T. Moncrieff Tom and Jerry III iii: I say, do you hear, let’s have a twopenny burster, half a quartern o’ bees’ wax, a ha’porth o’ ingens, and a dollop o’ salt along vith it, vill you?
[UK]‘Jon Bee’ Dict. of the Turf, The Ring, The Chase, etc. 20: Burster and Beeswax—Carpenters’ fare: a little loaf and a slice of cheese.
[UK]G. Kent Modern Flash Dict. 8: Buster, or burster – a loaf of bread.
[UK] in Comic Almanack (1835–43) 295: Cut us a slap-up slice of Cheshire cheese, / And tip’s a twopenny burster if you please .
[UK]Paul Pry 11 Dec. n.p.: We would recommend R—t E—s [...] not to be seen perambulating Clare-market with a twopenny ‘buster’ under his arm; it is anything but respectable.
[Aus]Bell’s Life in Sydney 4 Aug. 2/7: In a cold, confined cell your moist carcase pine / There, there to partake of the pump and the buster.
[UK]Hotten Dict. of Modern Sl. etc. 14: BUSTER (burster), a small loaf; ‘twopenny burster,’ a twopenny loaf.
[US]Letters by an Odd Boy 7: I see the Clown at Christmas go slap through a baker’s window, in for a buster, to come out with a roll.
[UK]C. Hindley Life and Adventures of a Cheap Jack 192: Mo and his man were having a great breakfast [...] off a twopenny buster and a small bit of butter.
[UK]Nottingham Eve. Post 28 Jan. 4/5: He was snugly seated near the bread baskets [...] wishing for a chance to ‘cop’ a couple of the small currant loaves on the sly [...] ‘I means to have a couple of them busters’.
[UK]Albert Chevalier ‘Blue Ribbon Janet’ [lyrics] She’d a’ a penny buster, an’ a sav’ry sav.
[UK]R. Whiteing No. 5 John Street 86: Cakes made in the form of hearts, and a formidable kind of bun which here circulates under the name of burster.
[UK]J. Ware Passing Eng. of the Victorian Era.
[UK]Nottingham Eve. Post 22 Sept. 3/4: To [the Cockney] a penny roll and a slice of cheese are ‘beeswax and a buster’.
[UK](con. 1835–40) P. Herring Bold Bendigo 79: Ecksersley ordered a burster and beeswax for each of them, by which he meant bread and cheese.

2. (orig. boxing) a heavy fall that could end a fight [one ‘bursts’ oneself].

[UK]Egan Bk of Sports 45: Neal [...] threw him so heavily as to be pronounced almost a burster.
[UK]Era (London) 26 Jan. 10/4: He had succeeded in throwing his man a burster.
[UK](con. 1837) Fights for the Championship 359: Swift closed, and threw him a burster [...] he was almost senseless [Ibid.] 360: The Jew [...] was thrown a burster, and Swift looked at him as if all was all over.

3. a heavy blow from the fist.

[Aus]Bell’s Life in Sydney 10 Apr. 2/4: In return for a round burster in the body, Ike sent a stinger in the left ear.
[Aus]Bell’s Life in Sydney 2 Mar. 5/3: Haley [...] threw George a burster.

4. an exhausting physical effort.

[UK]Illus. London News 99: A pace that would have been a burster to many a fresh man.

5. (UK Und.) a burglar [bust v.1 (1a)].

[US]Matsell Vocabulum.
[UK]Leaves from Diary of Celebrated Burglar 6/2: Here are to be found ‘mobs’ of ‘chat-pitchers,’ ‘cly-fakers,’ ‘bursters,’ ‘snyde-pitchers’ (‘snyde,’ bad money), ‘picking-up mobs’ and their ‘blokes’, etc., etc.
[US]G.P. Burnham Memoirs of the US Secret Service 198: Another sturdy and accomplished rogue [...] in the felonious secret occupation of cracksman, safe-blower, bank-burster, and counterfeiter.
[Aus]Smith’s Wkly (Sydney) 11 Aug. 15/1: To the eminent buster planning a job, close attention to those details Is of paramount importance.

6. a fall from a horse; thus come a burster, to fall from one’s horse [one ‘bursts’ oneself].

[UK]Eve. Standard 24 Apr. n.p.: Benedict came down a burster, and was out of the race [F&H].

7. (Aus.) ‘a cropper’, in fig. uses.

[Aus]Bulletin (Sydney) 13 Dec. 21/3: [W]hat with the ropes as was stretched across the decks [...], she did come some uncommon busters just at first.

8. see buster n.1 (1d)