1. the penis.
|Jemmy Twitcher’s Jests 84: The cook did slyly by me stand, / And clap’d his Something in my hand.(ed.)|
2. a euph. for the obscenity or oath of the speaker’s choice, e.g. ‘I don’t give a something’, i.e. a fuck n. (2a) or a damn n.
|Odd – But Even So 227: And if ’e ’as the nerve to say this bloomin’ chicken’s overdone, I’ll tell ’im somethink.|
|Scholar 102: She’s got more manners than dat red-skinned sumt’in’ he’s bin seein’.|
3. (orig. US) a remarkable thing or person, e.g. She’s really something!
|No Parachute (1968) 8 Dec. 196: The dinner and binge were really something.letter in|
|Plastic Age 239: ‘He’s something all right,’ Hugh agreed.|
|Walls Of Jericho 205: Well, ain’t this sump’m?|
|Spanish Blood (1946) 136: That’s something nowadays.‘Nevada Gas’ in|
|(con. late 1920s) Little Ham III i : Boy, ain’t you something!|
|A Rope of Sand (1947) 172: ‘I’ve just been shot at!’ [...] ‘Ain’t that something?’.|
|On the Beach 272: Then I got into this night fishing, and that’s really something.|
|Hide My Eyes (1960) 100: She will certainly expect six minutes chit-chat from me, and because she is really quite something I may feel like continuing after that.|
|Black! (1996) 223: That would really be something!‘Yet Princes Follow’ in|
|Cockade (1965) I iii: Don’t he think he’s something. Big headed.‘Prisoner and Escort’ in|
|Cinderella Liberty 114: ‘It’s a boy! [...] My God, ain’t that something!’ cries Maggie.|
|Picture Palace 83: You think you’re something.|
|Life and Times of Little Richard 36: He was really something.|
|Conversation with the Mann 91: The kitten’s a canary. She something, isn’t she?|
an excl. or description of approval or wonder; also as n.
|Attic Guest 87: But when a lover comes across a couple of states, leaving behind him a big city — and all the girls that are sorry to see him go [...] — that is something else, as we used to say in the South .|
|Scarlet Sister Mary 122: Jedus [sic] have mercy. You womens is someting else.|
|Call It Sleep (1977) 317: Like my picture too [...] Is something else if you know.|
|20 Jan. in Flying Tiger’s Diary (1984) 77: We got in a good bull session about the graft in China. And, man, is it something else!|
|I Like ’Em Tough (1958) 17: She’s something else.‘Die Hard’ in|
|Chosen Few (1966) 17: Man, that New York liberty was sump’n else.|
|Kings Road 217: This is something else, you’ve knocked me out!|
|Three Plays I i: Man you is something else.‘Ruby My Dear’ in|
|Woman Who Walked Into Doors 62: Nicola was something else.|
|You Got Nothing Coming 15: You white boys be something else!|
SE in slang uses
|, ,||Sl. Dict.|
a useful opportunity for gain, e.g. a good racing tip.
|Paul Pry (London 15 Aug. n.p.: The lady fancied she’d got a ‘mug’ [...] Fred thought her equally innocent, and so they were agreed each, without the knowledge of the other, that something good had been dropped into.|
|Charlie Thornhill 208: I always put him on something good — say fifty or a hundred to nothing.|
|Checkers 37: Why is it you have n’t been out to the track? I’ve had ‘something good’ nearly every day.|
|Fighting Chicago’s Crime Trusts 16: The man modestly admits that he is the individual who made the big killing at St Louis [...] The stranger then says, ‘Can’t you let me and my friend in on something good?’.|
|Gambler’s Wife 268: ‘Do you aim to bet that on a horse?’ [...] he couldn’t imagine [...] that I would bet a pile of money without it was going to be on something good .|
(US black) to attack someone physically, esp. with a knife.
|Really the Blues 218: Your boy’s too much, Mezz, but he better join the bird family else I’ll get somethin’ from him.|
(orig. US) to find out incriminating or otherwise negative information about someone, to gain an advantage over someone.
|Our Mr Wrenn (1936) 59: Pete was declaring to Tim and the rest that Satan ‘couldn’t never get nothing on him’.|
|Black Mask Aug. III 92: I figured if I planted her in that boarding-house she’d soon get something on either Mark Peters or the kid.|
|DA].Skinny Angel 85: Those fellows are trying to get something on someone [|
|Jimmy Brockett 166: I don’t care how you do it, but get something on Pat Regan.|
|Filth 140: Only that Estelle cow and her mate Sylvia are my means of getting anything on Gorman.|
to thrash, to beat.
|Tony Drum 46: ‘I won’t half give you something for that when I get you out.’ ‘Oh, don’t hit me,’ pleaded Tony.|
1. to have someone at a disadvantage, usu. through incriminating or negative information.
|Actors’ Boarding House (1906) 371: Nobody ain’t got nothin’ on us fur celebratin’.|
|Knocking the Neighbors 99: Gus Thomas and Simeon Ford had nothing on him.|
|Babbitt (1974) 218: They had, Babbitt perceived, ‘something on him’.|
|Coll. Works (1975) 243: [He] wouldn’t even give me money for an abortion. He said if he gave me the money that would mean it was his fault and I would have something on him?‘Miss Lonelyhearts’ in|
|House of Fury (1959) 25: She ran down the stairs. ‘Ain’t got nothin’ on me.’.|
|Jimmy Brockett 47: Jack and I now had something on Ted Jones, just as we had a bit on a few other hoops and one or two owners and trainers.|
|Crazy Kill 108: I know you had something on him and that’s enough.|
|Property Of (1978) 4: What I got on you [...] would make your mama cry.|
|Only Fools and Horses [TV script] And you’ve got nothing on me either?‘May the Force be with You’|
|Homeboy 80: [The] cops, who had nothing on Joe now, if court was adjourned.|
|Crumple Zone 73: There’s no way I can keep the thing or even leave it here too long. Like he’ll have something on me, isn’t that the line.|
2. to be popular with.
|Runyon on Broadway (1954) 501: The Humming Bird is such a guy as thinks he has something on the dolls [...] for he has plenty of youth, and good looks, and good clothes, and a nice line of gab.‘The Brakeman’s Daughter’ in|
3. to be better than, although usu. in negative.
|DA].Pitching 7: ‘Hans’ Wagner, of Pittsburg, has always been a hard man for me, but in that I have had nothing on a lot of other pitchers [|
|Plastic Age 197: He’s got to show me where other colleges have anything on Sanford.|
|Publishers’ Weekly 5 July 27: The antique hussies of history in spite of their hot reputations have nothing on her [DA].|
|Eve. Standard 17 Aug. 13: The baggy trousers he wore had nothing on the drainies of the local Teds.|
see under sock n.1
a dubious figure, prob. a fraudster or even a burglar.
|Passing Eng. of the Victorian Era.|
(US) skill, talent, great ability; thus negative phr. nothing on the ball.
|Collier’s 13 Apr. 19/1: He’s got nothing on the ball—nothing at all [DA].|
|Coshocton (OH) Trib. 13 Feb. 9/1: Every good athlete ‘has something on the ball’, but the layman is never certain just what he has on which ball.|
|Honest Rainmaker (1991) 62: Now the figurator thinks he really must have something on the ball.|
(gay) referring to someone who is presumed to have had a sex-change.
|Queens’ Vernacular 201: something’s rotten in Denmark (camp) said of a sex-change.|
|Maledicta IX 53: Denmark, something’s rotten in cl [R] Said of a sex change; homosexual slang.|
a distasteful, prob. dirty or unkempt, object or person.
|Kansan (Jamestown, KS) 25 Sept. 2/1: Displeasure [...] to have your bundle come back from the laundry looking like something the cat had brought in after a wet night.|
|Bulletin (Sydney) 5 Nov. 39/2: ‘You are suffering much less pain to-night,’ he said, sticking his chin out. / I felt like what a man has described as ‘something the cat has brought in.’ But Carisford would have made me flippant if I were being postmortemed.|
|TAD Lex. (1993) 24: Gee is that the queen? Looks like something the cat dragged in.in Zwilling|
|Gullible’s Travels 15: In the back o’ the stage they’s a bridge, but it ain’t over no water or no railroad tracks or nothin’. It’s prob’ly somethin’ the cat dragged in.‘Carmen’ in|
|Yes Man’s Land 263: The Colossal production mogul looks Gordon over like he’s something Puss dragged in on a stormy night.|
|Dream of Fair to Middling Women (1993) 233: ‘Like something,’ she said to the P.B. ‘that a dog would bring in.’.|
|Foveaux 308: I got a set out of Isey that’d make those look like something the cat brought in.|
|Web and the Rock 468: Bring me along? Just like something the cat dragged in, I guess.|
|Keep It Crisp 9: You certainly look like something the cat dragged in.‘Farewell, My Lovely Appetiser’ in|
|Mating Season 158: You look like something the cat brought in.|
|Criminal (1993) 30: Like I was something the cat dragged in.|
|Only Fools and Horses [TV script] You look like something the cat dragged in – then dragged out again!‘It’s Only Rock and Roll’|
|(con. c.1970) Phantom Blooper 228: Go on and eat. You look like something the cat dragged in.|
|Devil’s Feather 220: I’ve done everything you asked . . . and I get treated like something the cat’s brought in.|
|Odessa American (TX) 28 Mar. C3/1: Once a proud Fort Worth landmark [...] today looks like something the cat dragged in.|
(US black) that’s a different matter.
|Third Ear n.p.: that’s another something an expression denoting a complete change of subject or orientation.|