Green’s Dictionary of Slang

sock it to v.

[fig. use of sock v.1 (1); sock it to me! was popularized on TV’s Rowan & Martin’s Laugh-In (1967–73)]

1. (also sock it in, sock it into) to hit hard, lit. or fig., e.g. to charge someone a high price.

Mensalia Mar. 140: ‘Have you any more examinations — hard ones?’ ‘Yes, — and one will Sock it to me, too’.
[US]E.K. Wightman letter 11 May in Longacre From Antietam to Fort Fisher (1985) 176: Sock it to em, my hardies. [Ibid.] 21/24 July 203: Our motto should be that emphatic though vulgar one of rank and file, ‘sock it to em’.
[US]S.W. Payne Behind the Bars 145: If their liquor don’t set just right, then they sock it to us freed niggers till we can’t stand.
[US]‘Mark Twain’ Life on the Mississippi (1914) 390: A rich man won’t have anything but your very best; and you can just pile it on, too—pile it on and sock it to him.
[Aus]Dead Bird (Sydney) 26 Oct. 7/3: He couldn’t find much fault [with the painting] but he was afraid if he didn’t the artist would take him for a softy and [...] ‘sock it to him’.
[US]J.A. Riis How the Other Half Lives 224: The sheeny cum along an’ the saw was there, an’ we socked it to him.
[US]S.F. Call 22 Nov. 8/2: ‘Sock it to him!’ ‘Hit him where he lives!’.
[Aus]Sun. Times (Perth) 19 Mar. 1/1: The Sydneyites socked it into him for an act of gross discourtesy.
[Aus]C.J. Dennis ‘The Singing Soldiers’ in Moods of Ginger Mick 62: ‘Strike!’ sez ’e. ‘It sounds like skitin’; but they’re singin’ while they’re fightin’; / An’ they socks it into Abdul to the toon o’ “Nancy Lee”.’.
[Aus]G.H. Lawson Dict. of Aus. Words And Terms 🌐 SOCK IT IN—To administer severe punishment.
[US]J. Steinbeck Grapes of Wrath (1951) 57: Get ’em rolling. Get ’em out in a jalopy. Sock it to ’em!
[Aus]A. Marshall ‘Singing of the Sun’ in Tell Us About the Turkey, Jo 59: The screams . . . the shouting . . . ‘Sock it into ’em’.
[US]B. Schulberg Harder They Fall (1971) 116: You’ve got to really sock it to them out there.
[US]J. Thompson Swell-Looking Babe 72: I don’t like to [...] wait for old Uncle Whiskers to sock it to me.
[US]‘Hy Lit’ Hy Lit’s Unbelievable Dict. of Hip Words 3: Some jive cat really socked it to you.
[US]‘Soulful Spider’ ‘Pimp in a Clothing Store’ in Milner & Milner (1972) 286: Young man walked in, Jack, in black on black with a gray tie. Mack hat hanging down, pimp shades sockin’ it to you from the cue view.
[US]J. Wambaugh Glitter Dome (1982) 58: Tiffany Charles was a sucker for [...] big sweaty animals that socked it to you and no bullshitting around.
[US]L. Bing Do or Die (1992) 184: The system is really trying to sock it to these kids.
[US]S. King Dreamcatcher 29: I kind of socked it to him. He took off like his ass was on fire.
R. Stooker Income Investing Secrets 102: Their management expenses are less than mutual funds, but they can sock it to you with their upfront loads and deferred sales charges.

2. to reprimand.

[US]Nat. Police Gaz. (NY) 15 May 14/3: Umpire Young is working his school discipline in upon the ball players [...] he socked it to Barkley, Carroll and Ramsey April 26.
[US]C.L. Cullen Tales of the Ex-Tanks 119: The Sergeant socked it to the cop for being a pinhead, a lightweight, and an in-and-outer.

3. in fig. use of to ‘hit’, to play an instrument.

[US]C.L. Cullen Tales of the Ex-Tanks 64: The Howlingest Thing that ever struck this community will sock it to the harpsichord [...] to-night.

4. an excl. of exhortation.

[US]L. Pound ‘Word-List From Nebraska’ in DN IV:iv 281: ‘Sock it to him’ Give it to him hard.
[US]‘Cordwainer Bird’ Bohemia of Arthur Archer’ in Pulling a Train’ (2012) [ebook] Sock it to her Artie! Dance, Artie! Go, go, go, go!
[US]Aretha Franklin ‘Respect’ 🎵 Sock it to me, sock it to me, sock it to me.
[US]H.E. Roberts Third Ear n.p.: sock it to me (him, etc.) an expression urging another to ultimate effort; e.g. Encouraging one’s dancing partner with ‘sock it to me, baby’.
[US]J. Stahl Perv (2001) 252: Doobie-doobie-sock-it-to-me!
G. Stilton Haunted Castle 90: Way to go, Chintzina! Sock it to ’em!

5. to cuddle, to embrace.

[US]H. Ellison ‘Made in Heaven’ in Deadly Streets (1983) 183: I danced close to Torchy, sockin’ it to him.

6. to shock, to surprise; thus excl. sock it to me! amaze me! surprise me!

[US]H. Whittington Web of Murder (2000) 53: I had socked it to him hard and he sat back looking as though I had struck him.
[UK]N. Cohn Awopbop. (1970) 90: That’s a groove, that’s nice, baby, ooh, mammy-o, lay it down, sock it to me.
[UK]T. Rhone Smile Orange I i: Sock it to me sweetness!
[UK]Guardian Guide 5–11 Feb. 81: Carla socks it to Peter, with the shock revelation that Reese may not even be his son.

7. to explain.

[US]Current Sl. III:3 10: Sock it to . . . v. To speak, to tell.

8. (orig. US black, also sock it into) to have sexual intercourse.

[UK]J. Colebrook Cross of Lassitude 103: The oblique and penetrating language of the life. [...] ‘Listen Baby he’s [i.e. a lesbian] only tryin’ to cop. He satisfies her, he’ll sock it to her, but later on she’ll get him when she can.’.
[US]‘Iceberg Slim’ Pimp 28: I was frantic to sock ‘it’ into every young girl weak enough to go for it.
[US]San Diego Sailor 36: [...] the first time he socked it all the way into me.
[US]R. Price Ladies’ Man (1985) 61: How would she like it if she came home and caught me socking it to some inflatable love doll?
[US]P. Benchley Lush 116: Nowadays, guys did it to guys, girls did it to girls [...] deacons socked it to choir boys.