Green’s Dictionary of Slang

stick v.

1. in sexual senses.

(a) [17C+] (also stick up) of a man, to have heterosexual sexual intercourse; thus sticking n. and adj.

(b) [1960s] to sodomize another man.

2. in the context of extortion.

(a) [late 17C+] to cheat or swindle, esp. to overcharge; thus stuck.

(b) [mid-19C+] to take in, to impose upon; thus stuck.

(c) [late 19C+] (also stick for) to demand money from.

3. to attack, lit. or fig.

(a) [mid-18C–mid-19C; 1950s+] (US) to hit; thus stuck.

(b) [20C+] (US/UK prison) to charge with a crime.

(c) [1900s] to amaze.

(d) [1920s+] (US black) to attack, verbally or physically.

(e) [1920s+] (US) to defeat.

(f) [1950s] to punish.

4. to pierce the flesh.

(a) [mid-18C+] to stab with a knife.

(b) [late 19C] to bayonet.

(c) [1940s+] (US) to inject with a hypodermic syringe; thus stuck.

5. to render lit. or fig. immobile.

(a) [mid–late 19C] to stymie, to bring or come to a stop, to render or become unable to move; thus sticking.

(b) [late 19C+] to nonplus; thus stuck for, bereft of ideas.

6. [late 19C+] (also stick out) to tolerate, to put up with.

7. [1940s–60s] (drugs) to supply or use marijuana; esp. in phr. are you sticking?

8. [1940s+] fig. to dump something in the rubbish, to throw it away; usu. used in a hostile conversation [abbr. of stick it up your arse! at shove it up your arse! excl.].

9. [1950s] to give to, to pass over.

10. [1950s] to link one to.

11. see stick around

In phrases

stick a bust (v.)

see under bust n.

SE in slang uses

In compounds

stick-flams (n.) (also stick famms, stick-fams, stick-fans, stickhams) [fam n.1 , for which flams is prob. a misprint; thus lit. ‘stick to hands’]

[late 17C–mid-19C] gloves.

stick-jaw (n.)

1. [early 19C–1950s] any sweet food, e.g. a pudding, a sweet such as toffee, that is hard to chew.

2. [1910s–20s] anything seen as extremely tedious.

stickman (n.)

see separate entries.

stick partner (n.)

see separate entry.

sticksman (n.)

see separate entries.

stick-ups (n.)

see separate entry.

In phrases

stick a fork in them, they’re done (also stick a fork in their ass and turn them over, they’re done; turn them over, they’re done on this side)

[1940s+] (US) a phr. of condemnatory dismissal.

stick and lift (v.) [the actions of digging]

[late 19C–1920s] to eke out an impoverished life.

stick a point (v.)

[mid-17C; late 19C–1920s] to settle an argument.

stick around (v.) (also stick on, stick)

[late 19C+] (orig. Can./US) to stay close by; often as imper.

stick as close as shit on a blanket (v.) (also stick like glue to a basket, ... shit to a blanket)

[late 19C+] to stay very close, lit. and fig.

stick a tail on (v.) [tail n. (3)]

[1960s+] to admire sexually; usu. in phr. I could stick a tail on that.

stick-at-it (n.)

[1900s] a persistent, dedicated person.

stick away (v.)

[20C+] to hide something or someone away; thus stuck away, hidden.

stick fat (v.) [1980s+]

1. (Aus. Und.) to maintain silence rather than betraying one’s peers.

2. (Aus.) to maintain one’s loyalty.

stick (for drinks) (v.)

[late 19C] to play and win a toss of the dice (occas. turn of cards) to determine who pays for the next round of drinks.

stick in one’s gizzard (v.) (also stick in one’s stomach)

[late 17C+] to be unpalatable, to infuriate, to be unacceptable.

stick-in-the-middle (n.) [although the dumpling is shaped like a doughnut and might have had a stick pushed through its centre to make the requisite hole, the term more likely refers to the way the heavy dumpling sticks to one’s stomach]

[1950s] (W.I.) a form of dumpling.

stick-in-the-mud (n.)

see separate entry.

stick in the ribs (n.) (also stick to your ribs)

[19C] a thick soup.

stick it (v.)

see separate entries.

In phrases

stick one’s bib in (v.)

see under bib n.

stick oneself up (v.)

[late 19C] to boast, to claim, to make oneself out to be.

stick one’s spoon in the wall (v.)

[mid–late 19C] to die.

stick out (v.)

see sense 6 above.

stick out/stick out for

see separate entries.

stick out like a sore thumb (v.)

see separate entry.

stick someone for (v.)

1. [late 19C+] (also stick someone in for) to take from someone, usu. but not invariably money.

2. [1910s+] (also stick someone with) to make someone pay a bill; to borrow money without repaying it.

3. [1920s+] (also stick someone with) fig. to burden someone with something, e.g. a jail sentence.

stick someone with (v.)

1. to burden with, to trick someone into accepting.

2. [1950s+] to make responsible for a usu. unpleasant responsibility or something unpleasant, e.g. a faulty computer.

stick to (v.)

see separate entry.

stick up (v.)

1. see sense 1a above.

2. see separate entries.

stick up for (v.)

see separate entry.

stick up to (v.)

see separate entry.

In exclamations

stick a pin (in) there!

1. [early–mid-18C] wait! hold it!

2. [mid-19C–1940s] (also stick a pin in that! stick a pin here!) note carefully! bear in mind!

stick ’em up! (also stick’m up!) [the first-use date reflects the probable creation of the phr. for films, rather than in the 19C world that such films claimed to portray]

[1930s+] put your hands up! a robber’s trad. order to their victim to raise their hands above their head.

stick it!

see separate entry.

stick with it!

[1960s+] a general excl. of farewell.