Green’s Dictionary of Slang

metho n.


1. methylated spirits, beloved by extreme alcoholics; also attrib.

[NZ]N.Z. Truth 14 Feb. 6/8: ‘Metho’ Drinker saved — ‘Drinko’ Killed the Craving.
[Aus]Morn. Bulletin (Rockhampton, Qld) 25 June 8/4: [heading] Preferred Metho to Dope [...] [Because] he did not want to fly to ‘dope’ he took the methylated spirits.
[Aus]Sydney Morn. Herald 31 Dec. 9/7: ‘Metho-drinkers’ is the name applied to a new class of alcoholic.
Wodonga & Towaong Sentinel (Vic.) 25 Feb. 3/2: [heading] A Metho Drinker [...] he found the accused asleep under a tree. He smelt strongly of metho.
[Aus]R. Park Poor Man’s Orange 107: Anything came well to the Kidger, plonk, plink, metho, bombo.
[Aus]J.M. Hosking ‘Alcoholics’ Aus. First and Last 98: Metho can kill you on your feet, whether you take it mixed or neat.
[Aus]J. Walker No Sunlight Singing (1966) 32: I can liven up with a shot of metho.
[Aus]J. Alard He who Shoots Last 229: An old wine dot [...] no doubt much metho had been consumed when the wine ran out.
[Aus](con. 1930s) F. Huelin ‘Keep Moving’ 48: Such things as metho-drinking, petty theft [...] and sexual perversion were accepted as inevitable.
[Aus]D. Malouf Johnno 63: A wino, or a metho-drinker.
[Aus]A. Weller Day of the Dog 27: Now he drinks metho.
[Aus]L. Davies Candy 158: The cheapest palatable alcohol short of metho that we could find.
K. Greenwood Blood and Circuses 88: ‘What’s red biddy, sir?’ asked Constable Harris. ‘Ruby port and metho,’ said Robinson.

2. attrib. use of sense 1.

[Aus]Sydney Morn. Herald 31 Dec. 9/7: The police are finding that members of a higher grade of society are becoming ‘metho-mad’.
[Aus]Mail (Adelaide) 11 June 1/5: A ‘metho’ drinking party was held by the prisoners’ painting gang in Boggo Road Gaol.

3. a drinker of methylated spirits; ext. as metho fiend, metho king.

[Aus]K. Tennant Battlers 272: You ought to know not to camp with metho fiends by now.
[NZ]N. Hilliard Maori Girl 115: There’s the metho and the trammie and his old bitch.
[NZ]McGill Dict. of Kiwi Sl. 72/2: metho methylated spirits addict.
[NZ]McGill Reed Dict. of N.Z. Sl. 134: metho/metho king Methylated spirits addict. ANZ.