Green’s Dictionary of Slang

bang-up n.1

[bang-up adj. (2)]

1. a dandy, a fashionable man.

[UK]Lex. Balatronicum n.p.: We trust [...] that the whole tribe of second-rate Bang ups will feel grateful [etc.].
[UK]‘An Amateur’ Real Life in London II 521: Others take the example of the bang ups—make themselves perfect in milling, swearing, greeking, talking flash.
[US]National Advocate (N.Y.) 22 May 2/2: The next steam boats will bring us the bang ups from Virginia and Maryland. The Tom and Jerry’s are all in training – big whiskers – top boots – new curricles – green frocks – crop tail ponies – Clinton hats – shammey gloves and goggles – cotton planters from the south, and cotton spinners from Paterson and old Duchess.
[UK]J.E. Ritchie Night Side of London 134: We enter, we will say, Bang Up’s hostelry, about ten on a Thursday evening; there is Bang Up at the bar, with his ton of flesh and broken nose.
[UK]Punch lxxxii 115 I: ‘These then are the dandies, the fops, the goes and the bang-ups, these Corinthians of today.’ These fellows are very ‘good form’, and as to being bang-up, a good many poor old chappies are deuced hard-up [F&H].

2. good quality alcohol.

[UK]‘Nocturnal Sports’ in Universal Songster II 180/1: Tip us another bottle o’ bang-up.

3. a smart carriage.

[UK]Sussex Advertiser 14 Apr. 4/3: There were Corinthians in their bang-ups — the swell coves in their tandems, gigs, or on a bit of horse-flesh.
[UK]High Life in London 10 Feb. 5/2: [Baltimore paper] Coming home in a new-fashioned bang-up.

4. (Anglo-Irish/US) an overcoat with a cape and high collar.

[US]Spirit of the Times (Phila.) 13 Jan. n.p.: A gentleman dressed in a dark colored fashionable bang-up, with tight-bodied coat, neck-cloth, breast-pin, hair, and whiskers to match. [Ibid.] 28 Jan. n.p.: That gentlemanly looking man in the snuff-colored bang-up, that’s Mayor Scott.
[Ire](con. 1850–60s) G.A. Little Malachi Horan Remembers 15: He would wear a ‘trusty,’ or as you would call it a cotamore – the name the people had on it hereabout was a ‘bang-up’. This was a frieze coat that reached the ankles and which had attatched to it a cape to the wrists.