Green’s Dictionary of Slang

fizzle v.2

1. (US campus) to fail someone in an examination.

[US]Yale Literary Mag. 321: Fizzle him tenderly, / Bore him with care; / Fitted so slenderly, / Tutor, beware.
[US]B.H. Hall College Words (rev. edn) 203: fizzle 2. To cause one to fail in reciting. Said of an instructor.

2. (US campus) to fail in an examination.

[US]Yale Banger 22 Oct. in Hall (1856) 203: My dignity is outraged at beholding those who fizzle and flunk in my presence tower above me.
[US] ‘A Little More Cider’ in C. Elliot Songs of Yale (1870) 31: I ‘skinned’ and ‘fizzled’ through.
[US]B.H. Hall College Words (rev. edn) 203: fizzle. To fail in reciting; to recite badly.
[US]L.H. Bagg Four Years at Yale 44: Fizzle, partial failure on recitation. Flunk, an entire failure. Both these words are also used as verbs.
[US]W.R. Morse ‘Stanford Expressions’ in AS II:6 277: poop out—fizzle.

3. to fail, to make a mess of.

[US]Matsell Vocabulum 32: fizzled Broke up; fell through.
[US]J.R. Browne Adventures in the Apache Country 385: Guess they aren’t eager for it. Likely as not they’ll fizzle.
[US]Trumble Sl. Dict. (1890) 14: Fizzled. Broke up; miscarried.
[Aus]Sun. Times (Perth) 28 Aug. 1/1: The efforts of a she-rival to ruin the business of a William-street cafe have fizzled.
[US]Van Loan ‘The Extra Man’ in Buck Parvin 30: If the two big stunts [...] stand up all right I’ve got another grand picture [...] if they fizzle – good night!
[US]G. Henderson Keys to Crookdom 415: Rank. To blunder. To fizzle. To rank a job. To get a rumble.
[US]W. Winchell On Broadway 24 Jan. [synd. col.] [It] was a plot to get the Cork out of Washington, but it fizzled.
[US]W. Winchell On Broadway 29 Mar. [synd. col.] Goebbels is building a Bolshie scare, in case the Nazi offensive fizzles.
[US]B. Appel Sweet Money Girl 98: Then on the wedding night to fizzle it like the other times when I’d fizzled it.
[NZ]B. Mason Awatea (1978) 75: matt: What did they say? brett: That I was taking a risk; that if it fizzled, I’d be in the cactus.
[US]Newsday 7 Nov. G14: A call to the American Civil Liberties Union worked its magic, the bond requirement fizzled and a permit was issued.
G. Ragland Griffis Coaling Station A 87: The evening she had looked forward to all year was ruined, the grand denouement she had envisioned completely fizzled.
[US]J. Ellroy Hilliker Curse 13: Marriage #1 fizzled pronto.
[US](con. 1962) J. Ellroy Enchanters 1249: A phone book check fizzled. There no Dick Dawses [...] in the LA white pages.