1. [early 19C] a blow, a punch.
2. in lit. senses.
(a) [mid–late 19C] (UK Und.) a ticket of leave, parole; thus ticketer n., a person on parole.
(b) [late 19C–1930s] (US) a playing card, as used in three-card monte.
(c) [1900s] a prescription.
(d) [1910s] (UK Und.) probation.
(e) [1900s–40s] (US, a betting slip; thus Aus.) the bet.
(f) [1920s–40s] (US Und.) a prison sentence.
(g) [1930s] a track record, a history.
(h) [1930s+] (US prison) a disciplinary record.
(i) [1940s] (US prison) a certificate of release.
(j) [1940s] a certificate of demobilization from the armed forces [note WWI Aus. milit. ticket, a discharge from the Army].
(k) [1940s–70s] (UK Und.) an arrest warrant.
(l) [1950s+] (US) a licence.
(m) [1960s–70s] a pass or passport, whether valid or counterfeit.
(n) [2000s] (US black) a lottery ticket, usu. in pl.
3. in fig. use, as an ideal [? SE winning ticket or Fr. etiquette (suggested by Hotten, 1867) ].
(a) [mid-19C+] the right, proper, best or fashionable thing to do; esp. as that’s the ticket!
(b) [mid-19C+] the task in hand, the relevant procedure.
4. [mid-19C–1900s] the facts, the truth [? Fr. etiquette (suggested by Hotten, 1867) or SE ticket, a bill or invoice].
5. [1930s+] a person (as used esp. by a mod n.2 (1) in the early 1960s).
6. [1960s+] (Aus. drugs) a single dose of LSD, dripped onto a small piece of absorbent paper; also attrib. [resemblance to a SE ticket or sense 3, i.e. its positive effects; note Beatles title ‘Ticket To Ride’].
7. [1990s+] (US) the ideal person [? SE winning ticket].
8. [1990s+] (Irish) an amusing person, an eccentric [abbr. hard ticket under hard adj.].
9. [2000s+] (US black / drugs) $1,000,000, thus half a ticket, $500,000.
[late 19C] (US) a ticket tout.
1. [late 19C+] (also get one’s ticket) to die.
2. [1970s] to trust, to tolerate, to accept someone’s statements.
3. [1980s] to call someone’s bluff.
[1960s+] to murder, to assassinate.
[20C+] (Aus.) to gain admission to a sporting event or other entertainment without paying.
[1910s] to have good luck, to be successful.
to enjoy oneself, usu. in a sexual context.
[20C+] (Aus.) to be very fond of someone; thus have tickets on oneself, to be vain, to be conceited; thus put tickets on, to trust, to depend on.
[mid-19C+] perfect, ideal, exactly as desired and required.
[20C+] physically or more usu. mentally ‘below par’.
[1930s] (US Und.) a life sentence.
[1980s] (US) a private detective.
[2000s] (US prison) a rules violation notice for inappropriate behaviour in the visiting room.
[late 19C] a holiday.
[2000s] (US prison) a minor disciplinary offence.
[late 19C] (US tramp) a notched board cut to fit on the iron bars that support a passenger coach and which can thus be used to support a tramp.
1. [mid-19C–1900s] (US) a notice of dismissal.
2. [1950s+] (Aus./US prison) an official notice to inform a prisoner that they have finished their sentence.
see where did you get your licence? under licence n.
[20C+] to malinger, to escape onerous duties by shamming illness or similar unsuitability.
[late 19C+] to be able to stipulate one’s own conditions, to be in an advantageous position.
[mid-19C+] just what is wanted, the ideal thing; occas. as that’s the ticket for soup.