Green’s Dictionary of Slang

graft v.1

[SE graft, to fix onto, in this case the cuckold’s horns n.]

1. to cuckold; thus grafting n.; thus grafter of horns n., the adulterous lover.

[UK]Appius and Virginia in Farmer (1908) 11: A hairbrain, a hangman, or a grafter of horns?
[UK]Cobbler of Canterbury (1976) 22: No man might hold it scorne On his head to graft a horne.
[UK]Attowell ‘Frauncis New Ligge’ Pepys Ballads (1987) I 227: Now thinks good Master Frauncis [...] he is grafting of hornes vpon my head.
[UK]Jonson Epicene III i: By that light you deserve to be grafted, and your horns reach from one side of the island to the other.
[UK]Pasquil’s Night-cap (1877) 8: Else with her husband company doth keepe, To graft the horns vpon his head more deepe.
[UK]T. Randolph Muses’ Looking-Glass III iii: You are a horned beast, a very cuckold [...] And I did graft your horns.
[UK]T. Rawlins Rebellion I i: You appeare fresh as a City Bridegroome, That has sign’d his wife a warrant for the Grafting hornes.
[UK]W.P. Wit’s Academy II 17: [He] grafts on himself the gay horns that he wears.
[UK] ‘Unfortunate Miller’ in Ebsworth Bagford Ballads (1878) II 530: [He] grafted a large pair of Horns upon his Masters Head.
[UK]Motteux (trans.) Gargantua and Pantagruel (1927) II Bk III 107: Ods fish! [...] have you no preventative cure in all your medicinal art for hindering one’s head to be horny-graffed [sic] at home, whilst his feet are plodding abroad?
[UK]N. Ward Dancing School in Writings II 240: I should hate a Husband with Horns, were they even of my own Grafting.
‘Whipping-Tom’ Extravagancy of a Lady’s Toilet II 54: If a Man goes to Sea, he may surely expect his Wife will graft a Pair of Horns on his Head before he comes home.
[UK]Fielding Tumble-Down Dick 15: Madam, if Horns on my Head must wear / ’Tis equal to me who shall graft them there.
[UK]Friar and Boy Pt II 12: Jack at this aloud did laugh, And touted him with scorn; Also he on his head did graft A lusty pair of horns [...] And they began to skip and dance, Like cuckolds all a-row.

2. to have vaginal or anal intercourse; thus grafting n.

[UK]Shakespeare Henry VI Pt 2 III ii: Some stern untutor’d churl, and noble stock Was graft with crab-tree slip, whose fruit thou art.
[UK]Dekker Honest Whore Pt 2 (1630) III iii: Sure your wife is slipt vp, and the fourth man, I hold my life, is grafting your Warden tree.
[UK]Webster Duchess of Malfi II i: ’Tis a pretty Art, this grafting.
[UK]S. Marmion Antiquary IV i: Due to the early Cherry: the first Apples / Deserve more grace: the budding rose is set by; [...] as well you may affirm the tender tree / Too young to graft upon.
[UK]Ladies Delight 4: Others too curious will innoc / Ulate their Plants on Medlars Stock, / (i.e. as Tongues in Vulgar pass, / They graft it on an Open-arse).