Green’s Dictionary of Slang

soak v.1

1. in context of alcohol.

(a) (also soak up) to drink heavily.

[UK]Dekker Belman of London D3: They lye soaking with a Dopye in a tipling house.
[UK]Holborn Drollery 76: These are the solid prudent Boys, That soak a Hogshead without noise.
[UK] ‘Well-Wishes to the Royal Family’ in Ebsworth Roxburghe Ballads (1885) V:1 151: Who, [while] smoaking and soaking, wish the Return of the Rump.
[UK]B.E. Dict. Canting Crew n.p.: To set soking, to ply the Pot.
W. Dampier Voyages I 419: Scarce a ship goes to China but the Men come home fat with soaking this Liquor [Arrack] [F&H].
W. Dunkin Parson’s Revels (2010) 88: But Oaf could soke, as well as funk.
[UK]Johnson Dict. Eng. Lang. (1785).
[UK]O. Goldsmith Vicar of Wakefield (1883) 163: You do nothing but soak with the guests all day long.
[UK]Grose Classical Dict. of the Vulgar Tongue.
[UK]Sporting Mag. Mar. XI 344/1: When soaking Sam, who ev’ry day, / To Sot’s Holde went, to souse his clay.
[UK]Lex. Balatronicum.
[UK]Egan Grose’s Classical Dict. of the Vulgar Tongue.
[UK] ‘Job Halls And Mike Hunt’ in Lummy Chaunter 83: In the Feathers you’d find him soaking with Mike Hunt.
[UK]R. Barham ‘The Lord of Thoulouse’ in Ingoldsby Legends (1847) 188: Smoking, and joking, / And soaking, provoking / Such headaches next day.
[UK]G.J. Whyte-Melville General Bounce (1891) 169: For the beggars delight / To sit soaking all night.
[UK]‘Old Calabar’ Won in a Canter II 133: ‘[Y]ou young fellows [...] go on soaking all the day long, and then you cannot enjoy your liquor when the proper time comes for it’.
[UK]‘Pot’ & ‘Swears’ Scarlet City 317: The driver was soaking in a public-house.
[US]‘Hugh McHugh’ It’s Up to You 59: Ned Burnham had a long bottle of boozelene, and he insisted that I should soak it all up.
[UK]J. Masefield Everlasting Mercy 7: Faces of men who’d never been / Merry or true or live or clean; [...] Nor took a punch nor given a swing, / But just soaked deady round the ring.
[Aus]Truth (Melbourne) 24 Jan. 6/3: [headline] Sunday Soaking [...] Legally Drinking in Prohibited Bars.
[UK]‘William Juniper’ True Drunkard’s Delight 248: Less drastic after-effects of soaking, such as head, or a sore head.
[US]‘Paul Cain’ Fast One (1936) 52: She soaked up a couple of bottles of Scotch.
[UK]J. Cary Moonlight (1995) 349: They’re always soaking tea together in some hole or corner.
[UK]R.A. Norton Through Beatnik Eyeballs 14: No wonder you grovel after bread, give filthy love-signs, and soak the juice.
[US]Eble Campus Sl. Mar. 1: Let’s go to the Bacchae and soak some brew.
[UK]A. Sillitoe Birthday 129: Soak down a few jars.
[UK]K. Waterhouse Soho 126: I suggest you go piss it out wherever you soaked it up.

(b) to ply with liquor.

[Ire]J. Banim O’Hara Tales 272: ‘Well?’ questioned the woman, in a sharp whisper; ‘you pumped him? and soaked him?’.
[US]St Louis Post-Dispatch (MO) 8 Feb. 17/1: The ‘bulls’ [...] planned to ‘soak’ the popular chief detective.

(c) to spend money on drink.

[US]Ade Girl Proposition 104: Although his Salary didn’t make him round-shouldered taking it Home, he was enabled to soak a couple of Frog Skins each Month.

2. in monetary senses.

(a) to pawn; to give as collateral.

M.W. Merick From Desert to Bayou (1991) 8: Privat Whight soaked his bunky's boots for a bottle of whisky.
W. Baer Champagne Charlie! n.p.: On the previous day he had been compelled to soak his sword for a few dollars to pay for the cleaning of his coat.
S.F. Trade Herald Aug. 2/2: To soak—to hock—Yer upper benjamin at yer uncle’s, to get the ‘sugar’ for a good square meal [DA].
[UK]G.A. Sala America Revisited II 133: ‘Hock my sparks,’ ‘soak my gems,’ and ‘Walker my diamonds.’ [...] American euphemisms for the act of pawning your jewellery.
[US]Nat. Police Gaz. (NY) 19 Jan. 3/1: Forest’s watch was once offered to him, but he refused it, on the recommendation of a friend in the pawnbroking business, because it couldn’t be ‘soaked’ for more than $3.
[US]F. Hutcheson Barkeep Stories 64: ‘De odder guy soaks his benny to de dealer fer fifteen an’ dey blows dat. Den he soaks a super he has on an’ dey blows dat’.
[US]St Paul Globe (MN) 31 Dec. 11/6: I went and soaked my watch.
[US]H. Green Actors’ Boarding House (1906) 327: Yuh ain’t went and soaked that big ring, have yuh?
[US]J. London Valley of the Moon (1914) 99: I’ve soaked my watch when I was hard up, and I can calculate interest.
[US]D. Hammett ‘The Scorched Face’ Story Omnibus (1966) 74: They soaked the stuff Monday before they went away.
[US]Goldin et al. DAUL 201/2: Soak, v. [...] 3. To pawn.

(b) (US campus) to borrow [one leaves one’s possession ‘to soak’].

[US]Okolona Messenger (MS) 22 Oct. 3/1: College slang [...] ‘swipe’, ‘soak’, ‘hen-medic’, ‘goose-egg’, ‘crib’.
[US]R. Bolwell ‘College Sl. Words And Phrases’ in DN IV:iii 235: soak, v. To borrow.
[US]J.T. Farrell ‘Slouch’ in Amer. Dream Girl (1950) 102: She soaks me for fifty bucks I was savin’ up for the wedding bells.

(c) (US) to put away.

[US]C. Connors Bowery Life [ebook] I wouldn’t stan’ fer her lettin’ her last piece uv junk go. ‘Soak it [i.e. a ring] away agin, Kitty,’ sez I.

3. see let it soak

In derivatives

soaky (adj.)

very drunk.

[UK]C. Dibdin Yngr Song Smith 88: The Vintner he gets soaky, / The China-man gets in his cups.
[UK]London Standard 13 Dec. 3/3: Graduating the scale of drunkeness from slight inebriation to the soaky state of gutterdom.

In phrases

in soak

1. in prison.

[US]Terr. Enterprise 14 Sept. 3/1: There are a good many of the ‘boys’ over there in ‘soak’ [DA].
[US]Dodge City Times (KS) 2 June 5/3: Suppose Hayes and Morton should get on a bender and put their jewelry in soak for boose, then it would be appropriate to say they ‘got to the boose joint’ by this means.
[US]‘Bill Nye’ Bill Nye and Boomerang 15: He made a compromise by offering to put Pythias in soak while the only genuine Damon went to see his girl.
[Aus]C.J. Dennis ‘’Ave a ’Eart!’ in Rose of Spadgers 80: ‘Not on yer life!’ I tells him. ‘Spike’s in soak, / [...] / An’ that removes one interferin’ bloke.’.
[US]Goldin et al. DAUL 201/2: Soak, n. 1. (Rare) prison or county jail.

2. in pawn; thus soak n., pawn, a pawnshop; thus antonym out of soak.

St Louis (MO) Reveille 10 Apr. 2/3: Printer’s fee, $250, not paid—but the poet begged hard, and left his hat ‘in soak’ that fits our devil [DA].
[US] ‘The Jolly Vaquero’ in Lingenfelter et al. Songs of the Amer. West (1968) 337: Though often ‘dead broke’ – his saddle ‘in soak’.
[US]C.A. Siringo Texas Cow Boy (1950) 108: John came [...] to get his horse and saddle out of ‘soak’.
[US]C.F. Lummis letter 10 Jan. in Byrkit Letters from the Southwest (1989) 233: Full of blankets, belts, guns, and jewelry ‘in soak’ for the necessities of life.
[Aus]Bulletin (Sydney) 7 Sept. 14/1: [H]e was once more hard up after putting all his clothing into ‘soak’ with his favorite ‘uncle.’.
[US]Omaha Dly Bee (NE) 11 June 33/4: My sword will not be buried with me but will be placed in soak at the ‘Sign of the Three Balls’.
[US]S.S. Miller ‘Awful Moanin’ Blues’ 🎵 I’ve got no friend, I can’t trust men / Everything’s in soak, and always broke / There’s no place where I can get a loan.
Abbott & Smith We Pointed Them North (2003) 108: When a fellow was hired he would go to his girl and say: ‘I’ve got a job, but my bed’s in soak.’ [...] And she would lend him the money to get it back.
[US]Goldin et al. DAUL 201/2: Soak, n. [...] Pawn; pawn shop.
[US]B. Jackson Get Your Ass in the Water (1974) 137: She feeds me when I’m hungry and keeps my clothes out a soak [pawn].
[US]B. Jackson Get Your Ass in the Water 11: She feeds me when I’m hungry, keeps my clothes out a soak [hock], / and as long as I got this fabulous old broad I can’t be broke.

3. (Aus.) drunk.

[Aus]Bulletin (Sydney) 5 Nov. 9/2: King Billy was a monarch of some importance in those days, and experienced little difficulty in obtaining enough alcoholic stimulant to keep himself well ‘in soak’.

SE in slang uses

In phrases

let it soak (v.) (also lie in soak, soak)

of a man, to linger before withdrawing one’s penis after intercourse.

[UK]Farmer Vocabula Amatoria (1966) 175: Limer. To take time in the act of kind; ‘to lie in soak’; of men.
[UK]Lustful Memoirs of a Young and Passionated Girl 24: He would stop shoving occasionally, letting his charmer remain buried in her. While letting it soak in this way he turned to me [...] and asked what I thought of screwing now.
[US]Bawdy N.Y. State MS. n.p.: ONE FUCK, soak all Night, – – – – – $2.5.
[US] in E. Cray Erotic Muse (1992) 369: The elephant is a funny bloke / And very seldom gets a poke, / So when he does, he lets it soak / As he revels in the joys of fornication.
[US]Trimble 5000 Adult Sex Words and Phrases.
[UK] ‘Kathoozalem’ in Bold (1979) 125: So here’s to all you gentle folk / Who love to have your nightly poke; / May you often let it soak / Within the fair Kathoozalem.
‘Christmas Eve Afternoon’ at Drunk Wives Stories 🌐 He let his cock soak inside her for a few moments then pulled out wiping his knob on her stocking tops.
soak one’s face (v.) [SE face]

to drink, to quench one’s thirst.

[UK]Gent.’s Mag. 559/2: To express the condition of an Honest Fellow [...] under the Effects of good Fellowship, [...] It is also said that he has [...] Soaked his Face.
[US](con. 1940s–60s) Décharné Straight from the Fridge Dad 171: Soak your face get drunk.

In exclamations

go soak your head! (also go soap your ear!)

an abusive, dismissive remark.

[US]Whip and Satirist of N.Y. & Brooklyn 19 Feb. n.p.: He came out at the Little Drury, as one of the Sequin Opera Corps, was pelted, hissed and hooted off the stage. [...] He was told to go home and ‘soak his head,’ with which he complied.
[US]Life in Boston & N.Y. (Boston, MA) 14 Apr. n.p.: Go, soak thy withered head.
[UK]Chelmsford Chron. 17 Dec. 7/1: [from N.Y. Tribune] He is thus addressed: ‘Good bye, old windy; good bye old gaspipe; go home and soak your head in whisky.
[US]Santa Cruz Sentinel (CA) 14 Oct. 1/5: ‘Oh, go home and soak your head’.
[Aus]H. Lawson ‘Two Larrikins’ in Roderick (1972) 231: Soak yer heads.
People’s Reveille (Hill City, KS) 21 May 2/5: Go soak your head until your brain runs your think tank instead of your prejudice.
[US]Van Loan ‘The Low Brow’ in Big League (2004) 23: ‘Aw, go soak your head!’ roared Merry savagely.
[US]Salt Lake Trib. (UT) 16 Nov. 83/6: ‘Aw, go soak your head!’ roared Merry savagely.
Richmond Item (IN) 20 Jan. 4/1: ‘If you want me I’ll take the job and if you don’t [...] you can go soak your head’.
[US](con. 1918) E.W. Springs Rise and Fall of Carol Banks 248: Go soap your ear!
[US]P. Stevenson Gospel According to St Luke’s 201: ‘Aw dry up!’ ‘To the can, stinkbomb!’ ‘Go soak your head!’.
[US](con. 1910s) J. Thompson Heed the Thunder (1994) 242: ‘You just go soak your head,’ he advised.
Muncie Eve. Press (IN) 27 Jan. 11/6: Big shot (patronizingly) — You’ve got a lot to learn about the picture business. [...] Me — Go soak your head in celery tonic.
[US]J. Schaefer Mavericks (1968) 80: ‘Go soak your head,’ shouted Young Jake.
Cleaves Sea Fever 55: Aw, go soak your head.
[US]Star Press (Muncie, IN) 9 Nov. 18/1: ‘I’ve got to get to the hair drier!’ ‘Go soak your head’.
[US]L.A. Times 6 June B13/2: This land is blessed [...] with rights [...] the right to say ‘go soak your head’.
P. & C. Spiro Divided Minds 239: ‘Go soak your head,’ a rather mild insult, if I may say so myself.