1. (later use US black) the penis; cit. 1719 refers, as a double entendre, to the ‘hammer’ of a stereotypically lecherous tinker.
|Arundel MS I 218: [Her] Anvill bydeth battring still of hammers great and smale.‘Cockolds Kallender’ in|
|aecius: I am too course for Ladies; my embraces [...] Would break their tender bodies. emperor: Never feare it, They are stronger than ye think, they’le hold the hammer.Tragedy of Valentinian I iii:|
|Pilgrim I i: She is malleable: she’ll endure the hammer, And why not that strong workman that strikes deepest?|
|Mercurius Fumigosus 22 25 Oct.–1 Nov. 190: Before her Book I’de Knock, I’de see th’ Devil dam her, / Unless I made account to spoile my Stone and Hammer.|
|‘Song’ in Pills to Purge Melancholy II 199: Her Husband she said could scarce raise up his Hammer, / His strength and his Tools were worn out long ago.|
|in Pills to Purge Melancholy III 52: Some bring him Basons, some bring him Bowls, / All Wenches pray him to stop up their holes, / Tink goes the hammer, the Skillet and the Scummer. [Ibid.] IV 195: Her Husband she said could scarce raise up his Hammer, His strength and his Tools were worn out.|
|in Penkethman’s Jests II 75: Good Lad with your Hammer come hither to Morrow.|
|‘The Tinker’ in Secret Songster 43: He put his hammer in her hand, and she gave it a jerk, / To let the cuckold know that the tinker was at work.|
|‘Ten Pound Hammer’ [lyrics] I got a ten pound hammer, the women love to hear it sound, / They says, ‘Come on Moses, go and drive it down’.|
|Entrapment (2009) 104: ‘Come down I hammer your board,’the carpenter invited her with a leer [...] ‘You try carpenter’s hammer! You try, you like! Try for size! Come quick!’.‘Paper Daisies’ in|
|(con. WWII) And Then We Heard The Thunder (1964) 292: Boy, I have gotten so much pussy in my day [...] when I do die they gon say, I died with my hammer in my hand.|
|Confessions of Proinsias O’Toole 43: His hammer hung down the left side instead of the right.|
|Drylongso 160: Any cow can take ten times as much hammer as any bull can throw.|
|(con. 1920–57) Ozark Folksongs and Folklore II 787: Other common names for the male organ are [...] hammer.|
|Vatican Bloodbath 80: Clarence T. Blackbird dressed as a Cabaret-era Lisa Minneli eagerly sucking on a sailor’s brutally engorged love hammer.|
2. the testicles.
|‘Darby o’Gallagher’ Luke Caffrey’s Gost 2: No Doctor of skill can cure it so well, / As the two smacking hammers of Darby o’Gallagher.|
3. (also hammer man) a strong puncher.
|Dict. of the Turf, the Ring, the Chase, etc. 93: Hammer (ring) ― when a man hits very hard, chiefly with a favourite hand, his blows are said to ‘fall like those of a sledge-hammer,’ Such boxers are hammering fighters, that do not defend their own vitals, cannot make sure of a blow, and are termed hammerers and hammermen.|
|Annals of Sporting 1 Jan. 51: He is a hammer-man who hits round and hard.|
4. a bodyguard, a thug.
|Burlesque 158: He’s gettin’ in bad, an’ there’s plenty o’ hammers out for him.|
|DSUE (8th edn) 524: [...] late C.19–20.|
|Homeboy 121: Last night Reverend Bones and another hammer dueled over a carton of milk.|
5. (US black) a woman’s thigh.
|Runnin’ Down Some Lines 142: Terms for [...] thighs, hammers, suggest that males appreciate ample legs and thighs on women.|
6. (US) the accelerator; thus put the hammer down or drop the hammer, to accelerate.
|Family Circle Aug. 20: He’s eastbound and he’s got the hammer down.|
|Time 2 Jan. 36: ‘Modulating,’ (talking) while ‘dropping the hammer’ (accelerating) is more dangerous to the driver than to his speech.|
|Rat on Fire (1982) 88: Put the hammer down and I didn’t let her up until I hit Ludlow.|
|White Shoes 143: Les dropped the Jag back into second and put the hammer down.|
|http://slang.uoregon.edu [Internet] Put the hammer down (Phrase) Source: Biker Group. Meaning: To start going as fast as you can when you are feeling good. Context: Bragging or describing a moment when you started going very fast; usually faster that the other riders. Collected: 10/10/1999.|
7. (Irish) a turn, e.g. take a right-hand hammer.
|Cartoon City 14: ‘Take a right-hand hammer,’ Dez said. ‘Short cut.’.|
8. (US black) a gun, thus knock hammers, to fire weapons.
|Lush Life 10: ‘A whistle?’ Lugo makes a finger gun. ‘You mean a hammer?’ .|
|‘Don’t make No Sense’ [lyrics] All my boys knock hammers / Now all of your niggas damaged.|
|‘Milly Rock’ [lyrics] Hammers and dingers galore.|
|‘OOOUUU’ [lyrics] Like I don't always keep the hammer next to me / Like I ain’t got a hitter to the left of me.|
(US) the fast lane.
|Frank Sinatra in a Blender [ebook] I pulled onto Lindbergh, jumped into the hammer lane, and held the accelerator [...] to the floor.|
|‘Darby o’Gallagher’ Luke Caffrey’s Gost 2: Well known by the ladies to be a gay froliker / As he passes by the ladies replies, / There goes the bold hammerman Darby o’Gallagher.|
SE in slang uses
(US) the penis.
|Down in the Holler 101: Several witnesses used long tool and hoe-handle when they meant penis.|
|(con. 1920–57) Ozark Folksongs and Folklore II 787: Other common names for the male organ are [...] hammer-handle.|
see separate entries.
(US black) an authoritarian figure.
|AS Dec. 288: Hammerman. Generally, anyone with more authority than the speaker.|
|Dict. Afro-Amer. Sl. 63: Hammer-man An authoritarian figure.|
a boxing school.
|Tom And Jerry; Musical Extravaganza 54: Hammer school, boxing school.|
see under down adv.2
1. (orig. US) to take decisive action (against).
|Capt. Blackman 14: The guys’ll come splashing down here [...] and they’ll [i.e. ambushers] drop the hammer on them .|
|Skin Tight 228: It felt good to be the one to drop the hammer for a change.|
|Another Day in Paradise 178: I still couldn’t drop the hammer on Jewels.|
|Gun Monkeys 221: He decided to drop the hammer on everybody hard.|
2. to shoot.
|A-Team 2 (1984) 166: I’m a fugitive, just like yourself, and every now and then I like to drop the hammer on a piece of dirt like you, just to keep in practice.|
3. to humiliate.
|Snitch Jacket 88: If some college cocksucker tried to drop the hammer on me with ‘lagniappe’, I’d fire back with ‘epistemoological.’.|
(US) a phr. used to inquire about someone’s state of well being; the typically facetious answer being: ‘A little to the left and in the dirt’; note extrapolation in cit. 1961.
|‘Joe Louis the Pride of Harlem’ [comic strip] in Tijuana Bibles (1997) 123: Hello big boy! How’s yo’ old hammer hanging.|
|McSorley’s Wonderful Saloon (2001) 311: ‘Hello, Pop,’ a young clammer said to the man in an adjoining boat, a sullen old man in wet overalls, ‘how’s your hammer hanging?’.|
|Ginger Man (1958) 318: And how’s your hammer hanging. Step this way, Danger.|
|There Must Be a Pony! 242: One guy said, ‘Hey, man – how’s the stem end of your bladder?’ ‘Hanging!’ the other one said.|
|Reinhart in Love (1963) 263: Fedder! How’s your hammer hanging?|
|(con. c.1900) King Blood (1989) 61: Hi’ya Gran’pa, Uncle Ike [...] How’s your hammer hangin’?|
|After the Wake 72: When I walked in, he said to me, ‘How is the hammer hanging?’.‘The Catacombs’ in|
|Alt. Eng. Dict. [Internet] how’s your hammer hangin’? (phrase) Used to inquire as to one’s state of well being. [...] John: How’s your hammer hangin’ Joe? Joe: A little to the left and in the dirt.|
|(con. 1964–8) Cold Six Thousand 438: Let’s jaw first. ‘Hey, Bob, how’s the hammer hangin’?’ ‘Long and strong, Wayne, how about you?’.|
1. to take decisive action.
|Larceny, Inc. [film script] They put the hammer on his parole [HDAS].|
2. to demand money.
|They Drive by Night 206: It was no use trying to put the hammer on a man like that.|
3. to attack verbally, to slander.
|Friends of Eddie Coyle (1973) 76: It’s usually about someone else, [...] somebody that put the hammer on him and he’s looking to get back.|
|Cogan’s Trade (1975) 72: I’m not puting the hammer on Mike [...] He’s just expensive.|
|N.Y. Post 11 Aug. 37: Guys like to put the hammer on him [HDAS].|
4. (also put the hammer to) to pressurize.
|q. inPublic Administration 383: If you have someone out there who is about to overthrow the Government [...] you ought to put the hammer on him.|
|Our Man in Panama 98: Without trying to excuse the unwillingness of General Torrijos to really put the hammer on him, the general conception is that he is reluctant.|
|Life 425: I never put the hammer on hard. I didn’t make a move.|
|(con. 1973) Johnny Porno 188: They put the hammer to her. ‘Turn informant or get used to munching muff the next dozen years’ [...] They laid it on thick.|
(US) to beat up.
|Man with the Golden Arm 316: Had they let the punk out [...] or had they put the hammers to him?|
see swing the lead under swing v.
ideal, perfect, exactly what is wanted.
|(con. WWI) Soldier and Sailor Words 114: Hammer, That’s The: Excellent. A good notion.|
in trouble, at a disadvantage.
|‘Hearts for Sale’ [lyrics] I’m under the hammer.|
an excl. of surprise or disappointment.
|Insurrection 108: A rank outsider! Aw! By the hammers of hell!|
(US) a dismissive excl, suggesting that a speaker stop complaining and start offering praise.
|Indoor Sports 12 Mar. [synd. cartoon] Aw sell your hammer and buy a horn.|
|Frankfort Dly Index (Frankfort, KS) 3 Sept. 1/3: To habitual critics we pass on the following excellent suggestion which we recently heard: ‘Sell your hammer and buy a horn’.|
|Tennessean (Nashville, TN) 13 Sept. 5/7: [advert] Sell Your Hammer and Buy a Horn. Don’t Knock, BOOST for the Tennessee State Fair.|
|letter in Amarillo Globe-Times (TX) 3 May5/3: As long as you have to live where, why not ‘sell your hammer and buy a horn’.|
|Arizona Republic (Phoenix, AZ) 11 Aug. 6/1: ‘Sell your hammer and buy a horn.’ That was an oft heard admonition in an earlier and more expansive period of American history. A free translation would be, ‘Quit knocking and start boosting’.|