Green’s Dictionary of Slang

brown adj.2

1. worthy, earnest, totally devoid of any double entendre or ‘smut’ [the brown clothes popular among the sedulously pure Quakers].

[UK]Hotten Sl. Dict.
[US]E. De Roo Go, Man, Go! 9: ‘Been channeled. Can’t ya tell?’ Paul felt like a brown square.

2. used in combs. referring to the anus, usu. to imply homosexuality; usu. in combs. below; note heterosexual use in cit. 1993 at get a brown dick [the equation of brown and excrement, thus the anus].

[Ire]Joyce Ulysses 730: If he wants to kiss my bottom Ill drag open my drawers and bulge it right out in his face as large as life he can stick his tongue 7 miles up my hole as hes there my brown part then I’ll tell him I want £1.
[US]‘R. Scully’ Scarlet Pansy 174: There was an elegant Miss Drexel-Bütsch of Philadelphia; also there were the Brown-Bütsches of New Rochelle (very classy indeed), and a whole Bütsch-Fuchs family in New York.
[UK]F. Norman Guntz 113: [He] had had his brown habit taken away from him (because he had a brown habit).
[US]A. Baraka Tales (1969) 20: Yeh. They call this cat [i.e. a homosexual] Dick Brown. Hoooo!

In compounds

brown family (n.) (also browning family)

a generally obsolete generic term for homosexuals, referring to the predilection for anal intercourse.

[US]‘Dean Stiff’ Milk and Honey Route 201: Browning Sisters – The Angelina sorority. ‘He belongs to the Browning Sisters’ or ‘to the Brown Family’.
[US]Goldin et al. DAUL 35/1: Brown, Mr. (or ‘one of the Brown family’) A passive pederast.
[US]Trimble 5000 Adult Sex Words and Phrases.
[US]B. Rodgers Queens’ Vernacular 37: the Brown Family (dated, ’40s) the homosexual subculture.
[US]R.A. Wilson Playboy’s Book of Forbidden Words 50: The Browning family or the Browning sisters is exclusively homosexual slang for those devoted to this pastime [i.e. anal intercourse].
[US] R.O. Scott Gay Sl. Dict.
brown highway (n.)

the anus.

[US]A. Mariello ‘Dirty Dictionaries’ on Weekly Dig [Internet] He’s as thick as pig shit, but we like him anyway cos he always brings the megg and the morph, and he usually has surprises up his brown highway.
brown pipe (n.)

the anus; thus brown pipe engineer, a male homosexual, a sodomite.

[UK]Guardian Sport 9 Apr. 16: You know [...] He’s a brownpipe engineer.
Urban Dict. [Internet] brownpipe engineer. A plop plumber who always visits via the tradesman’s entrance. Timmy was visited by the Brown Pipe Engineer in the dead of the night.
brown shower (n.) (also b.s., b/s) [on pattern of golden shower n.]

(US) an act of defecation for sexual purposes.

[US]personal ad. Murray & Murrell Lang. Sadomasochism (1989) 45: Desperately need BS, GS, B and D, S and M to satisfy curiosity [...] I’ve tried GS, now want to try B/S.
[US]Intimate 1 in Murray & Murrell Lang. Sadomasochism (1989) 45: I wanted to receive golden and brown showers from females, while being Greeked by males.
[US]C. Fletcher Pure Cop 90: There’s water sports: golden showers, brown showers.
phonesex employees handbook, cited at [Internet] Under no circumstances, are any of the following subjects to be discussed during your fantasy calls [...]. No brown or red showers.
brown sugar (n.)

excrement, thus brown sugar basin, the anus.

[UK]A. Cairene Sixfold Sensuality 14: He said that [...] it was delightful to dip your finger into the basin where the brown sugar was kept and that the brown sugar basin of the Abbé was so nice.
brown trout (n.)

see separate entry.

brown wings (n.) [the ‘wings’ awarded to a qualified fighter pilot]

(orig. Hell’s Angels) hetero- or homosexual anilingus or anal intercourse.

[UK]J. Mandelkau Buttons 101: Most of the Frisco chapter earned their brown wings on this occasion.
[UK]K. Hudson Dict. of Teenage Revolution 29: Brown wings. A decoration awarded to Hell’s Angels on the occasion of their first homosexual intercourse.
[UK]Roger’s Profanisaurus in Viz 87 Dec. n.p.: brown wings n. The honour bestowed on a man after he has completed a successful spell of bowling from the Pavilion end (qv).

In phrases

get a brown dick (n.)

to perform anal intercourse, to sodomize.

[Aus]B. Moore Lex. of Cadet Lang. 60: brown dick, to get a to engage in (usually heterosexual) anal intercourse.

SE in slang uses

Pertaining to currency

In compounds

brown abe (n.) [President Abraham Lincoln’s head is on the cent, a buffalo head is on the nickel]

(US black) a cent; thus brown Abes and buffalo heads, small change, cents and nickels.

[US]D. Burley Orig. Hbk of Harlem Jive 106: I’m strictly 1849—on the gold rush standard, and I ain’t looking for Brown Abes and Buffalo Heads.
[US] ‘Bop Dict.’ Mad mag. July 20: penny – brown abe.
[US]Wentworth & Flexner DAS.
brown-back (n.) [its colour; the brown ten-shilling notes were issued in 1928 and superseded by the 50p piece after decimalization in 1971; from 1940 until 1948 the notes were mauve rather than brown]

a ten-shilling note.

[UK]Partridge DSUE (8th edn).

Pertaining to race

brown Betty (n.) [SE brown plus generic/assonant female name]

(US gay) a black man.

[US] (ref. to mid-1960s) B. Rodgers Queens’ Vernacular 62: a black man [...] brown Betty (mid ’60s).
brown flight (n.)

(N.Z.) the removal from predominantly Maori schools of the children of Pacific islanders, fearful of supposedly low standards.

[NZ]Sun. Star (Auckland) 10 Aug. A1: The poor standard of some schools denied them a fair chance and led to ‘brown flight’ as parents directed their children to high achievement schools, many of them Catholic. Senior lecturer in Maori studies at Auckland University Pat Hohepa rejects Mr Ioane’s comments and suggests Islanders involved in ‘brown flight’ should go home [DNZE].
[US]Brookings Instit. (US) ‘New Zealand’s Bold Experiment’ 9: The system has produced both white and brown flight from unpopular schools.
brown man (n.) [the belief that light skin is best] (W.I.)

a prosperous black man.

[US]M. Beckwith Jamaica Proverbs (1970) 22: Brown man wife eat cockroach in corner.
brown meat (n.) [meat n. (1)]

(US) a black woman considered as a sex object.

[UK]C. Deveureux Venus in India I 91: As I keep a pretty little piece of brown meat, and have my regular greens twice a week, I might not be able to do as good a turn now, as I did then, but I had that woman eight solid times, sir.
[US]H. Rhodes Chosen Few (1966) 95: So Reeves is a brown-meat hunter, huh?
[US]R.C. Cruz Straight Outta Compton 70: What have you got against brown meat?
[UK]C. Miller Salt and Honey 148: Okes said there was nothing like a bit of brown meat.
brown-out (n.)

see separate entry.


see separate entries.

brown sugar (n.)

see separate entries.

brown table (n.) [play on SE round table]

(N.Z.) the Maori Establishment; also attrib.

L. Pihama at [Internet] The hui at Hopuhopu has subsequently been described by the brown table media propaganda machine as the most important hui since Sir Hepi Te Heuheu gathered people together to challenge the crowns unfair and imposed fiscal envelope regime.
Duncan & Cronin at [Internet] The new Maori middle class and Brown Table elements use it as a negotiating ploy and lever to get their hands on the pie which has been created through the exploitation of Maori and pakeha workers.
Browntown (n.)

(US) the black area of a town or city.

[UK]P. Bisking ‘Blacks Britannia’ in Rosenthal New Challenges for Documentary 403: Blacks Britannica opens with the destruction of black ghettos like Moss Side in Manchester and ‘Brown Town’ in London.
[US]B. & R. Schultz It Did Happen Here 199: During the boycott, there were Klan rallies every other day in Browntown.
[US](con. 1964–8) J. Ellroy Cold Six Thousand 170: He cabbed to his car. He cabbed Monarch — the Browntown Express.
[UK] (ref. to 1950s) L. Pizzichini Dead Men’s Wages (2003) 133: The lively presence of Trinidadians, Jamaicans, et al – who were used to spirited congregations on sunlit streets [...] it [i.e. London W11] became known as ‘Brown Town’.
brown velvet (n.)

(N.Z.) a derog. term for a Maori woman, esp. when seen simply as a sex object.

[NZ]F.E. Baume Half Caste 64: [of a ‘white’ half-caste Maori] There’s a new bank-clerk at the New Zealand at Kawhia [...] He’s certain to fall for you Ngaire, though it’s brown velvet he likes.

General uses

brown ankle (n.) [he has crawled so far ‘up the arse’ of the authorities that only his ankles are visible]

(N.Z. prison) a sycophant, a toady.

[NZ]Salient (Wellington) 12 July 6: The Prisoner’s Code: I can’t crawl to screws [...] anyone who does is [sic] a ‘Nark’ [...] or has ‘Brown Ankles’ [DNZE].
[NZ]McGill Reed Dict. of N.Z. Sl. 35: brown ankles Toadying behaviour, suggestive of being up to your bent ankles in your attempt to get up the bum of the person you are trying to impress. From 1970s.
brown critters (n.) (also brown creatures) [joc. mispron.; note milit. use Bill Harris, bilharzia, Corporal Forbes, cholera morbus]


[US]F.M. Whitcher Widow Bedott Papers (1883) 27: Kier, you tie up yer throat, you know you was complainin’ of a soreness [...] it’s dangerous ’t egspose yerself arter singin’ – apt to give a body the browncritters.
[UK]‘Epistle from Joe Muggins’s Dog’ in Era (London) 26 Sept. 4/3: [M]y first and third picks runnin in fust and third, and my kockbote forth, brort on an attack of bronkiteis, or, az ther Yankees say, ther ‘brown creeturs’.
[US]Eve. Star (Wash., DC) 9 June 4/1: Dey get de brown critters in de froat, or cullinary consumshun ob de brownkill chubes ob de lungs.
[US]Adams Sentinel (Gettysburg, PA) 25 Sept. 1/4: There is a cock-eyed Judge [...] in thse parts, who has the brown critters and will die.
[US]Bangor Dly Whig (ME) 2 May 1/5: [advert] Throat, Chest, Diaphragm, and Lungs The Voice. Hoarseness. Bronchitis — Brown critters.
[US]Leavenworth Times (KS) 23 Feb. 4/7: [advert] The old lady who told the doctor she had the ‘Brown Critters’ when she only had the bronchitis.
[US]Pensacola News (FL) 9 Feb. 4/1: Another [London woman] said to an enquiring neighbor thast her ailment was ‘brown critters on the chest’.
[UK]J. Manchon Le Slang.
brown gargle (n.) [gargle n.]

1. (Irish) stout.

[Ire]J.P. Donleavy Ginger Man (1958) 113: Soles of the feet warming deliciously and the brown gargle as they say was putting the mind afloat.

2. (US) badly made or weak coffee.

[US]Republic (Columbia, IN) 29 June 16/1: Real ‘six-shooter’ coffee [...] is supposed to be strong enough to float a shooting iron (Bad coffee [...] is ‘brown gargle’).
brown george (n.) [ety. unknown; cf. naut. jargon negroes’ heads, brown loaves eaten on board ship]

1. bread.

[UK]Urquhart (trans.) Rabelais IV: (Author’s Prologue) The devil of one musty crust of a brown george the poor boys had to scour their grinders with.
[UK]R. Holme Academy of Armory.
[UK]A Society of Ladies Female Tatler (1992) (86) 172: A soldier in his life must have done a duty against his will for a Brown George and a cup of water.
[UK]Grose Classical Dict. of the Vulgar Tongue n.p.: Brown george, an ammunition loaf.
letter in C. Wordsworth Social Life at Eng. Universities (1874) 128: And rolls he cleverly does spread / Or from brown George toasts slice of bread.
[UK]Lex. Balatronicum.
[UK]B.M. Carew Life and Adventures.
[UK]‘Jon Bee’ A Dict. of the Turf, The Ring, The Chase, etc. 18: Brown George, a loaf made of wheat meal, entire.
[UK]Globe (London) 1 May 2/1: Why [...] should a ‘brown George’ be in different places and at different times, a jug (a companion, presumably to the ‘black jacks’), a coarse brown loaf or hard biscuit [...] and a dark brown 18th century wig?
[UK]Yorks. Post 10 Dec. 9/2: Some of the brown bread of Cumberland [...] the variety known as ‘Brown George’, must sure be own cousin to the despised rye bread of Germany.

2. a hard, coarse biscuit.

[UK]Dryden Persius V 215: Cubb’d in a cabin, on a mattrass laid, / On a brown george, with lousy swabbers fed .
[UK]N. Ward A Compleat and Humorous Account of all the Remarkable Clubs (1756) 61: Fit only to nibble upon a Brown-George in some foreign Garrison.
[UK]Hants. Chron. 29 Apr. 4/1: The Soldier’s Litany [...] May we all be deliver’d [...] From contractor’s brown George and a poor landlord’s swipes.
[UK]W.H. Smyth Sailor’s Word-Bk (1991) 139: Brown George. A hard and coarse biscuit.
see sense 1.

3. a brown wig [ref. to King George IV].

[UK]Lex. Balatronicum n.p.: Brown George. [...] A wig without powder; similar to the undress wig worn by his majesty.
[UK]Egan Grose’s Classical Dict. of the Vulgar Tongue.
[UK]R. Barham ‘My Letters’ in Ingoldsby Legends (1847) 311: He looked disdainfully at the wig; it had once been a comely jasey enough, of the colour of over-baked ginger-bread, one of the description commonly known during the latter half of the last century by the name of a ‘brown George’.
[UK]Globe (London) 24 July 2 1: The King [George III] wore a brown wig... known popularly a century ago as brown george [F&H].
see sense 1.

4. an earthenware jug.

[UK]T. Hughes Tom Brown at Oxford (1880) 263: He [...] stood behind his oak, holding his brown George, or huge earthenware receptacle, half full of dirty water.
[UK]Besant & Rice Chap. of the Fleet II iii: His country brother might have been seen at the Crown, over a pipe and a brown george full of strong October [F&H].
[UK]J. Ware Passing Eng. of the Victorian Era 50/1: Brown George (Oxford Un, 1890 on). Large jug holding bath-water, from its colour, and the name of the earthenwarer.
brown gravy (n.)

(UK Und.) melted gold, e.g. golden watch-cases.

[UK]Sporting Mag. Nov. VII 81/1: The old family watch-cases were [...] made into a brown gravy, and the guts are new-christened, and on their voyage to Holland.
brown nose/brown-noser

see separate entries.

brown paint (n.)


[UK]Flash Mirror 20: T. Potts has opened a rummy slush ken at the sign of the Grouts and Coffee-holder, commonly called the Saloopian Hot-Hell, where he sarves [sic] out, out and out Pekoe soup, Congou broth and brown paint.

see separate entries.

brown stuff (n.)

see separate entry.

brown tongue/tonguer

see separate entries.

In phrases

big brown eyes (n.) [heavy-handed euph.]

attractive female breasts.

[US]J.L. Kuethe ‘Johns Hopkins Jargon’ in AS VII:5 329: big brown eyes—breasts.
[US]Monteleone Criminal Sl. (rev. edn).
[US]Wentworth & Flexner DAS 34/1: big brown eyes The female breasts.
[US]Baker et al. CUSS 89: Brown eyes. the female breasts.
[US]E.E. Landy Underground Dict. (1972).
[US]R.A. Wilson Playboy’s Book of Forbidden Words 51: Brown Eyes. Southern slang for the female breasts or nipples.
[US]Maledicta VI:1+2 (Summer/Winter) 131: Big brown eyes or big brownies (boobs, breasts, from the aureoles, tit tips).
[US]P. Dickson Slang! 196: Big brown eyes. Nipples and areolas.
do brown (v.) [cooking imagery]

1. (also beat brown) to surpass, to defeat comprehensively; usu. in the phr. done brown or good and brown.

[UK]John Bon and Mast Person line 162 in Hazlitt Early Popular Poetry IV 16: Ha! Browne Done.
[UK]C. Dibdin Yngr Larks of Logic, Tom and Jerry I i: Tuesday, got clean’d at rough et noir, / And done quite brown.
[UK]Egan Bk of Sports 63: They have lost their money — they are done brown!
[UK]‘Sally Bray’ in Cove in Spedding & Watt (eds) Bawdy Songbooks (2011) IV 223: I’m floor’d, all by the pigman cove, / [...] / I’ve got my ticket, brown I’m done, / For fourteen penn’orth cast.
[Ire] ‘Jerry Duff’ Dublin Comic Songster 334: He’d been stealing of rum, and its strength done him brown.
[US]Whip & Satirist of NY & Brooklyn (NY) 9 Apr. n.p.: We once trusted some young rascals [...] They done us brown.
[UK]‘Epistle from Joe Muggins’s Dog’ in Era (London) 7 Nov. 3/3: One of the bookmen as napt it pretty eavily; they took hall is money at a long shot [...] The haffair was well managed, and the sharpest workmen were done slightly brown.
[Aus]Bell’s Life in Sydney 4 Nov. 2/5: The vengeance of a done-brown publican was at his heels.
[Aus] ‘Squatter Done Brown’ in Heads of the People (Sydney) [lyrics] My friend had seen that I was green, / And therefore did me ‘brown’.
[US]Harper’s Monthly Jan. n.p.: And some of the greenhorns / Resolved upon flight, / And vamosed the ranch in a desperate plight; / While those who succeeded in reaching the town, / Confessed they were done / Most exceedingly brown.
[UK]Mons. Merlin 18 Oct. 6/2: The fast man [...] is never cheated, but [...] though he does not care to confess it, occasionally ‘done brown’.
[Aus]Sth Aus. Register (Adelaide, SA) 17 Dec. 3/2: Mr. Brown, M.P., from whom in the Notes and Queries of next century it will be explained that the slang phrase ‘done brown’ was derived.
[US]Erie Observer (PA) 26 Sept. n.p.: [headline] The Bonny Brown Mare: or the Way an Abolitionist was ‘Done Brown’.
[Aus]J. Armour Diggings, the Bush, and Melbourne 48: He quietly confessed himself ‘done brown’.
[US]Cultivator and Country Gentleman (US) 10 Dec. 799/1: A man is not cheated, but ‘done brown,’ or ‘bamboozled’.
[UK]Leicester Chron. 9 Aug. 12/1: She’s done me brown this time.
[Aus]Bulletin (Sydney) 6 Jun. 11/1: I had ventured into Maitland’s flooded town / With no other fixed intention but to do some stranger brown.
[UK]P. Melon ‘Jack and Jim’ Sporting Times 4 Jan. 3: Here I get my little ‘nivvy’ while the public get done brown.
[Aus]Coburg Leader (Vic.) 13 July 1/6: If you go again take me straight tip for it, you will be done Brown.
[Aus]Bulletin (Sydney) 10 Mar. 14/1: ‘Right!’ said he, ‘my reputation / Is at stake, an’ Mudgee’s too; / An’ Go spare me days, I’ll bust or win that crown! / Fill ’em up, ole public-house, I’ll do ’em brown.’.
[UK]B. Pain De Omnibus 101: Pore ole ’Ankin’s been done by boys – done brarn.
[US]G. Bronson-Howard Enemy to Society 289: ‘I rather fancy we’re done.’ ‘Yes, good and brown,’ echoed Morgenstein. ‘Good and brown.’.
[Aus]Truth (Sydney) 4 May 5/5: Poison of each other easy. / Do each other werry brown.
[Aus]C.E.W. Bean Anzac Book 101: I was under their parapets, resting, / And I knew I had beaten them brown!
[UK]‘Sax Rohmer’ Dope 139: ‘Blimey!’ he said pathetically. ‘’Ere’s a go! I been done brown, guv’nor.’.
[US]A.J. Pollock Und. Speaks 32/2: Done brown, a terrific beating.

2. to do perfectly.

[UK] ‘I Met Her At A Bawdy Ken’ in Frisky Vocalist 30: She was, one time, a rummy swell, / And slap-up was her form, / Until a kid, once, in Pall Mall, / Made her mutton rather warm, She tried old Dr. Eady’s skill. / But oh! he did her brown, / He gave her many a mercury pill, / So now she’s on the town.

3. to satisfy completely.

[US]Boston Blade 10 June n.p.: Elephant, accept our must grateful acknowledgements for that ride over on your bus [...] You did us brown.

4. to take to extremes, to ‘go too far’.

[UK]Hotten Dict. of Modern Sl. etc. 12: ‘Doing it brown,’ prolonging the frolic, or exceeding sober bounds.
[US]C.G. Leland ‘Breitmann in Kansas’ in Hans Breitmann’s Party 21: Hans Breitmann vent to Kansas; / By shings! dey did it prown.
[UK]W. Hooe Sharping London 34: Brown, ‘to do brown,’ to indulge in some unusual extravagance.
[Aus]‘Banjo’ Paterson ‘Boss of the Admiral Lynch’ in Man from Snowy River (1902) 122: The other man fetched his army and proceeded to do things brown.
[Aus]Bulletin (Sydney) 19 Nov. 9/2: The play was certainly bad – / The co. was doing it brown. / Two score were perched in the gods, / And growled it was over the odds.
[UK]R. Cook Crust on its Uppers 179: We seem to have done everything a bit too brown this time.
do it brown (v.) [cooking imagery]

to take to the limit, esp. as in prolonging one’s enjoyment to the point of excess.

[UK] in Old Tom of Oxford Radical Harmonist 20: ‘As much smut as you please, but no blast,’ observed a master sweep. ‘Come, come, you’re doing it too brown,’ said Mr. E. the sausage patriot.
[UK] ‘The Spring Bedstead’ in Knowing Chaunter 17: I lately came to town, / In very decent trimming, / And thought to do it brown, / Among the fancy women.
[UK]‘Epistle from Joe Muggins’s Dog’ in Era (London) 10 Aug. 4/2: Teddy A— waz doin it up amazin brown with a young ladey from Portadowne Faire.
[UK]J.A. Hardwick ‘The Browns Ruralising’ in Prince of Wales’ Own Song Book 41: As Bill was starting out of town, / On Sunday morning, to do it brown.
[US] ‘Blixen’s Campaign Song’ in Farmer of Chappaqua Songster 53: By jinks – he does it Brown.
[UK] in G.D. Atkin House Scraps 73: To send the market either up or down, / In aerated ‘Breads,’ / Or ‘Shores,’ or ‘Yanks,’ or ‘Reds,’ / In slang we really do it rather brown.
[US]D.J. O’Malley ‘The Cowboy Wishes’ in Stock Grower’s Journal 7 Apr. [Internet] I’ll get plumb full of bug juice / And shoot up the whole town / When I start out to have a time, / You-bet I’ll do it brown.
[Aus]Truth (Sydney) 29 Sept. 7/3: Now the bloaks as does the burglin’ / They are fly & does it brown, / In a cottage with a donah, / Somewhere safe about the town.
L. Lawson ‘A Pound a Mile’ in Lonely Crossing and Other Poems n.p.: ‘That’s stiff, by God!’ said Monty Styles, / ‘The doctor does it brown; / There’s sixty-five, I know, good miles / Between us and the town.’.
do up brown (v.) [positive and negative images in overall sense of action + cooking imagery]

1. to beat up thoroughly, also in fig. use, to surpass.

[US]Nat. Police Gaz. (NY) 13 Nov. 2/3: This witness had been ‘cooked’ — had been ‘done up brown’ — by [...] his employer.
[US] in J.P. Quinn Fools of Fortune 532: I did not know a single soul / To ask for hash, or beg a bowl, / And I was done up brown.
[US]Irving Jones ‘Possumala Dance’ [lyrics] She was the toughest gal in town, She could do all the other gals up brown.
[US]J. London Valley of the Moon (1914) 284: We know how to do ’em up brown an’ tie ’em with baby ribbon.
[US]G. Marx letter Apr. in Groucho Letters (1967) 88: Your ears must have been burning because we spoke of you quite often and you can bet your shirt we certainly did you up brown – ha ha ha, you old son of a gun.

2. (also do up blue) to do thoroughly, to perform very successfully.

[UK]W.T. Moncrieff Heart of London II i: He’s been working on the Mace – doing it up very blue, and so they’ve lumbered him for a few moons.
[UK] ‘The Female Tobacconist’ in Rambler’s Flash Songster 14: You ne’er can decline, such a good shagg as mine, / And with it I do it up brown.
[UK] ‘Jack Sheppard & the Carpenter’s Daughter’ in Gentleman’s Spicey Songster 10: In Silks and satins she cut a dash, / In her cly she had always plenty of cash; / And she did it up brown, as long as she could, / But her pride had a fall, be it understood.
[US]Whip & Satirist of NY & Brooklyn (NY) 2 July n.p.: the whip wants to knowIf the silversmith intends to do the thing up brown with the millioner girl .
[UK]Era 10 Aug. 4/2: Teddy A— waz doin it up amazin brown with a young ladey from Portsdowne Faire.
[US]G.W. Harris ‘Epistle from East Tennessee’ Spirit of the Times (N.Y.) XIII Aug. in Inge (1967) 29: Those are places where things are done up brown!
[US] ‘The Famous East Side of Town’ in Rootle-Tum Songster 14: And in verses quite witty / I’ll endeavor to do it up brown.
[US]Tarboro’ Southerner (NC) 28 May 4/2: Whenever he had anything to do he did it up brown.
[US]J. London Road 165: It was up to me to deliver the goods. So I accepted Bob’s advice, and he came along with me to see that I did it up brown.
[US] ‘Bill Peters’ in Lingenfelter et al. Songs of the Amer. West (1968) 60: Bill had a way o’ doing things / And doin’ ’em up brown.
[US]S. Lewis Babbitt (1974) 209: I believe we ought to do the thing up brown and get one of the highest-paid conductors.
[US]I. Bolton Do I Wake or Sleep in N.Y. Mosaic (1999) 67: Hadn’t he perhaps preempted the field – done it up brown, once and for all.
[US]Kerouac letter 15 Jan. in Charters II (1999) 106: I collected 600 dollars [...] and went to Harlem and did it up brown and found a young girl with tight thighs.
[US]T. Berger Reinhart in Love (1963) 177: As long as we’re in Dutch anyway, might as well do it up brown.
[US]Wentworth & Flexner DAS.

3. to deceive, to take in, to surprise.

[US]M. Bodenheim Georgie May 99: There’s one fellah ah’d love to do up brown [...] Blabbing lak blue murdah’n fo’ his measly five.
[US]W.R. Burnett Little Men, Big World 66: ‘They busted up ten thousand dollars’ worth of gambling equipment.’ ‘The Officer did it up brown.’.
on the brown side of

(US) older than.

[US](con. 1946) G. Pelecanos Big Blowdown (1999) 63: Burke himself had seen no ‘action,’ as he was on the brown side of thirty.

In exclamations

brown salve! [ety. unknown]

used as a rejoinder, meaning ‘I understand’; the expression combines a degree of surprise at what has been said with, ultimately, comprehension of what it means.

[UK]Hotten Dict. of Modern Sl. etc. 12: Brown Salve a token of surprise at what is heard, and at the same time means ‘I understand you’.
[UK]Hotten Sl. Dict.