Green’s Dictionary of Slang

salt n.3

[SE salt]

1. [late 19C–1900s] money [generic use of salt as a necessity of life, as is money].

2. [20C+] (US black/W.I.) trouble, annoyance, difficulties [the image of oversalting one’s food].

3. [1970s] (drugs) heroin.

SE in slang uses

In compounds

salt bomb (n.)

[2000s] (US black) personal vilification.

salt-box (n.) [? its dimension; the salt tears shed within it]

1. [19C] the condemned cell at Newgate prison.

2. [mid-19C] (UK Und.) an outside flap-pocket of a coat or jacket.

salt cellar (n.)

[late 19C] the cavity above a woman’s collar-bone.

salt eel (n.)

[early 17C–early 19C] a rope’s end, as used for flogging.

salt horse (n.)

[mid-19C–1940s] salt beef.

salt water (n.)

see separate entry.

In phrases

give someone a salt eel for supper (v.)

[early 17C–early 19C] to flog someone.

have a salt eel (for supper) (v.)

[early 17C–early 19C] to be flogged.

row someone up salt creek (v.)

[mid-19C] (US) to cause somene trouble.

salt and pepper

see separate entries.

salt-box cly (n.) [supposed resemblance of the pocket to a SE salt-box, which has a flap]

[early 19C] (UK Und.) the outside coat pocket, with a flap.

suck salt (v.)

[20C+] (W.I.) to suffer hardship.

want salt (v.) [SE salt, that which enhances flavour]

[late 19C] (US) to be a weakling, to be lacking strength of character.