Green’s Dictionary of Slang

gob n.1

[orig. northern dial.]

1. (orig. UK Und., also gub) the mouth.

[UK]Christis Kirke Gr. xx: Quhair thair gobbis wer ungeird, Thay gat upon the gammi [OED].
[Scot]Polwart Invectiues Capitane Allexander Montgomeree and Pollvart in Parkinson Poems (2000) IX line 28: Meslie kyt and thou flyt deill dryt in thy gob.
[UK]J. Ray Eng. Words Not Generally Used (1691) 134: A Gob, an open or wide mouth .
[UK]B.E. Dict. Canting Crew n.p.: Gob c. the Mouth.
[UK]New Canting Dict. [as cit. c.1698].
[UK]Bailey Universal Etym. Eng. Dict. [as cit. c.1698].
[UK]Life and Character of Moll King 12: My Blos has nailed me of mine [handkerchief]; but I shall catch her at Maddox’s Gin-Ken, sluicing her Gob.
[UK]Bridges Burlesque Homer (3rd edn) 159: Their wide gobs / Kept roaring like your English mobs.
[Ire] ‘De Night before Larry was Stretch’d’ Irish Songster 4: When one of us ax’d ‘could he die, / Widout having truly repented,’ / Says Larry ‘dat’s all in my eye / And first by de clergy invented / To fatten dir gobs wid a bit’.
[UK]R. Anderson ‘The Village Gang’ Cumberland Ballads (1805) 74: The teyney, greasy wobster; / He’s got a gob frae lug to lug, / And neb like onie lobster.
[UK]Lex. Balatronicum.
[UK]‘One of the Fancy’ Tom Crib’s Memorial to Congress 18: Home hits in the bread-basket, clicks in the gob.
[UK]‘An Amateur’ Real Life in London I 110: Neat milling we had, what with clouts on the nob, / Home hits in the bread-basket, clicks in the gob, / And plumps in the daylights, a prettier treat / Between two Johnny Raws ’tis not easy to meet.
[UK]M. Scott Tom Cringle’s Log (1862) 3: I thrust a half doubled-up muffin into my gob.
[Ire] ‘The Night Before Larry Was Stretched’ in Dublin Comic Songster 185: He’d fence all the togs that he had, / To help a poor friend to the sneezer, / And moisten his gob ’fore he died.
[Aus]Bell’s Life in Sydney 13 Feb. 2/2: He napped the ‘double-shuffle’ on the gob.
[US]N.Y. Clipper n.p.: [H]e gave him one for his gob on the ivories .
[Aus]Bell’s Life in Victoria (Melbourne) 25 July 3/4: Crockett was bleeding slightly from the gob.
[UK]Hotten Dict. of Modern Sl. etc.
[US] ‘Paddy Miles’ My Young Wife and I Songster 60: I flourished my sprig of shillely, / An’ smattered their gobs so genteelly.
[Ire] ‘An Iligant Wake’ Yankee Paddy Comic Song Book 7: Silence! Pat Doyle, I’ll run a sod o’ turf in your gob if you don’ hould your tongue.
[Ire]C.J. Kickham Knocknagow 571: Can’t you talk? [...] Wan ’d think you hadn’t a word in your gob.
[UK]Star (Marion, OH) 21 Mar. 3/3: ‘Gob,’ meaning the mouth is of Northumberland parentage.
[Aus]J. Kirby Old Times in Bush 142: The snake gives a curious sort of turn, and in a jiffy whips the end of his tail into his ‘gob’.
[Ire]J.M. Synge Playboy of the Western World Act II: An ugly young streeler with a murderous gob on him.
[Aus]Truth (Brisbane) 20 Nov. 9/4: A billiard-room he tackled first, and smote upon the gob / The marker.
[UK]Honk! 30 Sept. 1/1: Furst Tiny Wilson ’as er go, / Then Tom Coyle ’e opes ’is gob.
[Ire]Joyce Ulysses 580: He deposited the quid in his gob and, chewing, and with some slow stammers, proceeded.
[UK]‘George Orwell’ Down and Out in Complete Works I (1986) 138: Take that in your dirty gob and suck it.
[UK]C. Day Lewis Otterbury Incident 31: Some of those types who sound as if their gobs were stuffed with cotton wool.
[Aus]Sydney Morn. Herald 29 Jan. 1/1: ‘Ghost, this soup’s ’ot, nearly scalded me gob off’.
[Ire](con. 1940s) B. Behan Borstal Boy 36: I stuck one [i.e. a cigarette] in my gob.
[UK]A. Sillitoe ‘The Disgrace of Jim Scarfedale’ Loneliness of the Long-Distance Runner (1960) 122: His dad had got a gob full of gas in the Great War.
[UK]T. Keyes All Night Stand 19: Shut up or I’ll smack you round the gob with a welly.
[Aus]J. McNeill Old Familiar Juice (1973) 104: stanley lashes out with open hand and hits him a lovely smack in the gob.
[UK]F. Norman Too Many Crooks Spoil the Caper 216: Birds wiv too much rabbit need a gob full of knuckles from time to time.
[Ire]S. McAughtry Belfast 92: I confess to thumping Artie Hughes on the gub.
[Aus]J. Byrell (con. 1959) Up the Cross 31: ‘You rotten fart. I orta smack you fair in the gob’.
[UK]S. Berkoff West in Decadence and Other Plays (1985) 130: Wished I had bit my tongue first / before I let those soppy words crawl out my gob.
[UK]A. Close Official and Doubtful 274: Hunners of fresh fruit and vegetables down your gub.
[Aus]J. Byrell Lairs, Urgers & Coat-Tuggers 193: ‘You rotten fart! I orta smack you fair in the gob’.
[Scot]I. Welsh Filth 235: I force my tongue as far into her gob as I can.
[SA]A. Lovejoy Acid Alex 121: You better keep your fucking gob shut.
[Aus]J.J. DeCeglie Drawing Dead [ebook] He took the weapon out of her gob and told her what to do.
[UK]J. Fagan Panopticon (2013) 255: A humongous spliff clamped in her gob.
[Ire]L. McInerney Glorious Heresies 121: Ryan took the spliff out of the glove compartment and stuck it in his gob.
[Ire]L. McInerney Rules of Revelation 337: ‘He wouldn’t open his gob about you’.

2. (US) a verbose individual.

[US]Kansas Agitator (KS) 18 Aug. 2/1: What is that great gob Funston doing [...] writing bushels of private letters to friends and enemies alike, begging them to help him.
[US]F. Hutchison Philosophy of Johnny the Gent 57: Then Clancy'll put in a gob wit’ the fourteen [dollars], an’ yer friend’ll cover the whole works.

3. (Aus.) a bridle.

[Aus]Crowe Aus. Sl. Dict. 32: Gob, a bridle.

4. verbosity.

[UK]Indep. Rev. 2 Sept. 4: They were also voted the team with most ‘gob’ – Cardiff slang for having a lot to say.

5. the face.

[Ire](con. 1890s) S. O’Casey Pictures in the Hallway 245: Haven’t I seen your gob somewhere before?

6. a blow to the mouth.

[UK]T. Keyes All Night Stand 170: If he came within thumping distance I would stick a gob on him like he never had.

In derivatives

In derivatives

gobful (n.)

(Aus.) a scolding, a telling-off.

[Aus]M. Coleman Fatty 84: ‘I said, ‘Hi,’ and she just reeled off and gave me an absolute gobfull’.
[Aus]R.G. Barrett Wind & Monkey (2013) [ebook] Les had given Pope and Corris a reasonable gobful on the night.

In compounds

gob-box (n.)

the mouth.

J. Forster Goldsmith (5th edn) Bk IV Ch. xiv 414: Shuter protesting in his vehement odd way that ‘the boy could patter,’ and ‘use the gob-box as quick and smart as any of them’ [F&H].
[Scot]W. Scott Bride of Lammermoor 19: ‘Your characters,’ he said, ‘my dear Pattieson, make too much use of the gob box; they patter too much.’.
[US]N.Y. Gazette and General Advertiser 2 Dec. 2/1–2: ‘Turn him out,’ says one. ‘Let him alone,’ says another. ‘Stop up his gob box.’ ‘It takes a man to do that.’ ‘Does it, by G—? then I’m that man.’.
gob-crockery (n.)

(Aus.) false teeth.

[Aus]B. Humphries Traveller’s Tool 107: Some of the dentists who have really cleaned up fitting the teatowel-heads with new sets of top-of-the-range, state-of-the-art gob crockery turn out to be [...] Aussies.
gobdaw (n.)

(Irish) a foolish or pretentious individual.

[Ire]L. McInerney Rules of Revelation 35: [T]he journalist had deduced she’d be a godawful gobdaw.
gob-iron (n.)

a mouth organ; note cit. 2004 may not be completely accurate in its geographical claims.

[UK]Partridge DSUE (8th edn) 479/2: since ca. 1950.
[UK]Guardian 3 May 🌐 As the marijuana fog enveloping the room becomes more dense, the washboard comes out, glasses are tapped, the Scouse accents become more impenetrable. Somebody asks for a ‘gob iron’. It turns out they want a harmonica.
review at 🌐 The Dutch call it the ‘moothy’, the Scotch call it a ‘gob iron’ and Americans call it a ‘harp,’ shortened from ‘French Harp,’ the label on early imports of the instrument.
gob-lock (n.) [SE lock; their inarticulacy]

a fool.

bitchology 🌐 This goblock that is ugly was standing there with his hand on the handle, doing nothing, not opening the door, just looking far away at another ugly goblock I bet.
gob off (v.)

to talk (loudly).

D. Shaw ‘Dead Beard’ at 🌐 It’s a good thing there’s nobody around on the beach to hear her gobbing off because she going to be doing a double matinee performance today.
[UK]Brummagem Dict. 🌐 gob off ph v. to mouth off. ‘’E was gobbin’ off left right and centre’.
gob-organ (n.)

(Aus.) a mouth-organ.

[Aus](con. 1930s) F. Huelin ‘Keep Moving’ 2: He pulled a mouth-organ from his pocket [...] ‘Play a gob-organ?’ he enquired.
gob plonk (n.) [plonk n.2 (1)]


[UK]J. Meades Empty Wigs (t/s) 604: The dripping oyster of mucus struck a pouting transvestite who shrieked: ‘I accept nothing but grand cru jism. This is gob plonk, matey.’.
gobshite (n.)

see separate entry.

gobsmacked (adj.)

see separate entry.

gob-stick (n.)

1. (US) usu. pl., (silver) forks or spoons.

[UK] in G. Parker Life’s Painter.
[UK]H.T. Potter New Dict. Cant (1795).
[UK]G. Andrewes Dict. Sl. and Cant.
[UK]G. Kent Modern Flash Dict.
[UK]Flash Dict. in Sinks of London Laid Open.
[US]Matsell Vocabulum.
[UK]Farmer & Henley Sl. and Its Analogues.
[Aus]Crowe Aus. Sl. Dict. 31: Gob sticks, silver forks or spoons.
[US]S. Clapin New Dict. Americanisms.

2. (orig. US, also gobblestick) a clarinet or fife.

[US]E.P. Norwood Other Side of the Circus 236: We call a clarinet a gob stick.
[US]Indiana Eve. Gazette 20 Mar. 9/2: A clarinet [may be called] a ‘gobblestick.’.
[US]Pic (N.Y.) Mar. 7: licking the licorice stick or gob stick. — playing the clarinet. Also known as an agony pipe or wop stick.
[US]P. Kendall Dict. Service Sl. n.p.: gobstick . . . clarinet, also a licorice stick.

In phrases

blow one’s gob off (v.) (also blow one’s gab off) [gab n.1 ]

to lose one’s temper.

[US](con. 1910s) J.T. Farrell Young Lonigan in Studs Lonigan (1936) 7: When they blew their gobs off, he would tell them [...] he was his own boss. [Ibid.] 61: He wondered if he was blowing his gab off too much.
flop one’s gob (v.)

(Aus.) to chatter, to gossip.

[Aus]Sport (Adelaide) 14 Mar. 4/3: Footman D, the eccentric Flunkey, still continues to flop his gob all over the ship. Look out Fred or someone will be putting a plaster across it.
hold one’s gob (v.) (also hold one’s mug) [mug n.1 (1d)]

to be quiet; often as imper. (cf. stow one’s gab under gab n.2 ).

[UK]‘Henry Green’ Living (1978) 241: I could hold my gob for a day and a year if I so wanted.
[UK]J. Arden Live Like Pigs Act I: Ah, hold your old gob, will you, I’m leading as much of the weight as you.
[US]Cressey & Ward Delinquency, Crime, and Social Process 809: If one ‘knows what’s happening,’ ‘holds one’s mug’ (does not snitch), and does not ‘rank’ people who get loaded, he is accepted.
shut (up) one’s gob (v.) (also shut one’s gab, stop one’s gob) [gab n.1 ]

to be quiet; esp. in imper. shut your gob!

[US]Whip & Satirist of NY & Brooklyn (NY) 16 July n.p.: Now Tom, your gab shut for once.
[UK]Wells Jrnl (UK) 18 July 3/6: Old English words and phrases [...] Hold your gab, shut up your gob.
[UK]Cumberland Pacquet 12 Dec. 4/5: Stop your gob and lay your braggin’.
[Aus]Melbourne Punch ‘City Police Court’ 3 Oct. 234/1: The Mayor. – Oh, I can voker Romany as well as you; so shut your gob, and don’t be kicksy. What’s become of your mollisher?
[Aus]Truth (Sydney) 15 July 8/2: ‘Cabby,’ sez he, ‘here's a sov.; / That’s for drivin’. Here's another / Just to shet yer bloomin’ gob’.
[Aus]Examiner (Launceston, Tas.) 10 Aug. 3/7: It was the ordinary occurrence for a clergyman preaching at St Paul’s Cross to request any noisy member of his congregation to ‘shut up his gob’.
[Ire]C. Mac Garvey Green Line and the Little Yellow Road in Mac Thomáis (1982) 159: Now Jamesy shut your gob, t’was blooming rotten job / To take that barefaced Johnnie for a Cod.
[Aus]Bulletin (Sydney) 28 Oct. 47/2: ‘Shut yer gob!’ retaliated Jones.
[US]G. Storm ‘Bobby Thatcher’ [comic strip] Shut your gab and get over there!
[UK]J. Franklyn This Gutter Life 80: Shut your gob, you daft bastard.
[UK]R. Westerby Wide Boys Never Work (1938) 12: ‘Shut your gob,’ he said. ‘That’s what. You’re looking for trouble again, boy.’.
[Ire]‘Myles na gCopaleen’ Faustus Kelly in ‘Flann O’Brien’ Stories & Plays (1973) 125: You shut your Cork gob and keep it shut!
[UK]R. Llewellyn None But the Lonely Heart 132: Shut your gab [...] I’m talking, see?
[UK](con. 1912) B. Marshall George Brown’s Schooldays 86: Shut your gob, you putrid little ruin.
[UK]A. Sillitoe ‘On Saturday Afternoon’ Loneliness of the Long-Distance Runner (1960) 105: ‘Shut yer gob,’ he said.
[UK]K. Waterhouse There is a Happy Land (1964) 43: You-ou wasn’t with us [...] so shut your gob.
[UK]J.P. Carstairs Concrete Kimono 58: Shut your gob. We’re here.
[UK]S. Berkoff East in Decadence and Other Plays (1985) 67: Shut your gob.
[Ire]H. Leonard A Life (1981) Act II: Shut that gob of yours. Shut it.
[UK]A. Payne ‘Get Daley!’ Minder [TV script] 43: Just shut your gob a minute.
[Aus]J. Clanchy Lie of Land 78: You shut your gab or I’ll blow your balls off.
[UK]K. Lette Llama Parlour 143: This woman should just make like a turtle — shut her gob and pull her head in.
[Ire]J. O’Connor Secret World of the Irish Male (1995) 204: Ah, shut your feckin’ gob, you great eejit.
[UK]N. Griffiths Sheepshagger 54: Shut yewer gobs or I’ll crack yewer heads together.
[NZ]A. Duff Jake’s Long Shadow 183: Shut your effin’ gob!
tip (someone) the gobbox (v.)

to abuse, to tell off.

[Aus]Sydney Herald 18 June 4/2: [M]y eyes how you did tip him the gobbox about imperdence, and when he wouldn't give you the go by, about morals and jistice, and equality, and sich like big words.