Green’s Dictionary of Slang

padder n.1

[pad n.1 (1); Rowlands, Martin-Mark-all (1610), differentiates between the types of highway thief: ‘Such as robbe on horse-backe were called high lawyers, and those who robbed on foote...called Padders’ ]

one who robs on the highway, but does not work from a horse.

[UK]Rowlands Martin Mark-all 50: Such as robbe on horse-backe were called high lawyers, and those who robbe on foote, he called Padders.
[UK]Massinger New Way to Pay Old Debts II i: Are they Padders? or Abram-men, that are your consorts?
[UK]Tinker of Turvey Epistle: Be you all then, (my Brother-strowlers, and Padders on the High way,) as Iouiall as I am.
[UK]Head Eng. Rogue I 386: He gives some instructions to his Country-men, first how to know Padders on the Road.
[UK]Dryden Sir Martin Mar-all IV i: There were those that would have made bold with Mistriss Bride; an’ if she had strirr’d out of Doors, there were Whipsters abroad i’faith, Padders of Maiden-heads, that would have truss’d her up, and pick’d the Lock of her Affections.
[UK]‘L.B.’ New Academy of Complements 204: The third was a Padder, that fell to decay; / And when he was living, took to the High-way.
[UK]Proc. Old Bailey 15 Oct. n.p.: One French, a very lusty fellow , and notorious Padder, charged with two Indictments, one for Robbing a Gentel-man of 30 Shillings and other things on the Road , and another for stealing a Horse pleaded guilty to both.
[UK]J. Crowne City Politicks V i: I’ll [...] cut the throats of such rogues as you, who abuse your trade, and like so many padders, make all people deliver their purse that ride in the road of justice.
[UK]Dryden Juvenal III 51: Chas’d from their Woods and Bogs the Padders come To this vast City.
[UK]N. Ward ‘A Walk to Islington’ in Writings (1704) 76: Buttocks and Files, House-Breakers and Padders, / With Prize-Fighters, Sweetners, and such sort of Traders.
[UK]‘Black Procession’ in Farmer Musa Pedestris (1896) 37: The third was a padder, that fell to decay, / Who used for to plunder up on the highway.
[UK]New Canting Dict.
[UK]Poor Robin n.p.: What does that thief Mercury do with Venus? Why even the very same that hectors and padders do with ladies of pleasure [N].
[UK]Scoundrel’s Dict.
[UK]J. Walker Pronouncing Dict. 377/1: Padder, A robber a foot highway man.
[UK]W. Scott Heart of Mid-Lothian (1883) 260: Deil a gude fellow that has been but twelvemonth on the lay, be he ruffler or padder, but he knows my gybe as well as the jark of e’er a queer cuffin in England – and there’s rogue’s Latin for you.
[UK] ‘My Dimber Mot’ in Regular Thing, And No Mistake 66: When Charleys in their wink cribs squat, / And padders rum, are loosed: / When coveys tip a flashy chaunt / Beneath Sir Olive’s glare, / And upright doxies sport and flaunt, / And bargain for their ware.
[UK] ‘Thief-Catcher’s Prophecy’ in W.H. Logan Pedlar’s Pack of Ballads 142: The third was a Padder [...] Who used to plunder upon the Highway.