1. [19C+] (orig. UK society, also frontage) cheek, audacity.
2. in senses of disguise or subterfuge.
(a) [mid-19C+] one’s external appearance or style, a pose, esp. one that masks one’s failings, whether financial or otherwise.
(b) [mid-19C+] a respectable cover or appearance, esp. as a mask for illegal activities.
(c) [20C+] a person who is employed or a place that is designated to maintain a respectable appearance behind which third parties, e.g. organised criminals, can hide; e.g. the ‘innocent’ manager and/or purported owner of what is in fact a Mafia-controlled casino.
(d) [late 19C+] (UK Und.) anything one needs – smart clothes, a clever line of speech, a personal style, a mental attitude – for the successful promotion of one’s schemes.
3. [late 19C–1970s] (US) a suit.
4. [1900s-1950s] (US Und.) a watch and chain; jewellery.
5. [1910s] (US Und.) a shop window.
6. [1910s] (US Und.) an assistant, usu. for purposes of diversion, in a criminal act.
7. [1920s] (US Und.) a high bail bond.
8. [1940s] in pl., a woman’s breasts.
9. [1950s+] (US black) in pl., clothes.
10. [1980s] (US drugs) a payment for drugs, i.e. not on consignment.
11. [2000s] (US black) in pl., the teeth.
12. see front money n.
[late 19C] to outwit.
[1970s] (US black) to assemble the ‘props’ required to present oneself in a desired manner, usu. expensive material possessions.
[late 19C] (US) to pose as better off than one actually is.
(US Und.) to provide a criminal with a respectable image.
[1930s+] a phr. used of one who is very cheeky, daring or outspoken.
[1980s+] a phr. used of one who is very cheeky, daring or outspoken.
[1950s+] a phr. used of one who is very cheeky, daring or outspoken.
1. extremely cheeky.
2. of a woman, large-breasted.
1. [1950s+] a phr. used of one who is very cheeky, daring or outspoken.
2. [1960s] a phr. used to describe a woman with large breasts.