1. (also copper’s nose) a police spy, an informer [20C+ use is US prison].
|Life’s Painter 167: Nose. Snitch.|
|Hamlet Travestie III iv: I’ll expose That dirty scamp; for you am I a Nose.|
|Vocab. of the Flash Lang. in McLachlan (1964) 255: nose a thief who becomes an evidence against his accomplices; also, a person who seeing one or more suspicious characters in the streets, makes a point of watching them in order to frustrate any attempt they may make, or to cause their apprehension; also, a spy or informer of any description.|
|London Guide 79: The mutton-thief turned out to be a Nose to one of these officers.|
|Memoirs (trans. W. McGinn) I 67: He did not feel desirous of being knocked on the head by the prisoners for turning nose.|
|Musa Pedestris (1896) 122: I ne’er was a nose, for the reg’lars came / Whenever a pannie was done.‘The House Breaker’s Song’ in Farmer|
|Ingoldsby Legends (1842) 207: Now Bill [...] Was a ‘regular trump,’ – did not like to ‘turn Nose’.‘The Dead Drummer’ in|
|Last Day of Condemned 38: The nose came prying round about, / To find the cunning cracksman out.(trans.) V. Hugo|
|Flash Dict. in Sinks of London Laid Open.|
|Bell’s Life in Sydney 26 Feb. 1/4: I nose there’s no nose in the case.|
|Revelations of Prison Life I 47: If he persumed to complain [...] He was called ‘a nose,’ and was made to run the gauntlet through a double file of scoundrels armed with short ropes or knotted handkerchiefs.|
|Leaves from Diary of Celebrated Burglar 45/1: Keep your eyes peeled that no one follows you from here, for there might be such a thing as a ‘nose’ on the ‘crib;’ in that case you’ll be ‘dogged’.|
|Dundee Courier (Scot.) 18 Mar, 7/4: A discharged Dartmoor prison officer [...] nicknamed Paddy the Nose because he was constantly prying into convicts’ private letters.|
|Dundee Courier (Scot.) 29 Apr. 7/3: That’s Joe’s work; he blowed on us. I allers know’d he was a ‘nose’.|
|Graphic (London) 30 Jan. 23/1: Constables used to be known as [...] ‘pig’ [but this is] now almost exclusively applied to a man in plain clothes, who acts as an informer and spy for the regular police and who is also [...] known as a ‘nose’.|
|Illus. Police News 9 Nov. 12/3: ‘What am I now, Snapper? Well, I will tell yer. I’m a copper’s nose [...] I’m shadowing a fellar for Sergeant Hicks, the ’tec’.Shadows of the Night in|
|More Educated Evans (1932) 26: ‘Can’t you get it out of your head that I’m a “nose,” Mr. Challoner?’ ‘“Nose” is vulgar – say unofficial detective.’.|
|Prison Community (1940) 334/1: nose, n. A stool pigeon for the police.|
|Red Wind (1946) 28: Some nose puts the but on me tomorrow, next week, what the hell?‘Red Wind’ in|
|Criminal Sl. (rev. edn).|
|Whisper in the Gloom (1959) 23: He was a nark, nose, snout, grass, squeaker, or whatever coarse word is current.|
2. a detective.
|Dick Temple I 221: ‘How would they know that there wasn’t a ‘nose’ – that is, a detective p’liceman – there in disguise.’.|
|Und. and Prison Sl.|
|Criminal Sl. (rev. edn).|
3. (drugs) heroin or cocaine [one can inhale them through the nose].
|ONDCP Street Terms 16: Nose — Cocaine; heroin.|
|Beano Comic Library No. 121 13: I’m bored! I think I’ll have a gnosey around!|
|Weir 56: I was having a good nosy around.|
|Indep. Traveller 11 Sept. 5: Enough time to have a quick nose around the shops and cafes.|
|Base Nature [ebook] They’d [...] have a good nose around and check if anyone was watching.|
(drugs) the butt of a marijuana cigarette.
|Narcotics and Narcotic Addiction (3rd edn).|
|Story Omnibus (1966) 277: ‘This is straight dope — hones’ to Gawd!’ ‘Yeah, straight from the nose-candy!’.‘The big Knockover’|
|Dames Don’t Care (1960) 13: The guy over in the corner with the fancy moustache is runnin’ nose candy.|
|Halo for Satan 24: A deck of nose candy for sale.|
|(con. 1940s) Veterans 45: ‘What’s nose candy?’ I asked Hagen. ‘What Carol’s stuffed with pal. Cocaine.’.|
|Snowblind (1978) 76: Cocaine is called ‘nose-candy’ for a reason.|
|Glitter Dome (1982) 243: A Bull Durham tobacco bag around her neck under her sweat shirt clearly stencilled: ‘Nose Candy!’.|
|You Wouldn’t Be Dead for Quids (1989) 146: ‘You can put your pot way [...] I’ve got something a bit better’ [...] ‘Some nose candy?’ said Jill.|
|Ruthless 238: After all, it is not one or two posse drug dealers who have become so enamoured of their ‘nose candy’ [...] that they have neglected to sell it.|
|Peepshow [ebook] She can get a little narky after too much nose candy.|
|Pound for Pound 257: Add nose candy and carbohydrates and the lack of exercise.|
|‘Middle of Da Summe’ [lyrics] Tryna get that money, zip-locks o’ nose candy.|
|Story Omnibus (1966) 156: Too much heroin broke his nerves [...] Since then Dummy had become an errand boy for whoever would stake him to the price of his necessary nose-candy.‘Dead Yellow Women’|
|Argot: Dict. of Und. Sl.|
|Dan Turner Detective Mar. [Internet] The coroner diagnosed her as a hop-head; reported it as an accidental suicide from an overdose of nose candy.‘Dead Man’s Shakedown’ in|
(drugs) taking narcotic drugs by sniffing them through the nose rather than by injection.
|‘Sl. of Watts’ in Current Sl. III:2.|
|A Second Browser’s Dict. 201: Nose habit. An addicition to cocaine.|
|Official Kresky Homepage [Internet] At the time I had about a grand a day nose habit. So I had to make mine any which I could.|
(drugs) a puff of a marijuana cigarette taken through the nose rather than the lips.
|AS L:1/2 63: nose hit n Method of inhaling smoke from a marijuana cigarette by sniffing the smoke from the ash either to intensify the effect or to inhale the butt of a roach when it is too short to puff.‘Razorback Sl.’ in|
(drugs) cocaine; occas. heroin, morphine.
|Modern Times [film intertitle] Charlie is incarcerated as a suspected communist instigator, and while at a meal the guards come searching for nose-powder.|
|Criminal Sl. (rev. edn).|
|Traffic In Narcotics 313: nose powder. Cocaine, heroin, or morphine, especially in a form for inhaling.|
|Bk of Jargon 338: nose powder: Cocaine.|
|ONDCP Street Terms 16: Nose powder [...] Nose stuff — Cocaine.|
the inhalation of cocaine.
|Layer Cake 44: Pissed and on the powder, having the big nose-up.|
|Kill Your Friends (2009) 73: That’s all he’s got not, isn’t it? The pumping [...] No nose-up, no pills, no frosty beers.|
|Viva La Madness 405: Dougie keeps popping off to the khazi for fat rails [...] While Doug’s having a nose-up Morty drops an FYI on me.|
SE in slang uses
see separate entries.
see separate entries.
(drugs) a large cannabis cigarette rolled with a rosebud-shaped twist of paper on the end.
|‘The Joint Roller’s Handbook’ at Smokinpuppy.com [Internet] The bigger, badder, bastard brother of the Tulip (try saying that after you’ve smoked one). It takes some effort to roll, but a good nose cone is a king size chunk of truly cosmic proportions.|
see separate entries.
see noser n. (2)
1. a blow on the nose.
|Grose’s Classical Dict. of the Vulgar Tongue n.p.: Nosegay. A blow on the nose. Pugilistic cant.|
|Black Beetles in Amber 250: I’ll fight [...] Here’s at you, nosegay!‘Aspirants Three’|
2. (UK prison) tobacco.
|‘Sl.’ in Kray (1989) 62: To touch your nose in prison means you want a cigarette, / Because nosegay in the old days was all the burn you’d get.|
1. (US black) a sexual obsession with some object of desire.
|Current Sl. I:2 4/2: Nose job, n. A planned assault on someone’s emotions.|
|‘Sl. of Watts’ in Current Sl. III:2 36: Nose job, n. In love.|
2. a rhinoplasty, cosmetic plastic surgery on one’s nose.
|Gentleman Junkie (1961) 15: You had the nose-job done to give you such a fine Gentile snout.‘Final Shtick’ in|
|Gumshoe (1998) 22: I’m saving up for caps and a nose job.|
|(con. 1960s) Wanderers 27: ‘Maybe he got a nose job,’ countered Perry. ‘Maybe he got a handjob,’ said Joey.|
|Ladies’ Man (1985) 22: I was born with an Irish pug. It looked too much like a nose job.|
|Sky Ray Lolly 63: At forty odd, the only obvious flaw – / the ripple of a lousy nose-job.|
|High Concept 103: LaRocca told her to get a nose job.|
|Sun. Times Rev. 6 Feb. 3: Euro-trashy children with vast allowances and a sports car or a nose job as a 17th birthday present.|
|Guardian G2 29 Oct. 15: Nose jobs are more popular than liposuction.|
|Brown Bread in Wengen [ebook] I heard someone got stiffed off a nose kiss one time.|
|Torchy 289: I only jabbed my elbows in his ribs when he got to tunin’ up the nose music too loud.|
(US) alcohol; thus paint one’s nose, to (take a) drink.
|Paul Pry 15 Jan. n.p.: Paul Wishes to Know [...] What Jolly Red-nose, alias Honest John, of the Five Bells [...] paid for painting his nose?|
|[||Bell’s Life in Sydney 12 Jan. 3/1: [He] might be well to do in the world, were he not in the habit of exercising his calling as a painter upon his own nose, by repeated doses of ‘blue ruin’].|
|New Colorado 158: We saw [...] a sign, in which the name which I have never encountered elsewhere was given to stimulating beverages. This sign was ‘Nosepaint and Lunch’ .|
|Greenock Advertiser 1 Oct. 4/1: The rancher slapped him on the shoulder and asked him if he would [...] ‘smile,’ [...] ‘test the tipple,’ [...] ‘sample,’ [...] ‘paint your nose’.|
|Wolfville 11: He’s been fretful about his whiskey [...] but beyond pickin’ flaws in his nose-paint thar ain’t much to take hold on about him.|
|Bulletin (Sydney) 7 Apr. 14/4: A hunk of bush phraseology:– ‘Yes, ole Brown was a reg’lar ole coot, a right down pukacker. Yer could ring a tatt into him anytime. He rolled ’is marble in last year – too much nose-paint, yer know.’ Which all meant merely that Brown was shiftless and credulous and had died through excessive drinking.|
|Sun. Times (Perth) 30 July 4/7: Taking a little nosepaint with a client on Tuesday [etc.].|
|Two and Three 17 Jan. [synd. col.] With the old nose rouge listed among the alien enemies [etc].|
|Vacation Trunk 4 Aug. [synd. col.] He never siphoned up the old nose varnish, chewed or smoked.|
|Ulysses 586: In a seedy getup and a strong suspicion of nosepaint about the nasal appendage.|
|Hooch! 6: You’ll buy him a pint of nose paint.|
|On Broadway 23 May [synd. col.] I was loaded with nose-paint caressing a box dat had more locks on it den Hoodeenee!|
|AS XVI:1 Jan. 70/2: liquor [...] nose paint.‘Drunk in Sl.’ in|
|Fond Du Lac (WI) Reporter 13 Oct. 8/3: Saloon keepers called the stuff they pushed across the bars to cowboys whiskey. What the cowboys called it, however, was ‘bug juice,’ ‘gut warmer,’ ‘nose paint,’ ‘red eye,’ ‘rotgut,’ ‘scamper juice,’ ‘snake poison’ or ‘tonsil varnish.’.|
|(con. 1940s–60s) Straight from the Fridge Dad.|
1. a child or person with offensive habits.
|Good Night, Sweet Prince 101: He was waist-deep in small Southern nose-pickers slugging him for his autograph.|
2. a rustic, a peasant.
|Current Sl. IV:2.|
|‘’Arry at a Radical Reception’ in Punch 12 May 219/1: You know Tommy Trotter – pale face, ginger hair, and nose-pinchers.|
1. a handkerchief.
|Clockmaker III 23: Tickle, tickle goes my boscis agin, and I had to stop to sarch my pocket for my nose-rag.|
|Bell’s Life in Sydney 28 June 3/2: [He] swore to having had the pleasure of meeting the prisoner in a boozing ken [...] and deposed, that after losing sight of him he speedily missed his nose rag.|
|Weekly Kansas Chief (Troy, KS) 15 Apr. 2/2: After death the bones, shirts, and nose-rags, etc., of such imposters, retain the same virtues as their owners possessed.|
|Thomas Co. Cat. (Colby, KS) 13 Sept. 1/2: T. is for Thurman with noserag unfurled.|
|‘His Last Ride’ in Roderick (1972) 26: Gimme yer nose-rag.|
|Buln-Buln and the Brolga (1948) [Internet] ‘I’ll cut across to that cloth-shop, an’ git a new nose-rag.’ [...] He tossed his white silk handkerchief to a barefooted guttersnipe.|
|Ulysses 5: Lend us a loan of your noserag to wipe my razor.|
|Call It Sleep (1977) 366: Well, where’s your nose-rag?|
|Augie March (1996) 307: Those bursts of blood on my noserag and shirt.|
|Shiralee 91: He tore off part of an old shirt that he kept for nose-rags.|
2. (US, also nigger nose-rag) a newspaper.
|Fayetteville Observer (TN) 22 Aug. 1/6: The down-town daily nigger nose-rag, sometimes called ‘The Disptach’.|
|Holt. Co. Sentinel (Oregon, MO) 15 May 2/2: The Democratic mushroom [...] is amusing itself by calling the republic Papers of the Northwest ‘nigger nose-rags’.|
|Cairo Bulletin (IL) 27 july 2/2: The Eagle expresses it, ‘by an individual who is endeavouring to keep body and soul together by publishing a one-horse nose rag’.|
|Anderson Intelligencer (SC) 24 June 4/2: We will inform the [...] evader of truth and honesty who runs the little nigger nose-rag [...] that he cannot rain any of his infernal lies down our throat.|
3. an unpopular person.
|(con. 1890s) Pictures in the Hallway 124: You’re a decent lad, a real decent lad [...] not like th’ rest o’ them, nose-rags, toe-rags, flittin’ afther Mr. Anthony here.|
(Aus./US) a propensity for interfering.
|Prison Community (1940) 334/1: nose trouble, n. Prying curiosity.|
|Diamonds Are Forever (1958) 110: They’re suspicious [...] and they get a bad case of nose trouble.|
|Mama Black Widow 123: Let’s go underground [...] in case the dirty old man has a bad case of nose trouble.|
|Big Huey 251: nose trouble (n) Over-inquisitiveness.|
1. a short pipe.
|Western Dly Press 9 Dec. 3/1: Seedy-looking caricatures of ‘swells’ perseveringly smoked blackened ‘nose-warmers’.|
|Morn. Post (London) 5 May 2/5: In a blue jersey and white straw hat, and with the shortest of all short pipes [...]— a regular nose-warmer.|
|Essex Newsman 20 May 3/2: Some of the older women are confirmed smokers, and [...] enjoy the comforts of a ‘nose-warmer’ or short clay pipe.|
|Taranaki Herald (NZ) 12 Oct. 2/9: The swaggie had tobacco and a pipe [...] and endeavoured to light his nose warmer.|
|Exeter & Plymouth Gaz. 15 Oct. 16/2: There were women cigar smokers before Georges Sand, and [...] quaint old irish women who nurses nose-warmers.|
|Love me Sailor 17: The elder held a ‘nose warmer’ between his aged, bleached lips.|
2. (US) consommé in a cup.
|Havana Eve. Telegram 3 Feb. 4/2: The slanguage used by the waiters of Dinty Moore’s restaurant fascinated us the other sundown when, while seated in the rear near the chef, we heard a waiter ask for: ‘Two nose warmers!’ ‘What’s a nose warmer?’ we asked Moore. ‘Consomme in a cup,’ he explained.in|
see nose paint ()
|Harrovians 95: When I was a new man I once shoved twenty nosewipes down my bags.|
1. a handkerchief.
|Clockmaker III 132: I takes out my noshe-viper to blow my noshe.|
|Season Ticket 52: He’d rub his right eye with his nosewiper.|
|Pittsburgh City Paper 29 Aug. [Internet] So where have all the hankies gone? Has the facial tissue finally defeated the hanky as the nose-wiper of choice?|
2. a toady [lit. image, but note ass-wiper n.].
|Living (1978) 212: There was Craigan’s nose-wiper by me, Joe Gates.|
see brandy blossom under blossom n.2
see chew someone’s ear v. (3)
to deny or reject a statement.
|N.Z. Truth 28 Aug. 7/7: Seth gave him the blunt nose on this and, ‘You’re a liar’.|
to be punished, lit. and fig.
|Over the Top 96: When the roll was called we found that we had gotten it in the nose for sixty-three casualties.|
1. (US) to get drunk.
|St Louis Globe-Democrat 19 Jan. n.p.: The party are supposed to be ‘off on a tear,’ and should one of them, at this stage of the game, ‘get it up his nose,’ he is asked by his beloved associate if he has ‘got ’em,’ and is requested to ‘heave her up, old man’.|
2. to lose one’s temper.
|Jeeves in the Offing 48: Wilbert Cream would get it up his nose and start attacking me.|
to curry favour.
|Dict. of Invective (1991) 61: The sycophant may also be said to brown [someone], to get nose with [someone], to be a brownie (also with allusion to a junior Girl Scout), or to receive brownie points.|
(drugs) to sniff cocaine.
|Runnin’ Down Some Lines 239: get (one’s) nose cold Get high from cocaine.|
see have one’s nose open
(US) to get drunk.
|Taking the Count 289: T-bone has to go and get his nose wet and pull a George Washington on me.‘Easy Picking’ in|
(US black) to have another person utterly dependent on oneself, typically in a one-sided love relationship.
|Black Jargon in White America 66: got (your) nose v. 1. to be in love [...] 2. to have someone else under your control through infatuation.|
|Runnin’ Down Some Lines 126: Woman she just got yo’ nose! Like you strung out behind a girl.|
1. to produce sexual excitement in someone.
|Tarhell Slim & Little Ann [song title] You Got My Nose Wide Open.|
|Black Short Story Anthol. (1972) 302: Kinda scared to show too much favoritism, making meaningless chit-chat, you know, like she had both our noses open.‘The Game’ in King|
|Airtight Willie and Me 31: She’s got his nose open wide enough to shove in a coffin.|
|Plainclothes Naked (2002) 109: The girl has his nose open, big-time.|
|Wire ser. 3 ep. 5 [TV script] Now she got our boy with his nose wide open.‘Straight and True’|
2. to be under someone’s control (other than sexually).
|Third Ear n.p.: nose open adv. 1. under someone’s control; strongly influenced by; e.g. He sure got your nose open.|
3. to anger someone.
|Edwardsville Intelligencer (IL) 30 Mar. 2/1: If someone with a shank throws down on a hack there is friction in the joint. It may just bring on a fever, and certainly is going to get the man’s nose open.|
(orig. US) to annoy, to irritate.
|Over the Top 114: The Germans must have known about these orders, for even in the day their transports and troops used to expose themselves as if they were on parade. This sure got up our nose, sitting there day after day, with fine targets in front of us but unable to send over a shell.|
|letter in Things My Mother Never Told Me (2002) 188: My God do they get up my shirt.|
|Diaries 7 June 30: The producer [...] looks as if he’s going to get up everybody’s nose.|
|Hancock’s Half-Hour [radio script] He’s getting up my nose, this bloke.‘The Poetry Society’|
|Dead Butler Caper 121: That’s always got up Clew’s nose.|
|Fixx 305: He really got up John’s nose.|
|Vinnie Got Blown Away 154: Only no point getting up his nose too far though.|
|Observer 16 Jan. 31: It is starting to get up so many peoples’ noses, especially agnostics, humanists and atheists.|
|Queer Street 306: Just then what some bleedin’ dreary-sof Jerry / Jad to say [...] / Got up / My nose an no mistake.‘Vilja de Tanquay Exults’ in|
|Jamaican Gleaner 14 May [Internet] You lot really gets up my nose [...] get a life man.|
to hit, to reprimand; also in fig. use.
|Bulletin (Sydney) 27 Oct. 11/2: The C.E. Australian School of Theology seems to have given Anglican Church dogma one on the nose.|
|Chicago May (1929) 51: The gent tried to attack me, but I gave him one on the nose.|
|Horse’s Mouth (1948) 29: I wanted to give Coker one on the nose.|
to be drunk.
|in Works (1869) III 5: For though he be as drunke as any Rat, / He hath but catcht a Foxe, or whipt the Cat. / Or some say hee’s bewitcht, or scratcht, or blinde, [...] Or seene the Lyons, or his nose is dirty, / Or hee’s pot-shaken, or out, two and thirty.|
|Womens sharpe revenge 175: The first Health is call’d a Whiffe, the second a Slash, the third a Hunch, the fourth Thrust, the fift is call’d Pot-shaken, the sixth is seeing the Lions, the seventh he is scratch’d, the eighth, his Nose is dirty, the ninth he hath whipt the Catt, the tenth, he is fox’d, the eleventh, he is Bewitch’d, the twelfth, he is Blinde, and the thirteenth, and last, he is drunke.|
to arrive at a house in time for a meal.
|Dict. Canting Crew n.p.: He has a good Nose, of a Smell-Feast.|
(Aus./N.Z.) to bear a grudge against someone, to take offence.
|Such is Life 14: I don’t blame ole Martin to have a bit of a nose on me.|
see get one’s face in a knot under face n.
to have one’s nose pulled.
|Classical Dict. of the Vulgar Tongue ms. additions n.p.: Parenthesis. To put a man’s nose into a Parenthesis: to Pull it, the fingers & Thumb answering the Hooks or Crooks.|
|Classical Dict. of the Vulgar Tongue (3rd edn) n.p.: To put a man’s nose into a parenthesis: to pull it, the fingers and thumb answering the hooks or crochets.|
|Lex. Balatronicum [as cit. 1796].|
|Dict. of the Turf, the Ring, the Chase, etc. 132: Parenthesis (a) — it is this thing, itself ( ); and when a man’s nose, or any prominent part of him, may get irrevocably between the thing — he is in a bad way; some few novices have died of it.|
1. to be infatuated with another person.
|On the Road (The Orig. Scroll) (2007) 357: We [...] restrained George from getting his nose opened up in Hot Shoppe on Colfax.|
|Mencken’s Amer. Lang. 745: A cat in hot pursuit of a chick or fox is said to have his nose wide open.|
|Howard Street 64: I think Jimmy strung out behind her. His nose is wide open.|
|Dopefiend (1991) 152: You still got your nose open for that young bitch, ain’t you?|
|Runnin’ Down Some Lines 136: To have your nose wide open [...] picture[s] the individual as little more than an obedient animal.|
|Homeboy 7: Most working girls were like that, their noses open wider than their cunts.|
|Portable Promised Land (ms.) 158: We Words (My Favorite Things) [...] Got me open. Got your back. Baby got back.|
2. (US black / drugs) to be using cocaine.
|Urban Black Argot 140: Have Your Nose Wide Open [...] to be snorting cocaine.|
3. to be excited – in a non-sexual context.
|(con. 1960s) Black Gangster (1991) 162: You really got your nose open over this trip.|
|(con. 1930s) The Avenue, Clayton City (1996) 8: You got your nose wide open an’ your tail straight up.|
4. to be angry.
|On the Road (The Orig. Scroll) (2007) 356: Be a buddy and watch m’nose don’t open up in Denver will you Jack?|
|On The Road (1972) 242: ‘You better take it easy.’ [...] ‘That’s what I intend to do, only trouble is m’nose opens up and I can’t tell what I’m doing.’.|
to act sycophantically, to toady; cit. 1979 also implies brown-nose v.
|(con. 1949) Boomers 152: You got your nose so high up Brass Ball’s ass you can’t see anything but brown.|
|Tip on a Dead Crab 123: He’s got his nose up your ass if you’re a winner.|
|posting 14 Nov. on ‘Ghost Recon Team Ladder’ on Rumble Forums [Internet] Your like the lame retard that follows ranger around and has his nose up his ass. Go get a life and put the bong down you get dumber every damn day. I remember why I left this game now too many tards such as yourselves.|
1. (orig. milit.) to avoid alcohol.
|Passing Eng. of the Victorian Era 162/1: Keep your nose clean (Army). Avoid drink.|
|Fellow Countrymen (1937) 435: If I work along [...] and keep my nose clean, who knows, I might get myself fixed up.‘A Sunday in April’ in|
|Heart is a Lonely Hunter (1986) 27: Buck up and keep your nose clean.|
2. (also keep one’s snout clean) to lead a law-abiding, upright life.
|Wkly Rake (NY) 18 June n.p.: wants to know If it would not be advisable for L—d A— n to keep his nose clean, unless he wants it wiped .|
|Boston Blade 10 June n.p.: You had better keep your nose clean before you open your mouth, old spew gag.|
|Lantern (New Orleans, LA) 13 Oct. 5: There’s worse fellows than you looking for it, and if you only keep your nose clean, we’ll let you have it.|
|Dead End Act I: Well, keep yer nose clean, Gimpty, an’ yer lips buttoned up tight, see?|
|Thieves Like Us (1999) 107: If you keep your nose clean, you can last as long as you want to.|
|Farewell, My Lovely (1949) 76: That’s all [...] And keep your nose clean.|
|Fabulous Clipjoint (1949) 34: As far as I know, his nose is clean.|
|Stockade 61: You keep your nose clean, Meathead.|
|Naked Lunch (1968) 135: Three thousand years in show business and I always keep my nose clean.|
|Rooted IIi i: Don’t get on the hops too much, keep your nose clean and your feet dry and you can’t go wrong.|
|Gonif 50: I kept my nose clean [...] I decided to lay low, do my job and stay in touch with Ward.|
|Animal Factory 6: Keep your nose clean and he can pull you back in a couple of years.|
|Only Fools and Horses [TV script] Use your old filbert, keep your nose clean.‘A Slow Bus to Chingford’|
|Close Pursuit (1988) 140: Make your friends. Keep your nose clean. And report to us regularly about the men and women you work with.|
|The Joy (2015) [ebook] Kept me nose clean these last few months, I have. So they’re letting me out, just for the Christmas.|
|Filth 21: I’ve got to keep my nose clean as there’s this new D.I. post which is coming up soon.|
|Destination: Morgue! (2004) 125: My new PO [...] told me to avoid drugs and keep my snout clean.‘My Life as a Creep’ in|
|Gift 160: Keep out of trouble son. Nose clean.|
|Winter of Frankie Machine (2007) 91: Teddy did a pop for loan-sharking a few years ago, but has kept his nose clean until recently.|
|Running the Books 51: Do your job, stay healthy, and keep your nose clean.|
|Locked Ward (2013) 322: He knew he was on trial so he kept his nose clean.|
3. to resist interfering in things that are not one’s business.
|In the reign of Rothstein 59: If a man minds his own business – ‘keeps his nose clean’ in gangster argot – he can go through life very sweetly.|
|Put on the Spot 18: That shiny-haired Mick wouldn’ keep his nose clean.|
|(con. 1920s) Studs Lonigan (1936) 517: They probably didn’t keep their noses clean.Judgement Day in|
|I’ll Say She Does! (1955) 12: You’re a guy who has gotta reputation for keepin’ his nose clean, but [...] you’re in bad with the big boy.|
|Corruption City 87: Would Whitcomb be interested in a job that paid $20,000 a year for as many years as he kept his nose clean.|
|Long Good-Bye 69: I went back to my desk [...] wondering why [...] Menendez would think it worth his time to come in person to my office and warn me to keep my nose clean.|
|Epitaph for George Dillon Act I: Kindly keep your nose clean in future, will you?|
|False Starts 156: ‘What’s Quentin like?’ I asked. ‘It’s okay, I hear. If you keep your nose clean and mind your own business.’.|
|Spike Island (1981) 79: His turn in the CID could come, if he keeps his nose clean.|
|Spidertown (1994) 169: I tol’ju there were gonna be times when I cun’t save your from shit. Thass why you gotta keep yuh nose clean.|
|A Few Kind Words and a Loaded Gun 153: Keep your nose clean and stay out of trouble.|
4. of a criminal, to avoid being implicated in something illegal.
|Dock Walloper 2: clews to the butler vernacular [...] keep your nose clean—be careful.|
|Spanish Blood (1946) 107: The guy wouldn’t uncover hisself for that kind of money. [...] He’d dump the marbles and keep his nose clean.‘Pearls Are a Nuisance’ in|
|Man with the Golden Arm 322: You can see the spot I was in [...] just to keep my nose clean.|
|Rap Sheet 199: I was called before the deputy [...] I said I’d been keeping my nose pretty clean, doing all right, just getting along.|
|(con. 1940s) Borstal Boy 44: You won’t do all that [i.e. jail time] if you keep your nose clean.|
|Big Rumble 6: Just keep your nose clean, that’s all I’m askin’ ya both.|
|Jones Men 156: To keep your nose clean isn’t going to be that easy.|
|Fixx 97: By concentrating on the administrative side, I kept my nose clean.|
|(con. 1960s) Blood Brothers 161: After locking me in the cell, he smiled and said, ‘Things get a lot worse around here if you don’t keep your nose clean, Yank’.|
|Outlaws (ms.) 11: Just keep your noses wiped and stay out of trouble.|
(US) to toady to.
|Pimp 115: Don’t get cute. Keep your nose square in his ass.|
|posting about article by Therese Droste ‘Do It Your Way’ on Monster Admin/Support Forum 8 Nov. [Internet] The reason the brownnoser’s ‘nose’ is always brown is for the simple fact they ‘keep their nose’ so far up managements ass, they tend to eat, smell and live the BS they produce.|
to miss out a person during the passing of a bottle around the table.
|Dict. Canting Crew n.p.: You make a Bridge of his Nose, when you pass your next Neighbor in Drinking, or one is preferr’d over another’s Head.|
|Polite Conversation 60: Pray, my Lord, don’t make a Bridge of my Nose.|
|Proverbs (4th edn) in Bohn (1855) 151: To make a bridge of one’s nose, i.e. To intercept one’s trencher, cup, or the like.|
|Classical Dict. of the Vulgar Tongue ms. additions n.p.: To Make a bridge of any one’s Nose; to push the Bottle past him, so as to deprive him of his turn of filling in his Turn; to pass one over.|
|,||Classical Dict. of the Vulgar Tongue (2nd, 3rd edn) n.p.: To make a bridge of any one’s nose; to push the bottle past him, so as to deprive him of his turn of filling his glass; to pass one over.|
|Grose’s Classical Dict. of the Vulgar Tongue.|
to thumb one’s nose.
|Pall Mall Gaz. 8 Nov. 2/3: The cheeky boy, with the natural ingratitude of youth, often makes a long nose at his master [...] [F&H].|
|(con. 1900s–10s) 42nd Parallel in USA (1966) 84: Friday pushed his faced through the crack in the door and made a long nose.|
|Lore and Lang. of Schoolchildren (1977) 340: That peculiar form of recognition variously known as ‘the five-finger salute’, nose-thumbing’, ‘making a long nose’ or ‘long bacon’.|
to cheat, to deceive.
|Israels Fast sig. B4: betraid into the pawes of the Beast, cheated & nosewiped euen to their face .|
see under brown nose n.
|Judge (NY) 91 July-Dec. 31: On His Nose - see Fried.|
1. (UK Und.) on the watch, on the lookout; thus phr. beaks (out) on the nose, magistrates peforming their evening rounds.
|Life in London (1869) 322: Their ogles were on the roll, under an apprehension that the beaks were out on the nose.|
|Mr Mathews’ Comic Annual 23: Why there can’t be any body on the nose, I should think? but I heard a noise.|
|Modern Flash Dict. 5: Beaks out on the nose, magistrates out on a search night.|
|Poverty, Mendicity and Crime; Report 106: At that early hour they considered the officers were not on the scent, ‘upon the nose,’ as they called it.|
|Flash Dict. in Sinks of London Laid Open [as cit. 1835].|
|New and Improved Flash Dict. n.p.: Beaks on the nose magistrates on their rounds on a search night.|
|, ,||Sl. Dict.|
2. (gambling) describing a wager placed on a horse to win, e.g. £5 on the nose.
|Big Town 156: I’m sorry we didn’t play her on the nose, but I was advised to play safe.|
|Dark Hazard (1934) 7: Give Maxie five hundred to-morrow morning [...] On the nose.|
|Pat Hobby Stories (1967) 142: He had ten bucks on the nose.‘Fun in an Artist’s Studio’ in|
|Naked Lunch (1968) 150: The whole two thousand at once on the the nose.|
|Lairs, Urgers & Coat-Tuggers 267: I hung onto this score note which I ended up plonking on the nose of this dead-set top-oil cert .|
|Chopper 4 157: I told this la de da old toff to whack all his dough on Leilani on the nose.|
|Artefacts of the Dead [ebook] Put that on and give me another two hundred on the nose.|
3. describing a reward offered for information leading to the capture of a criminal.
|Decade 317: Twenty grand on his nose if you tip your mitt to the dicks – but its death kale.|
4. in fig. use of sense 5, unpleasant, and thus offensive morally or aesthetically as well as to the nostrils.
|Newcastle Sun (NSW) 13 Mov. 4/3: We thought after the deplorably bad taste of Old Rowley last week, that the horses, for the time being, were a bit ‘on the nose’.|
|Popular Dict. Aus. Sl. 49: Nose, on the: (said of things) disliked, offensive.|
|We Were the Rats 5: ‘Jerry tells me they’re on the nose.’ [...] ‘Yeah. Just a coupler ———.’ He used a word that means that they titillated the passions and then refused to satisfy them.|
|Shiralee 148: Terrible, isn’t it? On the nose.|
|Holy Smoke 83: And that’s a bit on the nose as far as Joshua’s concerned.|
|(con. 1930s) Men of the Milford Road 84: I thought this was a bit ‘on the nose’.|
|Traveller’s Tool 25: There’s nothing worse, let’s face it, than a woman on the nose when you get down to it.|
|Llama Parlour 144: I’m just glad you’re sitting downwind [...] ’Cause your politics are all on the nose, Mom, j’know that. They stink.|
|Big Ask 26: Time like this, the Labor Party on the nose with the punters, we should all be pulling together.|
|Truth 350: Karen Mellish’s charges could be the fatal blow to a government seriously on the nose with voters.|
|Whiplash River [ebook] ‘A little on the nose for a place on the beach, don’t you think?’.|
|Old Scores [ebook] As a result, using mules was on the nose, for the time being. The arrest of Clifford and Welsh had seen to that.|
5. (Aus./N.Z.) foul-smelling.
|‘Down in the Dark Alley’ in Mess Songs & Rhymes of RAAF 1939-45 [Internet] Pink. God! how that lass did stink! / [...] / Rose. God she was on the nose!|
|Bobbin Up (1961) 59: ‘Jeez it stinks in here Ken.’ ‘Yeah, it’s on the nose all right.’.|
|Stag Party 48: It’s a bit on the nose, isn’t it?|
|(con. 1930s) ‘Keep Moving’ 20: Without warning he removed his boots and the narrow strips of rag wrapped round his feet. ‘By cripes! They’re a bit on the nose,’ said my mate [...] ‘What’s the Prince Albert’s for? have you got corns?’.|
|G’DAY 70: LES. Jeez, somethin's on the nose/ SHANE. It’s aftershave.|
|Brush-Off (1998) 86: An overfilled garbage bag, a little on the nose in the heat.|
|Turning (2005) 11: I know it’s hot and she’s had a tough day but she’s on the nose [...] there’s a blast of BO that could kill a wildebeest.‘Big World’ in|
6. accurate, to the point.
|Rough Trade [ebook] Because her assumption was straight-up right on the nose.|
(US black) to provoke sexual excitement in someone.
|Pimp 75: One of them tight pussies opened his nose wide enough to drive a freight train through.|
|Airtight Willie and Me 97: She opened up Red’s nose as none of his whores ever had.|
to surpass, to outdo.
|Memoirs of a Griffin II 79: Indeed he once or twice, to borrow a not very delicate sporting phrase, ‘wiped my nose’.|