Green’s Dictionary of Slang

case n.1

1. [17C; mid-19C+] a situation.

2. as personifications.

(a) [mid-19C] (US) a doomed person.

(b) [mid-19C+] a ne’er-do-well, a dubious character.

(c) [mid-19C+] a person, irrespective of status, morals, etc, although the usage, usu. denoted by an adj., tends be dismissive.

(d) [mid-19C+] (orig. US) an eccentric or otherwise exceptional person.

(e) [1980s] (Aus.) a nymphomaniac.

3. [mid-19C+] an infatuation, a love affair; thus an adulterous affair.

4. [late 19C+] in comb. with a n., implying an example of a given state; usu. as case of the...; see also phrs. below.

5. [20C+] (US Und.) the charge or crime for which one is tried and poss. convicted.

6. [1990s+] (US prison/Und.) punishment for breaking prison rules; arrest and charges.

In phrases

bad case of the tins (n.) [ety. unknown; ? tin-can v.] (US gay)

1. [1930s+] a state of fear, esp. of being raped.

2. [1980s+] (temporary) impotence.

case of the brokes (n.) [broke adj.1 ]

[1920s] a state of being penniless.

case of the reds (n.)

see under red n.

get off someone’s case (v.)

[1950s+] (orig. US black) to stop harassing, to stop annoying; esp. as imper.

get on someone’s case (v.) (also be on someone’s case, get down on someone’s case, stay on someone’s case)

[1950s+] (orig. US black) to pester, to harass.

get on the case (v.)

[1970s+] to get down to work, to occupy oneself with what needs to be done.

have cases on (v.)

[mid–19C] (US) to disparage, to harass.

on someone’s case [1960s+] (orig. US)

1. harassing verbally, persecuting.

2. pursuing, following; sexually attracted towards.

on the case

[1950s+] (orig. US) whether in one’s personal or professional life, working or acting efficiently, controlling a situation, ‘taking care of business’.