Green’s Dictionary of Slang

cony n.

also coney, conie, conny
[SE cony, a rabbit]

1. a term of affection for a woman.

[UK]Skelton Elynour Rummynge line 223: He calleth me [...] his conny His swetyng and his honny.
[UK]T. Ingelend Disobedient Child Ciii: My darlynge, my Conye, my Bryde.
[UK]Trial of Treasure E: My mouse my nobs and cony swete My hope and ioye my whole delight.
[UK]Chapman Blind Beggar of Alexandria v: New fashion terms I like not; for a man To call his wife cony, forsooth, and lamb: And pork and mutton, he as well may say.
[UK]Timon in Dyce (1842) II i: My sparrow, my hony, my duck, my cony.
[UK]T. Heywood Rape of Lucrece (1874) 256: My Willy, my Billy, my hony, my cony, / my love, my dove, my deare.
[UK]Rowlands Well met Gossip B1: Tell me Hony, My Loue, my Doue, my Lambe, my prettie Conny.
[UK]Urquhart (trans.) Gargantua and Pantagruel (1927) I Bk II 239: My sugar, my sweeting, my honey, my little coney, — yet it had in circumference full six acres, three rods, five poles, four yards, two feet, one inch and a half of good woodland measure, — my tender peggy, my cod-piece darling.
[UK]Greene & Lodge Lady Alimony V iii: Thou shalt have anything, my Conny Christobel.

2. in sexual senses (cf. cunny n.) [the stereotyped sexuality of rabbits + the pubic hair is supposedly reminiscent of the rabbit’s tail + play on cunt n.].

(a) (also cony-field, cony-skin) the vagina; thus coney-skin merchant, a pimp.

[UK]J. Bale Comedye Concernyng Three Lawes (1550) Ciii: What wylte thou fall to mutton? [...] Rank loue is full of heate where hungrye dogges lacke meate, They wyll durty puddynges eate For want of befe and conye.
[UK]Marlowe Ovid I: The whore stands to be bought for each man’s money, And seeks vile wealth by selling of her coney.
[UK] ‘Merry Discourse btwn a Country Lass & a Young Taylor’ in Chappell Roxburghe Ballads (1880) III 605: And having groped her purse, / and taken all her money, / he grop’d again, and mist, / and caught her by the coney.
[UK]Timon in Dyce (1842) II v: Sophrony Shee, shee alone is tractable / Feele her cony, feele her cony.
[UK]Middleton Chaste Maid in Cheapside IV i: Ay, and glad he may too, ’tis his living; As other trades thrive, butchers by selling flesh, Poulters by venting conies, or the like, coz.
[UK]Jonson Bartholomew Fair II iv: Hear for your love, and buy for your money! / A delicate ballad o’ ‘The Ferret and the Coney’; / ‘A Preservative again the Punk’s Evil’. / Another of ‘Goose-green Starch and the Devil’.
[UK]Massinger Virgin-Martyr II i: A pox on your Christian cockatrices! They cry, like poulterers’ wives, No money, no coney.
[UK]Beaumont & Fletcher Beggar’s Bush III i: Bring out your cony-skins, fair maids, to me, / And hold’em fair that I may see.
[UK]R. Brome Northern Lasse III ii: Oh he’s a Rare Fellow, he’ll tickle a Whore in Coany.
[UK] ‘Rebells Reign’ Rump I 316: Some for the Money, and some for the Conny, And some for they knew not why.
[UK] ‘Of All the Seas’ in Bold (1979) 160: My father gave me land, / My mother gave me money, / And I have spent it every whit / in hunting of a coney.
[UK]New Brawle 9: No, no, no money, no Coney; if they would not be packing, I had a Chamber-pot to wash them out, or a Winchester goose for them to pull.
[UK]Mercurius Fumigosus 58 27 June-4 July 4: But certainly he sow'd but his wilde Oates / If he did plow under her Petticoats. / Her ground indeed a crop might yeeld / 'Cause she oft dungs her Coney-field.
Mennis & Smith et al. ‘In Praise of fat Men’ Wit and Drollery 83: And make men sleepe when they should feast; Leaving untoucht a wholesome cony, Which sweeter is to man then money.
[UK] ‘Panders come Awaye’ in Furnivall & Hales Bishop Percy’s Folio Manuscript of Loose and Humorous Songs (1868) 104: Gardens neere the worss, though shee hauth made her Co[ney] / as common as the Bursse.
[UK]Wandring Whore I 6: No mony, no Cony, a Cunny being the deerest piece of flesh in the whole world.
[UK] ‘The Rebells Reign’ Rump Poems and Songs (1662) I 316: Martin and St. Johns [...] had each a finger i’th’ pye: Some for the Money, and some for the Conny.
[UK] ‘On the Ladies of the Court’ in Wilson Court Satires of the Restoration (1976) 4: For all her pride, Her cony’s wide; She needs not be so haughty.
[UK]‘L.B.’ New Academy of Complements 282: And under the Waste, / The Belly is plac’d, / And under that / I know no what, / But I think they do call it a — Coney.
[UK]News from Morefields n.p.: Unless he had coyn, / He should not take measure of that Coney of mine.
[UK]N. Ward Hudibras Redivivus II:5 24: You co’rdly Cony-groping Imp, / You little Lap-dog of a Pimp.
[UK] in D’Urfey Pills to Purge Melancholy V 303: And for your whole Coney, / Here’s ready Money [...] Bring out your Coney-Skins, / Bring out your Coney-Skins Maids to me.
[UK]Delightful Adventures of Honest John Cole 19: The Night we all spend with the Bunters [...] Drink away and rejoice, / Since for Supper we’re sure of a Coney.
[UK] ‘The Crafty Lass’ Highland Laddie’s Garland 6: Be witness, Gentlemen: / For this pretty Maiden’s Coney, / Which is betwixt her Legs, / I am to give her fifty Pounds.
[UK]‘Capt. Samuel Cock’ Voyage to Lethe [title page] Dedicated to the Right Worshipful adam cock Esq; Of Black-Mary’s-Hole, Coney-Skin Merchant.
[UK]Bridges Homer Travestie (1764) I 83: That our best leaders, men so stout, / For coney-skins should thus fall out. [Ibid.] 151: [note] Paris chose coney-skins to ornament his cloaths with, rather than any other; to shew he liked coneys above all things.
[UK]Gentleman’s Bottle-Companion 11: Yet finer sport he has in view / And hunts the hare and cony too.
[UK]‘The Crafty Maiden’ in Fal-Lal Songster in Spedding & Watt (eds) Bawdy Songbooks (2011) III 21: Two conies we have dined on, and one between her legs. / [...] / ‘My coney it is thin!’ and [he] pulled up her coat and gown.
[UK]T. Rowlandson Pretty Little Games (1872) plate ii: The Country Squire to London came, / And left behind his dogs and game; / Yet finer sport he has in view, / And hunts the hare and coney too.
[UK]Farmer Vocabula Amatoria (1966) 210: Petit lapin. m. The female pudendum; ‘the coney’.
[US]E. Field ‘A French Crisis’ in Facetiae Americana 19: What shall I term that slimy pit-like orifice of sin, / [...] / A- tuppence, twitchet, coney, commodity or nock.

(b) a prostitute.

[UK]R. Armin Valiant Welshman I iv: I haue knowne tall men as Hercules, beene wounded to death, and kicke vp her heeles in an Hospitall, by the byting of a tame Conyes in the City: therefore your wilde Conyes in the Suburbs, that eate of nothing but Mandrakes & Turne-her-vps, mark you me now, by Sheshu, are worse then Dog dayes.
[UK]Dekker Match me in London I i: So, ho, ho, ho, the Conyes vse to feed most i’th night Sir, yet I cannot see my young mistris in our Warren.
[UK]Wasp V ii: I have vncasd, and vnlacd many a fat conye in my tyme but ha not felt a plumper kidny.
[UK]T. Nabbes Microcosmus Act III: [I] dresse Phesant, Partridge and Coney for Lords, but their Ladies many times make the sawce.
[UK]Head Art of Wheedling 254: He [a shop-keeper] takes special care of not letting Coneyes burrough in his Shop-book, knowing ’twill be hard ferretting them out again.
[UK] ‘Frolicksome Bricklayer’ Pepys Ballads (1987) V 166: Like a Tumbler he dally’d with his couple of Coneys, Till it cost him good store of broad peeces or Guineas.
[UK]J. Bell Jr. (ed.) Rhymes of Northern Bards 254: Each cuddles his coney or rabbit, / And pleasantly purrs with puss-cats; / Hence with husky harlots cohabit, / And handle a herdling’s old hats.

(c) (US) attrib. use, pertaining to sexuality or promiscuity.

[US](con. 1918) J. Stevens Mattock 271: Say, gang, you who was there the night of the coney party in Madam Buson’s back room know the guts of Black Jean.

3. (also cunny) a dupe, the victim of a confidence trick, of card-sharping etc.

[UK]Greene Defence of Conny-Catching 5: For if euer I brought my Conny but to crushe a pot of ale with mee, I was as sure of all the Crownes in his purse, as if hee had conueyed them into my proper possession by a deede of gifte.
[UK]Dekker Belman of London F2: He that looseth his money, not a Cozen but a Cony.
[UK]Rowlands Knaves of Spades & Diamonds 108: A man would thinke no Conie could be caught. Who wil be drawne at Dice and Cards to play, With one who he meets a stranger on the way.
[UK]J. Taylor ‘Taylors Revenge’ in Works (1869) II 144: Couldst thou find no other way, / To Sharke, or Shift, or Cony-catch for money, / But to make me thy Asse, thy Foole, thy Cony?
[UK]Black Dog of Newgate in Griffiths (1884) 79: The coney put down £10, every penny of which was to be paid to the man in the moon.
[UK]B.E. Dict. Canting Crew n.p.: Cony A silly Fellow, a meer Cony, very silly indeed.
[UK]Grose Classical Dict. of the Vulgar Tongue.
[UK]Lex. Balatronicum.
[UK] in Egan Bk of Sports 154: He borrow’d a trifle more money, / And ventur’d another bet / Along with blubber-mouth Coney.
[UK] in Punch 25 Apr. 201: The ‘Cony’ is feeble, the Bear’s a rough bore.

In compounds

cony...

see also under cunny and its combs.

cony-burrow (n.) (also coney-burrow, connie-burrow, cony-berry, cony-borough, cunniborough, cunny-borough)

1. a brothel.

[UK]H. Porter Two Angry Women of Abington H3: mrs. bar.: Shees hid in this same Warren, Ile lay money. [...] boy: I have not seen a cunny since I came, Yet at the connyborow we should meete.
[UK] R. Brathwait Strappado 152: [title] Satyre called the Coniborrowe [...] Lasciuious Burrowes, where there nothing are But toused, sullied, and ore iaded ware.
[UK]S. Marmion Holland’s Leaguer IV iii: You are an apple-squire, a rat, and a ferret. I saw you bolt out from that coney-berry.
[UK]Man in the Moon 4 26 Nov. 29: In Moor-fields near the Rose is a new Conney-berry, common to all Warriners, Trappans, Hectors or others, One of the chief Conies belonging to this Cony-berry is called Scotch Nan, if any one would have a game at this Berry, he may be sure to find her ... in the Lodge at Finsbury.

2. the vagina; thus a woman considered as a sexual object; thus cony-burrow ferret, the penis.

[UK]Gesta Grayorum in J. Nichols Progresses and Processions of Queen Elizabeth (1823) III 326: Capringe Kate, of Clarkenwell, claymes to hold of his Highnes five cunyborowes [...] by night-service, to hold play for five Gentlemen Ushers, each of them with a ferret and two tumblers, weekly.
[UK]Dekker Honest Whore Pt 2 (1630) III i: Here, Madam, is the suruey [...] with euery Medow pasture, Plough-land, Cony-borough, Fish-pond, hedge, ditch, and bush that stands in it.
[UK]R. Brathwait Strappado 155: Till then adew: for till that time I sweare it, / Thy Connie-burrow is not for my Ferret.
[UK]Massinger Guardian IV i: Not too high You Ferrit, this is no Cunniborough for you.
[UK]Ford ’Tis Pity She’s a Whore IV iii: Alas, to marry a great woman, being made great in the stock to your hand, is a usual sport in these days; but to know what ferret it was that haunted your cony-berry, there’s the cunning.
[UK]R. Brome Eng. Moor IV iv: nat.: How now, what’s that? Ha’ you a black coney-berry in your house? quic.: Stay Catelina. Nay, she may be seen.
[UK]T. Rawlins Rebellion IV i: If you cann’t, here’s them that can ferrit in a Cunny burow without a provocative, Ile warrant you.
[UK]Urquhart (trans.) Gargantua and Pantagruel (1927) I Bk I 44: And some of the other women would give these names [...] my lusty live sausage, my crimson chitterlin, rump-splitter, shove-devil, down right to it, stiff and stout, in and to, at her again, my coney-borrow-ferret, wily-beguiley, my pretty rogue.
[UK]R. Brathwait Honest Ghost 151: [She] trades with men of choyce esteeme Who ferret-like still sport them in her Burrow.
[UK]Man in the Moon 2 1 Oct. 15: [His] hand accidentally slipping forth of his glove fell unhappily into his neighbours Conny-berry.
[UK]‘The Character of a Mistris’ in Ebsworth Merry Drollery Compleat (1875) 61: My Mistris is a Conny fine, / She’s of the softest skin, / And if you please to open her, / The best part lies within, / And in her Conny-burrow may / Two Tumblers and a Ferret play.
[UK]Merry Maid of Islington 4: This is the Survey, not only of the Mannour it self, but the Meadow, Pasture, Plow land, Coney-burrow, Fish-pond, Hedge, Ditch and Bush that stands in’t.
[UK]A. Radcliffe Ovid Travestie 88: Disdaining my poor little Cunny-borough.
[UK]D’Urfey Love for Money IV iii: This Warren of Conney Burrows [i.e. a girls’ boarding school].
[UK]N. Ward Humours of a Coffee-House in Writings II 315: The Damnd’st Distemper that ever crept into the Cony-burrow of Copulation.
[UK]Farmer & Henley Sl. and Its Analogues.
[UK]Farmer Vocabula Amatoria (1966) 66: Clapier, m. The female pudendum; ‘Cunnyborough’. [Ibid.] 145: Garenne, f. The female pudendum; ‘the cunny-barrow’. [Ibid.] 142: Furon, m. The penis; ‘the Cunnyborough ferret’.
conycatch/-catcher/-catching

see separate entries.

cony-skin (n.)

see sense 3a above.