1. the human foot.
|Merry Wives of Windsor I iii: Trudge, plod away o’ the hoof; seeke shelter, packe.|
|Belman of London B4: They [...] trauell upon the hard hoofe, from village to village for cheese and butter-milk.|
|Laugh and Be Fat 3: I could make neerer proofes, / And not (like you) so farre to gall my hoofes.|
|Scarronides 31: Quoth she, what serves the mat at door, But for to wipe your hoofes before You enter in.|
|‘The Potato Man’ in Musa Pedestris (1896) 55: A pair of large wedges on my hoofs, / And an oil skin round my hat.|
|New Dict. Cant (1795).|
|Dict. Sl. and Cant.|
|Real Life in Ireland 52: One, propelled by the sinnewy hoof of Brian Boru, fell.|
|Sketches in London 213: He again put both his ugly hoofs on it.|
|Swell’s Night Guide 62: Like the rank sweaty hoofs, of a donna who drinks.|
|Paved with Gold 382: The men were silent as ghosts [...] They ‘muffled the hoof’ with list slippers.|
|Unsentimental Journeys 230: P’raps you’ll be so perlite as not to scrounge, and to take your hoofs off my toes.|
|The Tailors’ Strike in Darkey Drama 5 34: dr. s.: Don’t you tink a man’s got feet! zip: I calls dem hoofs!|
|St Louis Globe-Democrat 19 Jan. n.p.: In reference to his feet [...] the loquacious fault-finder thinks he never saw such ‘hoofs,’ and asks if his friend did not have to hire a derrick to hoist his ‘flat-boats’ after they were once constructed.|
|Moko Marionettes 4: Dat hoof awoke me!|
|Bulletin (Sydney) 19 July 9/2: It is the girl with the great, flat, spodgy hoof who makes home happy and contented and clings to a fellow through good and evil fortune.|
|Cape Girardeau Democrat (MO) 5 May 7/2: I looses my balance and goes hoofs over elbows, kerplunk!|
|W.A. Sun. Times (Perth) 16 June 1/1: A North fremantle head of department put his hoof into things in Melbourne recently.|
|Cincinnati Enquirer 18 May in Unforgettable Season (1981) 70: The Captain’s generous hoof, hot from its fast trip around the sacks.|
|Harry The Cockney 247: I’ll hurt you, my son, if you don’t take your wet hoof off my sock!|
|‘Lord Ballyrot in Slangland’ in Tacoma Times (WA) 8 Jan. 4/4: I’ve only got two hoofs, you know and I hate to wear ’em out .|
|Stealing Through Life 180: Stick yore hoof up here.|
|Tropic of Cancer (1963) 127: Here and there a door opens and a hand yanks him, or a hoof pushes him out.|
|Halo in Blood (1988) 21: Now kind of take your goddam hoof to hell off my fender.|
|Tarry Flynn (1965) 7: Mind you don’t put the big awkward hooves on one of them chickens that’s under you.|
|Maori Girl 99: Keep your hoofs to yourself or you’ll cop one smartly.|
|Sneaky People (1980) 217: The whole hoof was red and puffy from its hours of confinement in a shoe one size too small.|
|Blow Your House Down 113: Every time the poor old bitch tried to get out Gloria plants her hoof between the old girl’s tits and shoves her back again.|
|Cartoon City 54: I was dancing earlier. I think someone reefed a lump out of my hoof.|
|Hurricane Punch 9: ‘Watch your hooves.’ The reporter looked down.|
2. a shoe.
|Current Sl. IV:1.|
|Campus Sl. Fall 3: hooves – shoes, boots.|
|Chinese Girl (2001) 12: He took her purple DMs and put them in a Tesco carrier bag on the top shelf [...] She wouldn’t go far without her hooves.|
(Aus.) a boot or shoe.
|Truth (Sydney) 6 Apr. 5/4: When Ada saw the mater stoushed; she picked up a boot and hurled it at Mary’s brain box. Strange to say, the ‘hoof gear’ got right home on the mark, but Mary wasn’t discouraged or scared by any means.|
|Familiar Letters (1737) I 1 May 39: The Secretary was put to beat the hoof himself, and foot it home.|
|Eng. Rogue I 59: Beating the hoof we overtook a Cart.|
|Saints in Uproar in Works (1760) I 78: We beat the hoofs as pilgrims.|
|Plautus’s Amphitryon I i: Well, I’ll beat it back upo’ the Hoof to my Lord.(trans.)|
|New Canting Dict. n.p.: Beat it on the hoof to walk on Foot.|
|New General Eng. Dict. n.p.: To beat the Hoof To walk much up and down, to go a-foot.|
|New General Eng. Dict. (4th edn).|
|Author in Works (1799) I 127: He beats the hoof and you are set astride; / Sirrah! get down, and let your father ride.|
|, ,||Classical Dict. of the Vulgar Tongue.|
|‘Education’ in Attic Misc. 116: For Dick had beat the hoof upon the pad.|
|Works (1794) II 266: So social were we together, And beat the hoof in ev’ry weather.‘Subjects for Painters’|
|Adventures of Gil Blas (1822) III 241: There had I to beat the hoof so long, that I began to suspect our forward sprig of royalty had gone another way.(trans.)|
|F&H].‘The Baronet’s Yacht’ Horace in London 24: When hostile squadrons beat the hoof [|
|‘Sonnets for the Fancy’ Boxiana III 622: [as 1791].|
|‘Dick Hellfinch’ in Rummy Cove’s Delight in Spedding & Watt (eds) Bawdy Songbooks (2011) III 105: [as 1791].|
(US) to dance, to go dancing.
|News-Chron. (Shippenberg, PA) 29 Oct. 4/3: Dragged a hoof myself last night. Had to take a spare tire. She surely is a flat .|
to walk without shoes.
|Dict. of the Flash or Cant Lang. 168: Shallow fellows gad the hoof, and fence their cant of togs.|
|Mysteries of London III 66/1: Tim put on the tats yesterday, and went out a durry-nakin on the shallows, gadding the hoof.|
|Magistrate’s Assistant (3rd edn) 447: Going without shoes, gadding the hoof.|
|gloss. in Occurence Book of York River Lockup in (1999) 38: I am gadding the hoof but quick, be a duffer now on the square.|
|Sl. Dict. (1890).|
to be thrown out, either of a place or of one’s employment.
|Making of an Englishman I 95: If that’s the way they do it in Border I’m not surprised you got the hoof.|
|Finnegans Wake (1959) 156: The loggerthuds of his sakellaries were fond at variance with the synodals of his somepooliom and his babskissed nepogreasymost got the hoof from his philioquus .|
1. in existence.
|Gangs of Chicago (2002) 54: Long John Wentworth — three hundred pounds on the hoof and six feet and seven inches in his socks.|
|(con. 1950s) Valhalla 36: ‘Dollies on the hoof,’ Dallas grinned.|
|You Flash Bastard 20: It’s when you have egos like Jack’s on the hoof that you get a breakdown in law and order.|
|Christine 536: And Mrs Sykes, nearly three hundred pounds on the hoof in a faded housedress.|
|Pugilist at Rest 229: She ain’t seen a real one on the hoof probably for some time.|
|Turning Angel 285: As long as Cyrus White stays a mystery, he’s our aquittal on the hoof.|
2. passing by, casual.
|One-Way Ride 21: He bought his girls by the dozen – in load lots – on the hoof.|
|letter 24 Sept. in Leader (2000) 579: The cabaret led off with the introduction of a pretty girl with just about the gig frig biggest tits I’ve ever seen on the hoof.|
|Burn 104: I don’ wanna get married. I’ll catch mine on the hoof.|
|Guardian Rev. 27 Nov. 8: He made it seem as if the poems were being written on the hoof, that he was thinking slightly uncertainly.|
|Indep. Rev. 14 Jan. 1: A good impression of life caught on the hoof.|
see under shake v.
(US) to run off, to leave quickly.
|TAD Lex. (1993) 84: He’s either full of truth serum or he escaped from some booby hatch — let’s take it on the hoof before he begins to rave.in Zwilling|
(Aus.) to commit oneself completely (if foolishly).
|Aus. Town & Country Jrnl 3 Oct. 19/1: A district in which I am certain of work has more than once caused me to throw hoofs after hide and ‘blue my last tanner’ on a ‘long-sleever’.|