1. a blow, a hit, a punch; also fig.
|Rebel Yell and The Yankee Hurrah (1985) 210: Some of our men have been treated to ‘a clout in the head’ or a ‘belt in the gob’.|
|‘Tim Finigan’s Wake’ in Comic and Sentimental Song Bk 60: But Judy then gave her a belt on the gob.|
|Dundee Eve. Teleg. 8 Apr. 4/3: A young man [...] hit him a belt back of the ear, fetched him another on the nose [etc.].|
|Red Badge of Courage (1964) 91: It’s jest a damn good belt on th’ head, an’ nothin’ more.|
|‘Central Connecticut Word-List’ in DN III:i 3: belt, n. A blow.|
|Everlasting Mercy 33: A madness took me then. I felt / I’d like to hit the world a belt.|
|McClure’s Mag. June 80/1: A girl alone gets many a bitter belt like that, but self-respect makes her hide her sorrow.‘Life on Broadway’ in|
|Iron Man 31: Coke met him and hit him a belt to the body that sent him spinning.|
|‘On Broadway’ 2 Jan. [synd. col.] The American Mercury takes another belt at Karl Marx.|
|Harder They Fall (1971) 87: He could take a good stiff belt without quitting.|
|Lead With Your Left (1958) 37: An unexpected belt in the gut is rugged.|
|Apprentices (1970) I i: I might be injured. I’ve had a belt on the knee.|
|In This Corner (1974) 104: I was nailing him some pretty good belts, left hooks.in Heller|
|Wiseguy (2001) 61: Before the cops arrived I gave Steve a few more belts.|
|(con. 1920s) Legs 67: It gets its name from the belt on the jaw that the mark gets when the con men have him clipped.|
|Paddy Clarke Ha Ha Ha 162: He’d only got a few belts.|
|Grits 269: A complete wanker; needser fuckin belt, ee does.|
|Artefacts of the Dead [ebook] You want a belt, want reminding who you’re dealing with?|
2. a drink of, a swig or swallow of, e.g. a belt of coffee.
|Sketch (London) 22 Feb. 18: ‘I paid the pots (beer) all roun’ an’ gort me belt as one of the “Brums”’.|
|DN V 326: Belt, n. [...] Drink.|
|Let Tomorrow Come 257: The Old Man takes his belt of gin at the end of the day.|
|Runyon on Broadway (1954) 45: Some of the G-guys may be tempted to take a belt or two at the merchandise they confiscate.‘Dream Street Rose’ in|
|Life in a Putty Knife Factory (1948) 78: Mr. Thomson joined us and was assigned to a bottle of scotch, at which he began taking heroic belts.|
|Teen-Age Gangs 184: I had me a few belts early in the evening.|
|Lead With Your Left (1958) 59: What kind of belt would you like, Dave, rye, scotch, gin, vodka, or tequila?|
|How to Talk Dirty 46: A couple of belts lift me out of the dumps.|
|(con. 1960s) Wanderers 128: Terror would growl but admire Perry’s class. Maybe offer him a belt of Tango.|
|Breaking Out 58: Most blokes go into terminal lunacy on the first swig, and he says try another belt.|
|Traveller’s Tool 97: After a couple of belts of Hoffmeister, Renate came into focus.|
|Weir 49: I took a good belt of the bottle, like.|
|Sheepshagger 184: They both leave the shop and open the whisky and take alternate belts at it.|
3. (drugs) the immediate effect of a drug, usu. one that has been injected.
|Opium Addiction in Chicago 196: Belt. The sensation derived from the use of drugs.|
|Lang. Und. (1981) 99/1: belt. 1. The exhilaration experienced when narcotics are taken; euphoria [...] 2. More specifically, the terrific ‘jolt’ which follows a vein-shot when the mass of injected narcotics reaches the heart.‘Lang. of the Und. Narcotic Addict’ Pt 2 in|
|Criminal Sl. (rev. edn).|
|Traffic In Narcotics 303: belt. The exhilaration produced by drugs. Also the effect of drugs on their user.|
|Narcotics Lingo and Lore.|
|ONDCP Street Terms 3: Belt — Effects of drugs.|
4. a thrill.
|Runyon on Broadway (1954) 650: It is really quite remarkable what a belt Hattie gets out of the idea of having this baby.‘Baseball Hattie’ in|
|Legs 27: You’d a got a belt out of the look on the old geezer’s kisser when I walked into his store.|
5. (US) the immediate effect of a drink of alcohol.
|Jr. ‘Sticktown Nocturne’ in Baltimore Sun (MD) 12 Aug. A-1/1: He had whiskey with a side of gin [...] the only thing besides smoke that gave him a belt .|
6. a measure of marijuana or any other drug.
|Neon Wilderness (1986) 21: Why don’t you take a good belt of cocaine and jump out of a twenty-story window?|
|Howl and Other Poems 9: Who got busted in their pubic beards returning through Laredo with a belt of marijuana for New York.‘Howl’|
7. an act of sexual intercourse.
|(con. 1940s–60s) Snatches and Lays 75: He’s looking with lust at the barmaid’s big bum. / He’s waiting to give her a belt up the back / But without a french letter he might get the jack.‘The Pyb with no Beer’ in|
8. (Aus.) a prostitute.
9. a sexually appealing woman.
|DSUE (8th edn) 69/1: Any woman regarded purely as a sex-object.|
(Irish) a reprimand from the Church, spec. from a bishop.
|Studies 253-60 191: The ‘belt of the crozier’ was less feared and both Church and Ireland were changing.|
|Robert Grosseteste 24: He felt bound once or twice on the way through to give the old pagan a belt of the crozier.|
|BS].Dev: Long Fellow, Long Shadow n.p.: The backlash created by this [...] was summed up in another notable ‘belt of the crozier’ directed at the Irish Parliamentary Party by the Bishop of Derry [|
|Ireland in 20th Century 372: This was no mere belt of the crozier. It was an episcopal salvo which would have the ultimate effect of destroying Browne's political career.|
|Death at Christy Burke’s 20: ‘Word went round about the planned speech, and they got a belt of the crozier.’ ‘I take it that means the bishop disapproved,’ Monty interjected. ‘The bishop indeed. The Cardinal Archbishop of Armagh, Primate of All Ireland’.|
to be rejected, to be jilted.
|They Drive by Night 232: You wasn’t no loss when you got the belt.|
(orig. Aus.) to get rid of, to throw out, to dismiss, to reject, to jilt.
|Gilt Kid 48: Perhaps his girl had given him the belt.|
|Bang To Rights 117: There were so many geezers getting the belt all the time. [...] There was one geezer who’s old woman gave him the belt so often that he never knew where he was. [Ibid.] 167: I can always give her the Lonsdale after a week or two.|
|Stand on Me 52: She would have to give her job the belt.|
SE in slang uses
underhand, illegal, cheating.
|Dublin Monitor 7 Feb. 2/4: Mr Fitzgibbon said this prosecution was unfairly conducted — his phrase was, that it was ‘a blow below the belt’.|
|Punch 16 95/1: Punch commenced his attack on the Alderman's smeller, on which he planted several scientific hits, but to no purpose [...] The Alderman retorted by a blow aimed below the belt, which, however, did not tell home.|
|U.S. Review (NY) Aug. 156: If a man is down, [the editor] kicks him. He is never ‘game,’ but always strikes ‘below the belt’.|
|Ordeal of Richard Feverel 297: In the prize-fight of fife, my dear Austin, our Uncle Hippias has been unfairly hit below the belt.|
|Household Jrnl (NY) 1 June 136/2: Though wo cannot now avoid the battle [i.e. the US Civil War], we can agree in making it a fair stand-up fight, with no striking below the belt, or hitting a man after he is down.|
|Dublin Eve. Mail 17 May 2/4: ‘ Liberal Conservative’ strikes below the belt in his strictures upon the ‘the Attorney General and his votes’.|
|Hamlet the Dainty Act III: ham.: Another hit, Laertes, in the stomach (Laertes down) laer.: Then it’s below the belt, you great big lummox.|
|Bath Chron. 12 Aug. 5/2: Mr Cossham complained [...] that the Tory press in their criticisms of him [...] were given to ‘hitting below the belt’.|
|Hants. Teleg. 15 May 6/3: As a politician he rather glories in hitting below the belt.|
|Lichfield Mercury 20 Nov. 5/1: The example set by Sir John Swinburne of hitting his rival [...] ‘below the belt’ — in other words of maligning Mr Mosley’s father — has been copied with a vengeance.|
|Sl. and Its Analogues I 175/1: To strike a man below the belt [...] is akin with ‘To stab a man in the back’.|
|Sheffield Indep. 16 July 4/6: To insinuate that such a man would be swayed in his principles by a few shillings difference [...] is, on the face of it, hitting below the belt.|
|N.Y. Tribune 20 Dec. 48/1: I felt it would be like hitting him below the belt to ask him to the house.|
(orig. RAF) to be quiet; esp. in excl. belt up! shut up!
|Chronicle-Telegram (Elyria, OH) 5 Nov. 21/6: ‘Belt up’ has nothing to do with aviation but is a polite and stern admonition to be quiet.|
|Oh! To be in England (1985) 426: Keep your big mouth shut [...] Belt up.|
|Inside the Und. 163: Jacko tells her to belt up.|
|London Embassy 153: Oh, belt up.|
|Inside 146: At my golf club I could tell a friend to belt up if he started to drone on.|
(Aus.) to be the outstanding example, the ‘champion’.
|Bulletin (Sydney) 31 Oct. 12/4: As a sarcastic cuss, Alderman Bowmer, of West Botony, holds the belt.|
|Bulletin (Sydney) 17 Oct. 16/3: One Joe Hallam, otherwise unknown to fame, holds the belt as pilot of the biggest load ever stacked on a waggon.|
(US gay) to be a promiscuous ‘feminine’ lesbian.
|Homosexual Generation Ch. xvi: To Lower Your Belt: A female homosexual who will go with anyone who asks her as opposed to the ones who try to ‘go steady’ even in prison.|
(US teen) to be exceptional, to ‘take the biscuit’ .
|Argosy 3 326: Uncle Sam has done pretty well with trees, but when it comes to height the British lion takes the belt.|
|‘High School Sl.’ in N.Y. Dispatch 31 May 7: ‘My, though, don’t he think he’s an awful swell?’ ‘Well, I should smile — he takes the belt.’.|
|Caldwell Trib. (ID) 10 Dec. 6/3: Take the Belt. Walter Cleavage has his radish on exhibition [...] The radish measures fifteen and one-half inches.|
|Oasis (Arizola, AZ) 9 Mar. 11/1: Of all the blood suckers that drain the ready money out of a community the mail order houses take the belt.|
(US) to hand over money.
|Checkers 236: He’s likely to ‘unbelt’ right away.|
|Fables in Sl. (1902) 114: I will go to my Wife’s Brother and make a Quick Touch. If he refuses to unbelt I will threaten to tell his Wife of the bracelet he bought in Louisville.|
|Gentleman of Leisure Ch. xxvii: My advice, if asked, would be to unbelt before the shooting begins.|
|Torchy 294: [She] unbelts reckless for the sterling decoration.|
|Old Man Curry 217: It ain’t like him to unbelt for a chunk.‘A Morning Workout’ in|
|Inimitable Jeeves 63: I unbelted the fiver.|
1. in one’s stomach, swallowed.
|Humphrey Clinker (1925) I 76: He was carried home with six good bottles of claret under his belt.|
|Handy Andy 291: The lord chief justice always goes to bed, they say, with six tumblers o’ potteen under his belt.|
|Vanity Fair I 177: Colonel Heavytop took off three bottles of that you sent me down, under his belt the other day.|
|Tom Brown’s School-Days (1896) 73: A capital spinner of a yarn when he had broken the neck of his day’s work, and got plenty of ale under his belt.|
|Tough Trip Through Paradise (1977) 20: There is nothing that will warm the cockles of an Indian’s heart [...] like a couple of shots of good old red-eye whiskey under his belt.|
|Tramp Poems 9: He landed one beneath his belt.‘Jim Marshall’s New Pianner’|
|Artie (1963) 34: Mebbe that’s because he had a few under his belt, but anyway it went with me.|
|Log of a Cowboy 380: Then with a few drinks under my belt and a rim-fire cigar in my mouth.|
|Actors’ Boarding House (1906) 366: Tonopah [...] had acquired a fair amount of the demon rum under his belt.|
|Ruggles of Red Gap (1917) 99: Looked like it would help a lot for them to [...] get a few shots of hooch under their belts.|
|Ulysses 154: After their feed with a good lot of fat soup under their belts.|
|Look Homeward, Angel (1930) 190: He ain’t worth a damn until he’s got a quart of corn liquor under his belt.|
|Tropic of Capricorn (1964) 62: I had to have something under my belt to carry on, and I wanted something nourishing.|
|Malachi Horan Remembers 118: Every man in form with a drink below his belt to keep out the fog.|
|Harder They Fall (1971) 104: It was an effort for him to make polite conversation until he had the first couple under his belt.|
|Jeeves and the Feudal Spirit 12: With two of Jeeves’ specials under my belt.|
|(con. 1930s) Teems of Times and Happy Returns 172: Not yet, sundown, wait’ll I get somethin’ under me belt before I help yeh.|
|Hang On a Minute, Mate (1963) 45: A man working as hard as they were couldn’t be expected to keep going without a feed under his belt.|
|Too Many Crooks Spoil the Caper 60: I already had threequarters of a bottle under my belt.|
|Daily Express 20 May 21: He had quite a few beers under his belt.|
|Sucked In 237: Margot had a glass in her hand and several under her belt.|
2. (also under one’s vest) personally achieved or experienced.
|Actors’ Boarding House (1906) 251: I may have a few balls under my belt, y’know [...] but I’m allus a gen’leman, see?|
|Continental Op (1975) 14: Brisk and fresh with five hours’ sleep under my belt.‘The Tenth Clew’ in|
|Portsmouth Eve. News 10 Dec. 9/4: Hal O’Neil [...] has some meritorious victories under his belt.|
|High Window 208: Then Mr Vannier breezed on home, still rather annoyed [...] but with the satisfaction of a good afternoon’s work under his vest.|
|Show Biz from Vaude to Video 8: Any American actor with a foreign tour under his belt found his stock boosted at home.|
|Apprenticeship of Duddy Kravitz (1964) 221: Three productions under his belt.|
|Jeeves in the Offing 61: With this under her belt, she’ll be able to forbid the banns in no uncertain manner.|
|Addict in the Street (1966) 57: I had six arrests under my belt.|
|Grand Central Winter (1999) 42: He may have a few million under his belt. But he is no snob.|
|Guardian Editor 18 June 14: Six Wimbledons, several Davis Cups and a few Olympics under her belt.|
|Guardian Rev. 21 Apr. 17: With that under his belt he might easily have faded away.|
|Dead Long Enough 285: With these forty winters under my widening belt.|