Green’s Dictionary of Slang

diver n.

[dive v. (1)/SE dive]

1. [16C–early 17C] a small boy who, like Oliver Twist in Charles Dickens’s novel (1837–9), is put in through an otherwise impassably small window; once inside the house, he either lets in the gang or passes booty out to them.

2. [17C–mid-18C] a man in the context of having sexual intercourse.

3. [17C–1940s] (also diving file) a pickpocket.

4. [late 18C–early 19C] one who lives in a cellar.

5. [mid-19C] in pl., the fingers.

6. [1940s+] (US) a beggar who forages in garbage cans for food.