Victorian Slang of the Week – Snobstick and a lot of Snot

This is a great page of The Slang Dictionary.

First you’ve got Snob-stick – a worker who refuses to join in strikes, and what would now be termed a “scab”.

Then there’s Snooks-and-Walker, a number game I was certainly still playing in the 90s, except it was a drinking game called “Fizz Buzz” (and the entry also says “see Buz” so that variant is also an ancient one).

Then there’s a glorious variety of snot-based words. Snottinger for a pocket handkerchief is a good one. But Snotter or Wipe-Hauler is a peculiar one. In other slang books, these terms are simply referred to as meaning a pickpocket who has a particular fancy for the aforementioned snottingers (it takes all sorts). But here it goes into a little more detail:

Snotter, or Wipe-hauler, a pickpocket who commits great depredations upon gentlemen’s pocket-handkerchiefs.

Well, maybe that just means nicking them. But is that all it means? It sounds strangely fetishistic to me.

Lastly, my fave – Snooze. Obviously this slang stuck around and still means the same thing now, but just look at the vulgar pronunciation of it – Snoodge. Isn’t that wonderful? I’m planning to bring this one back, ideally as Rowan Atkinson would say it.

Anyway, it’s Monday morning and I’ve already pressed snoodge twice. Time to get up….

The Slang Dictionary, 1865

The Slang Dictionary, 1865

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