noun, plural hors·es, (especially collectively) horse.
verb (used with object), horsed, hors·ing.
- to make (a person) the target of boisterous jokes.
- to perform boisterously, as a part or a scene in a play.
- to caulk (a vessel) with a hammer.
- to work or haze (a sailor) cruelly or unfairly.
verb (used without object), horsed, hors·ing.
Origin of horse
Examples from the Web for horses
In place of horses, underclassmen would pull the field pieces around the drill ground.
You have to have courage and endurance, like certain kinds of horses [laughs].All Eyes on Anjelica Huston: The Legendary Actress on Love, Abuse, and Jack Nicholson|Alex Suskind|November 10, 2014|DAILY BEAST
But before the national pundits and prognosticators write off the Kentucky contest, they should hold their horses.Those Alison Lundergan Grimes Obituaries Were Premature—She’s Hanging On|Jonathan Miller|October 23, 2014|DAILY BEAST
It surpasses the paintings of horses and rhinoceros from the Chauvet Cave in France by 400 years.
On Sark, horses and carts and feudal traditions still remain strong.
I turned my eyes in the direction I expected to see the horses.Snow Shoes and Canoes|William H. G. Kingston
One mile from New Harmony, we were forced to alight from the carriage, as the horses would not draw us up a steep hill.Travels Through North America, v. 1-2|Berhard Saxe-Weimar Eisenach
Presents of horses, blankets and other valuables were sent to the father of the young woman.Legends of The Kaw|Carrie de Voe
On a peg just inside the door of the ranchman's old wine shed hung one of the horses' unused nosebags.A-Birding on a Bronco|Florence A. Merriam
The two horses, instinctively drawing close together, turned their tails to the driving flakes.Two on the Trail|Hulbert Footner
British Dictionary definitions for horses
- a horse (Equus caballus) that has become feral
- another name for Przewalski's horse
- any other member of the family Equidae, such as the zebra or ass
- (as modifier)the horse family
Word Origin for horse
Word Origin and History for horses (1 of 2)
Old English hors, from Proto-Germanic *hursa- (cf. Old Norse hross, Old Frisian hors, Middle Dutch ors, Dutch ros, Old High German hros, German Roß "horse"), of unknown origin, connected by some with PIE root *kurs-, source of Latin currere "to run" (see current (adj.)).
The usual Indo-European word is represented by Old English eoh, from PIE *ekwo- "horse" (see equine). In many other languages, as in English, this root has been lost in favor of synonyms, probably via superstitious taboo on uttering the name of an animal so important in Indo-European religion.
Used since at least late 14c. of various devices or appliances which suggest a horse (e.g. sawhorse). To ride a horse that was foaled of an acorn (1670s) was through early 19c. a way to say "be hanged from the gallows." Slang for heroin is first attested 1950. Horse latitudes first attested 1777, the name of unknown origin, despite much speculation. Dead horse as a figure for "something that has ceased to be useful" is attested from 1630s.
HORSEGODMOTHER, a large masculine wench; one whom it is difficult to rank among the purest and gentlest portion of the community. [John Trotter Brockett, "A Glossary of North Country Words," 1829]
The horse's mouth as a source of reliable information is from 1921, perhaps originally of racetrack tips, from the fact that a horse's age can be determined accurately by looking at its teeth. To swap horses while crossing the river (a bad idea) is from the American Civil War and appears to have been originally one of Abe Lincoln's stories. Horse and buggy meaning "old-fashioned" is recorded from 1926 slang, originally in reference to a "young lady out of date, with long hair." The proverbial gift horse was earlier given horse:
No man ought to looke a geuen hors in the mouth. [Heywood, 1546]
The modern form perhaps traces to Butler's "Hudibras" (1663), where the tight iambic tetrameter required a shorter phrase:
He ne'er consider'd it, as loth
To look a Gift-horse in the mouth.
Word Origin and History for horses (1 of 2)
Old English horsian "to provide with a horse or horses," from horse (n.). Related: Horsed; horsing. Sense of "to play excessive jokes on" is by 1893, mostly in formation horse around (1928), perhaps from horseplay.
[A] favorite pastime for many men is to "horse" or guy a friend who has shown himself susceptible to ridicule or fun making. "Horsing" is extremely wholesome mental discipline for over sensitive or super-conceited young men. "Horsing" always implies a joke at another's expense. As to how it came into use there is no satisfactory theory to offer. ["Yale Literary Magazine," December 1893]
Idioms and Phrases with horses
In addition to the idioms beginning with horse
- horse around
- horse of a different color, a
- horse sense
- horse trading
- back the wrong horse
- beat a dead horse
- cart before the horse
- change horses in midstream
- charley horse
- dark horse
- eat like a bird (horse)
- from the horse's mouth
- hold one's horses
- if wishes were horses
- look a gift horse in the mouth
- on one's high horse
- war horse
- wild horses couldn't drag
- work like a beaver (horse)
- you can lead a horse to water