- one of a set of small metal objects having six prongs, used in the game of jacks.
- one of any other set of objects, as pebbles, stones, etc., used in the game of jacks.
- jacks,(used with a singular verb)a children's game in which small metal objects, stones, pebbles, or the like, are tossed, caught, and moved on the ground in a number of prescribed ways, usually while bouncing a rubber ball.
verb (used with object)
verb (used without object)
Origin of jack1
verb (used with object) Slang.
Origin of jack2
Origin of jack3
Origin of jack4
Examples from the Web for jack
Contemporary Examples of jack
Starting in the 1970s, then MPAA president Jack Valenti began what was to become a decades-long fight against the quota system.Propaganda, Protest, and Poisonous Vipers: The Cinema War in Korea
December 30, 2014
Heinold's First and Last Chance, Oakland (Jack London, Taft) You can thank Johnny Heinold for your favorite Jack London book.The Bars That Made America Great
December 28, 2014
But not even the threat of death can suppress the urge to live vicariously through Jack Dawson and James Bond.North Korea’s Secret Movie Bootleggers: How Western Films Make It Into the Hermit Kingdom
December 22, 2014
Like a Jack in the Box just sprung from coiled captivity, he begins rambling excitedly.Rob Marshall Defends ‘Into the Woods’
December 9, 2014
Jack Conte of the band Pomplamoose breaks down what it costs to hit the road.How Much Money Does a Band Really Make on Tour?
December 8, 2014
Historical Examples of jack
Bill was anxious to get back to poor Jack, who he remembered was well-nigh starving.From Powder Monkey to Admiral
With intense relief we saw Jack hauled on board over the stern; but papa was still in the water.A Yacht Voyage Round England
Jack took off his clothes quickly, but though he was weary he could not go to sleep.The Blue Fairy Book
All of which information, useful in a way, no doubt, was accepted by Jack with a smile.The Golf Course Mystery
Chester K. Steele
They had almost reached the middle of it when Jack looked down.
Word Origin for jack
Word Origin for jack
Word Origin for jack
- a remark indicating smug and complacent selfishness
- (as modifier)an ``I'm all right, Jack'' attitude
Word Origin for lynch
masc. proper name, 1218, probably an anglicization of Old French Jacques (which was a diminutive of Latin Jacobus; see Jacob), but in English the name always has been associated with Johan, Jan "John," and some have argued that it is a native formation.
Alliterative coupling of Jack and Jill is from 15c. (Ienken and Iulyan). In England, applied familiarly or contemptuously to anybody (especially one of the lower classes) from late 14c. Later used especially of sailors (1650s; Jack-tar is from 1781). In U.S., as a generic name addressed to an unknown stranger, attested from 1889.
late 14c., jakke "a mechanical device," from the masc. name Jack. The proper name was used in Middle English for "any common fellow" (mid-14c.), and thereafter extended to various appliances replacing servants (1570s). Used generically of men (jack-of-all-trades, 1610s), male animals (1620s, see jackass, jackdaw, etc.), and male personifications (1520s, e.g. Jack Frost, 1826).
As the name of a device for pulling off boots, from 1670s. The jack in a pack of playing cards (1670s) is in German Bauer "peasant." Jack shit "nothing at all" is attested by 1968, U.S. slang. The plant jack-in-the-pulpit is attested by 1837. Jack the Ripper was active in London 1888. The jack of Union Jack is a nautical term for "small flag at the bow of a ship" (1630s).
1860, jack up "hoist, raise," American English, from the noun (see jack (n.)). Figurative sense "increase (prices, etc.)" is 1904, American English. Related: Jacked; jacking. Jack off (v.) "to masturbate" is attested from 1916, probably from jack (n.) in the sense of "penis."
1835, from earlier Lynch law (1811), likely named after William Lynch (1742-1820) of Pittsylvania, Virginia, who c.1780 led a vigilance committee to keep order there during the Revolution. Other sources trace the name to Charles Lynch (1736-1796) a Virginia magistrate who fined and imprisoned Tories in his district c.1782, but the connection to him is less likely. Originally any sort of summary justice, especially by flogging; narrowing of focus to "extralegal execution by hanging" is 20c. Lynch mob is attested from 1838. The surname is perhaps from Irish Loingseach "sailor." Cf. earlier Lydford law, from a place in Dartmoor, England, "where was held a Stannaries Court of summary jurisdiction" [Weekley], hence:
Lydford law: is to hang men first, and indite them afterwards. [Thomas Blount, "Glossographia," 1656]
Related: Lynched; lynching.
In addition to the idioms beginning with jack
- jack off
- jack up
- before you can say Jack Robinson