put lead in one's pencil

Enhance or restore sexual vigor, as in Try one of these hot peppers; that'll put lead in your pencil. This phrase, a euphemism for causing an erection, is considered far more vulgar than the contemporary synonym put hair on one's chest, alluding to a secondary male sex characteristic. [Colloquial; c. 1900]


Nearby words

  1. put into effect,
  2. put into practice,
  3. put into words,
  4. put it mildly,
  5. put it to,
  6. put money on,
  7. put off,
  8. put on,
  9. put on a brave face,
  10. put on a brave front

The American Heritage® Idioms Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company.