A New and Comprehensive

Vocabulary of the Flash Language


a sixpence
Three and a tanner is three and sixpence, etc.
to flog or scourge
a dice-box
tats and all
an expression used out of flash
In the same manner as the word bender; and has a similar meaning.
to flog or whip


a watch
having , or wearing a watch
thrums ~ thrumbuskins, thrum-mop
three pence
through it ~ through the piece
surmounting trouble , etc
Getting acquitted on an indictment, or surmounting any other trouble or difficulty is called getting through it or thro’ the piece. So, to get a man through it , etc is to extricate him by virtue of your counsel and friendly assistance; sometimes called pulling him through it.
throw off
to talk in a sarcastical strain
So as to convey offensive allusions under the mask of pleasantry, or innocent freedom; but, perhaps, secretly venting that abuse which you would not dare to give in direct terms; this is called throwing off, a practice at which the flash ladies are very expert, when any little jealousies arise among them.
1 To begin to talk flash and speak freely of robberies past, or in contemplation when in company with family people is also termed throwing off meaning to banish all reserve, none but friends being present. 2 It also means to sing when called on by the company present.


a sixpence
a fire , a conflagration
persons whose practice it is to attend fires
For the purpose of plundering the unfortunate sufferers under pretence of assisting them to remove their property.
to give , pay , or bribe
To take the tip is to receive a bribe in any shape. They say of a person who is known to be corruptible that he will stand the tip. The tip  is a term frequently used to signify the money concerned in any dealings or contract existing between parties. Synonymous with the dues.
a young woman or girl


to rob a man on the highway
A person convicted of this offence is said to be done for a toby. The toby applies exclusively to robbing on horseback; the practice of footpad robbery being properly called the spice, though it is common to distinguish the former by the title of high toby, and the latter of low toby.
toby-gill ~ toby-man
properly signifies a highwayman
to walk slowly , either from infirmity or choice
Come , let us toddle is a familiar phrase signifying ‘ Let us be going’.
an infirm elderly person
Or a child not yet perfect in walking.
a coat
To tog is to dress or put on clothes. To supply a person with apparel is also to tog and they are said
to be well tog’d or queerly tog’d according to their appearance.
togd out to the nines
a fanciful phrase
Meaning simply that a person is well or gaily dressed.
togs ~ toggery
wearing apparel in general
Tom Brays bilk
laying out the ace and deuce at cribbage
Tom Brown
twelve in hand , or crib
implements for house-breaking , picklocks , pistols , etc
All are indiscriminately called the tools. A thief convicted on the police act of having illegal instruments or weapons about him is said to be fined for the tools.
to draw the corner or end of an article to the top of a person’s pocket
To top a clout or other article (among pickpockets) is to draw the corner or end of it to the top of a person’s pocket in readiness for shaking or drawing that which is being taken out when a favourable moment occurs. The latter operation is frequently done by a second person.
to the nines ~ to the ruffian
implying an extreme of any kind , or the superlative degree
These terms are synonymous.
look out , watch , observe
1 To tout a person is to watch his motions. 2 To keep tout is to look out or watch, while your pall is effecting any private purpose. 3 A strong tout is a strict observation or eye upon any proceedings or person.
tow ~ towline
to decoy a person by some fictitious story or artifice
To tow a person out – that is from his premises or post – is to decoy him therefrom while your pall seizes the opportunity of his absence to rob the place he has imprudently quitted. See line for more information.


police officers , or runners are properly so called
But it is common to include constables of any description under this title.
see do the trick
a bit of stick , paper , etc
Placed by thieves in a keyhole of or elsewhere about the door of a house which they suspect to be uninhabited. If the trig remains unmoved the following day it is a proof that no person sleeps in the house.
… on which the gang enter it the ensuing night upon the screw, and frequently meet with a good booty, such as beds, carpets, etc., the family being probably out of town.
This operation is called trigging the jigger.
try it on
to make all attempt , or essay , where success is doubtful
So to try it on with a woman signifies to attempt her chastity.


turn up
to desist from or relinquish any particular habit or mode of life
Or the further pursuit of any object you had in view is called turning it up. 1 To turn up a mistress or a male acquaintance is to drop all intercourse or correspondence, with them. 2 To turn up a particular house or shop you have been accustomed to use or deal at, signifies to withdraw your patronage or custom, and visit it no more. 3 To quit a person suddenly in the street, whether secretly or openly, is called turning him up. 4 To turn a man up sweet is to get rid of him effectually but yet to leave him in perfect good humour and free from any suspicion or discontent.
This piece of finesse often affords a field for the exercise of consummate address.
5 As in the case of turning up a flat after having stript him of all his money at play or a shopkeeper whom you have just robbed before his face of something valuable.See upon the pinch or the hoist for more information.
turned up
a person acquitted by a jury ,
Or discharged by a magistrate for want of evidence , etc.
Such a person is said to be turned up.
signifies to turn him or her up
The party so turned up is said to have knap’d turnips.
turn up a trump
to be fortunate in getting a good stake
Or by any other means improving your finances.


any thing accomplished cleverly , or as it should be
Is said to be done in twig, in good twig, or in prime twig. A person well dress’d is said to be in twig. See drop, gammon the twelve, and out of twig.
two poll one
see bridge
tye it up
synonymous with knifeing , stowing , turning it up , or stashing
To tye up any particular custom, practice, or habit, is synonymous with tye it up. To tye it up is a phrase, which, used emphatically, is generally understood to mean a course of depredation and wickedness. See square, and do the trick.