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Glass Breaker (A)


A wine-bibber. To crack a bottle is to drink up its contents and throw away the empty bottle. A glass breaker is one who drinks what is in the glass, and flings the glass under the table. In the early part of the nineteenth century it was by no means unusual with topers to break off the stand of their wineglass, so that they might not be able to set it down, but were compelled to drink it clean off, without heel-taps.

“Troth, yeʹre nae glass-breaker; and neither am I, unless it be a screed wiʹ the neighbours, or when Iʹm on a ramble.”—Sir W. Scott: Guy Mannering, chap. 45.

We never were glass-breakers in this house, Mr. Lovel.”—Sir W. Scott: The Antiquary, chap. ix.

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Entry taken from Dictionary of Phrase and Fable, edited by the Rev. E. Cobham Brewer, LL.D. and revised in 1895.

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