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Hook, Hooks


He is off the hooks. Done for, laid on the shelf, superseded, dead. The bent pieces of iron on which the hinges of a gate rest and turn are called hooks; if a gate is off the hooks it is in a bad way, and cannot readily be opened and shut.

On one’s own hook. On one’s own responsibility or account. An angler’s phrase.

To fish with a golden hook. To give bribes. “Pêcher avec un hameçon dʹor.” Risk a sprat to catch a mackerel. To buy fish, and pretend to have caught it.

With a hook at the end. My assent is given with a hook at the end means not intended to be kept. In some parts of Germany, even to the present day, when a witness swears falsely, he crooks one finger into a sort of hook, and this is supposed sufficient to avert the sin of perjury. It is a crooked oath, or an oath “with a hook at the end.” (See Over the Left.)

N.B. Ringing the bells backwards, and repeating the Lord’s Prayer backwards belong to the same class of superstitions.

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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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Honour (h silent)
Honour and Glory Griffiths
Honour paid to Learning
Honours (h silent)
Honours of War
Hood (Robin)
Hoods (Anglo-Saxon hõd)
Hoodlum (American slang)
Hoodman Blind
Hook, Hooks
Hook it!
Hook or Crook (By)
Hookey Walker
Hooped Pots
Hoopoe (Upupa Epops)
Hope-on-High Bomby