Dictionary: TOP – TOQ


• TOP
n. 1. c1205 obs. exc. Sc. – the hair on the summit or crown of the head; the hair of the head  
n. 2. a1225 obs. exc. Sc. & N. Eng. dial. – the crest or ‘topping’ of a bird; the forelock of a horse, etc.  
n. 3. 1440-1 obs. – a basket, as a measure of grapes or figs
n. 4. 1593 – the best; the most superior
n. 5. 1612 – the head of a clan, family, etc.  
n. 6. c1616 obs. – a sound sleeper
n. 7. 1624 obs. – the head or source of a river
n. 8. 1887 – members of the highest social class  
n. 9. 1898 US military sl. – a top sergeant  
n. 10. 1965 Amer. dial. – the green leaves at the top of a strawberry  
n. 11. 20C sl. – a circus tent
prep. 1340 obs. rare – above, beyond, more than
vb. 1. c1305 obs. – to fight, to struggle, to strive
vb. 2. c1330 obs. – to cut off the hair of the head
vb. 3. 1586 – to surpass; to better
vb. 4. 1594 obs. – to snuff a candle
vb. 5. 1598 obs. – to tope, to drink copiously and habitually
vb. 6. 1604 obs. rare – to ‘cover’, to copulate with
vb. 7. 1641 obs. rare – to oppose
vb. 8. 1662 obs. exc. Eng. dial. – to tip or throw over; to overturn, to upset, to topple  
vb. 9. 1664 obs. – to practice trickery; to impose upon
vb. 10. a1700 obs. – to cheat, to trick a person
vb. 11. a1700 obs. – to insult  
vb. 12. 1718 sl. – to execute by hanging; to kill; to commit suicide  
vb. 13. 1965 Amer. dial. – to remove the remove the green leaves at the top of a strawberry  

• TOP AND TAIL
adv. from head to foot, from beginning to end; all over, everywhere …c1440
n. the whole, everything without exception, every part …1303
vb. to wash a baby’s face and bottom without immersion in a bath

• TOPARCH
n. the ruler or prince of a small district, city, or petty state; a petty ‘king’ …1640

• TOPARCHY
n. the small district or territory under the rule of a toparch …1601

• TO-PART
vb. 1. to depart …c1275 obs.
vb. 2. to separate, to divide, to distribute …c1325 obs.

• TOPAZION
n. an early name for topaz …c1305 obs.

• TOP BANANA
n. 1. the leader, boss; the person in charge …1974 sl., chiefly US
n. 2. the leading comedian in vaudeville, burlesque, etc. …20C sl. chiefly US

• TOP BRASS
n. applied to officers of high rank in the armed services; hence, any group of people of high rank …1949 sl., orig. US 

• TOP CAT
n. the most powerful or important person …20C colloq.

• TOP COTTON
vb. to be very excited or agitated; to go very fast …1942 Amer. dial.

• TOP COW
n. a bull …Bk1942 Amer. Western sl.

• TOP CUTTER
n. a first sergeant …1898 US military sl.

• TOP DOG
n. the winner, leader, or dominant person; the person in charge …1900

• TOP DOLLAR
n. 1970 US sl. – the highest sum of money offered or given

• TOP-DRAWER
adj. 1. of the highest standard, esp. socially; aristocratic, upper-class …1920 colloq.
adj. 2. very excellent, first-rate …1920
n. the upper class …1905

• TOP-DRESSING
n. 1. trimming, decking out …1846
n. 2. more ostentatious display …1884

• TOPE
int. an exclamation used in drinking …1651
n. 1. a clump, grove, or plantation of trees ; in Upper India, chiefly of fruit-trees …1698 E. Indies
n. 2. the wren …1813 Eng. dial.
vb. 1. to drink copiously and habitually …1654 arch. or literary
vb. 2. to tilt over, to cause to slope or lean to one side; to overturn, to turn upside down …1684 obs. exc. Eng. dial.
vb. 3. to incline, nod, or fall to one side; to topple or fall over; to fall asleep, to die …1796 Eng. dial.

• TOPER
n. one who drinks a great deal; a hard drinker; a drunkard …1673 now chiefly literary

• TOP EYES
n. eyeglasses …1970 Amer. dial.

• TOP-FLIGHT
adj. excellent, superior, of the highest class or quality; outstanding

• TOPFUL
adj. high, lofty, towering …c1611 obs. rare

• TOP-FULL
adj. full to the top; brim-full …1553 rare

• TOPGALLANT
adj. excellent, grand, fine …1613
n. 1. the top piece or part; the most elevated part or member of anything …1581
n. 2. the peak of perfection …1592
n. 3. a ladies’ man, a philanderer …1701 nonce word

• TOP-HAMPER
n. 1. an encumbrance on the top or upper part of anything; something that makes it top-heavy …1861
n. 2. the head …1881

• TOP HAT
n. an important person, a bigwig …1946 Amer. dial.

• TOP-HEAVY
adj. said of an intoxicated person; tipsy …1687

• TOPHET
n. 1. the place of punishment for the wicked after death; the place of eternal fire; hell, Gehenna …1388
n. 2. a place likened to hell, a place of evil …1618
n. 3. a place or state of wild chaos and warring elements; a roaring furnace; a raging whirlpool, a maelstrom …1837

• TOPHETISM
n. hellishness …1859

• TOPHETIZE
vb. to make a hell of …1698

• TOP-HOLE
adj. first-rate, excellent, splendid …1905 sl.

• TOPIARIST
n. one skilled in landscape-gardening …1910

• TOPIARIUS
n. one skilled in landscape-gardening …1706

• TOPIC
adj. pert. to a particular place or locality; local …1610 obs.

• TOPICAL
adj. not demonstrative, but merely probable; likely …1594 obs.

• TOPICALLY
adv. in respect to place; locally …1648 rare

• TO-PIERCE
vb. to pierce entirely …c1470 obs.

• TOP JACK
n. a nonexistent item used as the basis of a practical joke ‘to jack the mountain up’ …1967 Amer. dial.

• TOPKICK
n. a sergeant in the military …1898 military sl.

• TOP KICKER
n. a first sergeant …1898 US military sl.

• TOPKNOT
n. the head …1870 Amer. dial.

• TOPLESS
adj. 1. immensely or immeasurably high; unbounded …1589
adj. 2. having no superior; supreme, paramount …1606 obs. rare

• TOPLINE
vb. 1980s US sl. – to feature as the main attraction

• TOP-LINER
n. an entertainer who is important enough to be the star of a show …20C Brit. theatre, colloq.

• TOPLOFTICAL
adj. high-flown, high and mighty, stuck-up, haughty, having a superior or disdainful attitude …1823 colloq. humorous usage

• TOPLOFTINESS
n. pretension to superiority …1889 colloq. humorous usage

• TOPLOFTY
adj. lofty in manner or character; elevated; haughty, high and mighty, pretentious, stuck-up …1859 colloq. humorous usage

• TOP-LOOKING
adj. stalwart, erect in one’s bearing …1923 Sc.

• TOPLY
adv. finely …1782 Sc.

• TOPMAN
n. a hangman …1607 sl. obs.

• TOP-NOTCH
adj. excellent; first-rate; superb; surpassing all others …1900 sl.
n. something excellent …Bk1942 Amer. sl.

• TOP-NOTCHER
n. a first-rate or excellent person or thing …1902

• TOP-OFF
n. one who betrays associates to the police or other authorities; an informer …1941 Aust. sl.
vb. (‘top off) among cowboys: to ride a difficult or unbroken horse until it becomes manageable …1906 Amer. dial.

• TOP-OFF MAN
n. one who betrays associates to the police or other authorities; an informer …1941 Aust. sl.

• TOP-OFF MERCHANT
n. one who betrays associates to the police or other authorities; an informer …1941 Aust. sl.

• TOP OF REEB
n. a pot of beer …Bk1903 back-slang

• TOP OF THE BOTTLE
adj. excellent; first-rate …Bk1942 Amer. sl.

• TOP-OF-THE-POT
adj. high-class, excellent …1824 Amer. dial.
n. (‘top of the pot’) the highest position, esp. in social or economic standing, a person of the highest social class; the most excellent one …1824 Amer. dial.

• THE TOP OF THE TREE
n. the highest, chief, or leading position, place, or rank …1782

• TOP OF THE WORLD
n. a feeling of elation, good health, or prosperity …1920 US sl.

• TOPOLATRY
n. excessive reverence for a place …a1800

• TOPOLOGY
n. 1. the department of botany which treats of the localities where plants are found …1659 obs.
n. 2. the art of assisting the memory by associating the thing to be remembered with some place or building, the parts of which are well known …1860 obs.

• TOP ONE
n. the best of times …1999 UK sl.

• TOPONYMY
n. the place names of a country or district as a subject of study …1876

• TOPOPHOBE
n. Bk1991 rare – a person who fears certain places

• TOPOPHOBIA
n. a morbid dread of certain places …1899

• TOPOPOLITAN
adj. that inhabits a definite or restricted locality, limited to a restricted habitat …1897

• TO-POUNE
vb. to pound to pieces …c1290 obs.

• TOP OVER TAIL
adv. upside down, topsy-turvy, head over heels …c1330

• TOP OVER TERVE
vb. to topple over, to fall topsy-turvy …a1450 obs.

• TOPPER
n. 1. a cheat at dice-playing …1671 obs. rare
n. 2. a candle-snuffer …1688
n. 3. an exceptionally good or excellent person or thing; the best or one of the best of the kind …1709 colloq.
n. 4. a top hat …1820 sl.
n. 5. a blow on the head …1834 sl.
n. 6. a large wave with curling or breaking summit …1863
n. 7. a cigar stump or cigarette end; also, the remains of tobacco in a pipe bowl …1888 sl.
n. 8. a first sergeant …1918 US military sl.
n. 9. a good sort …colloq.
n. 10. a person who excels at anything …colloq.
n. 11. a remark or action that serves as the coup de grace of a conversation or series of events …1939 US
n. 12. a criminal who represents the interests of a cheque forger …1956 UK sl.
n. 13. a wig, a toupee …1967 Amer. dial.
n. 14. in circus and carnival usage: a featured act …1981 US sl.
prep. upon; on …1888 Amer. dial.
vb. to knock on the head; to kill by a blow on the head …1869 sl.

• TOPPET
n. highest point, top, summit, tip …1439 obs.

• TOP-PIECE
n. 1. the best or finest piece; a masterpiece …1682 obs. rare
n. 2. the head …1864 colloq.

• TOPPING
adj. 1. that exceeds in height; very high …1681 obs.
adj. 2. very high or superior in position, rank, degree, amount, or estimation; chief, principal; pre-eminent, distinguished ..c1685
adj. 3. exhibiting a superior air; assertive, conceited, arrogant …1790 Amer. dial.
adj. 4. excellent; first-rate, splendid …1822 Brit. sl.
adj. 5. of the sea: swelling into crested billows …1857
adj. 6. domineering; confident, boastful …1885 US
n. 1. a high head-dress or coiffure …c1690 obs.
n. 2. a crest or topknot of hair, e.g. of a hairstyle adopted by men in the first half of the 19th century, in which the hair was combed up to form a crest or ridge on the top of the head …c1800 Sc.
n. 3. the woollen knot or pompon on the crown of a bonnet …1808 Sc.
n. 4. the head or crown of the head …1814 Sc. & Eng. dial.
n. 5. a high hill; the peaked top of a hill; a cairn on the top of a hill …1876 Sc. & Eng. dial.
n. 6. dessert; a dessert …1926 Amer. dial.
n. 7. the top or summit …1930 Sc.

• TOPPINGLY
adv. gallantly, splendidly; in excellent condition or health …a1739

• TOPPING SHED
n. in prison: a place of execution …1950 UK sl.

• TOPPING UP
n. completing, bringing to perfection …1890

• TOPPLE
vb. to turn somersaults …1801 Eng. dial.

• TOPPLER
n. a tumbler, an acrobat …a1825 Eng. dial.

• TOPPLETY
adj. toppling over easily …Bk1913-17 Amer. dial.

• TOP-PROUD
adj. proud to the highest degree …1613

• TOPPY
adj. 1. having or characterized by a top or tops; peaked …c1557 obs.
adj. 2. tipsy, partially drunk …1885
adj. 3. top-heavy, inclined to tip over …1885
adj. 4. showy, stylish, fashionable, smart …1905 colloq.
adj. 5. exhibiting a superior air; assertive, conceited …1908 Amer. dial.
adj. 6. excellent; first-rate …Bk1942 Amer. sl.

• TOPPY HORSE
n. a spirited horse …Bk1942 Amer. sl.

• TOP-RIGHT
adj. upright, erect …1562 nonce word obs.

• TOPS
adj. excellent; first-rate, best…1935 colloq.
adv. at the most, at the top estimate, as in ‘five years tops’ …1960s sl.
n. 1. pamphlets and broadsheets that purport to detail last words from the gallows, deathbed confessions, etc. …M19 sl.
n. 2. doctored dice used for cheating purposes …1930s gambling sl.
n. 3. something excellent; the best; the ultimate, the winner  …1935 sl., orig. US

• THE TOPS
n. something excellent; the very best …1935 sl., orig. US

• TOPSAILS OVER
adv. head over heels, topsy-turvy …c1400 obs.

• TOPSAIL WALTEN
adv. upside down …c1400 obs.

• TOPS AND BOTTOMS
n. 1. in poker: a hand consisting of a pair of aces (the highest card) and a pair of twos (the lowest card) …1951 US sl.
n. 2. a roll of notes of which only those on the very top and bottom are genuine, the rest being paper trimmed to fit and bulk out the roll …1959 sl.
n. 3. a combination of Taluin™, a painkiller, and the antihistamine Pyribenzamine™, abused for non-medicinal purposes …1989 US drug culture sl.

• TOPS AND DROPS
n. pendant earrings …1703

• TOP-SAWYER
n. 1. a first-rate hand at something; a distinguished person; one who excels at something …1823
n. 2. the leader in any profession, job, or occupation; a superior; a person of importance; the best person …1826 sl.
n. 3. a famous or eminent person …1854
n. 4. a collar …c1870 tailors’ sl.
n. 5. the favourite horse …1923 turf sl.

• TOP SCREW
n. the foreman of a group of cowboys …1920 Amer. dial.

• TOPSCRIPT
n. something written at the top of a letter …1731 nonce word

• TOP SERGEANT
n. 1. a first sergeant …1898 US military sl.
n. 2. a masculine lesbian …1940s homosexual sl.

• TOP SET
n. a woman’s breasts …1980s sl.

• TOPSET DOWNE
adv. upside down …1569 obs.

• TOPSET-TURVY
adv. upside down, bottom upwards …1549

• TOPS FOR MY DOUGH
adj. excellent; first-rate …Bk1942 Amer. sl.

• TOP-SHELF
adj. first-rate, excellent, the best …1882
n. 1. the highest class …1808
n. 2. spirits (usually as ‘top shelf’) …1950s NZ sl.

• TOP-SHELFER
n. a person or thing of the highest class; a member of the upper class …1882

• TOPSIDE
adj. 1. in charge, in control …L19 sl.
adj. 2. upstairs …1972 Amer. dial.
adv. upstairs …Bk1913-17 Amer. dial.

• TOPSIDE DOWN
adv. upside down …1725 rare

• TOPSIDER
n. 1. a lazy dog …1910s Aust. sl.
n. 2. a top-ranking executive …1960s US sl.

• TOPSIDES UNDER
adv. upside down …1872 rare

• TOPSIDE-THE-OTHER-WAY
adj. disorderly; in confusion …Bk1942 Amer. sl.

• TOPSIDE T’OTHER-WAY
adj. disorderly, in confusion …Bk1942 Amer. sl.
adv. upside down, bottom upwards; disorderly, in confusion …1577

• TOPSIDE-TURFWAY
adj. disorderly; in confusion …Bk1942 Amer. sl.
adv. upside down, bottom upwards …c1586

• TOPSIDE-TURN
vb. to turn topsy-turvy, to turn upside down; to throw into confusion …1637 rare

• TOPSIDE-TURNED
adj. disorderly; in confusion …Bk1942 Amer. sl.

• TOPSIDE-TURVY
adj. disorderly; in confusion …Bk1942 Amer. sl.
adv. upside down, bottom upwards …1582

• TOPSIETEERIE
adv. upside down, bottom upwards …1784 Sc.

• TOPSIE TURNIE
adv. upside down, bottom upwards …1681

• TOPSMAN
n. 1. a hangman …1825 sl.
n. 2. a head man, a bailiff, a principal servant; the chief drover in charge of a herd of cattle on the road …1825 Eng. dial.

• TOP SOLDIER
n. a first sergeant …1898 US military sl.

• TOP SOMEONE UP
vb. to replenish someone’s glass with drink …1969 sl.

• TOP STICK
n. the best regular player in a pool hall …1990 US sl.

• TOP STORY
n. the head as the seat of intellect …1903

• TOPSY
n. a chamber pot …1965 Barbados sl.

• TOPSY BOOZY
adj. tipsy, half drunk …L19 sl.

• TOPSY FRIZY
adj. tipsy, drunk …L18 sl.

• TOPSY-TEERY
adv. topsy-turvy, upside-down …1827 Irish

• TOPSY-TURN
adj. disorderly; in confusion …Bk1942 Amer. sl.
* vb. to turn topsy-turvy, to overturn, to turn upside down; to throw into confusion …1573

• TOPSY-TURNED
adj. disorderly, overturned …Bk1942 Amer. sl.

• TOPSY-TURVE
vb. to turn topsy-turvy, to turn upside down; to throw into confusion …1603 obs. rare

• TOPSY-TURVICAL
adj. of a topsy-turvy character; in utter disorder …1882

• TOPSY-TURVIFICATION
n. a making or turning topsy-turvy or upside down; reversal of the natural order …1840

• TOPSY-TURVIFY
vb. to make or turn topsy-turvy …1886

• TOPSY-TURVIMENT
n. act of turning or the condition of being turned topsy-turvy …1884

• TOPSY-TURVY
adj. in a disordered condition …1528

• TOPSYTURVYDOM
n. disorder …Bk1942 Amer. sl.

• TOPSY-TURVYIZE
vb. to turn topsy-turvy, to throw into confusion, to upset …1893

• TOPSY-VERSY
adj. upside down …M18 sl.

• TOPT
adj. made tipsy, intoxicated, drunk …a1632 obs.

• TOP-TAILS
adv. head over heels …1923 Sc. obs.

• TOP TALL TIMBER
vb. to make a commotion, to ‘blow one’s top’; to make great objections or a big fuss about something …1965 Amer. dial.

• TOP TASTE
n. dessert; a dessert …1991 Amer. dial.

• TOP THE BRUSH
vb. to leap or run through undergrowth, as a deer does …1953 Amer. dial.

• TOP THE COTTON
vb. to be very excited or agitated; to go very fast …1954  Amer. dial.

• TOP THE GLIM
vb. to snuff a candle …Bk1942 Amer. sl.

• TOP THE TREES
vb. to make a commotion, to ‘blow one’s top’; to make great objections or a big fuss about something …1965 Amer. dial.

• TOP-THRAWN
adj. headstrong, perverse, obstinate, wrong-headed …1808 Sc.

• TOP TIMBER
vb. to make a commotion, to ‘blow one’s top’; to make great objections or a big fuss about something …1965 Amer. dial.

• TO-PULL
vb. to pull to pieces …c1330 obs.

• TO-PUNISH
vb. to punish soundly …a1400-50 obs.

• TOP ‘UNS
n. a woman’s breasts …1940s sl.

• TOP-UP
adv. up to the top, to the brim …1581 obs. rare
n. a finish or conclusion …1883 rare
vb. (‘top up’) to end up, to conclude …M19 sl.

• TO-PUSH
vb. to push about, to hustle …a1300 obs.

• TO PUT IT MILDLY
phr. to downplay one’s feelings, usually ironic, i.e. to put it very strongly …1930s

• TOP WADDY
n. the foreman of a group of cowboys …1902 Amer. dial.

• TOP WHACK
n. a very high (esp. the highest) price or rate …1978 Brit. sl.

• TOP WOMAN
n. a senior or most favoured prostitute among a group working for a given pimp …1940s sl.

• TOP-YOB
n. a pot-boy …M19 back slang

• TO-QUAKE
vb. to quake violently …c1275 obs.

• TO-QUASH
vb. to crush or squash to pieces …c1375 obs.

• TOQUE
n. a cushion or pad worn by women to raise up the hair …1817 obs.


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