Booby hatch

Booby hatch
Booby Boo"by (b[=oo]"b[y^]), n.; pl. {Boobies} (-b[i^]z). [Sp. bobo dunce, idiot; cf. L. balbus stammering, E. barbarous.] [1913 Webster] 1. A dunce; a stupid fellow. [1913 Webster]

2. (Zo["o]l.) (a) A swimming bird ({Sula fiber} or {Sula sula}) related to the common gannet, and found in the West Indies, nesting on the bare rocks. It is so called on account of its apparent stupidity -- unafraid of men, it allows itself to be caught by a simple and undisguised approach. The name is also sometimes applied to other species of gannets; as, {Sula piscator}, the {red-footed booby}; and {Sula nebouxii}, the {blue-footed booby}. (b) A species of penguin of the antarctic seas. [1913 Webster]

{Booby hatch} (a) (Naut.), a kind of wooden hood over a hatch, readily removable. (b), an insane asylum. [Colloq.]

{Booby hut}, a carriage body put upon sleigh runners. [Local, U. S.] --Bartlett.

{Booby hutch}, a clumsy covered carriage or seat, used in the eastern part of England. --Forby.

{Booby prize}, an award for the poorest performance in a competition; hence, metaphorically, the recognition of a strikingly inferior or incompetent performance.

{Booby trap} (a), a schoolboy's practical joke, as a shower bath when a door is opened. (b), any concealed device causing surprise or injury when a usually harmless object is touched; -- in military operations, typically containing an explosive charge. [1913 Webster +PJC]

The Collaborative International Dictionary of English. 2000.

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Look at other dictionaries:

  • Booby hatch — Hatch Hatch, n. [OE. hacche, AS. h[ae]c, cf. haca the bar of a door, D. hek gate, Sw. h[ a]ck coop, rack, Dan. hekke manger, rack. Prob. akin to E. hook, and first used of something made of pieces fastened together. Cf. {Heck}, {Hack} a frame.] 1 …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • booby hatch — n [singular] AmE old fashioned informal a mental hospital …   Dictionary of contemporary English

  • booby hatch — n. 1. a covering over a small hatchway on a ship ☆ 2. Slang an institution for the mentally ill …   English World dictionary

  • booby hatch — [“bubi...] n. a mental hospital. □ I was afraid they would send me to the booby hatch. □ Don’t you mean send you back to the booby hatch? …   Dictionary of American slang and colloquial expressions

  • booby hatch — noun pejorative terms for an insane asylum • Syn: ↑Bedlam, ↑crazy house, ↑cuckoo s nest, ↑funny farm, ↑funny house, ↑loony bin, ↑madhouse, ↑nut house, ↑nuthouse, ↑ …   Useful english dictionary

  • booby hatch — n a psychiatric hospital. A jocular term, originally from North America. The asso ciation with boob and booby is obvious; hatch or hutch is an archaic term for many different enclosures and contain ers …   Contemporary slang

  • booby hatch — 1. Naut. a. a small hatch giving access to a ladder from the weather deck of a vessel to the interior of the hull. b. a small companion secured over a deck opening. c. a hoodlike hatch cover having a sliding top. 2. Slang. a. an insane asylum. b …   Universalium

  • booby hatch — noun Date: 1840 1. a raised framework with a sliding cover over a small hatch on a ship 2. a psychiatric hospital …   New Collegiate Dictionary

  • booby hatch — boo′by hatch n. 1) naut. navig. naut. navig. (on a vessel) a small companion secured over a deck opening 2) sts Slang. a) an insane asylum b) jail • Etymology: 1830–40 …   From formal English to slang

  • booby hatch — /ˈbubi hætʃ/ (say boohbee hach) noun 1. Nautical a wooden hood over a hatch. 2. US Colloquial a psychiatric hospital. 3. US Colloquial a jail …  

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