Off the hooks
Hook Hook (h[oo^]k; 277), n. [OE. hok, AS. h[=o]c; cf. D. haak, G. hake, haken, OHG. h[=a]ko, h[=a]go, h[=a]ggo, Icel. haki, Sw. hake, Dan. hage. Cf. {Arquebuse}, {Hagbut}, {Hake}, {Hatch} a half door, {Heckle}.] 1. A piece of metal, or other hard material, formed or bent into a curve or at an angle, for catching, holding, or sustaining anything; as, a hook for catching fish; a hook for fastening a gate; a boat hook, etc. [1913 Webster]

2. That part of a hinge which is fixed to a post, and on which a door or gate hangs and turns. [1913 Webster]

3. An implement for cutting grass or grain; a sickle; an instrument for cutting or lopping; a billhook. [1913 Webster]

Like slashing Bentley with his desperate hook. --Pope. [1913 Webster]

4. (Steam Engin.) See {Eccentric}, and {V-hook}. [1913 Webster]

5. A snare; a trap. [R.] --Shak. [1913 Webster]

6. A field sown two years in succession. [Prov. Eng.] [1913 Webster]

7. pl. The projecting points of the thigh bones of cattle; -- called also {hook bones}. [1913 Webster]

8. (Geog.) A spit or narrow cape of sand or gravel turned landward at the outer end; as, Sandy Hook in New Jersey. [Webster 1913 Suppl. +PJC]

9. (Sports) The curving motion of a ball, as in bowling or baseball, curving away from the hand which threw the ball; in golf, a curving motion in the direction of the golfer who struck the ball. [PJC]

10. (Computers) A procedure within the encoding of a computer program which allows the user to modify the program so as to import data from or export data to other programs. [PJC]

{By hook or by crook}, one way or other; by any means, direct or indirect. --Milton. ``In hope her to attain by hook or crook.'' --Spenser.

{Off the hook}, freed from some obligation or difficulty; as, to get off the hook by getting someone else to do the job. [Colloq.]

{Off the hooks}, unhinged; disturbed; disordered. [Colloq.] ``In the evening, by water, to the Duke of Albemarle, whom I found mightly off the hooks that the ships are not gone out of the river.'' --Pepys.

{On one's own hook}, on one's own account or responsibility; by one's self. [Colloq. U.S.] --Bartlett.

{To go off the hooks}, to die. [Colloq.] --Thackeray.

{Bid hook}, a small boat hook.

{Chain hook}. See under {Chain}.

{Deck hook}, a horizontal knee or frame, in the bow of a ship, on which the forward part of the deck rests.

{Hook and eye}, one of the small wire hooks and loops for fastening together the opposite edges of a garment, etc.

{Hook bill} (Zo["o]l.), the strongly curved beak of a bird.

{Hook ladder}, a ladder with hooks at the end by which it can be suspended, as from the top of a wall.

{Hook motion} (Steam Engin.), a valve gear which is reversed by V hooks.

{Hook squid}, any squid which has the arms furnished with hooks, instead of suckers, as in the genera {Enoploteuthis} and {Onychteuthis}.

{Hook wrench}, a wrench or spanner, having a hook at the end, instead of a jaw, for turning a bolthead, nut, or coupling. [1913 Webster]


The Collaborative International Dictionary of English. 2000.

Look at other dictionaries:

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