Cat o' nine tails Cat" o' nine" tails`, cat-o'-nine-tails cat"-o'-nine"-tails` . 1. a whip used as an instrument of punishment consisting of nine pieces of knotted line or cord fastened to a handle; -- formerly used to flog offenders on the bare back; -- called also the {cat}. It was used in the British Navy to maintain discipline on board sailing ships.

Syn: cat. [WordNet 1.5 +PJC]

The Collaborative International Dictionary of English. 2000.

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