the sun is over the yardarm

the sun is over the yardarm

It is the appropriate time of day to begin drinking alcohol. A "yardarm" is a horizontal bar on the mast of a ship, and it is supposed that when the sun passed it at a certain time of day (around noon), sailors were allowed to drink. Well, the sun is over the yardarm, so why don't we order some wine with our brunch? Are you really having a beer? I don't think the sun is quite over the yardarm yet.
See also: over, sun, yardarm

the sun is over the yardarm

People say the sun is over the yardarm to say that it is late enough in the day to have an alcoholic drink. Well, the sun is over the yardarm — anyone for a drink? Note: This expression is used humorously. Note: This expression is thought to come from the old practice on some ships of having an alcoholic drink when the sun had risen past a horizontal bar on the mast, usually around 11a.m.
See also: over, sun, yardarm

the sun is over the yardarm

it is the time of day when it is permissible to drink alcohol. informal
This was originally a nautical expression: a yardarm is the outer extremity of a yard , a cylindrical spar slung across a ship's mast for a sail to hang from. The time of day referred to is noon, rather than 6 o'clock in the evening, as is often supposed.
1992 Angela Lambert A Rather English Marriage Have a snifter? Sun's over the yardarm, as they say in the senior service.
See also: over, sun, yardarm