sailor


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curse like a sailor

To use profanities or vulgar language very freely or frequently. (An allusion to the rough language presumed to be used by navy personnel.) My little sister has been cursing like a sailor ever since she started college. My granny is the sweetest old lady you'll ever meet, but she curses like a sailor when she gets to talking about someone or something she doesn't like.
See also: curse, like, sailor

cuss like a sailor

To use profanities or vulgar language very freely or frequently. (An allusion to the rough language presumed to be used by navy personnel.) My little sister has been cussing like a sailor ever since she started college. My granny is the sweetest old lady you'll ever meet, but she cusses like a sailor when she gets to talking about someone or something she doesn't like.
See also: cuss, like, sailor

have the mouth of a sailor

To have a tendency or proclivity to use coarse, rude, or vulgar language. I don't know what you're letting your son watch on television, but, for a fifth grader, he sure has the mouth of a sailor! My grandmother is the sweetest old lady you'll ever know, but, my lord, does she have the mouth of a sailor!
See also: have, mouth, of, sailor

heaven protects children, sailors, and drunken men

proverb A phrase used to explain how these vulnerable groups are able to avoid harm. Of course heaven protects children, sailors, and drunken men—how do you think Billy's managed to avoid hurting himself when he rides his bike so recklessly?
See also: and, drunken, heaven, men, protect

language that would make a sailor blush

Very profane language. (An allusion to the rough language presumed to be used by military personnel.) My grandmother was the sweetest lady you'd ever meet, but boy howdy could she use language that'd make a sailor blush!
See also: blush, language, make, sailor, that

like a drunken sailor

In an unrestrained, feckless, and frivolous manner. Usually used in reference to spending money. He always starts spending money like a drunken sailor right after he gets paid, then struggles to cover his rent and bills toward the end of the month.
See also: drunken, like, sailor

mouth of a sailor

A tendency or proclivity to use coarse, rude, or vulgar language. I don't know what you're letting your son watch on television, but, for a fifth grader, he sure has the mouth of a sailor! My grandmother is the sweetest old lady you'll ever know, but, my lord, does she have the mouth of a sailor!
See also: mouth, of, sailor

red sky at night, sailor's delight

proverb A red sky at sunset is a sign that good weather will follow. The full phrase is "Red sky at night, sailor's delight; red sky in the morning, sailor's warning." I think we're going to have a nice sunny day tomorrow. Just look at that gorgeous sunset—red sky at night, sailor's delight!
See also: delight, red, sky

spend like a sailor (on (shore) leave)

To spend excessively, extravagantly, or wastefully. Now don't go spending like a sailor on shore leave just because you got a bit of a tax refund from the government. The local council has been spending like sailors on this new tram project, while other existing public transport goes into disrepair. Every time my husband's paycheck comes through, he goes out to the pubs and spends like a sailor on leave!
See also: like, sailor, spend

spend money like a drunken sailor

To spend money freely and frivolously. He always starts spending money like a drunken sailor right after he gets paid, then struggles to cover his rent and bills toward the end of the month.
See also: drunken, like, money, sailor, spend

swear like a sailor

To use profanities or vulgar language very freely and fluently. (An allusion to the rough language presumed to be used by military personnel.) My little sister has been swearing like a sailor ever since she started learning bad words. My granny is the sweetest old lady you'll ever meet, but she swears like a sailor when she gets on the topic of something or someone she doesn't like.
See also: like, sailor, swear
Farlex Dictionary of Idioms. © 2015 Farlex, Inc, all rights reserved.

like a drunken sailor

With no restraint. A merchant seaman on shore leave with months' worth of pay in his pocket tended to make up for lost time in the drinking and “play-for-pay romance” departments. Fiscal restraint was out of the question. So did miners and cowboys when they too had a chance to go to town, but the image of a sailor prevailed. The sea shanty “What Shall We Do with the Drunken Sailor?” suggests the same idea of a jocular attitude toward an inebriated mariner.
See also: drunken, like, sailor
Endangered Phrases by Steven D. Price Copyright © 2011 by Steven D. Price
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References in classic literature ?
The girl's words temporarily quieted the men, and finally it was decided that the two kegs of water and the four tins of food should be divided into two parts, one-half going forward to the three sailors to do with as they saw best, and the balance aft to the three passengers.
The sailors were the first to get one of the tins of "food" open, and their curses of rage and disappointment caused Clayton to ask what the trouble might be.
Then D'Artagnan perceived that all his men, with remarkable intelligence, had already travestied themselves into sailors, more or less ill-treated by the sea.
"I say, captain," said the sailor who had cried "Courage!" to Dantes, "if what he says is true, what hinders his staying with us?"
But the sailor had many reasons, all of which were so mixed up with the mysterious customs of the islanders, that he was none the wiser.
"Come!" he commanded, and tugged to pull the beast from among the sailors, many of whom were now sitting up in wide eyed fright or crawling away from their conqueror upon hands and knees.
Then, of their own accord, two of the sailors, by the direction of the patron Yves, lowered the sail, in order that that single point upon the surface of the waters should cease to be a guide to the eye of the enemy pursuing them.
The men were working backwards toward the little party who were facing away from the sailors. Closer and closer they came, until one of them was directly behind the captain.
"But," said Porthos, with great wisdom, "that was impossible, for they would have killed the captain and the sailors."
"I hadn't time to tell anybody, sir, the sailor went out in such a hurry."
The 6th of July, about three o'clock in the afternoon, the Abraham Lincoln, at fifteen miles to the south, doubled the solitary island, this lost rock at the extremity of the American continent, to which some Dutch sailors gave the name of their native town, Cape Horn.
Here I sat, inside my first ship, a smuggler, accepted as a comrade by a harpooner and a runaway English sailor who said his name was Scotty.
The truth of the matter being that Nikolas Rokoff was so poor a sailor that the heavy seas the Kincaid encountered from the very beginning of her voyage sent the Russian to his berth with a bad attack of sea-sickness.
The taking of Departure, if not the last sight of the land, is, perhaps, the last professional recognition of the land on the part of a sailor. It is the technical, as distinguished from the sentimental, "good-bye." Henceforth he has done with the coast astern of his ship.
Miners and sailors came back from the North with wonderful stories and pouches of gold.