wooden

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Related to woodenly: dutifully, craftily

wooden mare

An ancient torture device involving a wooden horse, typically used for military punishments. I was so terrified of what my parents would do when they found out I'd failed my exam that I had visions of them making me ride the wooden mare.
See also: mare, wooden

wooden spoonist

slang The person or team that finishes last in a competition. So-named because the imaginary prize for a last-place finish is a wooden spoon. Primarily heard in UK. Of course Roy was the wooden-spoonist in today's race—I didn't know a person could run so slow!
See also: wooden

wooden top

A beet-shaped wooden toy that spins on a metal point at the bottom. What are you kids complaining about? When I was your age, I only had a wooden top to play with!
See also: top, wooden

don't take any wooden nickels

Take care and, specifically, try not to get swindled. The phrase is thought to have originated in the early 20th century when country residents visiting the city were considered easily duped. Primarily heard in US. Have fun tonight and don't take any wooden nickels!
See also: any, nickel, take, wooden

the wooden spoon

The imaginary prize for the person finishing in last place in a competition. Primarily heard in UK, Australia. I don't expect to win, but I sure hope I don't get the wooden spoon!
See also: spoon, wooden

get the wooden spoon

To finish a contest or competition in last place. (The "wooden spoon" is the hypothetical prize for the person finishing in last place in a competition.) Primarily heard in UK, Australia. I don't expect to win, but I sure hope I don't get the wooden spoon!
See also: get, spoon, wooden

win the wooden spoon

To finish a contest or competition in last place. (The "wooden spoon" is the hypothetical prize for the person finishing in last place in a competition.) Primarily heard in UK, Australia. I don't expect to win, but I sure hope I don't win the wooden spoon!
See also: spoon, win, wooden

take the wooden spoon

To finish a contest or competition in last place. (The "wooden spoon" is the hypothetical prize for the person finishing in last place in a competition.) Primarily heard in UK, Australia. I don't expect to win, but I sure hope I don't take the wooden spoon!
See also: spoon, take, wooden

a wooden nickel

A person or thing that only vaguely appears to have any real value, but is ultimately worthless. A nickel is worth five cents, thus already being worth very little. Primarily heard in US. This whole accreditation scheme has as much value as a wooden nickel when it does nothing to get you more work in the field.
See also: nickel, wooden

a wooden nutmeg

dated A fraudulent substitute or imitation. Primarily heard in US. Anyone selling you designer goods at such low prices is definitely peddling wooden nutmegs. The major tax overhaul congress has been promising is nothing more than a wooden nutmeg—it will benefit no one but a few at the very top, and for everyone else it will remain a convoluted and expensive mess.
See also: wooden

accept a wooden nickel

To accept something that proves to be fraudulent or deceitful; to be swindled or conned. Primarily heard in US. I'm done accepting wooden nickels—capricious women who say they love me, then get bored and decide I'm not worth their time. My husband is a wonderful man, but he has about as much business sense as a grade-schooler. If I had let him accept all the wooden nickels offered flaky customers have tried to peddle on us, we'd have gone bankrupt years ago.
See also: accept, nickel, wooden

a wooden nickel

AMERICAN
If you call something a wooden nickel, you mean that it is completely false or has no value. Note: A nickel is a five cent coin and a dime is a ten cent coin. He looked at the card as though it were a wooden nickel. `That doesn't prove a thing,' he said.
See also: nickel, wooden

the wooden spoon

BRITISH
COMMON If you say that someone gets the wooden spoon, you mean that they are the last in a race or competition or are the worst at a particular activity. Cosmos will almost certainly get the wooden-spoon for the second year in a row if they lose. Britain's bureaucrats won the EU's wooden spoon yesterday, as the worst linguists in Brussels. Note: You can use wooden spoon before a noun. After their third defeat, the Hawks have confirmed their place as wooden spoon contenders this season. Note: At one time, the student who got the lowest marks in their final mathematics exam at Cambridge University was given a wooden spoon.
See also: spoon, wooden

accept a wooden nickel

be fooled or swindled. US
A wooden nickel is a worthless or counterfeit coin.
See also: accept, nickel, wooden

a wooden nutmeg

a false or fraudulent thing. US
A wooden nutmeg was a piece of wood shaped to resemble a nutmeg and fraudulently sold as the real thing. This deception was particularly associated with the inhabitants of Connecticut, giving rise to the nickname ‘the Nutmeg State’.
See also: wooden

win the wooden spoon

be the least successful contestant; win the booby prize.
A wooden spoon was originally presented to the candidate coming last in the Cambridge University mathematical tripos (the final honours examination for a BA degree).
See also: spoon, win, wooden

don’t take any wooden ˈnickels

(American English) used when saying goodbye to somebody to mean ‘be careful’, ‘take care of yourself’: Well, see you around Tom. Don’t take any wooden nickels.
See also: any, nickel, take, wooden

get, win, take, etc. the ˌwooden ˈspoon

(British English, informal) come last in a race or competition: England must win this match if they are to avoid taking the wooden spoon.It was a custom at the University of Cambridge to give a wooden spoon to the student of mathematics who had the lowest mark/grade for their year.
See also: spoon, wooden

Don't take any wooden nickels

Don't let yourself be cheated. This expression was first heard in the early 20th century. Although there never were any wooden nickels as legal tender, country folk going to a city were likely to be cheated by all manner of ruses, including obviously counterfeit coins. Wooden nickels did exist, however, as bank promotions during and after the Great Depression; the “coins” were redeemable for prizes.
See also: any, nickel, take, wooden
References in periodicals archive ?
It is far less compelling when the practitioner has no such credentials and woodenly applies a standard piece of textbook analysis for purposes of rational reconstruction or sectarian polemic.
A second fundamental problem with these approaches is that by woodenly splitting patents into different categories of treatment, they overlook the central lessons learned from debates over civil litigation generally.
Her voice soared, expanded and modulated in an excruciating role for which each act has lengthy and emotionally powerful monologues--reminiscences of childhood, sexual awakening and the terrible finale in which a transfixed Mattila walked woodenly along the Volga river bank in a dirty wet dress.
What happened next is acted out woodenly, in mime, the singers now transformed into puppets.
The woodenly literal "co-suffering" is nevertheless useful in forming a contrasting parallel with "suffering," used consistently here to render Hugh's "passio.
I caution them not to apply that rule of thumb too woodenly but to use professional judgment particularly if a number of cells are close to but not quite at the critical value.
Of course, Calvin was not woodenly literal in his interpretation of Scripture, and many today would wonder about what he thought was the "simple and natural" meaning of certain texts.
It is hard to miss Judge Bork's ironic glee in rejecting "old categories which, applied woodenly, do not address modern problems," id.
Her stiff, outstretched arms protrude woodenly, as she raises them to reveal a small circular cavity in either hand, oozing a substance more akin to tar than blood.
If it is not, then criteria that determine what is "law-like" in other areas might mislead when applied too woodenly in the constitutional domain.
Alan Carr was an embarrassment, woodenly reading a message off the autocue: "Forty per cent of the Earth's population get their drinking water from river systems fed by glacial water," before giggling: "And I can't swim
Ahmad overhears it all, including the resentful effusions of the son, Charlie, only to reply woodenly, when asked where he stands, that Americans "brag of freedom, but freedom to no purpose becomes a kind of prison.
Unable to string a sentence together, they generally resort to woodenly asking for the criminal to "give himself up.
Blowing her nose, Ava stood and walked woodenly to the door.
Without ever appearing strained or woodenly referential, it rapidly establishes a calculated but remarkably diverse aesthetic.