from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition
- n. An infectious, usually fatal bacterial disease of cattle and sometimes of sheep, goats, and swine, caused by Clostridium chauvoe and characterized by gas-containing swellings in the musculature.
- n. A bacterial or fungal disease of certain plants, such as the cabbage and potato, that causes the stems to turn black at the soil line.
- n. One who cheats at cards; a cardsharp.
- n. Chiefly British A worker who is opposed to trade unions; a scab.
from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License
- n. Fatal cattle disease caused by the soil-borne bacteria Clostridium chauvoei; symptomatic anthrax
- n. A person who takes the place of striking workers. A scab.
- n. A person who cheats in a game, a cheater.
- n. A notorious gambler.
- adj. Relating to a scab worker.
from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English
- n. A notorious gambler.
- n. A disease among calves and sheep, characterized by a settling of gelatinous matter in the legs, and sometimes in the neck.
from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia
- n. A disease in cattle and sheep which affects the legs; symptomatic anthrax. See anthrax.
- n. A severe form of purpura.
- n. One who systematically tries to gain money fraudulently in connection with races, or with cards, billiards, or other games; a rook; a swindler.
- n. Same as black-nob.
- n. A laborer who is not a member of a trade-gild or trade-union; a ‘scab.’
from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.
- v. take the place of work of someone on strike
- n. someone who works (or provides workers) during a strike
Sorry, no etymologies found.
One of their number stood out, refusing to join the combine; whereupon the rest summoned the gang and had the "blackleg" pressed for his contumacy.
BURNS -- who has stuck loyally to Council -- fiercely denounced as a "blackleg" by crowd.
He thinks I am a kind of blackleg, not true to my principles; or rather he thinks that I am not a Christian at all, and only call myself one for the sake of the associations.
The most plausible ground is that of those  who, bringing marriage down to the level of prostitution, maintain that the prostitute is a "blackleg" who is accepting less than the "market rate of wages," i.e., marriage, for the sexual services she renders.
If an excited Unionist called a man a "blackleg" or "scab" in the Imperial bar he was run out -- sometimes with great difficulty, and occasionally as far as the lock-up.
In our day he would have been called a "blackleg," and mobbed: perhaps, even in the seventeenth century, he needed protection, for the college built him
_Escroc_ as the French might call him; "blackleg" in the English vocabulary; "sport" in American phrase, Frank Lara is a man with whom no one who knows him likes to take liberties.
A kind of blackleg doing the work cheaper -- nay, for nothing. "
Now, he leans over his guitar and begins strumming the melody and summoning the vengeful lyrics: "Across the way they stretch a line/To catch the throat and break the spine/Of the dirty blackleg miner."
According to environmental activists, 250 elephants and hundreds of other animals have died from starvation, thirst and blackleg -- an infectious disease caused by unusually arid conditions and stress -- over the past two months.
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