Definitions

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • n. A British sailor: so called because he is obliged by law to use lime-juice at sea as an antiscorbutic.
  • n. Hence A British ship on which the lime-juice law is carried out.
  • n. In Australia, a new-comer; one who has made the voyage on a lime-juicer; a greenhorn; a ‘new chum.’

Etymologies

Sorry, no etymologies found.

Examples

  • And we were near him, on the poop, when he drove by an east-bound lime-juicer, hove-to under upper-topsails.

    CHAPTER XL

  • "Yes, she's a lime-juicer," he remarked, and something like a sigh escaped him.

    The Moving Picture Girls at Sea or, A Pictured Shipwreck That Became Real

  • On the Lord Summerville was a mad Pennsylvania boy who had, like myself, gone to sea for the first time ... but he had had no uncle to beat timidity into him ... and he had dared ship as able seaman on the big sky-sailed lime-juicer, and had gloriously acquitted himself.

    Tramping on Life

  • On the _Lord Summerville_ was a mad Pennsylvania boy who had, like myself, gone to sea for the first time ... but he had had no uncle to beat timidity into him ... and he had dared ship as able seaman on the big sky-sailed lime-juicer, and had gloriously acquitted himself.

    Tramping on Life An Autobiographical Narrative

  • At noon we picked up a ship ahead, a lime-juicer, travelling in the same direction, under lower-topsails and one upper-topsail.

    Chapter 40

  • "I saw it done when I was second mate on a lime-juicer," Captain Ward spoke up.

    The Jokers of New Gibbon

  • He had sailed always on French merchant vessels, with the one exception of a voyage on a "lime-juicer."

    Confession

  • a foreign cargo of lumber into the lime-juicer; then her mate steals all the paint in the Britisher's lazaret.

    Cappy Ricks Retires

  • And, though lime juice isn't as needful as it was, 'cause they have other things that do as well, perhaps, I always think of a Britisher as a lime-juicer. "

    The Moving Picture Girls at Sea or, A Pictured Shipwreck That Became Real

  • By the everlastin ', if I was younger I'd ship aboard a British lime-juicer and go and fight, myself! "

    The Portygee

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Comments

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  • I can attest to that "application to all English people" thing, though in my experience 1) it was applied more frequently to men rather than women, and 2) the Australians I knew were positively gleeful in applying it especially to those Brits who took offense.

    I didn't know it could be a ship though.

    February 24, 2009

  • Yes, I'd forgotten to add that. Thanks.

    February 22, 2009

  • Also applied to British ships.

    February 22, 2009

  • A "pejorative term applied in the mid-19th cent. by Americans and Australians to British sailors who had for the past half century been issued lime juice as a preventive of scurvy. By the early-20th cent. the term had been shortened to Limey, and by the end of WWI the shortened form was being applied, without prejudice, to all Englishmen, whether sailor or not. (Nevertheless, the general nickname must have been about as easy to take, for the average Englishman, as "Yank" was for the average Southern American.)" -- Food: A Dictionary of Literal and Nonliteral Terms, 2000.

    February 22, 2009