from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • n. In shipbuilding, a body of timber built up on top of the keel at either end, to afford a firm fastening for the cant timbers.
  • n. A buffer-block.
  • n. In ten-pins and pin-pool, the pins which have been knocked down.
  • n. Useless material.
  • n. In card-playing, the discards from the various players; cards which cannot be used again for any purpose during the hand then being played.


Sorry, no etymologies found.


  • Notre Dame University is now just more dead-wood to be cut away from the Church, and probably has been for a long time.

    Fr. Reese's flawed arguments for Pres. Obama at Notre Dame

  • Whatever the private feelings expressed inside the Great Wishford cottages by tiny dead-wood fires in midwinter, things then seem to have settled down until 1807, when the Earl of Pembroke bought the Manor of Wishford and the forest, and promptly brought an Act of Enclosure upon it to Parliament in 1809.


  • Right-sizing, communication plans, austerity-distilled policies, dead-wood clearance et al. A chunk of all these have no more than a symbolic effect on real-time cost savings.

    Don't Just Rush to the Treadmill

  • They must start getting rid of the dead-wood at the top.

    A Little Advice For The New Ceo

  • You've got thousands of dead-wood lifers hanging around doing nothing but you don't have the stomach to purge them.

    Wet work

  • I should have known it would be a topic of interest when I found my husband reading the essay in my dead-wood copy of the Journal.


  • I do recall as a former public worker, under protection of the Civil Service, that it did make it almost impossible to get rid of “dead-wood” employees.

    Firedoglake » America’s Public Employees: Live Like Slaves, Die Like Dogs

  • The Jerle Shannara shuddered and lurched as the parse tubes emitted fresh discharges of converted light, then shot forward across the enemy's stern, raking her decking and snapping off pieces of railing like dead-wood.


  • Then Tamis was back, dragging a huge limb by one end, dead-wood, well over eight feet in length, most of its smaller branches reduced to broken stubs.


  • Reaching down, he broke off a piece of damp dead-wood, intending to use it to nudge the petals aside so he could pass without having to walk on so much beauty.

    Mid Flinx


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