from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • A tropical tree (Hernandia sonora), which bears a drupe that rattles when dry in the inflated calyx.
  • A child's toy, consisting of a box, out of which, when the lid is raised, a figure (usually a clown) springs; also called jack-in-the-box.
  • An epicyclic train of bevel gears for transmitting rotary motion to two parts in such a manner that their relative rotation may be variable; applied to driving the wheels of tricycles, road locomotives, and to cotton machinery, etc.; an equation box; a jack frame; -- called also compensating gearing.
  • A large wooden screw turning in a nut attached to the crosspiece of a rude press.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • n. A kind of toy, consisting of a box out of which, when the lid is unfastened, a figure springs.
  • n. A street peddler who sells his wares from a temporary stall or box.
  • n. A gambling sport in which some article placed on a stick set upright in a hole is pitched at with sticks. If the article when struck falls clear of the hole, the thrower wins.
  • n. Same as jack-frame.
  • n. A screw-jack used to raise and stow cargo.
  • n. A large wooden male screw turning in a female screw, which forms the upper part of a strong wooden box. It is used, by means of levers passing through it, as a press in packing, and for other purposes.
  • n. A plant of the genus Hernandia (H. Sonora), which bears a large nut that rattles in its pericarp when shaken.
  • n. A hermit-crab, as Eupagurus pollicaris: so called by fishermen.
  • n. A very small but powerful sorew-jack used by burglars to force locks, particularly to pull the spindle of a combination lock from the door.
  • n. A device for holding the tool on a planing-machine in position while cutting.
  • n. In Australia, same as hairtrigger-flower. Also called trigger-plant. See hairtrigger-ftower and Stylidium.


Sorry, no etymologies found.


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  • A child's toy, where a figure springs out of a box when the lid is unfastened.

    July 21, 2008