from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 5th Edition.

  • noun A short crowbar with curved ends.
  • transitive verb To pry (something) open with or as if with a jimmy.

from The Century Dictionary.

  • noun A short crowbar: same as jemmy, 1.
  • Same as jemmy.
  • noun A freight-car used for carrying coal; a coal-car.
  • A free emigrant.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English.

  • noun A short crowbar used by burglars in breaking open doors.
  • noun Australian slang An immigrant.
  • transitive verb To pry open (a door, window, etc.) with a jimmy or similar device; often used with open.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License.

  • noun plural only, dialectal, US, usually plural chocolate sprinkles used as a topping for ice cream, cookies, or cupcakes.
  • noun slang A marijuana cigarette.
  • noun A device used to circumvent a locking mechanism; a slim-Jim.
  • noun slang Royal Navy slang for First Lieutenant (Executive Officer)
  • noun US A jemmy; a crowbar used by burglars to open windows and doors.
  • noun US, slang penis
  • noun US, slang A condom.
  • verb To pry open, especially a lock.

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • verb to move or force, especially in an effort to get something open
  • noun a short crowbar


from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

[Probably from the name Jimmy, nickname for James.]


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  • As a verb, it means to force open with a jimmy. "He locked himself out of the house, so he had to jimmy the door."

    June 30, 2007

  • Jimmy Mack by Martha and the Vandellas

    February 9, 2008

  • I've only ever heard this as jemmy.

    November 19, 2008

  • A speakeasy. Seen here.

    June 3, 2009


    "I think it means "pry open" or "break open"."

    ""Jimmy" is a slang term. A native speaker would use it to describe how use a a key that doesn't quite fit into a lock. This means that the key must be moved around a bit inside the lock until it lines up correctly (and allows you to unlock the door.) In other words, "you have to jimmy the lock."

    More generally, some people could use it to describe a door that is too big for the frame and needs to be forced slightly to open; "In the Summer all the wood in this place swells up, so you will have to jimmy the door.""

    May 21, 2018