from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • n. Alternative form of sockdolager.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • n. A conclusive argument; the winding up of a debate; a settler.
  • n. A knock-down or decisive blow.
  • n. Something very big; a whopper.
  • n. A patent fish-hook having two hooked points which close upon each other as soon as the fish bites, thus securing the fish with certainty.


Sorry, no etymologies found.



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  • also see Zander's and chained_bear's comments on sockdolager

    November 9, 2012

  • Sockdologer Plus
    Sockdologer knocked my socks off when I came across it in a particularly tough article on logic(?) by Charles S. Peirce who wrote in the 1880′s.

    What a world of coincidences I get into when I start to check on words. I looked up”sockdologer” to see if I could date it using Wordnik. There it was referenced to James F.Cooper in 1830. I then stumbled on to a reference to Our American Cousin marked SPAM. So I Googled Our American Cousin and here is what I found:

    "The play’s most famous performance was at Ford’s Theatre in Washington City on April 14, 1865. Halfway through Act III, Scene 2, the character of Asa Trenchard, played that night by Harry Hawk, utters a line, considered one of the play’s funniest, to Mrs. Mountchessington: “Don’t know the manners of good society, eh? Well, I guess I know enough to turn you inside out, old gal — you sockdologizing old man-trap.”

    During the laughter that followed this line, John Wilkes Booth, a famous actor and Confederate sympathizer who was not in the cast of the play, fatally shot Abraham Lincoln. Familiar with the play, Booth chose this moment in the hope that the sound of the audience’s laughter would mask the sound of his gunshot. He then leapt from Lincoln’s box to the stage and made his escape through the back of the theater to a horse he had left waiting in the alley. The remainder of the play that night was suspended.8

    The last words Lincoln heard “You sockdologizing old mantrap.”

    November 9, 2012

  • Sockdolager, I thought - a fantastic word however spelt.

    May 11, 2008

  • The winning or conclusive blow in a fight/argument.

    May 11, 2008