Definition of eighty-six in English:


(also 86)


[WITH OBJECT]North American
  • 1Eject or bar (someone) from a restaurant, bar, etc.

    ‘they were accused of cheating, and eighty-sixed from their favorite casino’
    • ‘We have 86ed him before for those reasons, so I think it would probably be smarter for us to avoid future incidents.’
    • ‘She wore a wedding dress just for the hell of it and danced and flirted and cussed in French Quarter barrooms until she was eighty-sixed, which was often.’
    • ‘Shortly after the guidebook was published in April, he found himself trashed (by a rival guide) in the local paper, eighty-sixed from a local cantina, and called a ‘hillbilly creep’ via e-mail.’
  • 2Reject, discard, or cancel.

    ‘the passwords will be 86ed by next October’
    • ‘Brian continues to try to eighty-six Michael's practically perfect boyfriend but finds the good doctor can give as good as he gets.’
    • ‘As is everything, which makes the bustling lunch rush a better bet than dinner, when lower turnover can result in dry rice, reheated kafta, or - sorrow of sorrows - an eighty-sixed chicken shawarma.’
    • ‘I don't think that eighty-sixing him from the movie was the right thing to do at all.’
    • ‘She started buying bottled organic milk from a local dairy and eighty-sixed her ‘noxious toilet-bowl cleaner’.’


1930s (as a noun, used in restaurants and bars to indicate that a menu item is unavailable or that a customer is not to be served): perhaps rhyming slang for nix.