One of the mysteries of the English language finally explained.
1Ham which has been cured or smoked like bacon.
- ‘Fried bread, potatoes, mushrooms, fancy jams, and regional frills such as porridge, black pudding, laverbread, or gammon are provided at the discretion of the proprietor.’
- ‘I asked for roast honey glazed gammon and had a couple of good thick slices.’
- ‘There isn't much on the menu but judging by my gammon steak and chips what is offered is pretty good.’
- ‘He recommends matching it with roast duck, coq-au-vin or baked gammon.’
- ‘There has been a glimmer of reaction to the militant protests of our pig producers and, thankfully, the armed forces are in future to procure all their pork, bacon and gammon from UK producers.’
- ‘Brush the gammon steaks with oil, sprinkle over the pepper and grill for about 5 minutes on each side.’
- ‘Chicken goujons, sausage rolls and turkey gammon roasts are soon to go the way of spaghetti hoops in Hampshire's school kitchens: they will be kicked off the menu.’
- ‘For the main course, Mike couldn't resist gammon steak, eggs and chips and he wasn't disappointed.’
- ‘‘In the menu, we've got things like terrine of gammon, with a fried quail's egg and spiced pineapple pickle,’ he said.’
- ‘Twelve ounce steaks are available, as are moussaka, deep fried scampi and gammon steaks, as well as a choice of reasonably-priced burgers and kebabs.’
- ‘If there is leftover gammon ham, lamb shank, or roast meat around, he suggests you shred it finely and add at the last minute, for the best of all possible borschts.’
- ‘My partner opted for the escalope of gammon, which was served with fried egg - although you can choose pineapple - chips and vegetables.’
- ‘The day's specials included a sweet and sour dish and gammon steak.’
- ‘Half an hour later, I left laden with gammon steaks, beefburgers, bacon, a side of beef, poultry, a bag of aubergines and two dozen eggs - all from local producers.’
- ‘But any piece of boiling ham or gammon will work well.’
- ‘I was seized by a ravenous appetite in the middle of my house-cleaning today and decided to satisfy it by tripping down to one of the local eateries for gammon and chips with all the trimmings.’
- ‘We popped into the Frogshole Farm, asked the barman for the usual, and had two fine gammon steaks bestowed upon us.’
- ‘Angered by what she felt was misleading labelling, she called them and was told the firm had not been able to source enough local gammon so had supplemented supplies with Danish meat.’
- ‘My gammon steak was very thick and moist and the large cut chips were not soggy (despite a good dousing in the vinegar).’
- ‘An ‘old school’ professional butcher, Norman cures his own gammon, and makes all his own pies and sausages.’
- 1.1 The bottom piece of a side of bacon, including a hind leg.
- ‘We take pride in our home dry-cured bacon and gammons.’
- ‘Today, few of us have pans large enough in which to cook a whole gammon, or even an end of gammon on the bone.’
Late 15th century (denoting the haunch of a pig): from Old Northern French gambon, from gambe ‘leg’.
A victory in backgammon (carrying a double score) in which the winner removes all their pieces before the loser has removed any.
- ‘Earlier we mentioned briefly the possibility of gammons and backgammons, where the winner wins twice or three times the stake.’
- ‘Her probability of winning may still be far below 80%, but if she doubles, Player B will gratefully refuse and concede just a single point, rather than the two he would concede if he lost a gammon.’
Defeat (a backgammon opponent) with a gammon.
- ‘Winning the first game 4 points by gammoning on his initial cube was useful and I soon found myself 6-1 on Crawford.’
- ‘If there is a good chance you could be gammoned, be more inclined to pass the double.’
- ‘I am going to get gammoned if I lose this, but I often win too, so I may as well double now.’
- ‘In that story one unlucky player got into the Box at the end of the night, and was allowed stay in for the last three games, despite getting gammoned by everyone the first two.’
- ‘Analogously, it's possible to calculate the chance of gammoning the opponent.’
- ‘I now roll a real caffeine-rush, high-velocity 5-5, closing him out, and gammoning him for the match.’
- ‘He took down the third game, narrowly, and then I almost gammoned him again on the fourth.’
- ‘Players starting with less than 15 checkers in play may still be gammoned or backgammoned.’
- ‘It also penalizes you for losing those same types of games if you get gammoned or bear off only one or two men at the end.’
- ‘On the other hand, you are damaged to a less significant extent when your opponent's 9's hit you and send a third checker back, because getting gammoned costs you no more than losing a single game.’
- ‘In the end if you are unable to take any of your checkers to the home board then you are said to be gammoned which means that your loss is double the stake amount.’
- ‘However, if the loser has not borne off any of his checkers, he is gammoned and loses twice the value of the doubling cube.’
- ‘Sure, I could get gammoned, vaporizing most of the points I spent the day winning, but he still has two open points, and may not be able to get a second man.’
Mid 18th century: apparently from Old English gamen or gamenian (see game), with survival of the -n ending.
nonsense, balderdash, gibberish, claptrap, blarney, blather, blether, moonshineView synonyms
- ‘I wonder you will talk such gammon, I do, indeed!’
- ‘'Come, that's gammon, Pink' said Christian.’
verb[WITH OBJECT]informal, dated
Hoax or deceive (someone).
play a practical joke on, play a joke on, play a jest on, play a prank on, trick, foolView synonyms
- ‘Again and again, he 'gammoned' me and nobody was then game to tell me that I was the unknowing victim of deceptions.’
- ‘"He was always telling interviewers about his people," said the author; "but he gammoned them."’
Early 18th century: origin uncertain; the term was first used as criminals' slang in give gammon to ‘give cover to a pickpocket’ and keep in gammon ‘distract a victim for a pickpocket’.
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