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sneck, n.1

Brit. /snɛk/
U.S. /snɛk/
Scottish /snɛk/
Forms:  α. ME snekke, ME snekk, ME–16, 18 snek, ME–15 sneke; 15– sneck, 16 snecke; 16, 18 snack; 17 snake. β. 17– snick.(Show Less)
Frequency (in current use): 
Etymology: Of obscure origin: compare snatch n. 1.
Chiefly Sc. and north. dial.

 a. The latch of a door or gate; the lever which raises the bar of a latch; †a catch (cf. 2a).

1324   Accts. Exchequer King's Remembrancer (P.R.O.: E101/165/1) m. 4,   Pro xxviij snekkes cum xxviij stapulis ad tenendum trendles ligni pro springaldis tendendis.
1419   in J. T. Fowler Memorials Church SS. Peter & Wilfrid, Ripon (1888) III. 147   Et in j snek ad ostium pulpiti, 1d.
c1440   Promptorium Parvulorum 461/2   Snekke, or latche, clitorium, pessulum.
a1500  (▸a1460)    Towneley Plays (1994) I. xiii. 139   Mak. Good wyff, open the hek!.. Vxor. I may thole the dray the snek.
1530   J. Palsgrave Lesclarcissement 272/1   Sneke, latche, locquet, clicquette.
1560   Extr. Burgh Rec. Peebles (1872) 258   To vphald substantiousle thair portis in..stapillis, snekkis and all irne graith necessare.
1600   in J. Barmby Churchwardens' Accts. Pittington (1888) 133   For mending the North church gate, and also an iron sneck.
1638   in J. Barmby Churchwardens' Accts. Pittington (1888) 302   A snecke for the ministers sette.
c1725   in J. J. Vernon Parish of Hawick (1900) 80   Paid for 2 Snecks for Quire doore.
1770   P. Forbes Jrnls. Episcopal Visitations (1886) 303   Any one, by Night or by Day, can lift the Sneck and come in.
1816   Scott Antiquary III. iii. 70   The sneck was drawn, and the Countess..entered my dwelling.
1853   G. J. Cayley Las Alforjas II. 216   Sometimes the demons will undo the sneck of the gate.
1885   J. Runciman Skippers & Shellbacks 50   The old man lifted the ‘sneck’ quickly and caught us.
1786   R. Burns Poems & Songs (1968) I. 104   When click! the string the snick did draw.
1889   A. Munro Siren Casket 169   He raised the snick Of Allan's cottage door.

1324—1889(Hide quotations)


 b. to draw a sneck , to act cunningly or stealthily.

a1500   in Ratis Raving 89   Thar word is fyrst in awdiens, With fenȝeand falsat ay reddy To draw a snek rycht subtely.
1786   R. Burns Poems & Songs (1968) I. 242,   I ken, he weel a snick can draw, When simple bodies let him.

a1500—1786(Hide quotations)


 c. on the sneck, latched. So off the sneck.

1823   Scott St. Ronan's Well III. ii. 31   I'se warrant it a twa-handed ghaist, and the door left on the sneck.
1893   R. L. Stevenson Catriona xv. 167   The door was on the sneck that day.
1897   S. R. Crockett Lads' Love iv. 43   Then..leave the lang window o' the ben room off the sneck, after the lairds are awa'.

1823—1897(Hide quotations)

 2. techn.

 a. A catch or device for holding the lever of a spinning-machine.

1825   ‘J. Nicholson’ Operative Mechanic 426   When in geer they [i.e. levers] are held firm by the sneck.
1825   ‘J. Nicholson’ Operative Mechanic 426   The machine is put in motion by raising the main lever into the sneck by hand.

1825—1825(Hide quotations)


 b. (See quot. 1883.)

1883   W. S. Gresley Gloss. Terms Coal Mining 229   Snecks, appliances for diverting wagons from the main line into a siding.

1883—1883(Hide quotations)


 3. dial. or techn. in various senses (see quots.).

1810   S. Smith Agric. Surv. Galloway 86   Besides the improvement of locked tops [in stone walls], he invented also snecks or hudds, i.e. spaces built single at short intervals.
1828   W. Carr Dial. Craven (ed. 2)    Sneck, a small piece or tongue of land, abutting on or intersecting an adjoining field.
1883   W. S. Gresley Gloss. Terms Coal Mining 229   Sneck, a carving [= air-way].

1810—1883(Hide quotations)



 C1. General attrib.The Eng. Dial. Dict. contains a number of other examples.

  sneck-fastening   n.

1844   H. Stephens Bk. of Farm I. 204,   10 Pairs of crooks and bands for feeding-holes. 10 Sneck-fastenings for ditto.

1844—1844(Hide quotations)


  sneck-lock   n.

1570   in J. Raine Wills & Inventories N. Counties Eng. (1835) I. 312,   I do geve vnto An Jaxssonn one woode Cheast which haithe a sneck locke.

1570—1570(Hide quotations)


  sneck-band   n. (see quot. 1828).

14..   in T. Wright & R. P. Wülcker Anglo-Saxon & Old Eng. Vocab. (1884) I. 733   Hec mastiga, a snek~bank [? read -band]. Hic gumfus, a dorbande.
1828   W. Carr Dial. Craven (ed. 2)    Sneck-band, the string fastened to the latch, and passed through a hole to the outside of the door.
1855   E. Waugh Sketches Lancs. Life 106   The door is still opened from without by a ‘sneck-bant’.

14..—1855(Hide quotations)


  sneck-bend   n. a form of fish-hook (see quots.).

1816   G. C. Bainbridge Fly Fisher's Guide 31   The Sneckbend, as it is commonly called, diverges from the parallel lines from the bend upwards.
1856   ‘Stonehenge’ Man. Brit. Rural Sports i. v. ii. 235   Many Scotchmen use what is called the sneckbend, differing slightly from both of the above [hooks], in being made of a more square shape.

1816—1856(Hide quotations)


  sneck posset   n. a cold reception or greeting; a discharge or dismissal.

1876   J. Richardson Cummerland Talk 2nd Ser. 65   A sneck posset I gat.
1885   H. Caine Shadow of Crime 8   He had his own reasons for not quitting Wythburn after he had received his very unequivocal ‘sneck posset’.

1876—1885(Hide quotations)


  sneck-string   n. a sneck-band.

1758   W. Reckitt Jrnl. (1799) 59   They did not so much as pull in their sneck-string when they went to bed and had neither lock nor bar.

1758—1758(Hide quotations)