billingsgate


Also found in: Thesaurus, Encyclopedia, Wikipedia.

bil·lings·gate

 (bĭl′ĭngz-gāt′, -gĭt)
n.
Foul, abusive language.

[After Billingsgate, a former fish market in London, England.]

Billingsgate

(ˈbɪlɪŋɡzˌɡeɪt)
n
(Placename) the largest fish market in London, on the N bank of the River Thames; moved to new site at Canary Wharf in 1982 and the former building converted into offices

billingsgate

(ˈbɪlɪŋzˌɡeɪt)
n
obscene or abusive language
[C17: after Billingsgate, which was notorious for such language]

bil•lings•gate

(ˈbɪl ɪŋzˌgeɪt; esp. Brit. -gɪt)

n.
coarse or vulgar abusive language.
[1645–55; orig. the kind of speech said to be heard at Billingsgate, a London fish market at the gate of the same name]

billingsgate

coarse, vulgar, violent, or abusive language. [Allusion to the scurrilous language used in Billingsgate market, London.]
See also: Language
ThesaurusAntonymsRelated WordsSynonymsLegend:
Noun1.billingsgate - foul-mouthed or obscene abusebillingsgate - foul-mouthed or obscene abuse  
contumely, insult, revilement, vilification, abuse - a rude expression intended to offend or hurt; "when a student made a stupid mistake he spared them no abuse"; "they yelled insults at the visiting team"

billingsgate

noun
References in classic literature ?
Mrs Western, on her first arrival at her brother's lodging, began to set forth the great honours and advantages which would accrue to the family by the match with Lord Fellamar, which her niece had absolutely refused; in which refusal, when the squire took the part of his daughter, she fell immediately into the most violent passion, and so irritated and provoked the squire, that neither his patience nor his prudence could bear it any longer; upon which there ensued between them both so warm a bout at altercation, that perhaps the regions of Billingsgate never equalled it.
He would have insulted and taunted them, reviling in the jungle Billingsgate he knew so well; but now he sat silent out of Tantor's reach and upon his handsome face was an expression of deep sorrow and pity, for of all the jungle folk Tarzan loved Tantor the best.
Leach laughed and hurled more of his Telegraph Hill Billingsgate, and before either he or I knew what had happened, his right arm had been ripped open from elbow to wrist by a quick slash of the knife.
There's a pillau, Joseph, just as you like it, and Papa has brought home the best turbot in Billingsgate.
Old London Bridge was soon passed, and old Billingsgate market with its oyster-boats and Dutchmen, and the White Tower and Traitor's Gate, and we were in among the tiers of shipping.
Wyeth would fain have slipped by this cavalcade unnoticed; but the river, at this place, was not more than ninety yards across; he was perceived, therefore, and hailed by the vagabond warriors, and, we presume, in no very choice language; for, among their other accomplishments, the Crows are famed for possessing a Billingsgate vocabulary of unrivalled opulence, and for being by no means sparing of it whenever an occasion offers.
They talk forever and forever, and that is the kind of billingsgate they use.
His growls and roars were incessant and horrible and all the time Tarzan sat grinning down upon him, taunting him in jungle billingsgate for his inability to reach him and mentally exulting that always Numa was wasting his already waning strength.
From thence I crossed and turned through so many ways and turnings, that I could never tell which way it was, not where I went; for I felt not the ground I stepped on, and the farther I was out of danger, the faster I went, till, tired and out of breath, I was forced to sit down on a little bench at a door, and then I began to recover, and found I was got into Thames Street, near Billingsgate.
With intervals of Marshalsea lounging, and Mrs Bangham succession, his small second mother, aided by her trusty friend, got him into a warehouse, into a market garden, into the hop trade, into the law again, into an auctioneers, into a brewery, into a stockbroker's, into the law again, into a coach office, into a waggon office, into the law again, into a general dealer's, into a distillery, into the law again, into a wool house, into a dry goods house, into the Billingsgate trade, into the foreign fruit trade, and into the docks.
And so Taug charged and bellowed like a bull, and Tarzan of the Apes danced lightly to this side and that, hurling jungle billingsgate at his foe, the while he nicked him now and again with his knife.
He is proposing closure of the meat and fish markets at Smithfield and Billingsgate, and designation of the three remaining markets, Western International, Spitalfields and New Covent Garden, as west, east and central respectively.