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1. jackstraws(used with a sing. verb) A game played with a pile of straws or thin sticks, with the players attempting in turn to remove a single stick without disturbing the others.
2. One of the straws or sticks used in this game.
1. (Games, other than specified) a thin strip of wood used in the game of spillikins
2. informal an insignificant person
1. one of the thin strips of wood or other material used in jackstraws.
2. jackstraws, (used with a sing. v.) a game in which piled jackstraws must be picked up, one by one, without disturbing the heap.
[1590–1600; earlier, scarecrow, after Jack Straw, name or nickname of one of the leaders of the rebellion headed by Wat Tyler in 1381 in England]