play gooseberry

play gooseberry
Vrb phrs. To be an unwanted, extra person, usually in the company of a courting couple. See 'gooseberry'.

English slang and colloquialisms. 2014.

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Look at other dictionaries:

  • play gooseberry — play ˈgooseberry idiom (BrE) to be a third person with two people who have a romantic relationship and want to be alone together Main entry: ↑gooseberryidiom …   Useful english dictionary

  • play gooseberry — be a gooseberry or play gooseberry British informal to be with two people who love each other and would prefer to be alone together …   English dictionary

  • play gooseberry — vb British to be the unwanted third person present at a romantic assignation, as a chaper one, uninvited guest or unwitting intruder. The expression dates from the 19th century: in the language of par ents and children gooseberry then, as now,… …   Contemporary slang

  • play gooseberry — British, humorous to be with two people who are having a romantic relationship and who would prefer to be alone. Yes, thank you, I d love to go to the cinema, if you two are sure you don t mind me playing gooseberry …   New idioms dictionary

  • gooseberry — [16] Probably, when all is said and done, gooseberry is simply a compound of goose and berry. But no one has ever been able to explain satisfactorily why the gooseberry should have been named after the goose, and there has been no lack of… …   The Hutchinson dictionary of word origins

  • gooseberry — [16] Probably, when all is said and done, gooseberry is simply a compound of goose and berry. But no one has ever been able to explain satisfactorily why the gooseberry should have been named after the goose, and there has been no lack of… …   Word origins

  • gooseberry —    the devil    Not obsolete because the use survives in the expression play gooseberry, to play the devil with a courting couple by keeping them company when they would rather be left alone:     Th match ther wur betwixt a tailor and owd… …   How not to say what you mean: A dictionary of euphemisms

  • gooseberry — goose|ber|ry [ˈguzbəri, ˈgu:z , ˈgu:s US ˈgu:sberi] n plural gooseberries [Date: 1500 1600; Origin: Perhaps from goose + berry] 1.) a small round green fruit that grows on a bush and has a sour taste 2.) be a gooseberry also play gooseberry BrE… …   Dictionary of contemporary English

  • gooseberry — [ˈgʊzb(ə)ri] noun [C] a small green fruit with a sour taste that grows on a bush • be a gooseberry; play gooseberry British informalto be with two people who have a sexual or romantic relationship and want to be alone together[/ex] …   Dictionary for writing and speaking English

  • gooseberry — n British See play gooseberry …   Contemporary slang

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