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[h]Posted - 13 Jul 2007 : 09:56:57[/h] Scotch?
[h]Posted - 13 Jul 2007 : 10:35:04[/h] Just thoughts.
For me there is a subtle difference between these. For me "Courage" or "balls" is used to describe a cool and calculated taking of a risk. Whereas "bottle" is used (more frequently) to describe an adrenaline, alcohol or poorly-considered taking of a risk.
[h]Posted - 13 Jul 2007 : 10:57:12 [/h] But "Lost his bottle", means he has decided better of it regardless of the length of time involved.
"He stood up to the thug, but when it came to it, he lost his bottle"
"He was booked to perform back in March, but by the time it got to June he had lost his bottle"
Bob in Wales
[h]Posted - 13 Jul 2007 : 10:59:41[/h] "He bottled out" also means the same thing.
[h]Posted - 13 Jul 2007 : 21:46:38[/h] I don't believe I've ever heard this expression here in the US. "BOTTOMED" out, yes -- but it means something else. This is really new to me. "He lost his bottle" means the person misplaced the fancy water for which he paid a dollar and a half.
[h]Posted - 14 Jul 2007 : 18:21:24[/h] Except, I gather, as of recently in New York?
[h]Posted - 14 Jul 2007 : 18:55:49[/h] Tony forgive, but elucidate
[h]Posted - 15 Jul 2007 : 10:19:51[/h] Well, I heard last week that due to the exceptionally hot weather in N.Y. there has been a massive increase in the amount of bottled water being drunk, which has led to an exceptional amount of plastic going into landfill, which has led to the Mayor heading a campaign to encourage New Yorkers to drink the perfectly palatable tap water instead...a campaign which it was said is also taking place on the west coast somewhere...possibly California.
I assumed that if I knew about this in my backwater in Wales, that all you folks over there must know about it!
[h]Posted - 12 Oct 2007 : 19:38:04[/h] I have heard it said that 'bottle' in this context is short for 'bottle and glass', a Cockney rhyming slang expression for 'arse'. The reference here is seemingly to the loss of control of bodily functions sometimes experienced by someone in the grip of a great fear. I have tried to confirm this in various on-line dictionaries of slang but without success.
Mark (a.k.a. Big Squirrel), It would seem that the simple answer, as mentioned above, would be that ‘bottle’ implied courage as gained from a liquor bottle, as in ‘Dutch courage,’ but I haven’t found any proponents of that view in any source I’ve checked. All sources seem to say that it is related to the rhyming slang ‘bottle and glass’ for ‘arse’ and some say that arse means ‘bottom,’ which also has the meaning ‘firmness of character,’ But the connection from ass/arse to loss of courage that you offer seems fairly reasonable also, and you’ll be happy to hear that the venerable Brewer’s
as well as the Oxford Dictionary of Slang
think so too:
Brewer’s Dictionary of Modern Phrase & Fable
(2002) compiled by Adrian Room
: To lose one’s nerve or ‘bottle.’ The latter word apparently comes from ‘bottle and glass, rhyming slang for ‘arse,’ perhaps with a reference to the temporary incontinence experienced by an apprehensive or ‘shit-scared’ person.
Oxford Dictionary of Slang
(1998) by John Ayto
(1958) British: Probably from obsolete slang no bottle
no good, useless, but often popularly associated with rhyming slang bottle and glass
arse, and other similar expressions, perhaps with the connotation (in phrase ‘lose one’s bottle’) of temporary incontinence associated with extreme fear. “The government is losing its bottle and is using ‘concern for environment’ as something of an excuse to renege on promises and punish the motorist.”—S. Dyer, 1991
(1979) British: From bottle
courage. “Why did Ken Livingstone ‘bottle out’ and vote to set a legal GLC [[ground level concentration]] rate?”—Times
Here is what some others had to say about BOTTLE
Cassell’s Dictionary of Slang
(2005) by Jonathon Green
noun: 2) [1910s and still in use] Courage, bravery; thus has your bottle fallen out
? are you afraid? [abbreviation of ‘bottle and glass’ [[the rhyming slang for ‘the buttocks’]] which in turn, plays on the 18th-century Standard English ‘bottom
,’ character]. 5) [2000s] A person, usually in a derogatory sense.
Oxford Dictionary of Rhyming Slang
(2002) by John Ayto
[[under the heading ‘Courage and its Lack’]]: Metaphors don’t get much more unheroic than bottle
, which has been used for ‘courage’ in British slang since at least the 1950s, and came to a wider public (mainly via television crime dramas) in the mid-1970s. Its origins are still in dispute, but one school of thought makes it a reduction of ‘bottle and glass,’ rhyming slang for arse
. Proponents of this point to the metaphorical use of bottom
for ‘firmness of character’ or ‘staying power’ since the late 18th century.
A Dictionary of Slang and Unconventional English
(2002) by Eric Partridge, edited by Paul Beale
noun: 4) Short for bottle and glass
[[rhyming slang]], arse, low. 20th century. Especially, in the later 20th century sense, ‘Spirts, guts, courage . . . it’s the worst that could be said about you, that you had lost your bottle.’ (Tony Park, The Plough Boy
Oxford English Dictionary
In various slang
(a) NO BOTTLE
noun: No good; bad(ly), useless(ly).
<1846 “She thought it would be NO BOTTLE, cos her rival could go in a buster.”—‘Swell’s Night Guide,’ page 76>
<1931 “When he got up the steps, he had a mouthpiece who was NO BOTTLE.”—W.F. Brown in ‘Police Journal,’ October, page 501>
noun: Courage, spirit, ‘guts’; especially
in phrase to lose one's bottle
, to lose one's nerve. This use probably derives from the phrase no bottle
‘no good, useless’ (sense (a) above). It is however often popularly associated with the rhyming slang term bottle and glass
= ‘arse’ and other similar expressions.
Ken G – October 12, 2007
<1958 “We all began to ask each other . . . why he hadn't made a dash for it. ‘What's the matter Frank, YOUR BOTTLE FALLEN OUT?’”—‘Bang to Rights: An Account of Prison Life’ by F. Norman, page 62>
<1965 “It's the worst that could be said about you, that you'd LOST YOUR BOTTLE.”—“Sunday Times,’ 30 May, page 24/3>
<1969 “You've gotta have a helluva LOT OF BOTTLE to do something like that, and I believe that Morrison did it out of sheer contempt.”–‘It,’ 4-17 July, page 11/2>
<1978 “Clowns in the social world of soccer fans . . . aspire to being hooligans but LACK THE ‘BOTTLE’ to succeed in such a role.”—‘Rules of Disorder’ by P. Marsh et al, iii. page 73>
<1982 “Danny's real hard, and got a certain amount of BOTTLE.”—“Old ‘Vengeful’” by A. Price, vii, page 114>
<1985 “I don't think I handled the intrusion so well. I tend to LOSE MY ‘BOTTLE.’—‘T.V. Times,’ 31 August - 6 September, page 17/1>