Supernaculum

Definitions

  • Webster's Revised Unabridged Dictionary
    • Supernaculum A kind of mock Latin term intended to mean, upon the nail; -- used formerly by topers. "Drinking super nagulum supernaculum ], a device of drinking, new come out of France, which is, after a man hath turned up the bottom of the cup, to drop it on his nail and make a pearl with that is left; which if it slide, and he can not make it stand on by reason there is too much, he must drink again for his penance."
    • Supernaculum Good liquor, of which not enough is left to wet one's nail.
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Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia
    • supernaculum On the nail: used of drinking, with reference to the custom of turning the glass over the thumb to show that there was only a drop left small enough to rest on the nail: as, to drink supernaculum.
    • n supernaculum Wine good enough to be worth drinking to the bottom; good liquor; hence, anything very fine or enjoyable.
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Chambers's Twentieth Century Dictionary
    • n Supernaculum wine fit to be drunk to the last drop with no heeltaps, anything very choice
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Etymology

Webster's Revised Unabridged Dictionary
NL., from L. super, over + G. nagel, a nail, as of the finger, or a corruption of L. super, and ungulam, claw

Usage

In literature:

Clear off, neat, supernaculum!
"Gargantua and Pantagruel, Complete." by Francois Rabelais
Clear off, neat, supernaculum!
"Gargantua and Pantagruel, Book I." by Francois Rabelais
With agony he had observed that supernaculum was his miserable lot.
"Vivian Grey" by Earl of Beaconsfield, Benjamin Disraeli
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