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3 definitions found
 for Booby hatch
From The Collaborative International Dictionary of English v.0.48 :

  Hatch \Hatch\, n. [OE. hacche, AS. h[ae]c, cf. haca the bar of a
     door, D. hek gate, Sw. h[aum]ck coop, rack, Dan. hekke
     manger, rack. Prob. akin to E. hook, and first used of
     something made of pieces fastened together. Cf. Heck,
     Hack a frame.]
     1. A door with an opening over it; a half door, sometimes set
        with spikes on the upper edge.
        [1913 Webster]
              In at the window, or else o'er the hatch. --Shak.
        [1913 Webster]
     2. A frame or weir in a river, for catching fish.
        [1913 Webster]
     3. A flood gate; a sluice gate. --Ainsworth.
        [1913 Webster]
     4. A bedstead. [Scot.] --Sir W. Scott.
        [1913 Webster]
     5. An opening in the deck of a vessel or floor of a warehouse
        which serves as a passageway or hoistway; a hatchway;
        also; a cover or door, or one of the covers used in
        closing such an opening.
        [1913 Webster]
     6. (Mining) An opening into, or in search of, a mine.
        [1913 Webster]
     Booby hatch, Buttery hatch, Companion hatch, etc. See
        under Booby, Buttery, etc.
     To batten down the hatches (Naut.), to lay tarpaulins over
        them, and secure them with battens.
     To be under hatches, to be confined below in a vessel; to
        be under arrest, or in slavery, distress, etc.
        [1913 Webster]

From The Collaborative International Dictionary of English v.0.48 :

  Booby \Boo"by\ (b[=oo]"b[y^]), n.; pl. Boobies (-b[i^]z). [Sp.
     bobo dunce, idiot; cf. L. balbus stammering, E. barbarous.]
     [1913 Webster]
     1. A dunce; a stupid fellow.
        [1913 Webster]
     2. (Zool.)
        (a) A swimming bird ({Sula fiber or Sula sula) related
            to the common gannet, and found in the West Indies,
            nesting on the bare rocks. It is so called on account
            of its apparent stupidity -- unafraid of men, it
            allows itself to be caught by a simple and undisguised
            approach. The name is also sometimes applied to other
            species of gannets; as, Sula piscator, the
            red-footed booby; and Sula nebouxii, the
            blue-footed booby.
        (b) A species of penguin of the antarctic seas.
            [1913 Webster]
     Booby hatch
        (a) (Naut.), a kind of wooden hood over a hatch, readily
        (b), an insane asylum. [Colloq.]
     Booby hut, a carriage body put upon sleigh runners. [Local,
        U. S.] --Bartlett.
     Booby hutch, a clumsy covered carriage or seat, used in the
        eastern part of England. --Forby.
     Booby prize, an award for the poorest performance in a
        competition; hence, metaphorically, the recognition of a
        strikingly inferior or incompetent performance.
     Booby trap
        (a), a schoolboy's practical joke, as a shower bath when a
            door is opened.
        (b), any concealed device causing surprise or injury when
            a usually harmless object is touched; -- in military
            operations, typically containing an explosive charge.
            [1913 Webster +PJC]

From WordNet (r) 3.0 (2006) :

  booby hatch
      n 1: pejorative terms for an insane asylum [syn: Bedlam,
           booby hatch, crazy house, cuckoo's nest, funny
           farm, funny house, loony bin, madhouse, nut house,
           nuthouse, sanatorium, snake pit]

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