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See also: English
Origin uncertain. It is speculated to relate either to people from England introducing the technique for billiards or bowling in the United States, or perhaps from a particular person with the surname English.
- (US) Spinning or rotary motion given to a ball around the vertical axis, as in billiards or bowling.
- You can't hit it directly, but maybe if you give it some english.
- (figuratively) An unusual or unexpected interpretation of a text or idea, a spin, a nuance.
- 1988, Andre Romelle Young (lyrics and music), “Express Yourself”, in Straight Outta Compton, Ruthless Records, performed by Dr. Dre:
- Some drop science, while I'm dropping english.
- 1993, Thomas Cripps, Making Movies Black, page 94:
- Preston Sturgis in his Sullivan’s Travels (1942) put some english on the idea in a bit about a filthy, defeated, white chaingang that is invited to a rural black church for an evening of old movies.
spinning or rotary motion around the vertical axis