jerrybuild

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English[edit]

Verb[edit]

jerrybuild ‎(third-person singular simple present jerrybuilds, present participle jerrybuilding, simple past and past participle jerrybuilt)

  1. To assemble a project in a hasty, low-quality manner, especially when cheap, low-quality and/or inappropriate materials are used.
    • 1938, Xavier Herbert, Capricornia, New York: D. Appleton-Century, 1943, Chapter IX, p. 154-5, [1]
      It was a queer-looking hovel, built of galvanised iron and kerosene-cans and bark and saplings and bamboo, according to no definite plan, and obviously, to knowing eyes, by one of those masters of the craft of jerry-building []
    • 1968, Barbara Hardy, Tellers and Listeners: The Narrative Imagination, London: Bloomsbury, 2013, Chapter 2, p. 49, [2]
      If we look at some of the stories of R. D. Laing's patients in The Politics of Experience it looks as if schizophrenia jerrybuilds a shaky structure of passion and freedom which depends for existence on negation of control and conscious scruple.
    • 1999, John Vernon, A Book of Reasons, New York: Houghton Mifflin, Chapter III, p. 110, [3]
      Evolution, for example, isn't rational—and it jerry-builds our bodies.
    • 2012, Jerry White, A Great and Monstrous Thing: London in the Eighteenth Century, Harvard University Press, 2013, Part One, Chapter I, p. 28,
      Little wonder that corners were cut, bad materials made do for good and jerry-building was one of the curses of the age.
  2. To assemble a structure in such an unsafe manner that it is doomed to collapse.
  3. To repair a structure in one of the above manners.

Usage notes[edit]

This term generally refers only to inanimate objects. Devices built or repaired in the above manner are said to be jerryrigged.