pandybat

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English[edit]

Etymology[edit]

Seems to have been used in Ireland for much of the 20th century. Since James Joyce cites it in the context of a Catholic school in his novel, A Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man, it may have been a pun on the Latin word pendebat, but was more probably derived from the Latin words pande manum, meaning "hold out your hand".

Noun[edit]

pandybat (plural pandybats)

  1. A stout leather strap reinforced internally with whalebone or even lead and used to inflict punishment, especially by striking the palms of schoolboys.
    • 1916, James Joyce, Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man
      The soutane sleeve swished again as the pandybat was lifted and a loud crashing sound and a fierce maddening tingling burning pain made his hand shrink together []