scrag end

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scrag end (countable and uncountable, plural scrag ends)

  1. A cheap primal cut of lamb or mutton that comes from the forepart of the neck and is typically used in soups or stews.
  2. The scraps of something; the leftover bits.
    • 1984, Rory Barnes, The Bomb-monger's Daughter, page 198:
      By classifying van Niekerk's food on a par with scrag ends of cheese and half-tins of sardines, we managed to eat a surprising number of omelets of a surprising number of varieties: caviare omelet, grouse omelet, roll-mop omelet, almost anything that could be chopped up and served between folds of egg was added to the list .
    • 2003, Antiquarian Book Monthly - Volume 30, page 14:
      Perhaps they did not get rid of scrag ends, the damaged notes that are kept in bank tills.
  3. The less desirable part of something.
    • 1936, Elizabeth Maury Coombs, Cardinal Sins, page 27:
      He makes strong rope and may you be hanged in the scrag end of it!
    • 1992, Jody Lynn Nye, The Dragonlover's Guide to Pern, page 101:
      The Lord Holders send the scrag ends of their own herds for the dragons' herds.
    • 2014, Peter Hennessy, The Secret State: Preparing For The Worst 1945, page 2010:
      The scrag end of Europe!
  4. A person who is old and weak or useless.
    • 1945, Harry C. Jones, Ben Jones: a great co-operator : his life according to his son, page 122:
      One of his favourite " tips " to me was " Pay for brains, my boy, let the others have the scrag ends, and always let your vehicles be an advertisement to your Stores "
    • 2016, Paul Finch, The Incident at North Shore:
      "Don't tell me," Lewton said through his open window. “Pugh wants us to pick up the scrag ends?”