Thursday, December 30, 2004
[It., pl. of spaghetto thin string, twine.]
1. a. A variety of pasta made in long thin strings. Occas., a dish of spaghetti.
1849 E. Acton Mod. Cookery (ed. 8) p. xxxii, Sparghetti [sic] Naples vermicelli. 1888 Mrs. Beeton Bk. Househ. Managem. §2952 Maccheroni, or Spaghetti, a smaller kind of macaroni, generally follows the soup. 1921 F. Swinnerton Coquette ii. xvi. 175 The waitress approached, bearing two large plates piled high with spaghetti. 1931 B. Starke Touch & Go iv. 51 A schoolteacher took us to lunch in Avon and showed us how to manage yards of spaghetti by rolling it up on our forks. 1949 J. More Land of Italy 4 A capacity to eat pasta is an essential requirement. The principal varieties are the rope-like spaghetti of Naples, the pipe-like macaroni, and the omelet-like cannelloni. 1956 N. de la Fère Italian Bouquet vi. 66 He slipped the menu under my eyes. I refused to admit that the only recognisable word was "spaghetti". 1965 C. K. Stead in N.Z. Short Stories (1966) 337 Julian came into Gomeo's and asked for a spaghetti. 1981 M. Nabb Death of Englishman ii. iii. 97 Old men munching slowly at their spaghetti with toothless gums.
b. fig. and transf.
1935 A. Huxley Let. 17 Feb. (1969) 391 Orlo Williams has read every inch of spaghetti that has ever emerged from the Italian presses. 1940 O. Nash Face is Familiar 195 And they give you a look that implies that your spine is spaghetti and your soul is lard. 1946 F. Hamann Air Words 50 Spaghetti, (1) electric wiring; (2) strings of sealing compound. 1960 Cooke & Markus Electronics & Nucleonics Dict. 446/2 Spaghetti, insulating tubing used over bare wires or as a sleeve for holding two or more insulated wires together. The tubing is usually made of varnished cloth or a plastic. 1973 C. Williams Man on Leash (1974) viii. 119 He was always experimenting and lashing up nutty pieces of electronic spaghetti. 1981 T. Barling Bikini Red North xiii. 276 His vasectomy could be reversed. New techniques. "We can join up all that miniature spaghetti with incredible accuracy."
4. attrib. and Comb. spaghetti house, joint, sauce, tongs; spaghetti-like adj.; spaghetti Bolognese, spaghetti served with a sauce of which the principal ingredients are beef and tomato; spaghetti bowl, a network of pipelines constructed to carry materials between petrochemical companies on the Gulf Coast of the U.S.; also transf.; spaghetti junction colloq., a complex junction of roads at different levels; applied spec. to a major interchange on the M6 near Birmingham; also fig.; spaghetti (shoulder) strap, a thin cord-like shoulder strap for a dress or the like; spaghetti tubing colloq., tubular insulation for electrical wire; spaghetti Western, a Western (western n. 4) or film set in the U.S. old west, but made in Italy or by Italians, esp. cheaply.
[1947 L. P. De Gouy Gold Cookery Bk. 760 (heading) Spaghetti alla Bolognese.] 1950 E. David Bk. Mediterranean Food 93 If you are serving the classic spaghetti Bolognese+see that it is highly flavoured. 1973 M. Underwood Reward for Defector vii. 56 [He] reached out for everything he needed to make himself a plateful of spaghetti bolognese.
1962 I. Fleming Spy who loved Me i. ii. 34 Derek took me right across London to a spaghetti house called "The Bamboo".
1900 Ade Fables in Slang 158 He knew his Works were good, because all the Free and Untrammeled Souls in the Spaghetti Joint told him so. 1982 H. Engel Murder on Location (1983) ix. 87, I could see a spaghetti joint across the street.
1971 Evening News (Worcester) 15 Nov. 7/4 Worcester will have its own "spaghetti junction" if the big multi-level interchange is ever constructed in the Arboretum. 1978 Listener 5 Jan. 25/4 We pass abruptly from the proprium to the ordinarium, from the winding country road into a great spaghetti junction of criss-cross melodies. 1980 S. Brett Dead Side of Mike xi. 125 He got held up under the spaghetti junction between the M23 and M25 because of road works.
1979 K. Bonfiglioli After You with Pistol vi. 25 We parted in a spaghetti-like tangle of insincere matiness.
1953 A. Boni Talisman Italian Cook Bk. xiii. 222 (heading) Spaghetti sauce home style. 1968 C. Drummond Death & Leaping Ladies v. 111 He was neatly avoiding spilling spaghetti sauce over a very snappy jacket. 1980 B. Freemantle Charlie Muffin's Uncle Sam vii. 73 The man hadn't changed his shirt. There was spaghetti sauce on the collar.
1972 New Yorker 30 Sept. 81/1 Black cocktail dresses with sparkling spaghetti straps. 1977 Lancashire Life Dec. 104/3 The demure look from Elizabeth Hayes consists of a lace-trimmed polyester satin bedjacket which, when taken off, reveals a sexy nightdress with spaghetti shoulder straps. 1980 Times 12 Feb. 7/5 A natty little camisole top with spaghetti shoulder straps topped with an amazing sort of opened up tube of knitting which seals your arms and then blossoms into a shrug for the back and shoulders. Do not ask me how it is done.
1972 House & Garden Feb. 78/1 Spaghetti tongs, 85p. 1977 E. McBain Long Time no See iii. 32 Knives and forks piled haphazardly, paper napkins, spaghetti tongs, a corkscrew.
1922 Science & Invention Mag. May (Advt., rear cover), Spaghetti Tubing, black or yellow in 2 1 / 2 -ft. lengths+18 cents per length. 1969 M. Pei Words in Sheep's Clothing (1970) iii. 22 "Spaghetti Western" and "Sukiyaki Western" are terms applied to cheap Westerns produced in Italy and Japan. 1973 J. Susann Once is not Enough i. 34 It started with the flop of Melba's picture. When your kid is busted into pieces, you can't worry about a spaghetti western. 1977 G. Marton Alarum 56, I wanted to see a Spaghetti Western movie.
Posted by Peter at 2:41 PM