(A). Slang for a house or dwelling, as a “Stocking Crib” (i.e. a hosiery), a “Thimble Crib” (i.e. a silversmith's). Crib is an ox—stall. (Anglo-Saxon, crib, a stall, a bed, etc.)
“Where no oxen are, the crib is clean.”—Prov. xiv. 4.
(A). A petty theft; a literal translation of some foreign work, stealthily employed to save trouble.
“We are glad to turn from the choruses of Æschylus, or the odes of Horace, confected in English verse by some petty scholar, to the original text, and the homely help of a school boy's crib.” — Balzac's Shorter Stories: Prefatory Notice, p.16.
To steal small articles. (Saxon, crybb; Irish, grib; our grab, grapple, grip, gripe, etc.)
Source: Dictionary of Phrase and Fable, E. Cobham Brewer, 1894
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