• adjective worn out, exhausted. The second of these essentially British terms has been adopted in the USA since the 1950s. They are normally applied to machines, particularly cars, although they derive originally from the idea of a person debilitated by the clap (venereal disease). As the origin has been forgotten, the terms are now colloquial rather than vulgar.
  • adjective infected with venereal disease, suffering from gonorrhoea. These rather old-fashioned forms have largely been replaced by ‘got the clap’.