jackstraws

jackstraw

[jak-straw]
noun
1.
one of a group of strips of wood or similar objects, as straws or toothpicks, used in the game of jackstraws.
2.
jackstraws, (used with a singular verb) a game in which players compete in picking up, one by one, as many jackstraws as possible without disturbing the heap.
3.
Obsolete.
a.
a straw-stuffed figure of a man; scarecrow; straw man.
b.
an insignificant person.

Origin:
1590–1600; after Jack Straw, name or nickname of one of the leaders of the rebellion headed by Wat Tyler in 1381 in England

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Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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Collins
World English Dictionary
jackstraws (ˈdʒækˌstrɔːz)
 
n
(functioning as singular) another name for spillikins

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 10th Edition
2009 © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009
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Encyclopedia Britannica
Encyclopedia

jackstraws

game of skill, played by both children and adults, with thin wooden sticks or with straws or matches. In the early 18th century sticks were made of ivory or bone; later they were made of wood or plastic.

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Encyclopedia Britannica, 2008. Encyclopedia Britannica Online.
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