Let me preface this by saying my husband is really good at distracting himself, and sometimes, he distracts me, too. He sent me this link, and I went questing for more.
For the entire book, "The 1811 Dictionary in the Vulgar Tongue" by Francis Grose, visit the lovely Gutenberg Project.
Here are some particular favorites of mine:
ACORN. You will ride a horse foaled by an acorn, i.e. the
gallows, called also the Wooden and Three-legged Mare.
You will be hanged.—See THREE-LEGGED MARE.
ALE POST. A may-pole.
ALL NATIONS. A composition of all the different spirits
sold in a dram-shop, collected in a vessel into which
the drainings of the bottles and quartern pots are emptied.
BABES IN THE WOOD. Criminals in the stocks, or pillory.
BACON FED. Fat, greasy.
BAKERS DOZEN. Fourteen; that number of rolls being allowed
to the purchasers of a dozen. (when did it become thirteen?)
BAPTIZED, OR CHRISTENED. Rum, brandy, or any other
spirits, that have been lowered with water.
FLY-BY-NIGHT. You old fly-by-night; an ancient term of reproach to an old woman, signifying that she was a witch, and alluding to the nocturnal excursions attributed to witches, who were supposed to fly abroad to their meetings, mounted on brooms.
TO FUZZ. To shuffle cards minutely: also, to change the pack.
GOOSECAP. A silly fellow or woman.
And one I wish I could use on my students:
GUM. Abusive language. Come, let us have no more of
I think I might have to peruse this further. Perhaps I need to craft a character from 1811 just so he could say some of these things!