from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition
- n. A dark, oily, viscous material, consisting mainly of hydrocarbons, produced by the destructive distillation of organic substances such as wood, coal, or peat.
- n. Coal tar.
- n. A solid residue of tobacco smoke containing byproducts of combustion.
- transitive v. To coat with or as if with tar.
- idiom tar and feather To punish (a person) by covering with tar and feathers.
- idiom tar and feather To criticize severely and devastatingly; excoriate.
- idiom tarred with the same brush Having the same faults or bad qualities.
- n. Informal A sailor.
from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License
- n. A black, oily, sticky, viscous substance, consisting mainly of hydrocarbons derived from organic materials such as wood, peat, or coal.
- n. Coal tar.
- n. A solid residual byproduct of tobacco smoke.
- n. A sailor, because of their tarpaulin clothes. Also Jack Tar.
- n. black tar, a form of heroin
- v. To coat with tar.
- n. A program for archiving files, common on Unix.
- n. A file produced by such a program.
- v. To create a tar archive.
from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English
- n. A sailor; a seaman.
- n. A thick, black, viscous liquid obtained by the distillation of wood, coal, etc., and having a varied composition according to the temperature and material employed in obtaining it.
- transitive v. To smear with tar, or as with tar
from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia
- To smear with tar; figuratively, to cover as with tar.
- To incite; provoke; hound.
- n. A small silver coin formerly current on the Malabar coast, especially at Tellicherri and Calicut. Sixteen tars of Calicut equal one fanam; one tar of Tellicherri is equivalent to four reas, and one hundred tars equal one rupee.
- n. A thick dark-colored viscid product obtained by the destructive distillation of organic substances and bituminous minerals, as wood, coal, peat, shale, etc.
- n. A sailor: so called from his tarred clothes, hands, etc. Also Jack Tar.
from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.
- n. a man who serves as a sailor
- v. coat with tar
- n. any of various dark heavy viscid substances obtained as a residue
Acne artificialis is a term applied to an acne or acne-like eruption produced by the ingestion of certain drugs, as the bromides and iodides, and by the external use of tar; this is also called _tar acne_.
The term "tar baby" is widely regarded as a racial slur.
This is not the first time a member of Congress has come under fire for using the term "tar baby."
Some people consider the term "tar baby" to be a racial epithet.
Tweet Massachusetts Governor Mitt Romney is taking flak this week for his use of the term "tar baby" while addressing a group of Iowa Republicans on July 29 in a reference to Boston's troubled Big Dig highway project.
I have also always known the term tar baby to be racist, and unlike Poilievre I had the opposite knowledge of the term to only be a racist one.
Except that Davis Kerry really, really, really should have known, given that almost exactly two years ago to the day, Tony Snow made his grand entrance as White House Press Hack by using the term tar baby not once, but twice, to a resulting shitstorm.
I have never used the term tar baby, have now placed it on my official “do not use” list along with all sorts of other terms, and generally try to be very sensitive to how slurs can figuratively cut and bleed even when used unintentionally.
So if someone asked me whether the use of the term tar baby, in isolation, signified a racist mentality, I really would have to demur.
He regrets that he chose the phrase 'tar baby,' rather than the word 'quagmire.'