Top hole

Posted by John Horlivy on March 25, 2003

Dorothy Sayers's character Lord Peter Wimsey had a pechant for saying "Top hole!" when most of us would say "Top notch!" Assuming a notch is not a hole, I imagine that there is some sort of game or competitive event--probably British--that marks rank with a dowel on a board punctured with a verticle set of holes. Am I right? If so, what is the game? I suspect British origin for "top hole" because I have never heard the phrase here in America, and the only speaker I have ever heard use it is the famous fictive Brit, Lord Peter.