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Wildcat strike

Posted by James Briggs on May 23, 2003

In Reply to: Wildcat strike posted by Sax on May 23, 2003

: How did the phrase wildcat strike originate? Thank you, Saxon

'Strike' originated as follows. As a guess,'Wildcat' has been added as a suitable adjective to indicate that the strike is not 'official'.

This is another with a nautical background. The Strike in this instance is the one used to strike (lower) the sails on a sailing ship. A crew which was in dispute with an owner simply refused to strike the sails and the ship could not move. The word in this sense was first recorded in 1768