Definition of blackleg in English:

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Pronunciation: /ˈblaklɛɡ/


1British derogatory A person who continues working when fellow workers are on strike: [as modifier]: blackleg labour
More example sentences
  • In response to his letter, I wholeheartedly disagree with his comments about ‘scabs’, ‘non-strikers’ and ‘blacklegs’.
  • There was no violence directed against the many blacklegs who drove buses and engaged in other strike-breaking activities.
  • The marital crisis coincides with a miners' strike in which the men are forced to live off a pittance while blacklegs take over their jobs.
2 [mass noun] An acute infectious bacterial disease of cattle and sheep, causing necrosis in one or more legs.
Example sentences
  • Such other clostridials include black disease, blackleg, braxy, bacterial redwater and tetanus.
  • The researcher said cases of blackleg often increased when animals moved to new pastures.
  • The clinical signs of botulism in cattle are caused by the toxin produced by a bacteria, which is in the same group that causes such familiar diseases as tetanus and blackleg.
3 [mass noun] Any of a number of plant diseases in which part of the stem blackens and decays.
  • A fungal disease of cabbages and related plants (caused by Leptosphaeria, Pleospora, and other genera). A bacterial disease of potatoes (caused by Erwinia carotovora subsp. atroseptica).
Example sentences
  • This will ensure that any future overcoming of resistance does not result in the complete collapse of the cultivar from blackleg disease as now occurs in some field situations.
  • The models revealed telling facts about the spread of anthracnose, blackleg and black spot.
  • Although numerous studies suggest that seedling and adult blackleg resistances are under different genetic controls, many authors have observed a significant correlation between the two.

verb (blacklegs, blacklegging, blacklegged)

[no object] British derogatory
Continue working when one’s fellow workers are on strike.
Example sentences
  • The party's organic hostility to the working class soon proved of value to the bourgeoisie when it blacklegged on the 1980 general strike, which was broken by the government.
  • Second, the left decided to scab and blackleg on the ethnic group, whose struggle is the oldest cause of the left in the region.
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