A disagreeable, ill-tempered person, male or female. Patch
means a fool or gossip; so called from his parti-coloured or patched
dress. A cross-patch is an ill-tempered fool or gossip. Patch,
“fellow,” is common enough; half a dozen examples occur in
Shakespeare, as a “scurvy patch,” a “soldier's patch,” “What patch is
made our porter?” “a crew of patches,” etc.
Cross-patch, draw the latch,
Sit by the fire and spin;
Take a cup, and drink it up,
Then call your neighbours in.
Old Nursery Rhyme.
Source: Dictionary of Phrase and Fable, E. Cobham Brewer, 1894
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