ham


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Ham,

in the Bible, son of Noah. In biblical ethnography, Ham is the father of the nations Cush, Mizraim, Phut, and Canaan. In a story separate from the flood narrative, the legend related in the Book of Genesis and in the Qur'an suggests that Canaan was a son of Noah. The "Land of Ham" is a designation for Egypt in the Psalms. The Hamitic languagesHamitic languages,
subfamily of the Hamito-Semitic family of languages, a now-abandoned system of classification for languages of N Africa and SW Asia. The Egyptian, Berber, Cushitic, and (sometimes) Chadic languages were formerly classified as Hamitic languages. See Afroasiatic languages.
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 were named after this son of Noah.

ham,

hind leg of a hog above the hock joint, prepared for food by curing or smoking. Ham is one of the earliest of preserved meats; it is now a leading product of the meatpacking industry. The flavor and quality of ham depend on the age, condition, and feeding of the swine and on the smoke used in curing. The Westphalian hams of Germany are smoked with juniper brush; birchwood also is used in N Europe; hickory is favored in the United States. The delicate flavor of the relatively lean Smithfield hams of Virginia is attributed in part to the roots, acorns, and nuts upon which the hogs feed. The major consumers of ham are Denmark, Germany, and the United States.

ham

1
1. the part of the hindquarters of a pig or similar animal between the hock and the hip
2. Informal
a. the back of the leg above the knee
b. the space or area behind the knee
3. Needlework a cushion used for moulding curves

ham

2
Theatre informal
a. an actor who overacts or relies on stock gestures or mannerisms
b. overacting or clumsy acting
c. (as modifier): a ham actor

ham

An amateur radio operator. The term's origin is uncertain, but most likely came from early, pre-radio days, when Morse-code operators were referred to as "ham-fisted" and called "hams." Anecdote places the origin as the first initials of "Hertz," "Ampere" and "Marconi," the originators of radio technology, but the term was used before Marconi's time. See amateur radio.
References in classic literature ?
Then the cat thanked them for the ham, and gave them a pocket- handkerchief and a comb, and told them that when the witch pursued them, as she certainly would, all they had to do was to throw the handkerchief on the ground and run as fast as they could.
I have served you all these years and you never even threw me a bone, but the dear children gave me their own piece of ham.
Smallweed, compelling the attendance of the waitress with one hitch of his eyelash, instantly replies as follows: "Four veals and hams is three, and four potatoes is three and four, and one summer cabbage is three and six, and three marrows is four and six, and six breads is five, and three Cheshires is five and three, and four half-pints of half-and-half is six and three, and four small rums is eight and three, and three Pollys is eight and six.
I shall take a mere mouthful of ham and a glass of ale," he said, reassuringly.
The ladies at Ham Farm practiced the pious observance of the evening on this plan.
When she thus claimed his attention the six pieces of ham were arranged as follows in her plate: Two pieces were placed opposite each other, and four pieces were ranged perpendicularly under them.
I walked many miles through the noble park, over the commons of Ham and Wimbledon, and one day as far as that of Esher, where I was forcibly reminded of a service we once rendered to a distinguished resident in this delightful locality.
At eight o'clock, the shelves being taken down and put away and the tables joined together, everybody sat down to the tea, coffee, bread, butter, salmon, shad, liver, steak, potatoes, pickles, ham, chops, black-puddings, and sausages, all over again.
It was a substantial meal; for, over and above the ordinary tea equipage, the board creaked beneath the weight of a jolly round of beef, a ham of the first magnitude, and sundry towers of buttered Yorkshire cake, piled slice upon slice in most alluring order.
Young John was some time absent, and, when he came back, showed that he had been outside by bringing with him fresh butter in a cabbage leaf, some thin slices of boiled ham in another cabbage leaf, and a little basket of water-cresses and salad herbs.
The tea-things, including a bottle of rather suspicious character and a cold knuckle of ham, were set forth upon a drum, covered with a white napkin; and there, as if at the most convenient round-table in all the world, sat this roving lady, taking her tea and enjoying the prospect.
there sat Queequeg, altogether cool and self-collected; right in the middle of the room; squatting on his hams, and holding Yojo on top of his head.