cat-tongue n, also attrib Also cat’s tongue chiefly Mid Atl coast Cf coon oyster n
A long, narrow oyster n B1; a mass of such oysters cemented together.
1882 NJ Bur. Statistics Labor & Industries Annual Rept. for 1882 243, Where oysters are crowded, and there is a struggle for existence, . . the result is those unnaturally elongated specimens, known in South New Jersey as “stick-ups,” “cat-tongues,” &c., and a still more exaggerated form farther South, known as strap oysters and “coon heels.” 1893 Norfolk Landmark (VA) 26 Jan /4, Some of the local dealers are now getting oysters for their customers, but mostly of “cat tongue” size. 1908 Biloxi Daily Herald (MS) 14 May /1, Over in South Carolina “coon” oysters are called cat tongues. Isn’t it funny how some people do talk? 1912 Green VA Folk-Speech 108, Cat-tongues. . . Very long, slender, small oysters. 1931 Daily Press (Newport News VA) 31 May 16/3, When a “strike” of new oysters has come, the oysters fasten themselves to each other in what oystermen know as a “cat tongue,” tending to smother the oysters at the bottom of the mass. 1970 Morning News (Wilmington DE) 21 Jan 16/2, Some of them [=Chincoteague Bay oysters] are not as well fed as Chesapeake Bay oysters . . and they tend to have long thin, “cats’ tongue” shells. 1995 (1997) Turner Chesapeake Boyhood 162 seVA, Cat-tongue oyster—a group of young oysters, all growing together in a clump with sharp bills, resembling a bunch of razor blades embedded in concrete.