Meaning of Spring-heeled Jack in English:

Spring-heeled Jack


(also Spring-heel Jack)
  • A legendary figure with an exceptional ability in running and jumping, enabling him to escape from the scene of various robberies and assaults; (in later use) a highwayman.

    The first sighting of this putative figure was reported in London in 1837 and he allegedly appeared numerous times until the early 20th century; he was never apprehended. He was particularly associated with attacks on coaches, or for appearing in gentlemanly disguise to young women and then frightening them by revealing his claw-like hands and fiery breath.


Mid 19th century; earliest use found in Penny Satirist.