Reference > Brewer’s Dictionary > Run a Rig (To).

 Run Amuck.Run Riot (To). 
E. Cobham Brewer 1810–1897. Dictionary of Phrase and Fable. 1898.
Run a Rig (To).
To play a trick, to suffer a sportive trick. Thus, John Gilpin, when he set out, “little thought of running such a rig” as he suffered. Florio gives as a meaning of rig, “the tricks of a wanton;” hence frolicsome and deceptive tricks. The rig of a ship means the way it is rigged, hence its appearance; and, as pirates deceive by changing the rig of their vessel, so rig came to mean a trick to deceive, a trick, a frolicsome deception.   1

 Run Amuck.Run Riot (To). 


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