jackstraw

n.

  1. An effigy stuffed with straw; a scarecrow; hence, a man without property or influence.
  2. One of a set of straws of strips of ivory, bone, wood, etc., for playing a child's game, the jackstraws being thrown confusedly together on a table, to be gathered up singly by a hooked instrument, without touching or disturbing the rest of the pile. See Spilikin.