Most of it is still in use today, although the meanings in some cases have changed. It is resilient and untameable— the voice of the city.Within the George Harley Mystery books the reader will come across characters speaking thieves’ cant, Polari, Yiddish, rhyming slang and street argot. - Romany: the language of the Romany people (Gypsies).

Weird & Wacky, Copyright © 2020 HowStuffWorks, a division of InfoSpace Holdings, LLC, a System1 Company. “sprucing up” the facts], a fool, a gullible person, a punter [rhy.sl, an absolute certainty [Stone Ginger was a celebrated champion racehorse in New Zealand; the meaning is emphasised by the use of, to be obliged to run away [acting on the lookout’s cry of “stop!”], a substantial meal [its effects on the stomach, especially if it is a rarity], of a prostitute, to work the streets looking for punters [Pol. Andy K I Like Games. Lexicon by Decade: Insults and Compliments of the 1920s The 1920s was a great period of social change. - backslang: a type of slang where the written word is pronounced backwards (e.g. These insults and slang terms provide a window into the real emotions that people were experiencing back then. Pol. Ring a Ding Ding — Used as a way to describe or express that someone had a great time at a party. “My friend here is a cool cat, he’s a big fan of Glenn Miller.”, 12. A study of slang in the Great Depression. Next Last. Italian mangiare, to eat], joe ronce - a ponce (pimp) [rhy.sl see ponce], judy - a woman, a girl [from Punch and Judy], kate and sidney - steak and kidney [rhy.sl], khazi- a toilet [ ? At Capone's Dinner & Show, our staff commonly uses slang terms from the prohibition era. “I heard your father coming home and I had to make tracks.”, 8. from French Alphonse, or possibly pont or pontonnière, a prostitute who works from the arches of a bridge], pooter - a prostitute [ ? Greaseball — This slang word was a way to tell or say that someone that they was unpopular, disreputable, unworthy, etc. An Indo-European language related to Hindustani. Slang is, by … mamzer, bastard], manor - a police district; a policeman’s beat; a wide-boy’s patch [from “Lord of the manor”], meshuggener – crazy, a crazy person [Yid.

moosh, a man], muzzler - a male homosexual [from the muzzle - mouth, hence to fellate], myrna loy - a saveloy [rhy.sl Myrna Loy = saveloy; Myrna Loy - movie star], nanti - not, nothing, none [Pol. ], tub - an omnibus [from its resemblance to a bath tub], tut - (pronounced like put) rubbish, worthless items [probably a corruption of tot, bone as in totter, rag-and-bone man; from German tod, dead], vada - to look at [Pol. its effects], a left-winger, socialist or an opponent of the status quo. We use cookies to personalise content and ads, to provide social media features and to analyse our traffic. - shut up! stone blind, stone-cold sober etc. from British dialect kyte, womb, stomach], lakes - mad [rhy.sl lakes of Killarney = barmy], lavender boy - a male homosexual [ ? It might be used as professional jargon, as an euphemism, or as a way for young people to communicate. ], stripe - to slash with a cut-throat razor, take stoppo - to be obliged to run away [acting on the lookout’s cry of “stop!”], tightener - a substantial meal [its effects on the stomach, especially if it is a rarity], tomfoolery - jewellery [rhy.sl tomfoolery = jewellery], troll - of a prostitute, to work the streets looking for punters [Pol. Also uncooperative, subversive, obstructive [from, tail; tail was a 19C term for a prostitute], Buckingham Palace, London home of the Royal Family.

Cat/Alligator — Used as a way to describe a person who was a fan of swing music. backsl. from Italian seaman sailing from the Guinea Coast], a gentile, a non-Jew [Yid. Slang has been around since the beginning of language. Giggle Juice — The 1930s slang term was used to describe alcohol, often found in illegal speakeasies during the prohibition. bauro, heavy, big], hocus - to incapacitate someone with drugged liquor, homi-poloney - an effeminate male homosexual [Pol. Since the 1930s this has fallen into common usage; although I would imagine that most people would not use it so readily if they knew its origin, gin [“blue” as in miserable; i.e. its effects], boat - the face [rhy.sl boat race = face], bogey - CID detective [“Old Bogey” = the Devil], bolshie - a left-winger, socialist or an opponent of the status quo. The greatest example of this change was the flapper. - Yiddish: the historical language of Ashkenazi Jews, based on German dialect with added words from Hebrew, Polish, French and English. - Polari: theatrical cant first used by actors, circus folk and fairground showmen, and then taken up by the gay subculture. We also share information about your use of our site with our social media, advertising and analytics partners who may combine it with other information that you’ve provided to them or that they’ve collected from your use of their services. from the Cantonese nga pun-yin, opium], people - trustworthy, loyal, safe; able to keep secrets [see staunch], pester up - to pay, to pay up [Rom.

“What’s in this giggle juice, it’s great!”, 2. Italian uomo, man; pollo, chicken], ikey-mo - a Jew [derogatory; from Isaac + Moses], iron - a male homosexual [rhy.sl iron hoof = poof], ixnay - nothing, not at all [backsl. from the Hebrew, ring(s), especially set with gems [from tramp slang. shayner Yid, a beautiful-faced Jew - i.e.

Italian cecare, to seek; uomo, man], cheese it! scheisse, shit], shicer - a lowlife, good-for-nothing [see shice], skimish - beer/alcohol [from Shelta (travellers' language)], smother - an overcoat [ it smothers the wearer, but also ? from shopkeepers’ patter: a bastard—though used as a term of endearment [Yid. ten shillings [bar = £1 sterling; ? I.e. Venetian vardia, a look], vodeodo - money [a playful rendering of dough], whistle - a suit [rhy.sl whistle and flute = suit], wide - sharp-witted, shrewd; also (of clothing) flash, ostentatious [wide awake], wide-boy - petty criminal, wheeler-dealer, minor villain, wind pudding, to eat - to go without food, yok - a gentile, a non-Jew [backsl. 53 Slang Terms by Decade. empty chatter, gossip [the sound made by a hen], shut up! I.e. from Old Dutch, a male homosexual [from the muzzle - mouth, hence to fellate], to be without any visible means of subsistence [so starved the ribs are showing], trustworthy, loyal, safe; able to keep secrets [see, a pimp, a man “living off immoral earnings” [ ?

Nov 8, 2007 #1 So we're playing SOTC, using the world of Crimson Skies. The early 1930s were chaotic years in the United States. As the poet Carl Sandburg once said: “Slang is a language that rolls up its sleeves, spits on its hands and goes to work”, but essentially it is the language of the dispossessed, the marginal. Italian buonanotte, goodnight], bonaroo - wonderful, excellent [Pol. ], shice - nothing, no good [Yid. People were breaking free of the bonds and norms previously held and creating an entirely new way of life. see goy], to look at a watch [the early large pocket watches resembled kettles], = cunt]. schlep, to drag], schmendrik - a clueless mama's boy [Yid. Like most decades, the 1910s had its own particular slang. cor, to steal], claret - blood [its resemblance to red wine]. Some of it originated during World War I. from shopkeepers’ patter: ‘Of course it will, madam’], mamzer - a bastard—though used as a term of endearment [Yid. from the Hebrew goy, a nation], groin/groinage - ring(s), especially set with gems [from tramp slang gravney/grawney, ring], half-a-bar - ten shillings [bar = £1 sterling; ? a pavement artist who draws in coloured chalk [Italian, a pot or pint of beer [“wallop” as in its effects on the drinker], to steal, to cheat [Pol. as in card sharp], , a beautiful-faced Jew - i.e. Slang and the Great Depression . cowson - a general insult, similar to son of a bitch.

from French, , a prostitute who works from the arches of a bridge], a prostitute [ ? crease - to kill [from the body creasing at the waist], dilly boy - a teenage male prostitute [Piccadilly was well-known for its prostitution], dinarly - money [Pol. I.e. “Lou, how’s it going? [a corruption of “cease it!”], chife/chiv - a knife, a razor [Rom.

from Italian seaman sailing from the Guinea Coast], god forbids - children [rhy.sl god forbids = kids], gold watch - whisky [rhy.sl gold watch = scotch], goy - a gentile, a non-Jew [Yid. Spanish borracho, drunkard], brama - a pretty woman [British Raj -Brahma is the supreme God of Hindu mythology], brass - a prostitute [rhy.sl brass nail = tail; tail was a 19C term for a prostitute], bright'un - a gun [from its shiny surface? British Raj—derogatory allusion to the habits of the Khasi people], kibbitz - to offer unwanted advice in a card game [Yid.

Words like these wouldn't be present when society was less-established and people couldn't enjoy the luxuries of staying put. by the Editors of Publications International, Ltd. Prev NEXT .

Italian buono, good], bona nochy - goodnight[Pol. trouble, bother [despite its appearance not a Yiddish word; ? The Wall Street stock-market crash of 1929 precipitated the Great Depression, the worst economic downturn in the history of the United States. “I heard your father coming home and I had to make tracks.” Since the 1930s this has fallen into common usage; although I would imagine that most people would not use it so readily if they knew its origin, bleat - to inform on someone to the Police, blue ruin - gin [“blue” as in miserable; i.e. Many of the phrases have their roots in the vulgar and the profane; but mostly it is a language of rough poetry, inventiveness and humour.In recreating Harley’s world the author has endeavoured to employ the authentic vernacular and idioms of 1930s London.

from the lavender water that they used]. nix; from German nichts, nothing], jane - a prostitute [rhy.sl jane shore = whore; Jane Shore - mistress of Edward IV], jarry - food [Pol.

I.e. nonsense, rubbish, flattery [ ? I.e.

from Rom. stuck adapted to a Yiddish model], schtum - quiet, silent [Yid. “I think that grifter cheated me out of my money!”, 7. The slang of the ’30s was all about the blue collar side of life from alcohol to women, gambling and more. Also uncooperative, subversive, obstructive [from Bolshevik], bona - good, pleasant; very [Pol. 1. 1920's Slang Dictionary . the Editors of Publications International, Ltd. Information about the device's operating system, Information about other identifiers assigned to the device, The IP address from which the device accesses a client's website or mobile application, Information about the user's activity on that device, including web pages and mobile apps visited or used, Information about the geographic location of the device when it accesses a website or mobile application. In the 1930s the Great Depression was just getting it’s steam, the epic American historical film Gone with the Wind was in theaters and radio shows were the popular form of entertainment. Make Tracks — This 1930s slang term was a way to say that a person has/should leave quickly, in a hurry or abruptly. ‘yob’ for ‘boy’). I'll be a monkey's uncle-- sign of disbelief; I don't believe it!

I.e. arris - the behind [rhy.sl aristotle = bottle = bottle and glass = arse], bang your kettle - to look at a watch [the early large pocket watches resembled kettles], barney - a pocket[rhy.sl barney moke = poke], berk - a fool, an incompetent [rhy.sl Berkeley hunt = cunt]. “Timmy’s the new butter and egg man, he’s loaded.”, 4. an overcoat [ it smothers the wearer, but also ? Italian niente, nothing], nark - a police informer [Rom. to incapacitate someone with drugged liquor, an effeminate male homosexual [Pol.

I find myself wanting to swear, but I find myself dissatisfied with using modern common swear words ("Let's fucking go now! Italian, = whore; Jane Shore - mistress of Edward IV], a toilet [ ? from Rom. pesser, pay], plates - feet [rhy.sl plates of meat = feet], ponce - a pimp, a man “living off immoral earnings” [ ? “I don’t know how to tell you this, Anna, but your boyfriend is a greaseball.”, 10. nak, nose], nebbish - a nobody, a loser [Yid.

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