Just For Fun... Cockney Rhyming Slang. - TheBritishBaker Blog at Allrecipes.com - 182299

TheBritishBaker

Just for fun... Cockney Rhyming slang. 
 
Jun. 23, 2010 5:29 pm 
Updated: Jun. 29, 2010 3:51 am

Following on from my last blog about the word differences between US English and British English I thought I would carry the blog on to include some Cockney Rhyming Slang.


Rhyming slang I guess is a form of slang both written and spoken in English, where a word is replaced by a rhyming word.  Typically the last word of a two or maybe even three word phase means something completely different and not always obvious to people who are not familiar with this code.  I must admit this is not something that is spoken in the area that I am from, but I would hear it from time to time on the TV and many times it would take a little while for me to try and get my brain around the word they were referring to….


In Britain the origin of rhyming slang is associated with Cockney speech from the East End of London, who are often well known for having characteristic speech pattern’s and accents.  It’s believed to date from around 1840.  It’s still unknown whether rhyming slang was a game, linguistic accident or a cryptolect developed intentionally to confuse non locals.  If deliberate it may also have been used to maintain a local sense of community.  Its also been suggested that it may have been used by criminals to confuse the Police.


Adam and Eve  (Believe)

Apple and Pears (Stairs)

Ayrton Senna (Tenner – 10 pound note)

Bacon and eggs (Legs)

Bangers and Mash (Cash)

Bees and Honey (Money)

Bended Knees (Cheese)

Big Ben (Ten)

Billy Goat (Coat)

Brass Tacks (Facts)

Bricks and Mortar (Daughter)

Britney Spears (Beers)

Brown Bread (Dead)

Cain and Able (Table)

Calvin Klein (Fine)

Cat and Mouse (House)

Chew the Fat (Chat)

Clickerty Click (Sixty Six)

Clever Mike (Bike)

Currant Bun (Sun)

Danny La Rue (Clue)

Dickory Dock (Clock)

Dog and Bone (Telephone)

Giraffe (Laugh)

Glasgow Ranger (Stranger)

Hey Diddle Diddle (Fiddle)

Mince Pies (Eyes)

Peckham Rye (Tie)

Pork Pies (Lies)

Rock and Roll (Dole)

Rosie Lee (Tea)

Tea Leaf (Thief)

Tommy Tucker (Supper)

Trouble and Strife (Wife)

 
Comments
Jun. 23, 2010 9:41 pm
I'm sorry...I don't get this at all. What are we supposed to figure out?
 
Mrs.S 
Jun. 23, 2010 10:39 pm
Doesn't make sense to me. It goes back to 1840? Then, a modern singer, Britney Spears (Beers)?;Rock and Roll (Dole)?; Pork Pies (Lies)? ~~ I do recognize a few, from childhood "nursery rhymes": Dickory Dock (Clock); Hey Diddle Diddle (Fiddle); Tommy Tucker (Supper); Trouble and Strife (Wife). I'll have to research this. Interesting though! Thanks for another very interesting Blog apple.strudel!
 
Jun. 24, 2010 1:33 am
I get it! But, I'm married to a Brit! It's just a colorful way to spruce up your speech. "let's go to the pub and have a few Britney Spears!" "oh, she's got big mince pies!". etc. What about the bingo numbers at the club, AS? Legs, eleven?
 
Jun. 24, 2010 4:31 am
Lynna, I guess you don't have to figure anything out as such, this is just a list of what some cockney people will say instead of using the words like we do. Eg I am ready for a nice cup of Rosie Lee, personally I think its far easier to say cup of tea, but each to their own. Mrs.S I think the Britany Spears is a new one, but the slang is date to date from the 1800's.
 
Jun. 24, 2010 5:07 am
I don't think it's something to *get*. They're just expressions used in Britain, as we'd say "a cup of joe", meaning coffee, over here.
 
Jun. 24, 2010 5:48 am
I see now....apple.strudel, did you edit the post? I was *sure* when I read it last night it said something along the lines of "how many of these do you know?"...something that led me to think we were supposed to be playing a sort of game.
 
Jun. 24, 2010 7:48 am
Nun's Habits (Rabbits) Ginger Beer (Queer) Butcher's Hook (look) and many, many many more. Where it gets really confusing is that actually the cockneys don't use the second half of the original phrase! So a standard sentence might be: "Go up the apples to Uncle", the listener has to first fill out the sentence in their mind: "Go up the Apples and Pears to Uncle Ned". Then the listener translates the rhymes: "Go up (the) stairs to bed". A frequent expression that you hear all over Britiain is the statemnet "let's have a butcher's at it". This is actually short for "let's have a Butcher's Hook at it" which means "let's have a look at it". It is not tied to 1840, as famous people or events are snapped up and used to great merriment of all concerned. So the principle behind it stems from the 19th century, but usage is always fairly modern. I must cut this reply short as the Trouble is calling me (Trouble = Trouble and Strife = Wife)
 
Jun. 24, 2010 9:58 am
It's good to know that Americans aren't the only ones to trash the English language. This is interesting. Now, if you could revitalize the... limerick? :)
 
Abbey 
Jun. 24, 2010 11:46 am
I've never heard of these before...it makes sense to me but...why? Lol, you're right apple.strudel, to each their own! Fun blogs you have. :)
 
Jun. 25, 2010 4:26 am
Swiss Phil ~ You have a bigger list there than me! Thank you for your comment Mike, yes these are interesting but I am not sure I could get my head around them to use them everyday, even if I wanted to. Abbey ~ I guess some people are brought up speaking this way so its just second nature to them.
 
Jun. 25, 2010 12:07 pm
There's an old movie where the man is talking to a woman this way but I can't remember what the movie was. It may have been a Cary Grant movie but I'm not sure!
 
Jun. 25, 2010 2:26 pm
Yes, dear hubby sometimes uses this with me, in fun, but uses only the first word, to see if I'll catch on....(I usually don't)!
 
Jun. 25, 2010 6:30 pm
It is no odder than some of the expressions in various parts of this country. Used differently, yes, but part of what makes language so much fun! You pick such great topics to blog.
 
BD 
Jun. 25, 2010 7:22 pm
My husband and his guys are always doing cockney rhyming slang! The only one I can think of though is tom tit!!! LOL sorry had too.... hehehe... I'll go slap my wrists now... ;o)
 
Binklet 
Jun. 26, 2010 12:00 am
and don't forget that if you go for a few Britney Spears don't come home Brahms and Listz [pissed ie drunk] or you'll het it in the Gregory Peck [neck] from the trouble and strife and be up and down all night needing a Jimmy (Riddle) [piddle.] Of course you probably stopped off on the way for a Ruby Murray [curry] so you could end up feeling pretty Moby Dick [sick] and in need a pony and trap too!
 
Binklet 
Jun. 26, 2010 12:07 am
oops sorry for the typos - it's dark here. Use your loaf is a common expression in UK meaning think (loaf of bread = head) and people will refer to your barnet (fair = hair) It is not uncommon for university graduates to refer to their degrees as a Douglas (Hurd - 3rd), Desmond (Tutu -2:2 or lower 2nd), Atilla (the Hun - 2:1 or upper second), or Geoff (Hurst - 1st)
 
Jun. 26, 2010 12:54 pm
Yeah, living here for almost a year I've gotten the hang of most words on your last list, but rhyming slang is WAAAY beyond me. The only one I remember is our friends told us about a Strawberry Tart... or was it a Raspberry Tart? Either way, probably not appropriate for polite company.
 
Jun. 27, 2010 10:47 am
Oh yes ... that is a wide-ranging one that has gone all round the world... Raspberry Tart. As in the expression "blow a raspberry" - the unsaid word "Tart" is the rhyme for .... well let's say it starts with an F
 
Linnie 
Jun. 27, 2010 3:26 pm
And Bob's your uncle....the only one I truly 'get'. LOL!
 
Jun. 28, 2010 7:39 am
Living with a brit for over 10 years, this language is second nature to me now. Dont forget Posh and Becks!
 
irishfancy 
Jun. 29, 2010 3:46 am
I was having so much fun with the last blog. Is it still around? Linnie, I live in Ireland and still don't get Bob's your uncle. I know what it means, sort of like "There you are". But it still sounds a bit silly to me.
 
irishfancy 
Jun. 29, 2010 3:51 am
Blowing a raspberry !! LOL Just like a "Bronx Cheer". And it goes back to the last blog about the differences in words :UK/US. Also refered to as just blowing off or trumpeting. If you live in the UK, try watching Loose Women; they are always talking about it, especially Carol McGiffin, who loves to do just that, blow off.
 
 
 
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TheBritishBaker

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A little about me, I am a wife and Mum of two gorgeous boys aged 18 and 23, and now mummy to two adorable English Cocker Spaniel puppies named Brie and Henri. We have been living in the US now for 5 years. (You will also see me on allrecipes.co.uk - AR's UK site). I guess like most other European’s I don’t eat to live, but live to eat!!! One of my great passions in life is food. Good home cooked, fresh produce. Especially if it is sourced locally. I truly believe that it is so important at the end of the day for a family to sit down and eat a home cooked dinner together. I spend a lot of my time in the kitchen now, which always amuses my husband. A few years back we had a small public house and restaurant in the Derbyshire Countryside (England). Never once would I venture in the kitchen. With all those professionals there was certainly no need for an amateur! Should you wish you can contact me at thebritishbaker@mail.com
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