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55 Most

Commonly Used
British and
American Slang
Words and Their
Meanings




06.12.2014
Nadia Ilyas
English Idioms, English Vocabulary




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Ive managed to book the best seats at the theatre


for us, this weekend!
Wicked! Thank you. Im really excited!
What do you think wicked means? No, it doesnt
mean evil or bad.

Believe it or not, wicked is actually a slang term


that means Brilliant! or Awesome!
Slang is a type of jargon that originates from various
small groups of people. They tend to come about
from conversation, and people naturally use words
that have a meaning for them, then over time, these
words alter and become slang.
It is probably one of the hardest aspects of the
English language to learn, because there are so
many variations in each small town, let alone in
different English-speaking countries!
People use slang to sound less formal. Slang is
mainly used because it relaxes the mouth, and
allows people to speak in a more comfortable way.
It is a lot easier to use slang than perfect English,
which is probably why its so common!
This blog post will show you some of the most
popular slang terms, but this doesnt cover all of
them! There are just too many! Hopefully the list
below will cover some of the most common ones
that you might hear!

1. UNREAL

Something that is unbelievably cool or brilliant


I love this party, its just unreal!

2. PROPS
This means respect, recognition
I know he failed the test, but youve got to give him
props for trying.

3. KUDOS

Another word for respect, recognition


Kudos for organising this party. Its brilliant!

4. BOTTOM LINE
The main point
The bottom line is we just dont have enough
money to make it work.

5. DISS

When a person disrespects someone else


Stop dissing her behind her back. Show some
respect!

6. DIG
To really like something
Hey, I dig your new style. Where did you buy that
T-shirt?

7. BOBS YOUR UNCLE




This is a well-used phrase in the UK. It is added to


the end of sentences, and means something
like and thats it!
How did you make this cake? Its delicious!
Well, I just mixed in the batter thoroughly,
poured it into a cake pan, baked it for 30 minutes
and Bobs your uncle!

8. BUDGE UP
When you ask someone to move and make space
for you
I want to sit down too, could you budge up a little
please?

9. ACE

This has two meanings, something that


is awesome, really cool
Or to achieve something with perfection, really
easily
Ace! I just got a promotion at work!
Robert aced his physics exam!

10. ALL RIGHT?





This means hello, how are you?


All right?
Good thanks, you all right?

11. FULL OF BEANS


This means to have loads of energy
All the children were full of beans at the party
today. I couldnt get any of them to sit still!

12. BLATANT

Something that is really obvious


Shes blatantly very annoyed, everyone can see it
apart from you.

13. PEAR SHAPED


This means something has become a disaster
I was trying to organise a surprise birthday party for
her, but its all gone pear shaped!

14. PIECE OF CAKE





When someone is boasting or they think something


is extremely easy to do, they would use this
What did you think of the exam? I thought it
was really difficult.
No, it was a piece of cake!

15. BLIMEY

This is an exclamation of surprise


Blimey, look at all this mess here! Id only left the
house for an hour, and look what youve done!

16. BOTCH
There are two ways of using this expression to
botch something up or to do a botch job. They
both mean that the work done was not of a high
standard, or was clumsy workmanship
The builder did a terrible job on the roof. He just
botched it up, and it still leaks every time it rains!

17. CHEERS

Used when drinking with friends to salute or make a


toast (raise your glasses and clink them together)
Cheers everyone! Happy birthday to John!

18. SMASHING
This means something is terrific, brilliant
I had a smashing time on holiday, it was so much
fun!

19. SODS LAW

This is another name for Murphys Law whatever


can go wrong, will go wrong

I wore my pretty new dress, because it was a


sunny day, but as soon as I stepped out of the
house, it started raining, and I got completely
soaked!
Sods Law!

20. CHIN WAG

This means having a nice, long chat with someone.


You can probably tell why!
I saw Mary after such a long time yesterday! We
had a lovely chin wag together, like the good old
days.

21. CHUFFED

Used when someone is really pleased about


something
My mum bought me a fantastic car when I passed
my driving test. I was chuffed to bits!

22. CRAM
This means to study hard in a very short period of
time
I was so busy with my family before the exam, that I
only had three days to cram in all the revision work!

23. NICE ONE





Can be used when someone does something


particularly impressive
I published my first book last year, and Ive
already started working on the sequel!
Nice one! Youre doing really well.

24. CRIKEY
An exclamation of surprise




I went shopping today! (comes in with lots of


bags)
Crikey! Have you spent all of our savings??!!

25. DEAR

Something that is expensive


I avoid going shopping into the town centre
nowadays, everything is so dear!

26. FAFF
This is when someone procrastinates, or wastes
time wondering around
Come on we have to go now. Stop faffing around,
were going to be late!

27. DO

Another word for a party


Are you going to Lizzies birthday do next week?

28. FLOG
To sell something
I managed to flog my car for a really good price!

29. FORTNIGHT

Two weeks. This comes from an abbreviation of


fourteen nights
Ive been really ill for the past fortnight, and still
havent recovered.

30. GOBSMACKED
This means amazed (your gob is your mouth, and if
you smack your gob, it would be out of
amazement!)
I cant believe I passed that exam! I thought I was
going to fail, Im completely gobsmacked!

31. SPLASH OUT

When you spend far too much money


I wanted to give Sarah a special treat for her
birthday, so I splashed out on a very romantic
weekend away.

32. GRUB / NOSH


Both these words mean food
Im going to get some grub for myself from the local
takeaway. Do you want anything?

33. BEES KNEES

Something or someone fabulous, spectacular


You should see my new sound-system, its the
bees knees!
I dont like Harvey very much, he thinks hes the
bees knees!

34. GUTTED
When someone is really upset or disappointed
Im so gutted I failed my driving test, again!

35. PEANUTS

When something is cheap, financially low

I hate my job. I have to work such long hours, and


I get paid peanuts.
You should buy your clothes on-line. You can find
some great designs for peanuts!

36. HAGGLE

To argue over, and try to negotiate the price of


something you want to buy
The last time I went shopping with my mum, she
was haggling for something that was already really
cheap!
I managed to haggle the price of this shirt down
by 25%!

37. JOLLY




You might hear people use this in all sorts of ways,


but basically it means very. So jolly good would
mean very good
Dont worry, I will pay you back before the end
of this month.
I should jolly well think so!

38. THROW A SPANNER IN


THE WORKS
This is an expression that means to wreck
something

I managed to keep the surprise a secret, right up


until the day before my sisters birthday, then he
threw a spanner in the works by telling her!

39. KIP

A short sleep, forty winks, a nap, a power nap, or a


snooze.
Why dont you try and have a kip before everyone
gets here? You wont have time to rest later.

40. WIND UP

This has a couple of meanings. If something you do


is a wind up it means you are making fun of
someone you could be called a wind-up merchant
if you do this.
However, if you are wound up it means you
are annoyed.
John really is a wind-up merchant, but the girl he
was picking on was so gullible!
I was just winding her up for fun, but she took
offence to it and got really angry!

41. MATE
This means friend, chum, pal, or buddy.
Im going to the cinema with my mates tonight.

42. NOT MY CUP OF TEA

This is a common saying which means that


something is not to your liking.
I dont really like this sort of music. Its just not my
cup of tea.

43. PORKIES
This means telling lies. It comes from cockney
rhyming slang. Short for porky pies, meaning pork
pies, which rhymes with lies!
Dont listen to her, shes telling porkies!

44. ROW

This means an argument (rhymes with cow)


My brother had a huge row with his girlfriend
yesterday. Hes really upset!

45. DONKEYS YEARS


If someone says I havent seen you in donkeys
years, it means they havent seen you for a very
long time!
Hi Sarah! What a surprise to see you here. I havent
seen you in donkeys years! How have you been?

46. EASY PEASY

A childish term for something very easy


I could make that for you, if you like? Its easy
peasy!

47. SORTED




When someone asks you about a problem you have


already fixed, you could say this.
You can also say get it sorted, when you are
telling someone to get on with something they have
to do.
Whats happening about that roof leak then?
Oh thats sorted now. I found a really good
builder to do the job.

48. STROP

If someone is sulking or being particularly


miserable, you would say they are being stroppy,
or throwing a strop
Janet would you please cheer up? Its your birthday,
dont be so stroppy!

49. CHEERIO
This is a friendly way of saying goodbye
Right, I have to go now, see you soon. Cheerio!

50. WANGLE

This is used to say some people have all the luck


I cant believe he managed to wangle an upgrade
on their airline seats, AND the honeymoon suite in
their hotel!

51. BLINDING
If something is a blinding success, it means it
was awesome, brilliant

They had a blinding party after their wedding


ceremony. Everyone had such a great time!

52. WONKY

If something is shaky or unstable, you might say it is


wonky.
I cant eat my dinner at this table. Its wonky and
wont stop wobbling!

53. ZONKED
If someone is zonked or zonked out it means they
are totally knackered, or exhausted
He had a lot of fun at his birthday party earlier, but
hes completely zonked out now!

54. DODGY

If someone or something is a bit dodgy, it is not to


be trusted.
I saw a few dodgy-looking people standing around
along that quiet street near our house, so just to be
on the safe side, I notified the police.
This food looks a bit dodgy, it might have passed
its expiry date. I dont think we should eat it.

55. LEG IT
This is a way of saying run or run for it
I went out on Halloween night, and someone
jumped out from behind a bush to scare me. I was

so frightened, that I just legged it all the way back


home!
So there you go. Now you have a long list of slang
words that you can familiarise yourself with, and try
to remember! If youre going to England or another
English-speaking country, you might feel a bit more
prepared to make conversation, if youve gone
through this list!