Posted by: Jack Henry | January 26, 2021

Editor’s Corner: Australian English

Hello there!

In one of my last emails, I sent you a list of South African English words; today I’m sending on some Australian English and the American translations. One of my guilty pleasures during the COVID-19 lockdown is to watch Australian and British TV shows. I love trying to find my way around the accents! The following list is from Mental Floss and I edited it a bit so as not to offend anyone.

The term for Aussie slang and pronunciation is strine, and it is often characterized by making words as short as possible; the story goes it developed by speaking through clenched teeth to avoid blowies (blow flies) from getting into the mouth. So, if you plan to visit the world’s smallest continent, this list of some of the most commonly used slang expressions is for you.

arvo: afternoon

Bottle-O: bottle shop, liquor store

chockers: very full

grommet: young surfer

mozzie: mosquito

ripper: really great

roo: kangaroo. A baby roo, still in the pouch, is known as a joey

She’ll be right: everything will be all right

sickie: sick day. If you take a day off work when you are not actually sick it’s called chucking a sickie.

slab: 24-pack of beer

sook: to sulk. If someone calls you a sook, it is because they think you are whinging.

Sweet as: sweet, awesome. Aussies will often put ‘as’ at the end of adjectives to give them emphasis. Other examples include lazy as, lovely as, fast as and common as.

ta: thank you

tradie: a tradesman. Most of the tradies have nicknames too, including brickie (bricklayer), truckie (truckdriver), sparky (electrician), garbo (garbage collector), and chippie (carpenter).

ute: utility vehicle, pickup truck

whinge: whine

And for your visual learning aid:

American English: Barbie

Australian English: barbie

Kara Church

Pronouns: she/her/hers

Technical Editor, Advisory

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