The series about informal British expressions continues here. You can read a list of the words in this episode below. *Caution – there is some rude content in this episode.*
Right-click here to download this episode.
British Slang Expressions (H to M)
Please be aware that some of the words in this episode are quite rude. Also, I must apologise for the explosive sound of the microphone whenever I say the word “KIP” – this is because of the plosive sound of the ‘K’ in ‘kip’. I had the mic a bit too close to my mouth for that one. I do apologise.
Thanks also to www.effingpot.com for providing some of the words and definitions you can read below. The explanations I give in this episode are all my own.
Haggle – To haggle is to argue or negotiate over a price. Most people that wangle stuff are usually quite good at haggling. I just learnt that in the USA you dicker over a price, particularly for used cars!
Hard – After your 20 pints of lager, the curry or the doner, your average 20 year old feels hard. Since his male organ has no chance of working at this stage, hard clearly refers to something else – it means he is ready to fight anything or anybody or to take on any bet. This is the time to make fun of drunken lads by betting them they can’t jump off the end of the pier, hang on to the back of a bus etc.
Hiya – Short for hi there, this is a friendly way of saying hello.
Horses for courses – This is a common saying that means each to his own. What suits one person might be horrible for someone else. If my Dad was trying to understand why my brother had wanted to get his ear pierced he might say “Oh well, it’s horses for courses I suppose”!
Hump – If you have got the hump it means you are in a mood. If you are having a hump, it means you are having sex. Care is advised when you try using these words for the first time. It could be embarrassing!
Hunky-dory – My English dictionary tells me that hunky-dory means excellent. We would generally use it to mean that everything is cool and groovy, on plan, no worries and generally going well.
I’m easy – This expression means I don’t care or it’s all the same to me. Not to be confused with how easy it is to lure the person into bed!
Irony/sarcasm – The cornerstones of British humour. This is one of the biggest differences between the nations. The sense of humour simply doesn’t translate too well.
Jammy – If you are really lucky or flukey, you are also very jammy. It would be quite acceptable to call your friend a jammy b****rd if they won the lottery.
Kip – A short sleep, forty winks, or a snooze. You have a kip in front of the telly on a Sunday afternoon.
Knackered – The morning after twenty pints and the curry, you’d probably feel knackered. Another way to describe it is to say you feel shagged. Basically worn out, good for nothing, tired out, knackered.
Knees up – If you’re having a knees up, you’re going to a dance or party.
Knob – Yet another word for your willy.
Knockers – Another word for breasts.
Leg it – This is a way of saying run or run for it. Usually said by kids having just been caught doing something naughty. Well it was when I was a kid!
Left, right and centre – If you have been looking left, right and centre, it means you have been searching all over.
Love bite – You call them hickies – the things you do to yourself as a youngster with the vacuum cleaner attachment to make it look like someone fancies you!
Lurgy – If you have the lurgy it means you are ill, you have the Flu. Don’t go near people with the lurgy in case you get it!
Luvvly-jubbly – Clearly another way of saying lovely. Made famous by the TV show Only Fools and Horses.
Mate – Most chaps like to go to the pub with their mates. Mate means friend or chum.
Morish – Also spelt “moreish”, this word is used to describe desserts in my house, when a single helping is simply not enough. You need more! It applies to anything – not just desserts.
Mug – If someone is a bit of a mug, it means they are gullible. Most used car salesmen rely on a mug to show up so they can sell something!
Are you mugging me off?
Here’s a nasty scene from the film “The Football Factory” (not a great film really) involving the expression ‘are you mugging me off?’. Watch out, it’s full of swearing.