Have you ever felt like British folks are talking in code? Trust me, you're not alone. I’m Hilary, and today, you'll decode British slang words that are so timeless, they've been in play since the 1930s! 😲 Imagine being gobsmacked when you finally get that 'bazillion' just means ‘a lot’ or knowing that someone who is ‘dodgy’ is really just ‘a bit sus.’
What You'll Gain:
- 🇬🇧 Master AUTHENTIC British Slang: From ‘gobsmacked’ to ‘bazillion’ to ‘dosh,’ speak like you were born in Britain!
- 🕰 Time-tested Words: These slang words have roots going back to the 1930s, and they're not going away!
- 🎉 Have Some Fun: Use slang words people wouldn’t expect you to know. Surprise and delight your British friends!
- 🏴 Venture Beyond England: Pick up a few words from Scotland and Wales too!
- 🎧 Just Listen: With Adept English's "listen & learn" system, it's as easy as hitting "play"!
Learning never exhausts the mind.
⭐ Leonardo da Vinci
You may not like slang, and not want to use it in your own conversations, but you still need to know it so you can follow others who do use slang in their conversations. So navigate the maze of British slang like a pro! Watch our latest lesson and get an #EnglishLesson like no other! No fluff. No filler. Just cold, hard, conversational gems that’ll make Brits think you've lived among them for years. Because, let’s face it, language isn't just about grammar—it's the key to a culture.
Imagine this: You're in the UK, surrounded by locals, and you hear the word "gobsmacked." Confused? You should be. This English lesson dives into the quirky world of British slang, revealing words like "gobsmacked" that will leave you absolutely—well, gobsmacked. Far from your typical lesson, this one uncovers the language that real Brits use every day. Don't just learn English—experience it!
One language sets you in a corridor for life. Two languages open every door along the way.
⭐ Frank Smith
👉 So, are you ready to become a British Slang Maestro? Hit 'Play' and jump-start your journey to English fluency with Adept English.👈 Don't walk, RUN to this lesson. Become a part of the Adept English revolution now!🚀
Welcome to Adept English! Want to talk like a British local? Tired of not getting British jokes and phrases? Dive into our lesson, "Master British Slang with Adept English!" We'll teach you words like 'gobsmacked,' 'bazillion,' and 'chuffed.' Plus, we'll even take you on a tour of slang from Scotland and Wales!
The limits of my language mean the limits of my world.
⭐ Ludwig Wittgenstein
Things you will learn in today's English vocabulary and phrases lesson:
- Introduction of Common Slang: Provides learners with a real understanding of day-to-day British language.
- Historical Context: Offers insight into the origin of words, adding depth to language comprehension.
- Word Explanations: Breaks down slang words into simpler terms, helping learners grasp meaning.
- Real-World Examples: Helps learners know when and how to use slang in conversation.
- Regional Variations: Exposes learners to slang from Scotland and Wales, broadening understanding.
- Engagement Techniques: Uses questions to involve learners, making the information more memorable.
- Tips on Usage: Provides warnings and guidance on when not to use certain slang terms.
- Promotion of Active Listening: Emphasizes the importance of listening for language acquisition.
- Free Resources Plug: Informs about additional tools available to speed up the language learning process.
- Lesson Recap: Aids memory retention by summarizing key points at the end.
- Sound Like a Local: Learn words that British people actually use.
- Make Friends: Slang helps you connect with people on a deeper level.
- Explore Culture: You'll get to know not just the language, but the culture of the UK, too.
- Learn Timeless Words: Some slang words we teach have been around since the 1930s!
- Add Spice to Conversations: Just like spices in food, slang adds flavour to your talks.
- Gain Cultural Insight: Words have stories. Learn why 'chuffed' means more than just happy.
Words are, of course, the most powerful drug used by mankind.
⭐ Rudyard Kipling
Need more reasons to listen?
- Catch Real Emotions: Know when someone is 'chuffed to bits,' they are really, really happy!
- Don't Feel Left Out: Understanding slang means you won’t feel lost in British conversations.
- Have Fun: Slang adds a fun twist. You won't just learn; you'll enjoy yourself!
- Scared of Making Mistakes?: Don't worry, people find it cute when you try!
- Think Slang is Hard?: Take it easy. You’ll learn as you practice more.
Ready to change your English language learning game? Click now to join Adept English and unravel the fun world of British slang. Step up your English to legendary status!
Unlocking British slang is like finding a secret codebook that suddenly makes you part of an exclusive club. Adept English's lesson is your golden ticket to that hidden world, revealing gems like "gobsmacked" and "chuffed." Imagine cracking the linguistic enigma, surprising locals, and feeling the thrill of blending in. It's not just language learning; it's a cultural treasure hunt!
- Why is learning British slang essential for mastering English fluently? Learning slang enriches your understanding of the language, making your conversations feel more natural and nuanced. You'll blend in effortlessly with locals and gain a deeper insight into British culture. Trust me, when you throw in a slang word like "gobsmacked" or "chuffed" in a conversation, you not only surprise people but also display your understanding of the nuances in British English. Adept English makes learning slang a breeze with immersive lessons, so dive in!
- What does 'gobsmacked' mean and how do I use it? The term 'gobsmacked' means you're extremely surprised or shocked. It's a blend of 'gob', a slang for mouth, and 'smacked', which means to hit. Imagine someone telling you a surprising fact; you can express your astonishment by saying, "I was absolutely gobsmacked!" Incorporating such terms into your vocabulary makes your English sound more native and engaging.
- How does Adept English teach British slang effectively? Adept English employs a listen & learn method that's not just easy but also fun. By listening to real conversations that use slang, you internalize these terms naturally, without the grind of rote memorization. Moreover, Adept English presents slang in its cultural and historical context, making your learning experience culturally enriching. For instance, did you know that some slang terms date back to the 1930s?
- Can learning slang help in understanding regional accents like those in Scotland and Wales? Absolutely, yes! Adept English even covers slang terms from Scotland and Wales, like "wee" and "lush." So, you're not just learning British slang; you're going on a linguistic tour of the UK. Grasping these regional words gives you a keen edge in understanding accents and dialects across Britain. So, next time you hear someone from Wales say something is "lush," you'll know it's a compliment!
- Is Adept English's approach to teaching slang suitable for beginners? You bet! Adept English's teaching style is accessible to learners at all levels. With the listen & learn system, you soak up slang in a contextual and intuitive way, making it easy to remember and use. Plus, Adept English offers a free course that guides you through the basics, making the road to fluency smoother.
- Gobsmacked: Very surprised or shocked.
- Bazillion: A made-up word that means "a lot."
- Sus: Short for "suspicious," means something is not trustworthy.
- Chuffed: Very happy or pleased.
- Dosh: Slang for money.
- Mental: Slang that means either "crazy" or "very angry."
- Lush: In Welsh slang, means "very nice" or "fabulous."
- Tidy: In Welsh slang, means "pleasing" or "good."
- Wee: Scottish word that means "small."
- Bonnie: Scottish word that means "attractive" or "beautiful."
Hi there. Have you ever wondered why British people sometimes sound like they're speaking a different version of English? Well, that's because in conversation we often use slang words - that’s SLANG. If you spend time in the UK, you’ll find that a lot of the language is formal, standard, but that amongst ordinary people in conversation, slang is automatically used and understood. But it may leave English language learners puzzled. You’ll generally pick them up, these words, as you go along if you spend lots of time in the UK - but let’s cover some slang words today - then you can get comfortable with them and maybe even use them yourself, which will make people smile. If you’re an English language learner, people probably won’t expect you to know these words - so you can have some fun with it! And stick around to the end of this podcast for some British slang words which come from Scotland and Wales - words which everybody knows!
And slang isn’t just ‘here today, gone tomorrow’. Some of the British slang words I’ll cover today originated as far back as the 1930s but remain widely used in everyday conversation today. Slang words have staying power, so they're worth learning because you're likely to hear them or use them for years to come.
Hello, I’m Hilary, and you’re listening to Adept English. We will help you to speak English fluently. All you have to do is listen. So start listening now and find out how it works.
First one - have you ever been so shocked that it felt like someone slapped you across the face? That's what 'gobsmacked' means! That’s GOBSMACKED. It’s slang of course, and an adjective to mean ‘very surprised’ - as in ‘I was absolutely gobsmacked’. An explanation? Well ‘gob’, GOB is a slang word for your mouth. The word ‘gob’ - it’s a bit childish and it comes into phrases like ‘Shut your gob’ - meaning ‘Be quiet!’, which would be rude in most company! So don’t use that one, don’t say that to someone unless you know them really well! Other slang words like ‘gobby’, GOBBY come from this word. Someone who is ‘gobby’ has a lot to say and an overly confident attitude. ‘Gobby’ means their mouth or ‘gob’ is working too hard, talking. The ‘smacked’ part of ‘gobsmacked’? Well ‘to smack’, SMACK means ‘to hit something with your open hand’, with the palm of your hand. So ‘gobsmacked’ means ‘very surprised’, stunned perhaps ‘as though you’ve been hit or smacked in the gob’. That’s ‘gobsmacked’. And according to the article I’ve included the link for, this word comes from the 1930s, but we still use it! And ‘gobsmacked’ isn’t rude - it is informal and slang though. An example? ‘He was gobsmacked when he got his new job’.
Next one - ‘bazillion’, that’s BAZILLION. Again this is another word which originated in the 1930s, but it’s slang that we still use today. It’s really simple this one - ‘bazillion’ of course rhymes with ‘million’ or ‘billion’ or ‘trillion’ - which are all words for large numbers. A ‘million’, MILLION is a 1 followed by six zeroes - as in ‘a million pounds’ [£1,000,000]. So a ‘bazillion’ is just a made-up word to mean ‘a lot’. If you’re feeling overwhelmed, you might say ‘I’ve got a bazillion things to do today’. So ‘bazillion’ is used in the context of exaggeration. Exaggeration, EXAGGERATION means when you ‘overstate’ something, you talk about it in a way that makes it seem larger, more important, more impossible or worse than it is - you ‘exaggerate’. So if you hear someone use the word ‘bazillion’, you’ll know that they’re exaggerating. ‘Bazillion’ isn’t a fixed number - it just means ‘a lot’. ‘There are a bazillion flies in my kitchen today’. ‘She’s made a bazillion sandwiches for the picnic’.
By the way, if you're new to Adept English, let me tell you something revelatory - listening is the best way to become fluent in English. If you’re wondering how, our Seven Rules of Adept English Course will guide you through the exact steps to fast forward your English language learning. Go to adeptenglish.com to sign up for this free course. It will change how you do your English practice. And yes, you heard me right - it’s free, you don’t pay! We give you this course. And if you’ve not heard this material before, it’ll help you speed up your language learning, so make sure you sign up today!
Ready for more British slang? Next have you heard the adjective 'sus’? ‘Sus’, SUS. If something is ‘a bit sus’, it means that it’s ‘questionable’ or ‘dodgy’, DODGY. ‘Sus’ is short for ‘suspect’ or ‘suspicious’ - and means ‘generally untrustworthy, not right’. A person or a situation can be ‘sus’ but for things we’re more likely use ‘dodgy’ - ‘I think I ate a dodgy curry last night’. To expand on ‘suspect’ or ‘suspicious’? ‘Suspicious’, SUSPICIOUS is an adjective and it can describe both your attitude if you see something ‘sus’ or dodgy and this makes you ‘suspicious’. Or it can also be used to describe the actual activity or thing that you might be suspicious of. ‘There was a suspicious package delivered’. And ‘suspect’ can be a noun meaning ‘someone you’re suspicious of’, or an adjective - we might also say ‘a suspect package was delivered.’ Or pronounced with the alternative emphasis ‘suspect’, it becomes the verb, ‘to suspect’, meaning ‘to be suspicious of someone or something’. So if you hear someone say ‘That’s a bit sus’ - you’ll know what they mean! It’s a questionable, a suspect, a dodgy situation.
A photograph of lush green forest. Impress Locals: Use slang from Scotland and Wales for a well-rounded British vocabulary.
Ever been so thrilled and excited that you didn't know how to express it? Well, in British slang, the word 'chuffed' may be what you're looking for. ‘Chuffed’ means you're super happy - that’s CHUFFED. It’s an adjective and it means ‘happy, satisfied, pleased with something’. Because British people don’t like to overstate achievements, it might be ‘I’m pretty chuffed - I passed my driving test’ or ‘I’m quite chuffed with my exam results’. If someone’s really ‘chuffed’ and struggling a bit more to contain their delight, you might hear ‘I’m chuffed to bits’ - as in ‘My son was chuffed to bits - he scored two goals!’ ‘Chuffed’ - quite a satisfying word. It does sound like a past participle, but as far as I’m aware, there is no verb ‘to chuff’ or if there ever was, it’s been lost in time!
Next one - time to talk money or should I say, 'dosh'? That’s DOSH. Nice simple one - ‘dosh’ just means ‘money’ as in ‘Have you got any dosh on you?’ Whether it's coins, notes, or your bank balance. It doesn’t mean just cash - it can mean your wealth, your assets, what’s in your bank account as in ‘They’re rolling in dosh’ - that means ‘they’ve got a lot of money’. While we’re at it, do you know what ‘a fiver’ or ‘a tenner’ are? If you think of the banknotes in pounds sterling or British currency, then a ‘fiver’, FIVER just means a ‘five pound note’ and a ‘tenner’, TENNER just means a ‘ten pound note’. So there we are - ‘Lend us some dosh - a fiver or a tenner will do!’
You might recognise this next word because I use it often—'mental', MENTAL meaning ‘of the mind’. And you’ll probably have heard that one in Adept English podcasts because I sometimes talk about people’s ‘mental health’, their ‘psychological wellbeing’. But did you know that ‘mental’ has slang meanings too? It can be used of something like a weekend - or an evening - meaning ‘it got a bit crazy, it was mental’. That probably means there was a lot of drinking and partying - ‘The weekend was mental’ or ‘When that song came on, everyone went mental!’ meaning probably that they danced vigorously and excitedly. But the more usual slang meaning, if someone ‘goes mental’ it means that they ‘got very angry’. ‘My dad went mental when he heard I’d crashed the car’. It can also be used of a person, who’s unpredictable or angry - ‘That guy on the train was mental - I was scared’.
Let’s make this truly British, as if I’m not careful, I can be quite ‘England-centric’. Ready for a quick trip around the UK? How about we explore some slang from Wales and Scotland? How about a couple of slang words from Wales and two that you might hear in Scotland?
I lived in south Wales for four years, so I know these words are used all the time. The word ‘lush’, LUSH. In formal English this is an adjective which you would use to describe juicy, green plant growth. You might comment that the lawn ‘looks lush’ if there’s been a lot of rain. But in Welsh slang, ‘lush’ means ‘very nice’ or even ‘fabulous’. Often used of someone you find attractive ‘Oh, she’s lush, she is!’ I even remember someone using the phrase ‘Cowin’ lush’ for emphasis - that means ‘really, really nice!’ Maybe that one is specific to south Wales!
The other Welsh slang word and another positive one - ‘tidy’. Usually, in formal English, the adjective ‘tidy’, TIDY means ‘neat’, arranged in the right place. It’s also a verb ‘to tidy’, said frequently to teenagers like my son - ‘Go and tidy your room - it’s a mess!’. But in Wales, ‘tidy’ is used as an adjective to ‘mean ‘pleasing or good’. You might hear ‘The holiday is all booked and paid for’ and someone responds ‘Tidy!’ meaning ‘I’m pleased about that.
A couple of Scottish words for you - these are so well-known you may have heard of them already. Scottish people use the word ‘wee’, WEE as an adjective to mean ‘small’. ‘I have a wee house in the Highlands’ or ‘I have a wee sister’. Be a bit careful here though - ‘wee’, WEE as a noun or verb in informal English means ‘urine’ or ‘to urinate’. But the meaning ‘small’ will usually be obvious from the context and it’s only really ever used by Scottish people.
Last one - another Scottish adjective for you - ‘bonnie’, BONNIE. This one can also be a girl’s name, as in the singer Bonnie Tyler - though actually she’s Welsh! But ‘bonnie’ as an adjective means ‘attractive, beautiful, pretty’. More often used of people and more likely used of a girl or woman. ‘Bonnie’ is also used in the north of England too. My mother would have said ‘Ooh, she’s a bonnie baby’, for example. And of course, there’s a Scottish song ‘On the bonnie, bonnie banks of Loch Lomond’ - so apparently ‘bonnie’ can even be used to describe how pretty the shores of a lake are!
Solve The Maths Problem To Download Podcast & Transcript
So, we've covered quite a bit there, haven't we? Ready to practise these words and surprise some British with your vocabulary? Let’s quickly recap, so that you remember them.
- Dosh, with ‘fiver’ and tenner’ added in
- Wee and
British people will all know these words, but they may not expect you to - so have some fun with it - it’ll make people smile!
Enough for now. Have a lovely day. Speak to you again soon. Goodbye.
Thank you so much for listening. Please help me tell others about this podcast by reviewing or rating it. And, please share it on social media. You can find more listening lessons and a free English course at adeptenglish.com
- 20 Delightful Slang Terms
- Cowin' lush
- If you feel we have helped you please consider supporting us https://adeptengli.sh/donate
- More great phrases lessons
- Find us on Spotify
- Read along on YouTube
- Apple Podcasts
- FREE English language course
- 7 Rules Of Adept English
- English language courses
- Listen & Learn