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21 Grand Irish Slang Terms For You to Dekko

March 17, 2016

Celebrate St. Patrick’s Day with these words and phrases straight out of the Emerald Isle.
Irish Slang
Cat: Something terrible or annoying. Not that the Irish hate cats; it’s short for cat malojan, a Gaelic corruption of an old English phrase, “cat on a melodeon,” which is a type of organ. (Indeed, cat walking across an organ’s keyboard would be very annoying.)
Work away: The Irish equivalent of “carry on!”
Culchie. What in the United States we would call a country bumpkin.
Pup. A derisive term used by old people to describe over-confident young people.
The Pale: The greater Dublin metropolitan area.
Norn Orn: Northern Ireland.
Rugger hugger: A girl from a nice, upper-crust family who likes to date rough-and-tumble rugby players.
Gurrier: A hooligan or criminal.
Holy Joe: A self-righteous individual.
Dekko: Inspect.
Make a right hames. To ruin something. (To “make a bags of something” means the same thing.)
Waster: Someone who is utterly incompetent.
Grand. In American English, if someone asks how you’re doing or how something was, a generic, bland, proper response is “fine.” Similarly, in Ireland, a lot of people say “grand.”
Leg it. The act of running away very quickly
Bad dose. A very bad illness.
Donkey’s years: A very long period of time.
Earwinging: Eavesdropping.
Gaff: Home.
Black stuff: Guinness.
Jacks: The toilet.
Now you’re sucking diesel! “Now you understand what I mean!”

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