- Entertainment and Media
How To Speak Australian Slang
Your Guide to Aussie Slang
G'day mate! Now if you don't want to look like a bit of a galah when you visit Australia you'd better take a Captain's Cook at this guide to Australian slang. A lot of the lingo that we used to speak is starting to die out but you still need to be prepared. Some of the more common slang words and phrases are listed below.
So if you go walkabout and end up out the back of Bourke when all you wanted was to find the dunny, don't blame me! And just so ya know, fishing for a brown eyed mullet would not be a good thing, but in some places it's ok to eat a floater. Read on and she'll be right mate, Donyer!
Quick Video Lesson in Aussie Slang
I'm not sure what's going on with this blokes face but he does a good job of demonstrating Australian language.
A - Is for Apples
Aerial pingpong : Australian Football, A derogatory comment made by rugby players.
Ambo : Ambulance, ambulance driver
Ankle biter : Small child
Apples : It'll be all right, "She'll be apples"
Apple Islander : A Tasmanian
Arvo : Afternoon
Arsey : Lucky
Aussie : An Australian, pronounced "Ozzie", not "Ossie"
Aussie salute : Brushing away flies with the hand
Avos : avocados
B - Is for Billabong
Back of Bourke : a very long way away
Banana bender : a person from Queensland
Barbie : barbecue
Barrack : to cheer on
Bastard : term of endearment, or an insult. "You're a clever bastard!" "You dirty little bastard!"
Battler : someone working hard and only just making a living
Beaut, beauty : great, fantastic
Big-note oneself : brag, boast
Billabong : watering hole
Billy : teapot. Container for boiling water.
Bingle : motor vehicle accident
Bitzer : mongrel dog (bits of this and bits of that)
Black Stump, beyond the : a long way away
Bloke : man, guy
Bloody : very (bloody hard yakka)
Bloody oath! : that's certainly true
Blue : A fight, or to make a mistake. "They were in a blue" "I made a blue"
Bluey : A traffic ticket, a redhead, a cattle dog, a type of jellyfish
Bodgy : of inferior quality
Bog in : commence eating, to attack food with enthusiasm
Bog standard : basic, unadorned, without accessories (a bog standard car, telephone etc.)
Bondi cigar : see "brown-eyed mullet"
Bonzer : great, ripper
Boomer : a large male kangaroo
Bored shitless : very bored
Bottle-o : liquor shop
Bottler : something excellent
Brekkie : breakfast
Brick shit house : large and strong, "He's built like a brick shit house"
Brown-eyed mullet : faeces floating in the sea
Brumby : a wild horse
Buckley's, Buckley's chance : no chance "New Zealand stands Buckley's of beating Australia at football"
Budgie smugglers : men's bathing costume
Bull bar : stout bar fixed to the front of a vehicle to protect it against hitting kangaroos, also a roo bar
Bundy : short for Bundaberg, Queensland, and the brand of rum that's made there
Bush : the Outback, anywhere that isn't in town
Bush oyster : nasal mucus
Bushman's hanky : Emitting nasal mucus by placing one index finger on the outside of the nose (thus blocking one nostril) and blowing.
Bushranger : highwayman, outlaw
Butcher's, Butcher's hook : rhyming slang for look "Take a butcher's at that!"
C - Is for Cobber
Cactus : dead, not functioning "This bloody washing machine is cactus"
Cane toad : a person from Queensland
Captain Cook : ryhming slang for look "Let's have a Captain Cook"
Cark it : to die, cease functioning
Cat burying shit, as busy as a : to be very busy
Chook : a chicken
Chunder : vomit
Clacker : anus
Clayton's : fake, substitute
Clucky : feeling broody or maternal
Coathanger : Sydney Harbour bridge
Cobber : friend
Cockie : farmer (Farmers were called cockies in the early days of settlement because, like the birds of the same name, they made their homes on the edges of permanent waterholes)
Cockie : cockatoo
Cockroach : a person from New South Wales
Coldie : a beer
Come a gutser : make a bad mistake, have an accident
Cooee, not within : figuratively a long way away, far off "England weren't within cooee of beating Australia at cricket"
Cooee, within : nearby "I was within cooee of landing a big fish when the line broke." "He lives within cooee of Sydney."
Corroboree : an aboriginal dance
Cozzie : swimming costume
Crack a fat : get an erection
Crack onto : to hit on someone, pursue someone romantically, to try to get a root
Cranky : in a bad mood, angry
Crook : sick, or badly made
Crow eater : a person from South Australia
Cut lunch : sandwiches
Cut snake, mad as a : very angry
You don't have an Aussie Flag? Why the bloody hell not????
D - Is for Dinkum
Dag : a funny person, nerd, goof
Date : anus "get off your fat date"
Dead dingo's donger, as dry as a : very dry
Dead horse : ryhming slang for tomato sauce
Deadset : true, the truth
Digger : a soldier
Dingo's breakfast : a yawn, a leak and a good look round (i.e. no breakfast)
Dinkum, fair dinkum : true, real, genuine "I'm a dinkum Aussie" "is he fair dinkum?"
Dinky-di : the real thing, genuine
Dog's balls, sticks out like : obvious
Donger : penis
Donyer : Good on you, also "G'donya", "Donya"
Doodle : penis
Drongo : a dope, stupid person
Dummy, spit the : get very upset at something
Dunny : outside lavatory
Dunny rat, cunning as a : very cunning
E F - E is for Esky, F is for Furphy
Earbashing : nagging, non-stop chatter
Esky : large insulated food/drink container for picnics, barbecues etc.
Face, off one's : drunk "He was off his face by 9pm"
Fair dinkum : true, genuine
Fair go : a chance "give a bloke a fair go"
Fair suck of the sav! : exclamation of wonder, awe, disbelief
Fairy floss : cotton candy
Feral : a hippie, a person with poor personal hygiene
Flat out like a lizard drinking : flat out, busy
Flick : to give something or somebody the flick is to get rid of it or him/her
Floater : Meat pie served floating in pea soup
Footy : Australian Rules football
Franger : condom
Freckle : anus
Fruit loop : fool
Full : drunk
Furphy : false or unreliable rumour, an argument or fight
G - is for Gander
G'Day : hello!
Gabba : Wooloongabba - the Brisbane cricket ground
Galah : fool, silly person. Named after the bird of the same name because of its antics and the noise it makes.
Gander : look "have a gander at this"
Garbo, garbologist : municipal garbage collector
Give it a burl : try it, have a go
Gobful, give a : to abuse, usually justifiably "The neighbours were having a noisy party so I went and gave them a gobful"
Gobsmacked : surprised, astounded
Going off : used of a night spot or party that is a lot of fun - "the place was really going off"
Good oil : useful information, a good idea, the truth
Good onya : good for you, well done
Goog, as full as a : drunk. "Goog" is a variation of the northern English slangword "googgie" meaning an egg.
Greenie : environmentalist
Grog : liquor, beer "bring your own grog, you bludger"
Grouse : great, terrific, very good
Grundies : undies, underwear
Gutful of piss : drunk, "he's got a gutful of piss"
Gyno : gynaecologist
H I J K - H is for Hooro, J is for Jumbuck, K is Knock back, I just is
Harold Holt, to do the : Rhyming slang for "do the bolt", meaning to leave in a hurry. Also "to do the Harold"
Heaps : a lot, e.g. "thanks heaps", "he earned heaps of money" etc.
Hoon : hooligan
Hooroo : goodbye
Jackaroo : a male station hand (a station is a big farm/grazing property)
Jillaroo : a female station hand
Joe Blake :Rhyming slang for snake
Joey : baby kangaroo
Journo : journalist
Jumbuck : sheep
Kangaroos loose in the top paddock : Intellectually inadequate "he's got kangaroos loose in the top paddock"
Kero : kerosene
Kindie : kindergarten
Knock : to criticise
Knock back : refusal, refuse "He tried to crack on to her but he only got a knock back"
Knocker : somebody who criticises
Knockers : female breasts
L M - is for Larrikin, M is for Matilda
Lair : a flashily dressed young man of brash and vulgar behaviour, to dress up in flashy clothes, to renovate or dress up something in bad taste
Lair it up, Lairise : to behave in a brash and vulgar manner
Larrikin : a bloke who is always enjoying himself, harmless prankster
Lend of, to have a : to take advantage of somebody's gullibility, to have someone on "he's having a lend of you"
Liquid laugh : vomit
Lizard drinking, flat out like a : flat out, busy
Lob, lob in : drop in to see someone "the rellies have lobbed"
Lollies : sweets, candy
Long paddock : the side of the road where livestock is grazed during droughts
Longneck : large bottle of beer
Lunch, who opened their? : OK, who farted?
Lurk : illegal or underhanded racket
Mallee bull, as fit as a : very fit and strong.
Mappa Tassie : map of Tasmania - a woman's pubic area
Mate : buddy, friend
Matilda : swagman's bedding, sleeping roll
Mexican : a person from south of the Queensland or New South Wales border
Mickey Mouse : excellent, very good. Rhyming slang for Grouse. Beware though - in some parts of Australia it means inconsequential, frivolous or not very good!
Mob : group of people, or a group of kangaroos
Mongrel : despicable person
Moolah : money
Mozzie : mosquito
Muddy : mud crab (a great delicacy)
Mug : friendly insult "have a go, yer mug", gullible person
Mulga : the bush
Muster : round up sheep or cattle
Mystery bag : a sausage
N O - N is for Naughty, O is for Old Fella
Naughty, have a : have sex
Never Never : the remote outback, centre of Australia
No-hoper : somebody who'll never do well
Not the full quid : not bright intellectually
Nuddy, in the : naked
Nun's nasty, as dry as a : very dry
Nut out : work out an agreement
Ocker : an unsophisticated person
Offsider : an assistant, helper
Old fella : penis
Oldies : parents - "I'll have to ask my oldies"
Op shop : opportunity shop, thrift store, place where second hand goods are sold.
Outback : interior of Australia
P Q - P is for Pokies, Q is for Quid
Paddock : a field, a fenced in rural area, as in "top paddock, sheep paddock, wheat paddock"
Pash : a long passionate kiss; hence "pashing on"
Pav : Pavlova - a rich, creamy Australian dessert
Piece of piss : easy task
Pig's arse! : I don't agree with you
Piker : Someone who doesn't want to fit in with others socially, leaves parties early
Piss : urine, also beer. Don't get the two confused. "Have a piss", "Hit the piss", "Sink some piss"
Piss up : A party where much alcohol is consumed
Plonk : cheap wine
Pokies : poker machines, fruit machines, gambling slot machines
Polly : politician
Pom, pommy, pommie : an Englishman
Porky : Lie, untruth, rhyming slang for lie = pork pie
Port : suitcase (portmanteau)
Pozzy : position - get a good pozzy at the football stadium
Prezzy : present, gift
Quid : refers to pre-decimal currency, a pound. "Are you earning a quid?" "I wouldn't give it up for quids?"
R - Is for Ratbag
Rack off : push off! get lost! get out of here!
Rage : party
Rage on : to continue partying - "we raged on until 3am"
Ratbag : mild insult
Raw prawn, to come the : to bullshit, to be generally disagreeable
Rellie or relo : family relative
Ridgy-didge : original, genuine
Ripper : great, fantastic - "it was a ripper party"
Ripper, you little! : Exclamation of delight or as a reaction to good news
Road train : big truck with many trailers
Rock up : to turn up, to arrive - "we rocked up at their house at 8pm"
Rollie : a cigarette that you roll yourself
Root : synonym for f*ck in nearly all its senses: "I feel rooted" "this washing machine is rooted"; "(s)he's a good root". A very useful word in fairly polite company.
Root rat : somebody who is constantly looking for sex.
Ropeable : very angry
Rotten : drunk - "I went out last night and got rotten"
Rubbish : to criticize
S - Is for Skite
Sandgroper : a person from Western Australia
Sanger : a sandwich
Sav : saveloy
Servo : petrol station
Shag on a rock, stands out like a : very obvious
Shark biscuit : somebody new to surfing
She'll be right : it'll turn out okay
Sheepshagger : A New Zealander
Sheila : a woman
Shit house : a toilet, or of poor quality, unenjoyable "this car is shit house", "the movie was shit house"
Shonky : dubious, underhanded. E.g. a shonky practice, shonky business etc.
Shoot through : to leave
Shout : turn to buy - a round of drinks usually "it's your shout"
Skite : boast, brag
Skull/Skoll : to drink a beer in a single draught without taking a breath
Slab : a carton of 24 bottles or cans of beer
Sleepout : house verandah converted to a bedroom
Snag : a sausage
Spit the dummy : get very upset at something
Sprung : caught doing something wrong
Spunk : a good looking person (of either sex)
Squizz : look - "take a squizz at this"
Station : a big farm/grazing property
Stickybeak : nosy person
Stoked : very pleased
Strewth : exclamation, mild oath "Strewth, that Chris is a bonzer bloke"
Strides : trousers
Stubby : a 375ml. beer bottle
Stuffed, I feel : I'm tired
Stuffed, I'll be : expression of surprise
Swag : rolled up bedding etc. carried by a swagman
Swaggie : swagman
Swagman : tramp, hobo
T - Is for Tuckerbag
Tall poppies : successful people
Technicolor yawn : vomit
Tee-up : to set up (an appointment)
Thongs : cheap rubber backless sandals, flip flops
Throw-down : small bottle of beer which you can throw down quickly.
Tickets, to have on oneself : to have a high opinion of oneself
Tinny : can of beer
Tinny : small aluminium boat
Togs : swim suit
Top End : far north of Australia
Trackies : track suit
Troppo, gone : to have escaped to a state of tropical madness; to have lost the veneer of civilisation after spending too long in the tropics.
True blue : patriotic
Tucker : food
Tucker-bag : food bag
Turps : turpentine, alcoholic drink
Turps, hit the : go on a drinking binge
Two up : gambling game played by spinning two coins simultaneously
U V - U is for Unit, V is for Vejjo
Uni : university
Unit : flat, apartment
Up oneself : have a high opinion of oneself - "he's really up himself"
Up somebody, get : to rebuke somebody - "the boss got up me for being late"
Useful as tits on a bull : unhelpful or incompetent person or thing - "he, she or it is about as useful as tits on a bull" etc. etc.
Ute : utility vehicle, pickup truck
Vedgies : vegetables
Vee dub : Volkswagen
Veg out : relax in front of the TV (like a vegetable)
Vejjo : vegetarian
Vinnie's : St. Vincent De Paul's (charity thrift stores and hostels)
W X Y Z - W is for Wacker, Y is for Yobbo, Z is for Zack, X just is
WACA (pron. whacker) : Western Australian Cricket Association and the Perth cricket ground
Walkabout : a walk in the outback that lasts for an indefinite amount of time
Walkabout, it's gone : it's lost, can't be found
Weekend warrior : army reservist
Wacker, whacka : Idiot; somebody who talks drivel; somebody with whom you have little patience; a dickhead
White pointers : topless female sunbathers
Wobbly : excitable behaviour "I complained about the food and the waiter threw a wobbly"
Wobbly boot on, he's got the : drunk
Wog : flu or trivial illness
Wog : person of Mediterranean origin. More accpetable than in other parts of the world
Wombat : somebody who eats, roots and leaves (see also root)
Woop Woop : invented name for any small unimportant town - "he lives in Woop Woop"
Wowser : straight-laced person, prude, puritan, spoilsport
Wuss : coward; nervous person or animal
Yabber : talk (a lot)
Yabby : inland freshwater crayfish found in Australia (Cherax destructor)
Yakka : work
Yewy : u-turn in traffic "Chuck a yewy at the next traffic lights"
Yobbo : an uncouth person
Zack : sixpence from pre-decimal currency, equivalent to 5 cents. "It isn't worth a zack", "He hasn't got a zack"