Cockney Rhyming Slang

Cockney Rhyming Slang is a specialised form of slang used in the East of London. It is a kind of antilanguage where words are replaced by phrases that rhyme (sound the same): North and south = mouth Adam and Eve = believe Sometimes, the last word is dropped.

Why is Cockney Rhyming Slang called so?

A Cockney is a Londoner; the original definition was someone born near enough to hear the bells of Bow, which meant people in the east of the city. The word Cockney means the egg of a cockerel (male hen) and was meant as an insult, implying dishonesty in business deals by trying to sell non-existent or low quality goods, or so the story goes. The term is now used happily and proudly by the people of the east and north of London, who regard themselves as the 'real' Londoners in a very cosmopolitan city where a lot of the population have come in from other areas of the country or abroad.

As well as having a distinctive pronunciation and many grammatical features, the language of London is most notable for its Rhyming Slang. This consists of using a phrase that rhymes, sounds the same, as the word you want to say, so 'telephone' becomes 'dog and bone'. Unfortunately, many of the phrases then lose the second word, making it very hard for the outsider to guess the original meaning; 'rabbit' for 'talk' comes from the phrase 'rabbit and pork', but few would be able to guess it.

A lot of the original rhyming slang appeared among the market traders in the east end of London in the 19th century, but it is still used and new words and phrases are being invented all the time. At the moment, it is very fashionable to use famous people's names, so the DJ Pete Tong is used meaning 'wrong'- 'thing's have gone Pete Tong'.

Here is The List of Cockney Rhyming Slangs beginning with

Rabbit and pork: (UK) Rabbit and pork = talk This is often used as a verb, and the first word is normally all that is used. 'He was rabbitin' away.'

Rachel Hunter: (UK) Rachel Hunter = munter (ugly woman)Rachel Hunter is a model.

Radio rental: (UK) Radio rental = mental (crazy)

Raquel Welch: (UK) Raquel Welch = belch (burp) Raquel Welch is an actress.

Raspberry ripple: (UK) Raspberry ripple = cripple

Raspberry ripple: (UK) Raspberry ripple = nipple

Raspberry tart: Raspberry tart = fart

Read and write: (UK) Read and write = fight

Real Madrid: (UK) Real Madrid = quid (pound)

Reggie Kray: (UK) Reggie Kray = gayReggie Kray was a London gangster, though it was his twin brother, Ronnie, that was actually gay.

Richard Gere: (UK) Richard Gere = beer Richard Gere is an actor.

Ricki Lake: (UK) Ricki Lake = fake Ricki Lake is an American TV presenter

Rifle range: (UK) Rifle range = change (money)

Right said Fred: (UK) Right said Fred = dead Right said Fred were a pop group.

Rigobert Song: (UK) Rigobert Song = thongRigobert Song is a footballer

Rocking horse: (UK) Rocking horse = sauce

Rogan Josh: (UK) Rogan Josh = dosh (money)

Roger Mellie: (UK) Roger Mellie = telly (TV) Roger Mellie is a cartoon TV presenter in the magazine Viz.

Ronan Keating: (UK) Ronan Keating = meeting Ronan Keating was a singer in a boyband.

Ronnie Biggs: (UK) Ronnie Biggs = digs (accommodation) Ronnie Biggs was one the Great Train Robbers, who stole millions from a train in the UK in the 1960s.

Ronson lighter: (UK) Ronson lighter = shiter (toilet or anus) Ronson is a company that makes cigarette lighters.

Roof tile: (UK) Roof tile = smile (noun)

Roseanne Barr: (UK) Roseanne Barr = BraRoseanne Barr is an actress.

Rosie Lee: (UK) Rosie Lee = tea

Rub-a-dub: (UK) Rub-a-dub = pub

Ruby Murray: (UK) Ruby Murray = curry Ruby Murray was a famous singer.

Runner bean: (UK) Runner bean = Queen

Cockney Rhyming Slang Index

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