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The Mudcat Cafesj

Aussie Glossary

contains exact

Aussie English
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Aussie Words Definitions Comments
sack To dismiss from a job  
sack Bed: "Hit the sack" = go to bed Also (usually a sleeping bag) "fart sack"
safe Storage box/cupboard for food See also Coolgardie safe
salute, aussie Brushing flies away  
salvo Member of the Salvation Army  
sandgroper Resident of Western Australia; sand-burrowing desert insect  
sanger A sandwich  
Sawbees Brand of hand-shears used for shearing sheep Spelling?
scallops Fried potato cakes (Queensland and New South Wales), shellfish (elsewhere) The shellfish often distinguished as "Tasmanian" scallops" … except in Tasmania or Victoria
scheme System or method (no negative connotation) Or project … I worked on the Snowy Mts Scheme in the '60s
school Group of drinkers, each of whom buys a round  
schooner Large beer glass (New South Wales, South Australia)  
scratchy Instant lottery ticket  
screamer Party lover; "two pot screamer" - somebody who gets drunk on very little alcohol  
scrub Can be the same as the bush or it can mean areas in the country without many tall trees  
sea wasp Deadly box jellyfish  
sealed road Surfaced road  
see you in the soup See you around  
selector Farmer who was able to freely choose a small parcel of Government land  
semitrailer Articulated truck  
septic Disparaging term for an American ("septic tank" rhymes with "Yank")  
servo Petrol station  
session Lengthy period of heavy drinking  
SFA Sweet Fuck All, precious little Actually started as Sweet Fanny Adams: Frances Adams, murdered and chopped up, c. 1870 (RN term for canned meat!)
shark biscuit Somebody new to surfing  
she'll be right! Everything will be fine!  
she-oak Tree (wood of which) vaguely resembling a European oak, the 'she' meaning inferi Dead right - but don't try to explain that to a feminist ...
shed Shearing shed - major structure on large wool property Rung the shed', means shearing top tally for that property, that season
sheila Female or woman  
shellacking Complete defeat  
shinplasters Cheque for wages (surreptiously baked to make paper brittle) . Workers often wrapped them around their ankles, under their socks, to keep them moist and intact
shirty To get upset or angry  
shivoo Rowdy party (archaic)  
shonky Unreliable  
shoot through To leave or disappear in a hurry  
shout Turn to buy - a round of drinks usually ("it's your shout")  
shove off! Go away!  
sickie Day off work ill, or malingering  
silk shirt on a pig Something wasted  
silvertail Well off, usually English, settler (European silvertail pigeon, contrasted with  
sink the boot Go in hard  
skint Broke  
skite Boast, brag  
sky pilot Minister, bush missionary (early 20th c.)  
slab 24 cans (tinnies) of beer, shrink-wrapped as a unit  
sleepout House verandah converted to a bedroom  
slog Hard work  
smoko Smoke or tea break  
snag Sausage  
snagger Inexpert, slow or worn out shearer  
sook Person or animal who is soft, tame, inoffensive  
spag bol Spaghetti bolognese  
sparrow-fart Dawn, first light  
spider (19th c.) Brandy mixed with lemonade  
spider (20th c.) Aerated soft drink plus ice cream (~ US 'soda'?) NOT Sydney - lime soft drink + ice cream = 'Ice cream, lime & soda', no other spiders served
spieler Carnival spruiker - con artist - swindler (Originally a US term)
spit the dummy Get very upset at something  
sport More general way to refer to someone rather than a mate  
sprung Caught doing something wrong  
spunk A good looking person (of either sex)  
square Honest, respectable  
square face Gin (comes in square bottles)  
square off Apologise and make reparations  
square up Prepare to fight (as in boxing)  
squatter Large landowner who originally occupied land as a tenant of the government  
squattocracy Australian "old money" folk, who made their fortunes by being first on the scene  
stand Shearing position, shearing job  
station A big farm/grazing property  
sticky beak Nosy person  
stinger Deadly box jellyfish  
stockman Station hand (rural worker) herding cattle  
stockwhip Plaited leather lash on a (usually) cane handle used by stockmen and drovers Plaiting and whipcraft are important Australian bush skills
stood Shouted, paid for as a gift  
strewth! It's the truth! An exclamation, often of surprise  
strides Daks, trousers  
strike a light! An exclamation, of surprise or as an intensifive  
strine Australian slang and pronunciation (Or-strine = Australian … badly nasalised!)
stringybark Shaggy-barked eucalypt, its timber (proverbially tough) or its bark used as roof  
stubby 375 ml bottle of beer  
stubby holder Polystyrene insulated holder for a stubby  
stuff Money, the payment for a job (Capt. Of the Push / Cockies of Bungaree)
stuffed, I feel I'm tired  
stuffed, I'll be Expression of surprise  
sunbake Sunbathe  
sunnies Sunglasses  
surfies People who go surfing - usually more often than they go to work!  
surfy Surfing fanatic  
swag Canvas-covered bedroll used in the outback or for camping (modern usage) Traditionally, a swagman's belongings wrapped in a blanket and carried over or around the shoulders
swaggie Swagman Confuses non-Australians, since swag means 'loot from a crime' … so, it was a convict colony … ? (It also means something rolled up.)
swagman Vagabond, rural tramp  
swimmers Swimming costume (Queensland, Victoria)  
t'other side The northern island (mainland Australia) to a Tasmanian Of course, they're 'down under down under …"
tack (hard) Work (hard) Trans. From sailor's 'hard tack' - tough, hard biscuit?
take away food Take-out food  
tall poppies Achievers, often a disparaging term Tall poppy (syndrome)?
tally The number of shorn sheep attributed to individual shearers in a day Transf. - a good result
tank Dam or reservoir, as well as constructed water storage container  
tar Stockholm tar, applied as first aid to sheep cut during shearing  
tar boy Shearing shed hand patching up cut sheep  
tariff Rate  
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List Full Glossary

Many thanks to John in Brisbane for this concept and the initial data, and to Bob Bolton for additions and comments.