Dictionary of Cork Slang
'Irish by misfortune. Cork by the grace of God.'
All over the shop
Everywhere (as in “I was walking down Pana and there was old dolls all over the shop” = I was walking down St Patrick’s Street and there girls everywhere). Or, all over the place (as in “I seen your man langers and he was all over the shop” = I saw that man drunk and he was swaying from side to side.
Up for grabs. Usually said by children throwing objects up into the air and whoever catches them can keep them.
An expression of dislike. “I’m allergic to that feller.”
The dregs of a drink. “I’m up the ass of your can of beer” = may I have the remainder of your beverage.
Away for slates
Do well, be successful. “After the goal, Cork were away for slates.”
The carrier above the back wheel of a bicycle To give somebody a backer is to give them a lift on this carrier. Carry them on the crossbar and it’s a “crosser.”
Keep going. “Ball on until you see Shandon.”
Very relaxed (usually following the smoking of a dounchy nodge, or a small piece of cannabis.)
Insanely drunk people with no regard for authority.
A game of football involving kicking the ball in turn against a wall. Very annoying if you live in the house that it’s being played against.
Broken beyond repair. “This stepladder is banjaxed.”
The most favoured child in a family. “Little Seamus is Mary’s bar-of-gold.”
Beat that in two throws!
Term of approval after something remarkable has been achieved.
Black-as / Blackberries / Blood-and-bandages
The red jerseys and white shorts of the Cork hurling and football teams. Also the teams themselves: “Come on, you blood-and-bandages.”
Pork spare ribs, a very popular Cork dish.
Break your melt
Test your patience to the breaking point. “That feller would break your melt!”
Erection. “I woke up this morning with a big búdán up on me.”
Two people who look alike. “Denis is the bulb off his father.”
Preventing something from taking place. “They withdrew the funding from the flood barrier and that put the cawhake on it.” Similar to Cockney “putting the mockers on it.”
Pieces of broken china that little girls would use to play tea-sets.
A way of catching somebody’s attention. “C’mere lamp the gatch on that feen” = look at the way that young man is walking.
Chalk it down
Yes, absolutely right. As in, “Are you going to the match Friday?” “Chalk it down, boy.”
A vicious blow usually inflicted by a teacher with a steel ruler.
To challenge somebody to a fight which you are pretty sure you can win. “Come on, you langer and I claim ya.”
Easy. “We got a load of ecca but it was pure climpy” = we had a lot of homework but it was very easy. Also, dimwit. “That feen’s some climpy.”
The change you keep when your mother sends you to the shop, or the cash you keep out of sight of the old doll.
Choice, or “nothing.” “He hardly did it for choicer” = he didn’t do it out of the goodness of his heart.
To joke or fool someone. “Are you codding me?”
To copy somebody’s homework and pass it off as your own. “I cogged that exam.”
Compensation claimed for “falling” or “tripping” on public roads and around public amenities. A common method of generating income in Cork.
Fantastic; nice, “That new dress is da berries on you.”
A punch, or a dig in the ribs to shut somebody up.
Good. “That’s some daycent record, boy.”
The cinema. “I’m bring me old doll to da flicks for a shift” = I’m taking my girlfriend to the cinema for a kiss.
Injury (possibly caused as an act of revenge.) “Sean got an awful debt off his bike” = he experienced terrible pain when his big toe was severed by the spokes.
Be extra vigilant, or on the lookout. “Be doggy wide I seen a two bulb around” = watch out I’ve seen a police car in the area.
Chester cake (a thick brown paste containing sultanas and bakery leftovers between two slices of pastry, also known as “gur cake” because it was a favourite with “gurriers” or truants because it was cheap and that was all they could afford.
Very small (smaller than “twinchy.”) Can either refer to a small piece of chocolate or cannabis or a person. “Look at the size of your man, he’s dounchy.”
Down the banks
A reprimand. “I gave him down the banks.”
A term of approval or acclaim, such as when a goal is scored.
Sheep’s or cow’s blood pudding usually eaten with tripe.
A drink, usually cadged. “Give us a drizzle off your can, willya boy.”
A tight-fitting coat
Man or boy. “That feen is dead on” = that boy is likeable.
Free Gaff = party location, not to be confused with the political party Fine Gael. “Was that the FG when O’Leary took a hopper onto the bona?” = was that the party when O’Leary jumped in to the bonfire?
Stood up for a date. In other words, only 50 percent of the couple showed up.
Sexual relations. “I flahed your wan.” = I had sex with that girl.
Totally exhausted. Not very polite. English equivalent = shagged out.
The female genitalia. The lowered crossbar on a female bicycle is known as a flange bar.
Any girl who refuses to have sexual relations.
Noticeably wide parting between a girl’s legs. “Lamp the gatch on that wan she’s pure gapped!”
A go or a try. “Give us a garry off your bike, boy.”
Way of walking. “Can I buy that gatch off of you, boy?” = you have a strange way or unusual way of walking.
Alcoholic drink. Hence “gatting” for drinking, usually with cans of cheap lager in Dunnes Stores car-park.
To stare. As in, “Why is that feen gawking at me?” Also, to vomit, “I was mouldy and i gawked all over the shop” = I was drunk and I vomited everywhere.
Legs – usually female, and usually worth commenting on.
Taking care of your appearance.
Instructions (for a flat-pack wardrobe, for instance)
A stupid operson
Money. “Have you grade for gatts?”
Drink quickly. “Guzzle that boy, the shades are coming!”
Gooseberry, as in being the third unwanted person on a date.
Broken. “Is that nock goosed, sham?” = Is that object broken, my good man?
Arrested. “I was hauled in last night for gawking on some old doll for the laugh” = I was arrested for puking over a girl for the fun of it.
Extremely lucky. “I flahed your wan and I was haunted I didn’t catch anything off her.”
Look here. “Here la, two gatts.” = Look, I’ve brought us two alcoholic drinks.
To steal or shoplift
A walk. “Let’s go for a hod.”
The anus. Strangely used in Youghal as a greeting. “Hey, Hoop, how’s she going?”
A fall. “I took some hopper off my bike.”
Nickname for anybody named Horgan.
“I will in my gonkapouch.”
I certainly won’t.
“If you were sad, she’d make you lonesome.”
Somebody whose conversation is both boring and depressing.
Dubliner – especially those who waved the Union Jack when British monarchs visited Dublin in the past. Still held in some mild contempt in Cork – the Rebel County.
A date. “I’m going out on a jag with Maureen.”
Going out with somebody, usually involving not much more than shifting.
Act as a look-out. “Keep sketch for the shades” = watch out for the police.
Boring. “That film was very leadránach.”
To look or glance at something.
To take a free ride (a “langie”) on the back of a vehicle such as a lorry or a bus.
On the lang, or on the hop = playing truant from school.
A person less offensive than a langer, but still unpleasant.
Penis. Can be used as an insult in the same way as “prick” in English.
Large amount, as in “He’s making a langerload of grade” = he’s making a lot of money.
Very drunk – “After eight lagers I was totally langers.”
Food poisoning or diarrhoea or any unknown sickness.
Officers of An Garda Síochána, or “guards”
To run away. “I done a legger”
Trouble, especially financial. “Your man is in the height of loberty.”
Lacking energy or sluggish
A game played between two youths in which a leather ball is struck to and fro with a hurley at very high velocity over a long distance, preferably up and down a residential street with lots of parked cars in it.
Good, enjoyable. “Mad choons, boy!” = good music.
Leave. “I’ve no spoondoolies left so I’m going to make tracks” = I have run out of money and so I’m leaving.
A savings scheme operated by a few people, usually women. “Don’t forget to give Brenda the money for the manage.”
Very good, beautiful. Can describe anything from a Christmas dinner to a dress
Term of approval. “That Tanora is me daza.”
Idiot (or testicle)
Testicles, or a balls-up. “He made a pure mebs of that job.”
Not real, not the genuine article.
Wife or girlfriend
Old man’s arse
Someone who acts old even if they’re still young
To be offended with someone abnd/or refuse to speak to the, “Denis out with Mick.”
Out the gap
To leave. “Give us a smoke and then I’m out the gap.”
St Patrick’s Street, Cork’s main shopping street
Lying down, especially if you’ve been knocked down flat in a fight
Trinity Bridge over the south channel of the River Lee
A child’s name for pee
Utterly, completely. “I left my sausage in the oven and it was pure burned, like.”
A large quantity, usually of alcohol. “I had a rake of pints last night.”
A very large stone but still moveable or throwable
Trainers or running shoes
Extremely. Could be used to compliment a good-looking woman from a distance. “Savage old doll by the bar there” or describe a seirous nose-bleed “My schribler is bleeding something savage.”
Miser. Somebody tight with money.
Sconce/have a sconce at
Look. Take a look at.
A walk or a stroll
Very vain. “Look at your man, he thinks he’s it, he’s septic.”
Seven shows of Cork
Severe verbal abuse or dressing-down. “Mary was so angry she gave Kevin the seven shows of Cork.”
Showing off. “Look at her, she’s shaping.”
Stealing fruit from an orchard
Kissing and cuddling – usually the sort that invites spectators to shout out “find a room!”
Childish tantrum or sulk. “That boy is in a stailc.”
Home-made cart for children
Passing the time not doing much
Throw a rabie
Get worked up and angry
Orange-flavoured soft drink
An emotional lump in the throat (pronounced “tuct”)
The core of an apple. “When you’re finished with that apple, give us the ucks.”
Up the walls
Wax a gaza
Clamp a lamp-post. (Gaza = gas=lamp). Usually used as a way of telling somebody to go away = “go and wax a gaza.”