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Jamaican lingo

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I found this on visitjamaica.com and thought some of you may want it for newsletters or welcome letters. Kinda neat...


A lot of it is quite easy to adapt to. Jamaicans tend to drop the ‘r†at the end of words, so that dollar becomes ‘dollaâ€, and water becomes ‘wataâ€. Double “tâ€s†within words sometimes become double “kâ€sâ€, changing little to ‘likkleâ€, and bottle to ‘bokkleâ€. We often add or subtract ‘h†at will so that when you ‘harrive†at your ‘otelâ€, ‘heverybody†will tell you ‘elloâ€. For simplicity, men and women alike become ‘im†or ‘demâ€. ‘Dem†is quite a versatile word. It also acts as a modifier to pluralize everything, so ‘yuh new fren dem†will accompany you to the ‘place dem†that you need to visit. Jamaicans also have an interesting system of adding words - your ‘frock tail†may ‘hitch up†under your ‘foot bottom†causing you to ‘drop dung†and hurt your ‘neck backâ€.


Many words and phrases are unique to Jamaica. When in Jamaica you ‘nyam†(eat) your ‘bickle†(food) and ‘labrish†(gossip) with friends. ‘Jam†(hang out) on the beach with your ‘likkle boonoonoonous†(someone you love) or ‘bush-out†(dress up), ‘touch di road†(leave your house) and ‘go sport†(socialize). In the market youâ€re sure to get ‘brawta†(a little extra) with any purchase. Enjoy ‘ital stew†(salt-free rastafarian/vegetarian dish) and a good ‘reasoning†(discussion) with your Jamaican ‘Idren†(friends). ‘Skank†(Rock to Reggae music) at a local ‘dance†(street party) and drink a ‘stripe…well cold†(very cold Red Stripe Beer).


At the end of it all --- “it sweet fi talkâ€.


A few good words to know…


Whaâ€appen? (Whatâ€s up?) – Greeting used among friends.


Seen (Yes, I understand / Itâ€s OK) – response used in the affirmative or to reassert understanding


Nuff (Plenty) – used to represent volumes…of just about anything; also to describe an overbearing personality eg. “memba fi buy nuff tings†at the craft market (remember to buy lots of things); “how da gyal so nuff?†(why is that girl so overbearing?)


Bashment (Excitement/Party) – used as a noun, adjective, adverb eg. “Mi a go a ‘bashment†(I am going to an exciting event), “Im roll up inna one bashment car†(He arrived in an impressive vehicle), “What a bashy piece a outfit yu wearing!†(The outfit youâ€re wearing is gorgeous)


Rhaatid (Wow) – used as an expression, adjective or to intensify eg. “ Rhaatid, di gate drop down†(Wow, the gate fell), “she get a rhaatid lick†(she got a bad hit), “A figet di mango to rhaatid†(Oh no! I forgot the mango)


Walk Good – Departing salutation, issued with good wishes (Good-bye, Take care, Safe travel)

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yes we noticed quite a lot of different words when we were there for our honeymoon. Our guide at Dunn's river gave us a little lesson.


A few things I remember they say Ochie for Ocho Rios

hmm there was something else that I thought was really funny but I don't remember right now. I will ask my DH

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Originally Posted by Ilandking View Post
You know I wouldnt worry too much about the lingo, some people find it difficult but if you really listen its very similar to English...oh and if you try to speak it and they laugh its just that it sound funny to us without the accent....Have fun with it!!!....Marlon
Yeah, just thought it was cute. I am sure we would sound foolish if we used it.
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  • 6 years later...

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