What are slang terms

Colloquial expressions

In this chapter you will find a number of idioms that you will not necessarily find in every dictionary, but which you will often pick up as you listen to people in the UK on a day-to-day basis.

The following list does not claim to be exhaustive, after all, the colloquial language often differs by nuances from region to region, from city to city or even from clique to clique. The language of young people in particular is constantly being expanded to include terms and idioms. If we were to include such phrases in this grammar, they might be out of date by the time you are reading this.

You will find a small selection of these below slang- Expressions that are widely used and are also used nationwide in Great Britain. Please make sure that some of these terms do not exactly belong to the "fine tone" and can be perceived as offensive. We therefore advise against using them, especially in formal exchanges. Perhaps, however, you will also have a little fun learning not only pure school English and expanding your vocabulary to include such linguistic subtleties as occur in everyday language use.

Small selection of colloquial terms

Are you taking the mickey?

Are you kidding?

barmy / crazy

bad, idiotic (vulg.)

bastard / wanker / fucker

Asshole / wanker (vulg.)

bits and bobs

Little things


eye-catching, glittering

bloody (hell) / for ... ’s sake (e.g. for God’s sake, for fuck’s sake) / shit

damn (vulg.)

bollocks / crap

bad, nonsense (vulg.)

bunged up



Bottom up!

crap / rubbish

Junk / nonsense / shit


Butt, cigarette (caution: in the USA a derogatory term for homosexuals)

to gossip

gossip, blaspheme


That's right / Yes.

kiddie / bab / bairn (Scot) / kid / dead



like (often used as a filler word)


Toilet, loo


Buddy, friend

to natter / chat / gas

chatter, babble

to nick


nutcase / idiot / wally / muppet / nutter

Idiot (vulg.)

pissed / trollied / smashed

drunk (vulg.)

Ta./ Ta muchly./ Ta very much.

Thank you / Thank you very much.



Now that you are ready for everyday life in Great Britain, at the very end of this grammar you will find a chapter dealing with British measurements and weights.