Talk:List of words having different meanings in American and British English (A–L)

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Can we add company? It means 'corporation' in the UK (an incorporated body), but any firm/business in the US. See Company Aendolin (talk) 14:32, 14 April 2017 (UTC)


Apart from the "traffic circle" sense: I am almost certain that British English does not use roundabout for a fairground carousel (the kind of ride that might have horses going around on poles). In the UK, a roundabout is a children's ride consisting of a flat platform with handrails; children stand on the platform and somebody else walks around pushing it to make it turn. You'd find it in a small local playground with swings, slides and seesaws; it's not the staffed fairground attraction (which we'd call a carousel too). (talk) 17:34, 27 October 2008 (UTC)

I'd disagree - "Roundabout" is used in the name of a UK trade organization The Society of Independent Roundabout Proprietors, and, although I'd probably call the fairground ride a "merry-go-round" rather than a "roundabout", the usage doesn't seem unnatural. After all, The Magic Roundabout was a powered carousel. Tevildo (talk) 20:15, 30 October 2008 (UTC)
I agree with Tevildo. Deipnosophista (talk) 17:50, 20 December 2008 (UTC)
Same here, I have always used "roundabout" or "merry-go-round" for what the Americans call a carousel. I probably use "roundabout" in preference to "merry-go-round" but both sound OK, maybe the preference is regional. -- Q Chris (talk) 15:28, 21 December 2008 (UTC)
FWIW, outside of New Jersey and Seattle, "roundabout" for a circular traffic intersection seems to be the accepted terminology in the US. These are relatively new, mainly being built in the last decade. Living in the Midwest United States I had never heard of the term "traffic circle".Froo (talk) 02:14, 28 September 2009 (UTC)
I had always thought the american term was a rotary EdwardLane (talk) 14:38, 2 February 2010 (UTC)
Everything I've heard about "rotary" indicates that it's specific to the NE and perhaps moreso a Massachusetts term. You'll likely never hear a native Midwesterner, Southerner, etc. call it a "rotary."Caisson 06 (talk) 13:41, 22 April 2010 (UTC)
Did nobody here ever watch the Magic Roundabout? FergusM1970 (talk) 04:23, 11 January 2011 (UTC)

High School[edit]

Should high school be here? I know that in the UK its definitely a secondary school, but I get the feeling that in the US it can also be a university. Deipnosophista (talk) 17:49, 20 December 2008 (UTC)

Not according to the High school article - the only difference is that a UK high school takes pupils (or students, or service users, or whatever they're called these days) from 11 to 18, and a US high school's age range is 14 to 18. There might be a better case for Kindergarten, which is a distinct, formal part of the US educational system, but I don't think we really need either. Tevildo (talk) 20:56, 21 December 2008 (UTC)
High school is a secondary institution here in the US. I know, WP:OR, sorry. Gerardw (talk) 01:23, 20 January 2009 (UTC)
And in the UK, which is why it doesn't belong on this list.YobMod 12:10, 18 March 2009 (UTC)


I've reverted the recent addition of "coulis is a mountaineering term, derived from the French" to the "coulee" entry. I can't find any references to anything other than the culinary meaning of "coulis" with a quick search, and we don't usually have entries for similar-sounding words in any case. However, I may be mistaken... Tevildo (talk) 21:05, 21 December 2008 (UTC)

I didn't know this word, but the article coulee, it seems to be a cajun word used only on the Southern Mississippi river area. Stick with General American words or we'll get beyond the scope this article should have. Delete on obscurity grounds! Chrisrus (talk) 05:56, 10 September 2009 (UTC)
While coulee is of French original, it was much wider use than in Cajun Louisiana. It's pretty common in the NW US, Grand Coulee Dam for example, but I understand it is used in the Plains, etc. (talk) 18:45, 5 July 2010 (UTC)

C column widths[edit]

i recently did an edit in the c section, and it seems to have mucked up the column widths. how do i fix this ? Machete97 (talk) 10:22, 27 January 2009 (UTC)

Middle Class[edit]

I note that this has been added recently. It's true there's a difference in _meaning_ between the US and the UK for this term (which is given in the listing), but I'm not sure that it's a difference between AmE and BrE as such - it's a cultural difference rather than a linguistic difference. On the other hand, the same could be said for "football" and "Asian" and several other entries. I've not deleted "middle class", but neither am I convinced it should stay. Tevildo (talk) 22:43, 18 March 2009 (UTC)

I agree. These are not technical terms, they are relative to others in one's mind. If they mean different things to different people, it due to many factors beyond simple dialect questions. (talk) 06:18, 10 September 2009 (UTC)


I've never heard this term used for a gang member in North America. It can mean basically the same thing in both countries (especially in porn, meaning a group fuck with multiple men on one women).

I've heard it used as slang for a gang member numerous times in the US. John Darrow (talk) 03:12, 8 April 2009 (UTC)
Indeed, Merriam-Webster gives "gang member" as the _only_ definiton - [1]. Tevildo (talk) 21:51, 8 April 2009 (UTC)
In the US, A gangbanger is a gang member, a gangbang is group sex, usually one female and a group of guys. It's not a new use of the term for gang members, and may have some connection to the sexual sense. I'd say it's at least 10-15 years old. Spend some time in the Army, you learn alot. Caisson 06 (talk) 21:37, 24 April 2009 (UTC)
"Gangbanger" is clearly hip-hop slang. We should stick to talking about General American, where the word is "gang member" or "gangster". Bringing in every term from American Black English Vernacular would make this already unwieldy article unmanageable in scope. The situation in the East Atlantic might be more complicated, but I don't think words understood only by this or that UK subculture is implied in the term "British English", even if you allow something outside of what I think they call "received" English. Chrisrus (talk) 05:43, 10 September 2009 (UTC)
"Gangbanger" may or may not have originated as hip-hop slang, but it is pretty much universal now, in my experience. I can't recall one way or another whether this term was even in use back in the day before hip-hop and the type of gangs we have now, although I certainly recall "gangbang" as a noun referring to group sex. But in my experience, any reference to a "gangbanger" these days means either a gang member or one who exhibits characteristics thereof. (talk) 18:53, 5 July 2010 (UTC)

coach bolt, coach screw[edit]

British English seems to use the term, coach bolt, for what is known as a carriage bolt in the US.

British English seems to use the term, coach screw, for what is known as a carriage screw in the US. Davefoc (talk) 17:55, 6 May 2009 (UTC)

I'd say go ahead and add unless you really need some kind of confirmation. (talk) 06:21, 10 September 2009 (UTC)


I noticed a potential error in the listing for the definition of the word "cookie." The British and American english sections seem to have a definition in common that the writers missed because they both used terms that were mutually misunderstood. The British English section includes the definition a biscuit of a particular variety, usually containing chocolate chips (often referred to as a "chocolate chip cookie") and the American English includes the definition a small, flat baked cake * (UK usu. biscuit, q.v.)

Since I'm unsure if there might be some nuance that marks these as different enough to require being separate, I figured I should post it for discussion first. (talk) 07:39, 30 May 2009 (UTC)

In the U.S., a cookie is any sort of small flat baked cake—what a Briton would call a biscuit. In the UK, according to this article, "cookie" refers to a specific type of small flat baked cake (biscuit), usually a chocolate-chip cookie. Powers T 22:37, 30 May 2009 (UTC)

Stuff Nonsense[edit]

Hi, I see that much work goes on in this page. After a discussion about some differing American/British -English I have looked through A - D. Much of it is veering from slang for genitals to wild inaccuracies. Here are the more dubious accounts:- apartment (doesn't mean apartment in British-English huh?), casualty (doesn't mean tradgic death in British English?), ace (doesn't mean "to ace it" on some sort of test?), beaver (not slang for genitals?), box (not slang for beaver?), buggy (not the word for baby carriage?), alternate, anchor, appropriate, Asian, athlete, aubergene, awesome, banger, bash, bathroom, batty, beaver, bloody (on 'British' it says used when saying "Bloddy this" and "Bloody that" then for American it says "Used in place of some stronger swear words. Now doesn't that say the same bloody thing?), blow off, boost, boot, box, brilliant, buffet, bug, bugger, buggy, bum, bus, butt, call box, candy, car, carnival, carousel, casualty, catapult, clerk, closet, coach, commissioner, corn (where do you get this corn= wheat and oats and/or any kind of cereal grain? I have seen this on wiki before it's absolute crap), cunt (only men get called a cunt?), etc.

Look there is no point in making changes to half that without giving a discussion. ~ R.T.G 18:33, 12 June 2009 (UTC)
If a term is included that really is the same in both languages, remove that term. If there are dubious unsupported claims, move them to this talk page and request citations on them. Good luck. Have fun. The Transhumanist 21:40, 12 June 2009 (UTC) P.S.: visit WP:WPOOK and let me know what you think.

Ok I will list a few outdated or innaccurate entries along with why (obviously I think there is a whole bunch of them!). I think the Outlines are very encyclopaediacish. I thought, looking at 'Outline of space exploration' that it should be titled as 'Outline of Space exploration'. I will try writing that there. ~ R.T.G 11:49, 13 June 2009 (UTC)

From the top and only suggesting any that are very outdated or incorrect:

  • Apartment - That is outdated. It is a colloquialism of a word Francais and is certainly innaccurate to list as having a different meaning.
  • Appropriate - Says that in British English you can misappropriate but not appropriate. Now thats funny but again...
  • Asian - That is an attempt to say that in America, Asians of far eastern descent do not appreciate the word Oriental because you could be Chinese Thai, anything. On the list of different meanings Indians are still Asian in America and vis versa Orientals in British English.
  • Athlete - Says that in British English the like of a football player is not an athlete. Thats rubbish. The word "Athletics" might refer to track and field but "athlete" and "athletic" do not have different meanings in British English.
  • Banger - Doesn't seem to account that there are banging tunes in British English.
  • Bill - Anybody will know that bill means dollar not money just the same as pound is note. Any Americans been dealing with Pound bills today? Anybody read that dollar note?
  • Bloody - It says that in British English, bloody is used as an expletive where as in America it is some sort of swear word. Now I don't how fine a point that is...
  • Boost - You get booster cushions and boosted cars in British English.
  • Buffet - How fine a point is that?
  • Car - Says it is a railway carriage in British English but in American English it is a railway carriage.
  • Carnival - Isn't the Mardi Gras a type of carnival.
  • Catapult - Rise quickly, no difference.
  • City - Fine point? And, Londons The City... is that British English or is that what London calls the financial area in the center of the city?
  • Closet - Outdated?
  • Corn - I have seen several places on Wikimedia that I perhaps call wheat, oats and any other cereal grain a "corn" and it says "the principle crop" but only if it happens to be maize.
  • Dead beat - "Often in construction" the cheek of you!!
  • Deck - "Pack of cards" no difference there.
  • Die - For dice.
  • Dresser - OK surprise me. I am going to say that not only is dresser common knowledge as a chest of drawers/dressing table, why would somebody have a dresser in the kitchen? I know someone is going to say "We called it a dresser" but doesn't that one beggar a bit of reference?
  • Duck - A term of endearment. Not apply in America no?
  • Duplex - House, no difference there.

OK busy for now. ~ R.T.G 20:52, 13 June 2009 (UTC)

In the US, we might say sarcastically, "Ain't that just ducky?" when the fit hits the shan (So to speak.)
Mardi Gras ("the" is not used as a definitive article) is indeed a type of Carnival. However, the best-known Carnival is in Rio.
American kitchens don't have have "dressers". We have "drawers". LizFL (talk) 22:46, 13 June 2009 (UTC)
Right, my experience in the UK and reading UK media (unless you want notes inserted into your points?):
  • Apartment usually implies more room and luxury than flat - this is a difference in meaning compared to America.
The word "luxury" implies "above standard only" this is not the case, but it's a fine point.
  • Appropriate - don't think I've ever really heard it used over here, although it doesn't sound 'American'. I have heard misappropriate used.
I cannot see how we can have misappropriate and appropriation of the same meaning without "appropriate". If the actual word "appropriate" is more commonplace, say that but it is not different in meaning (and its prefixes and suffixes are no less common)
  • Asian - this is a word with different meanings in the two countries. These different meanings cause all sorts of confusions. They refer to people from different countries.
The word Asian is the title for a person from Asia. The racial preference isn't worded right (if that is nessecary, which maybe is a good idea but not to say the meaning is different)
  • Athlete - sort of. When people talk about athletes they usually mean people who do athletics. This does not include footballers, for example. But a footballer could be athletic, and probably nobody would turn their nose up at calling a footballer an athlete.
If you were generalising you could say "athlete", "athletic" but if you were talking about the Dolphins (is that football?) or Liverpool FC you would say "player". Same as that isn't it? Football isn't called "Athletics" (Europe), I don't know about America. It would be called an "Athletic pursuit". It could be worded better.
  • Banger - there might be bangin' tunes, but I've never heard anyone refer to a piece of music as a banger. Cars and sausages only.
Fine point. Yeah, cars and sausages are definitely right. "Thumper", etc..
Banger has no meaning in America, except maybe something that bangs alot. Chrisrus (talk) 01:16, 10 September 2009 (UTC)
  • Bill could perhaps be made clearer.
Agreed. Chrisrus (talk) 01:16, 10 September 2009 (UTC)
  • Bloody is describing the word being used as a general exclamation of anger in the UK, an emphatic swearword in its own right. In the US, it is being described as replacing other, harsher, swearwords - more like replacing 'damn' with 'darn'.
I am from Belfast and "bloody" is as commonplace as many other swear-words, saying "only in anger" is misleading.
You've got to keep in mind that this list is used (among others) by English as a Second/Foreign Language users who have learned only one version of English and now want to lear\n the other. Students who know what Americans mean when they say "bloody", (almost always "characterized by blood" as in "a bloody nose" might not be as quick to understand a Brit who says "That bloody dog is back again" or something, ie: "that damn dog is back again" not that the dog was covered in blood. Chrisrus (talk) 03:28, 5 September 2009 (UTC)
  • Carnival - Mardi Gras is indeed a carnival, covered by the central column "meanings common the US and UK"
I don't think "comic good times" describes a carnival and although the circus isn't called carnival, isn't a travelling funfair also a "carnie"? Is that even an English word?
Here in NYS, a carnival is a place where you can go on a Ferris wheel or a roller coaster, or maybe play one of those "skill" games like whack-a-mole or something, you know the places I mean, like a state fair, where the "Carnies" work, those creepy people who breeze into town for the carnival and then leave again as soon as it's over. The fact that we also use the word for the famous Rio "Carnival", is not so much American English but what the whole world calls it because the Brazilians call it that. Mardi Gras is not normally called or thought of as a carnival.

Chrisrus (talk) 01:16, 10 September 2009 (UTC)

In the New Orleans area, where Mardi Gras is celebrated, the term "Carnival season" is used to refer to the period from January 6 (Epiphany) through Mardi Gras itself. --BenStrauss (talk) 18:34, 8 April 2010 (UTC)
  • Catapult - certainly does describe the small handheld device. To catapult is therefore a metaphorical reference to this, not necessarily meaning 'to rise quickly'.
"And he was catapulted up into the air..." certainly not specific to American English
The verb is the same, but the noun is pretty much limited to that big thing they threw the cow at the French Taunter with in Monty Python and the Holy Grail. Chrisrus (talk) 01:16, 10 September 2009 (UTC)
  • City - a difference in meaning and definition, but you need to read the article for more detail.
It even suggests that "city" would be replaced by "postal town" on an envelope in the UK. Nonsense.
  • Closet - I agree with the article. I have never heard a British person refer to a wardrobe as a closet unless they were impersonating an American.
It suggests that "walk-in closet, linen closet, and skeleton in the closet" are specific to meaning in American English. That is nonesense.
  • Corn - I agree with this article, and all the other articles, and all the references in all the articles.
Wheat is corn? Oats are corn? You call wheat and oats "corn"? It says esp. in Ireland (let me tell you something...)
Wheat is not corn here. Only corn is corn, i.e.: maize. Chrisrus (talk) 01:16, 10 September 2009 (UTC)
  • Dead beat - does it not mean that in the US?
Dead beat means "beat up", "no good", "dead end", "hopeless", this that and the other. I could say "often refers to people who wash dishes for a living" It is very suspicious and unfair to say " construction".
I see it as one word, and it always means as far as I've heard someone that doesn't pay their debts. There was the famous "deadbeat dads" issue, about how to make divorced fathers pay their child support. Homer Simpson uses it this way in the one about the Elephant. I really don't htink it has another meaning here in New York.
  • Deck - interesting, I'm fully aware of 'deck of cards', but would never call a pack of cards a deck. Hmmm.
Certainly "deck of cards" holds the same meaning.
  • Die - I don't know about the US, so how much this is a difference, but I know that the fight to keep 'die' as the plural in the UK was lost long ago. The dictionaries and textbooks have surrendered and refer to 'a 6-sided dice'. Historically, it was the plural in the UK, and some of us still use it unless we are aware it will confuse.
I would add that as you explained (although I cannot say if it was plural or single, one of my grannys words!)
In NYS, one die, two dice.
  • Dresser - Seriously? You've heard UK people refer to a chest-of-drawers as a dresser? I never have, and consider it one of the surest signs I'm reading something written by an American. It was also one of the first US terms I had to work out the meaning of because it was confusing (along with 'in back of').
Certainly. Especially the ones arranged like a desk with a mirror. "Dresser in the kitchen" sounds odd. Granted, who knows what they call their kitchen in some parts in bygone days but I still say it is misleading to suggest the word dresser does not mean a bedroom dressing table.
Yes, dressers are for getting dressed, hence the name. You could put one in the kitchen, but you could put a bed in there as well if you really wanted to for some strange reason. It goes in the bedroom. Chrisrus (talk) 01:16, 10 September 2009 (UTC)
  • Duck - law love-a-duck, you think it's idiomatic over there? Based on what? Not just a word that could be used affectionately, but a word that widely is used affectionately in some dialects.
I doubt an American is going to misinterpret "You're my little duck"? As for replacing words like "chuck" and "mate", it must be very rare or something.
The use of "Duck/Ducks/Duckie" as a term of endearment is a pretty famous Britishism. Americans don't do that unless they are using a Britishism. Let us leave that for granted, from now on. Of course one dialect would use a word from another if they are deliberately doing so.
  • Duplex - what the Americans say instead of semi-detached. Not used over here. At all. Ever. Unless quoting Americans.
Shouldn't words that are rarely used but bear the same meaning be described like that? Duplex is a sort of word that would be taught in schools to mean divided house. Maybe it should say (UK: Semi-detached house) at least?
So, in brief, I mostly disagree with you and have very different experiences of the language. But none of this really matters: The big take-away is that we need sources for these differences in meanings. Yay! Dictionary-mining! (talk) 01:19, 14 June 2009 (UTC)
Over here, the idiom "Lord, Love-a-duck" is usually intended to express disbelief, incredulity, or amazement.
Deadbeat means the same thing over here as it does in the UK. LizFL (talk) 05:29, 14 June 2009 (UTC)
Yes with Liz, that one is more like "God bless us" not "God". I tried to give a response to all those. Note: 80.41.. did not cover "car" or "boost" ~ R.T.G 14:43, 14 June 2009 (UTC)
  • el - The L for learner driver is not "el", or is the letter L.
In Chicago it's the term for the elevated train that so desparately needs to be replaced with a subway. It could be the letter el, but we usually just type one.
  • Elevator - As in lift, elevator shaft. Same thing, less commonplace.
  • Fall - Was it "...fell for a baby"? I thought it was "Fall in love" Needs a better wording
  • Fancy - As in "To find appealing." there is no difference in meaning there.
It's very un-American to ask if you would fancy a beer. No, that's British. Here, it's just the adjective, a fancy new car or something.
  • Fix - "Fix you a sandwich" and "fix up" are non specific.
Normal US English to fix you a sandwich or fix up your place.
  • Flat - "Flat tyre" non specific
US - ""I got a flat (tire) on my way to work this morning."
  • Forward - That is a fine point or something.
  • Frog - Could add "frogman" (police diving specialist, is that still the term)?
Here, it's an animal first, an insult for a Frenchman maybe sometimes, and never a Frogman. Frogmen are Frogmen, not frogs.
  • Full stop - "Complete stop" non specific..?
You must always come to a full stop at this interection, period. ("Period" meaning UK "full stop", meaning "no arguements, exceptions, or caveats".
  • Garden - Fine point.
No, this is wierd for Americans in the UK and vice versa. Here a garden is planted with vegetables or flowers. It's the most popular hobby in America. Neither an unplanted yard or a lawn is not a gardern. Keep this or clarify, it's important.
  • Goods - Specific to railway trains?
US Goods as in "goods and services", that's all.
  • Graduate - Is it fair to say "graduate" is specific to higher level?
When I was a kid, you didn't graduate until you finished at least high school. Nowadays, kids graduate from kindergarten and stuff, which disgusts me and other people my age. We see it as an abuse of the term.
  • Guff - Specific to American English?
Specific to a construction with "not any guff": "Don't give me any guff (backtalk/complaints)! Sure, donno if it's just us or they do it in the UK, but it wouldn't be surprised if it were American.
  • Hire - Employment, specific to American?
Americans don't hire cars, we rent cars. We only hire people.
  • Hog - "(dialect) a yearling sheep"?
A hog's a pig or a metaphorical one. Period.
  • Holiday - Fine point? (I wonder should the page be renamed so as not to include the word "meanings" because some words of same meaning show valid examples of comparison such as "holiday" and "vacation", same meaning but the usage applies, right?)
It's well known that in the US, a holiday is a DAY. You can't go on holiday for a week. It makes no sence.
  • Home - That is a fine point. Real estate agencies sell "homes". Doesn't the phrase "at home" apply to American English? Also, missing, "home in", "homing beacon", as in targeting.
I agree, all of these apply to American English. This word is the same. I think maybe what they were thinking of was the fact that real estate marketing people have decided to stop selling houses and start selling homes. I don't know if that same marketing decision has been made in the UK, but it could be, I think, because the same emotional distinction might resonate the same way with a consumer in the UK, but I don't know for sure.
  • Immediately - Is that a difference?
Agreed, delete this one.
  • Indicator - Missing from common meanings "Indication"
  • Inventory - Again that same meaning different usage. Applies but does not differ in meaning.
  • Jam No - I guess "No" is just a mistake? "Jam" is British English for the preserve/jelly but "Jam No"?
Yes, what the heck is "jam no"?
  • Jock - "Jock strap" specific to American English?
  • Keen - Missing: "sharp edge", "keen edge", common to both?
Yes, I think so. Only "eager" isn't American.
  • Ladder - Look I don't know but is it really not "ladder in tights" in American? Should say what it is then.
They get runs in their stockings here, never ladders. The ladder for painting the house or whatever is the same.
  • Lead - "Guide" or should it be "go in front of/guide"? Should it say "type of metal" or could it say (pron. leed)
  • Leader - Missing, "most successful"
  • Let - "Let out" that is non specific.
  • Line - "pick up line" and queue line. Those are non specific.
  • Lot - The meanings of plot of land is non specific and I find it hard to accept that "whole lot" does not mean "whole thing" in America.
  • Lounge - Thats a very fine point.
  • Loveseat - Opposite directions?
  • Lug - "lug nut", "big lug" those are non specific.
  • Lumber - "timber", it is not commonly used but is non specific.
OK there is some more for now ~ R.T.G 16:49, 14 June 2009 (UTC)
Re: lot. The British phrase is the lot, not the whole lot. Anyway, like I said a zillion times (search the archives and the failed AfDs if you're interested), the approach is wrong, the categorization is pointless, the idea of the "different meanings" is useless, and the article is totally absurd. It's not just about "different meanings"--it's about differences in meaning, connotation, denotation, frequency of use. This article has been nominated for deletion several times, but it was all for naught. When the world comes to an end, only two things will survive--cockroaches, and the list of words having different meanings in British and American English. *Sigh.* I'm [dʒæˑkɫɜmbɚ] and I approve this message. 03:51, 15 June 2009 (UTC)
The list could be shortened to around 20 - 30% of it's current size and then, for the sake of interest, outdated stuff could be listed further down. Surely that would be invaluable to somebody. Aw come on! It was spiders and rats that survived :) ! ~ R.T.G 09:14, 15 June 2009 (UTC)
  • Mad - "enraged" or "mad skills" are certainly not specific to American and "mad" to describe an eccentric is only used to call the person insane.
  • Mail - "send a letter" is non specific.
  • Mailbox - is not commonly used but is not different in meaning.
  • Main line - "railway" that is non specific.
  • Make out - "made out well" non specific
  • Mean - two entries say the same thing. No difference in meaning
  • Meet with - non specific
  • Middle class - no difference. Certainly not a negative word.
  • Military - "Specifically the British Army" that is nonsense and so is the implication that only American English is specific to the meaning "to do with the armed forces"
  • Miss out - thats a very fine point
  • Momentarily - non specific
  • Motorbike - that is a very fine point
  • Nancy boy - I have heard Americans use the term "nancy boy" a few times
Me too.
  • Nor - "Ireland: 'Someone better nor me'" thats nonsense. Maybe a few hundred years ago (you should read some dialogue that old)
  • Panda - UK police cars have been blue and yellow for over a decade.
  • Pants - "trousers", "wearing the pants" those are non specific.
  • Pass out - "distribute" non specific
  • Pop - "father", "to kill" non specific
  • Post - "keep posted" non specific
  • Pressurise/ze - "insistently influence" that is hardly specific to British English is it? "Peer pressure"?
  • Protest - no difference in meaning
  • Pull - "pull in that office", "pull rank" non specific
  • Pull off - "Start a vehicle moving"? Maybe "Pull out" to move the vehicle out from the footpath/sidewalk. Is that specific to British English? "Pull over here"?
  • Pussy - non specific
  • Quite - Does "quite good" not make good sense in American English?
  • Root - "to root around" non specific.
  • Rubber - "condom" non specific
  • Run - "run a red light" is non specific, it may mean "to drive past" in another context in American English but that is a bad example.
  • Run in - I would question "last part of race". "argument or altercation" is non specific
  • Rundown - missing, "dilapidated", "exhasted" cannot say if has that meaning in American
  • Smashed - non specific
  • Stash - hiding place, non specific
  • Stove - "appliance for cooking food". Less common usage but non specific.
  • Strike - A good solid shot. Is that not the meaning in America? "struck me" or "strike while the iron is hot"
  • Student - usage is different. Meaning is the same. "students of a primary school"
  • Sweet - "something good" non specific
  • Tab - "keep tabs on" non specific
  • Tick off - "annoy", "tick off a list" non specific
  • Toasted - "on both sides"?
  • Torch - "act of arson" non specific
  • Tough - non specific
  • Tout - "the movie was touted" non specific
  • Tradesperson - "skilled worker" non specific
  • Vacation - common use differs not meaning
  • Wash up "wash hands and face" non specific "get washed up"
  • Wingnut - "crazy person" non specific

~ R.T.G 15:34, 16 June 2009 (UTC)

RTG - I agree that there is a lot of dross in this list. But there is also some good material, and (in so far as I understand the points you are making in the listing above) I think you have a number of things wrong. I'm puzzled by your last two items, for example, because I reckon (without, I admit, checking any reliable sources) that the entries in the article for wash up and wingnut are fairly accurate, and describe real differences between AmE and BrE. When you say "non specific", what do you mean? SNALWIBMA ( talk - contribs ) 15:49, 16 June 2009 (UTC)
I'm sorry, I wrote "American/British English" so many times, I just mean it is not particularly specific to American English such as "Wingnut" = Crazy person and "Wash up" = Get washed. Wingnut is one of the oldest slang I can remember. You're right about the rest of it, I had a great read of it but if it's not checked through occasionally you can only believe ones you know already. ~ R.T.G 16:46, 16 June 2009 (UTC)

I thought the UK used "holiday" more than "vacation"? LizFL (talk) 01:52, 17 June 2009 (UTC)

Yes they do (and why don't you go into it, would you in America, if I said "I'm on holiday for the weekend." think, "that's a funny word to say." or "That really doesn't make sense at all?"
I've heard the term in enough British movies to be used to it. LOL LizFL (talk) 15:58, 26 June 2009 (UTC)

Vacation certainly makes sense over here but, as described for American, doesn't mean "standard holiday period" and also, it's rarely the word {usually short 'break' or just holiday} but it's a school-taught and occasionally heard word) if you look at "holiday" further up I was asking, as the article is called "different" meanings, what about sectioning off words with same meanings yet very different usage (like muffin)? And, don't be fooled, I might be able to say "this word is definitely a commonplace in British English" but I will not be on the phone to say "whats the American for 'ladder' in your pantyhose" so any changes like that will require an American at least. (Although pantyhose says ladder a few times so it must be that. lol) ~ R.T.G 10:55, 17 June 2009 (UTC)

Maybe I can't do it. I was sure a lot of people would be criticising the list. Here in Ireland, even Northern Ireland, we seem to pick up a lot more American colloquialism (curz we iz curntry). Or maybe I picked out the right ones./? ~ R.T.G 10:30, 26 June 2009 (UTC)
FYI, Brussels Sprouts are known as "Brussels Sprouts" in the United States.--Son of Somebody (talk) 04:59, 18 July 2009 (UTC)

only one comment to add to the above The word Dresser in a kitchen almost certainly originates with the specific piece of furniture known as the 'welsh dresser' which was a cupboard with shelves on the upper half for displaying your prized porcelain (etc) EdwardLane (talk) 14:53, 2 February 2010 (UTC)

And one more thing... what about Canadian (as opposed to American) usage? We fall somewhere in-between. Going through the list, I thought a lot of the words would/could embody both of what were described as mutually exclusive meanings. We're still North Americans after all.

Oh, boy ... that's a whole other list! LMAO LizFL (talk) 05:06, 2 August 2010 (UTC)

British "Poof"[edit]

I would like to see the word "poof" added as a variation of "poofta", British slang (disparaging and offensive) for a an effeminate male or a male homosexual. As far as I am aware, the only known understanding of the word "poof" in America is as an indication of a sudden disappearance, as in a magic trick. For example it might appear in a comic strip simply as "Poof!" in a frame in which something was made to disappear that was present in the previous frame.

OK add it then. It seams reasonable. I would consider asterisking the "disappearing" meaning, I have heard that but I can't remember if it was just on US tv shows. -- Q Chris (talk) 07:50, 8 August 2009 (UTC)
American usage is as onomatopoeia for a puff of smoke, which usually accompanies said magical disappearances. Powers T 14:26, 8 August 2009 (UTC)

A lovely grease gun[edit]

While in Europe, I heard two very strange usages of the word "lovely" by British people. One was a mechanic who called a greasegun "lovely" and another was a teacher who called an academic article "lovely".

Back in the US, I saw a show about the Clumber Spaniel in which a British woman said that these hunting dogs had a "lovely" scense of smell.

It seems to me that "lovely" in BritEng means "excellent" and that back here, it means "beautiful". Do you all agree? Can we cite this? Should I add it to the article? Chrisrus (talk) 02:59, 5 September 2009 (UTC)

"We had a lovely time". Now is that specific to American English or to British English? ~ R.T.G 21:37, 18 September 2009 (UTC)
I'd assume it common to both. But "this is a lovely tire iron" is a strange thing to say in AmEng. Chrisrus (talk) 02:58, 19 September 2009 (UTC)

Car Bits[edit]

The same British mechanic that called the greese gun "lovely" (see above section) talked about "car bits" instead of "car parts". That reminded me of a British teacher who once said she liked "bits" of a syllabus I'd written, and looking back on that now, I think she didn't mean to say that she liked only tiny particles here and there, but rather that she liked some parts of it, but others she didn't.

In AmEng, "bits" calls to mind tiny little particles, as in "blown to bits" or something. It seems to me, however, that in BritEng, it's no different than the way we say "parts". Is this true? Can we cite it? Should I add it to the article? Chrisrus (talk) 03:08, 5 September 2009 (UTC)

Partner - different meaning[edit]

In the UK partner refers to someone you are romantically involved with (unless context dictates otherwise like "business partner"). We often use it when some people are married and some not; telling people that they can bring their partners to an after work meal would mean wive's, husbands, boyfriends and girlfriends.

Someone in the USA said that in America the use of "partner" implies a same sex romantic relationship. Is this right? -- Q Chris (talk) 21:08, 9 September 2009 (UTC)

Well, "business partner" is the normal term for that here as well, so I don't think there's any difference there. But I don't know what I'd say if I wanted a word like "all employees can bring thier ????? with them to the company picnic". To be honest, I actually might say "significant other", but I wish I wouldn't, that term seems pretty lame somehow. I guess I might say "parter," but I think maybe the English language is missing a very good word for "either spouse or girl/boyfriend". I do know, however, that it is used by gay people. They talk about their "partners" sometimes. Maybe if I used "partner", people might think I was implying that same-sex boy/girlfriends/spouses are being specifically and intentionally included, even if I didn't really want to say that. Maybe that's what the person you were talking to was noticing when they said that to you. "Lover", by the way, I think, is a pretty cringeworthy word and I avoid it like the plague, do you agree? It sounds like "person one has sex with," especially if it's cheating. Eww.
I donno if this helps, but I hope so. Chrisrus (talk) 00:15, 10 September 2009 (UTC)
While I think it generally connotes a same-sex couple, I have heard it used occasionally to mean a romantic partner, generally in the context of people who have formed a relationship similar to marriage, but who don't believe in getting married per se. But also as a generic term, i.e. when the speaker doesn't have a specific couple in mind. E.g. "This is something everyone should discuss with their partner...." And I agree with the above on the connotations of "lover." (talk) 02:20, 30 August 2010 (UTC)


You know, I think whether brilliant is being used sarcastically or not is far more dependent on the speaker than their regiolect.. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talkcontribs)


Uh..what makes a diner especially prevalent in NJ? removing that sentence. Ingridjames (talk) 01:40, 5 October 2009 (UTC)


How about "A&E"? UK: the accident and emergency (casualty) department of a hospital. US: Arts and Entertainment I know it's an abbreviation, but perhaps it should be included. —Preceding unsigned comment added by BenStrauss (talkcontribs) 21:57, 3 February 2010 (UTC)

Words I don't entirely agree on[edit]

apartment, asian, athlete, athletics, awesome, banger, base, bathroom, blinkers, blow off, bogey, bomb, boost, boot, box, braces, brew, brilliant, bug, bugger, buggy, bum, bunk, butcher, butchery, butt, can, campsite, candy, carousel, cart, casket, casualty, catapult, checker(s), chink, (city is just odd), clerk, closet, coach, commissioner, compensation, construction, cookie, corn, cracker

... and plenty more but I got bored. Mainly it's because a overwhelming amount of the "American English" descriptions should appear in the "Meanings common..." section, thus rendering the article seemingly meaningless at first glance.

Don't get me wrong, there are some really good words listed but realistically it looks as if somebody has been trying to rewrite the English dictionary and call it their own. Notice I didn't write "British English dictionary"?

Wales have their own language and many people from Northern Ireland speak Irish. It's called "English" for a reason - invented in England.

I'm not bitching ... just getting at the fact that amongst a large percentage of the descriptions, it should really be corrected. Take for instance, the word furnace. When the British used steam engines, they wouldn't shovel coal into the boiler, they would shovel it into the furnace (which heats the boiler). It is a word common to both English and 'American' English.

I don't have the motivation to change all of this stuff but maybe someone more sensible with a little more of their life to waste will.-- (talk) 05:57, 17 December 2009 (UTC)

The point about "furnace" is that a British person would never use that word to describe the thing which heats their house and their hot water. They would call that a "boiler", rightly or wrongly. Whereas an American person would (almost) always call it a furnace. The words are used differently. Likewise city - I had great trouble getting a visa for the US until I realised that the "City" they required for my parents was the hamlet they lived in of less than 20 houses. In general terms we are trying to describe the different uses of the words. Rachel Pearce (talk) 10:16, 1 January 2010 (UTC)
Well, I'm an American and the only thing I've ever heard a hot water heater called is a hot water heater. Maybe in times and places where radiators were used for heating, one and the same appliance supplied the hot water for both domestic and heating use, but pretty much there are 2 separate devices, often in different locations. (talk) 18:59, 5 July 2010 (UTC)

Worth knowing not known[edit]

Some words, like "banger", "chips", "pram", and "lift" are more valuable than "apartment" or other fringe bullshit. I have no desire to foist work upon the volunteers, but imagine a world where information has a "worth knowing" value you can navigate. It would be brill. (talk) 02:37, 10 June 2010 (UTC)

The Nupedia approach, which is great in principle but doesn't work in practice. :) Anyone can always fire off another AfD, of course. Tevildo (talk) 19:59, 11 June 2010 (UTC)


"Bread" meaning money (dough) is very much a British expression as well as an American one. There was even a sitcom in the 80s called "Bread" meant in this sense, with an opening sequence showing a family putting money into, and taking money out of, a pot. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 13:17, 23 June 2010 (UTC)


"Mum" in British English means "mother", while in American English a "mum" is a flower. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 13:04, 11 August 2010 (UTC)

Yea you say 'Mom' in America dont you? What kind of flower is a mum? —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 05:26, 29 August 2010 (UTC)

Perhaps a chrysanthemum? I've lived my whole life in the U.S. and never heard this usage though. Only thing I can think of with "mum" is to be silent, e.g. "On the topic of why he was there, he remained mum." Pretty archaic usage, at that. (talk) 02:16, 30 August 2010 (UTC)

"Mum" in American English is a colloquial abbreviation for chrysanthemum. It's also used thusly in Britain. So the only difference between the word for Mother in British and American English is the spelling and pronunciation. (talk) 17:50, 16 April 2011 (UTC)


This one may be amusing to some. In British English, 'Fag' can refer to a cigarette or a homosexual person. It is also used as a name for a low quality meat product (sausage patty) or 'Faggot' also used to refer to a homosexual person in a derogative way.

I believe it is not used the same way in America.


I haven't added this one, but wanted to see what the group thinks. An English exchange student told me this story about one of his first classes here in the U.S. He asked the girl sitting next to him for a rubber, resulting in much confusion. Apparently, to him, a rubber is what in the U.S. we call an eraser. In the U.S., rubber means a condom (or the material, of course). Anyone else seen this difference? (talk) 02:16, 30 August 2010 (UTC)

Your definitions are correct, but the story is an old one much repeated, I first heard it in the 1970's and suspect it's much older. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 23:19, 5 September 2010 (UTC)


I was surprised to see this one in the list because it is now used in the UK to mean a news presenter as in the US, although I wouldn't say the usage is particularly common at the moment. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 03:54, 8 September 2010 (UTC)


A lecturer is NOT the same as an Assistant Professor in most US colleges and universities.

There is DEFINITELY a hierarchy:

Top: Full Professor

Second: Associate Professor
Third: Assistant Professor (Minimum Education Requirement: Ph.D.)
Fourth: Lecturer (Entry level. Minimum Education Requirement: Master's Degree) LizFL (talk) 01:32, 25 June 2014 (UTC)

Jam and Jelly[edit]

Would one of the editors here please have a look at tweaking the entries for 'Jam' and 'Jelly'. In both Britain and America, there is a clear distinction between jam and jelly (the conserve) - jam having fruit pieces, jelly being clear or translucent. The only difference I am aware of is that 'jelly' is sometimes used as a generic term in America to describe both (albeit incorrectly). In the UK they are more strictly differentiated and it is not correct to say, as the article indicates, that jelly (the conserve) is called jam in British Eng. In fact I'm not convinced jam should even be listed here as there is no difference in usage for any of its meanings. Obscurasky (talk) 09:03, 21 September 2010 (UTC)

Have now done this myself; I've removed 'jam' completely - as there is no difference of definition for any of its meanings between Brit and US Eng. And, I've also amended the 'jelly' entry for US Eng, to reflect the fact that the word is sometimes applied to both jams and jellies. Obscurasky (talk) 08:54, 23 September 2010 (UTC)
surely, in the UK, if you spread it on bread, it's "jam", clear or not: while if you splodge it on a plate (mint jelly and other similar preserves) it's "jelly", whether there are bits in it or not. The "it's got bits in it" distinction is something I've only encountered in the US. But I may be wrong, and often am. - DewiMorgan (talk) 14:30, 30 September 2010 (UTC)
Hi Dewi. In the UK, Jelly and Jam (as in the spreads you put on bread) are not the same thing. Jelly is a clear spread, made from fruit juice (crabapple jelly, blackberry jelly, etc). Jam is made from the whole fruit and contains fruit pieces. Alun Williamson (talk) 12:08, 22 December 2010 (UTC)

Tory - new addition.[edit]

There should be an entry for Tory: British - a member of the Conservative Party, a political conservative or right-winger; US - 1. originally a person during the Revolution who was loyal to the British King. 2. (fig.) someone in a context of changing leadership who remains loyal to the ancien regime. Silas Maxfield (talk) 22:36, 27 September 2010 (UTC)


I do believe that in the UK, "Asian" is also used to refer to Chinese people. I'm not 100% sure since I live in Australia (which is a British colony anyway).Pokepal101 (talk) 12:19, 1 October 2010 (UTC)

Most people in the UK will immediately think of people from the Indian subcontinent when you say Asian. If the see that the person you are talking about are Chinese they would probably think "OK that's in Asia too" but be surprised. -- Q Chris (talk) 14:44, 1 October 2010 (UTC)
No, it depends on context and code switching. if someone says "a gang of Asian youths" they mean "from the subcontinent" whereas if they say "Asian countries" it is likely to be far more inclusive. Also you will never hear a politically correct MP use "Asian" in the restricted sense - or any other word that makes them worry - they will prefer to use a longer phrase or a circumlocution "people in our ethnic communities" for example. Perhaps someone would ask them to point to a non-ethnic community? (Race no longer exists, we have "ethnicity".) Rich Farmbrough, 21:31, 9 October 2010 (UTC).


This needs sources - preferably modern ones. Partly because people are putting in their own experience, and partly because things are constantly changing. Also it doesn't distinguish between mysterious terms and the merely unusual. Thus "parking garage" is totally American, but an English person would have some idea of it's meaning (as with horse-back riding - not to be confused with horse-front riding?). Conversely a good entry is "pavement" where an English person is likely to mean "sidewalk" (because it is paved with paving slabs) while an American is likely to mean the carriageway proper - but technical usage may be different again. Really it may seem painful, but the same treatment as Rhyming slang might be the way to go. Rich Farmbrough, 21:49, 9 October 2010 (UTC).


In the US it is a "dead battery". In the UK it is "flat battery". Jpg1954 (talk) 17:01, 3 January 2011 (UTC)


I see that this article has been tagged since 2007, but it's not clear why. If there are specific things that are inaccurate, could we please tag them with {{fact}} tags? Then either sources should be provided, or the information should be removed. If nothing gets tagged though, then let's remove the cleanup template? --Elonka 20:48, 13 January 2011 (UTC)

Agree wholeheartedly. Right now we have a bunch of words with their own discussions and a catch-all list under "Stuff Nonsense." I say we should tag each word with disputed accuracy with a fact tag, fix the ones that are easy on the spot, and open up sections discussing the ones that need discussing before changing. Also, archive any section that has been resolved, leaving only a list of words that still need attention. Guy Macon 00:59, 7 February 2011 (UTC)


Just reading over the article and was surprised to see the absence of 'Tractor'. As is my understanding, a 'Tractor' in the UK and most the rest of the world is described as "A tractor is a vehicle specifically designed to deliver a high tractive effort (or torque) at slow speeds, for the purposes of hauling a trailer or machinery used in agriculture or construction" whereas in the US it is most commonly used to refer to the towing engine unit of a 'semi-trailer'. This unit would be referred to as a 'prime-mover' in Australia. Anyone agree? — Preceding unsigned comment added by Accomotors (talkcontribs) 23:04, 25 February 2011 (UTC)

It depends on the region in the US. West coast calls long trucks "Semis" while east coast calls them "Tractor Trailers". Phearson (talk) 02:52, 12 March 2011 (UTC)
Here down South, a Semi is a eighteen-wheeler cab without a trailer. ;) LizFL (talk) 11:17, 5 June 2011 (UTC)
No one in the US calls semis tractors as just one word. In the US, a tractor is something you'd see on a farm. (talk) 04:59, 23 June 2011 (UTC)


The entry for this word seems to not really be specific to UK vs. US usage, but rather specific to sports which are popular in the two countries. Many sports have a position or positions called "forward" (indeed it seems that almost all sports which involve goals on both ends of the field do, for reasons which are pretty obvious), and it's not really specific to region. (If one were to play rugby in the US or basketball in the UK, the positions would presumably still be called "forwards".) Outside of the context of sports, too, the meaning is the same, so this really doesn't seem to meet the criteria for this article of a word with different uses in the two countries. Lurlock (talk) 03:00, 9 October 2011 (UTC)

(fire) brigade[edit]

I've removed the recently added term "brigade" as this, on its own, does not have a different meaning in British and American English. The term "fire brigade" does differ from "fire department" however, so I've amended and move the entry to List of British words not widely used in the United States. Mutt Lunker (talk) 18:00, 11 August 2012 (UTC)


I notice there have been a few recent changes of perfectly good spellings of words from one variety of English to another in this article. Normally if I see this kind of change I will revert it, whichever direction the change has been made, to highlight the change's pointlessness. As there are clearly strong ties to two varieties of English in this article, do we: accept a mixture of both varieties throughout the article; use e.g. use American spellings in the "British English meanings" columnn as this is likely to be for the benefit of Americans(?), v.v. for the "American English meanings" (don't know what for the common meanings column); prefer one variety over another throughout the article but if so, on what basis? Flip-flopping from one variety to the other with no basis is not going to be helpful. Mutt Lunker (talk) 09:29, 16 February 2013 (UTC)

Sick vs. ill[edit]

It's lately come to my attention that "sick" has a different meaning in British English than it does in American English. In British English, it means nauseated and/or vomiting. I've occasionally heard "sick" to mean vomiting in American English, but it usually means what the British call "ill." "Sick" and "ill" are interchangeable in American English, but not in British English. "Ill" sounds somewhat pompous to the American ear. I would add this to the table, but the table symbols defeat me. DreamersRose (talk) 04:27, 21 February 2013 (UTC)

Sick may mean vomiting ("he was sick on the floor") but may be any form of illness. If I talk about a sick day from work it does not imply the involvement of gagging or antiperistalsis. Mutt Lunker (talk) 12:10, 21 February 2013 (UTC)

Sick can also mean 'good', 'cool', or 'gross' in America, as in "Man, that is sick!", depending on connotative context.

"Sick" is sometimes also used by Americans in the sense of "to vomit". "I'm going to be sick" and "I'm going to puke" are effectively synonyms.

Another thing: "ill" is sometimes used in the southern US to mean "angry, cross". E.g. "Stop being ill with me" ( = Stop being cross with me, don't be angry at me), "Why are you acting so ill today?" ( = Why are you in such a bad mood today?).


British TV 'cop shows' are always looking to put the suspect 'in the frame', or pondering if a suspect is (sufficiently) 'fitted for the frame', etc., meaning they are, in fact, the guilty party. In America, 'framing' is negatively (falsely) accusing someone of being a suspect, or, more so, intentionally manufacturing evidence or circumstances to put an innocent party at risk of being charged with or convicted of a crime. And obviously, in both countries, a frame holds a picture or a painting, or maybe what you see when looking through a camera viewfinder. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 10:22, 5 April 2013 (UTC)

"To frame" has the same connotation in Britain. An innocent party doesn't fit the frame but by actively framing them they appear to (I guess). Mutt Lunker (talk) 10:45, 5 April 2013 (UTC)

"Us" as the oblique form of "me"[edit]

Two things here.

First, in the example given ("Give us a tenner") "us" really isn't the oblique form of "I"; it's the oblique form of "we", though at first blush this might seem strange. What we have here is the same thing as in "Give us a kiss" or "We are not amused". In all three examples the first-person plural (we, us) is being used rhetorically instead of the first-person singular (I, me).

Second, this rhetorical use of we/us isn't a Britishism. For example, the phrase "give us a kiss", a phrase used commonly in America and which also happens to be the title of a novel by American author Daniel Woodrell. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 19:58, 20 September 2013 (UTC)


The meaning of "just" marked here as a Britishism is also very common in American English. As a speaker of American English, I could easily say "I arrived, but only just". I could also say "I just barely made it", and several other things with the same meaning of "just". — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 20:27, 20 September 2013 (UTC)


I don't know if this should go on here, but I happened to think of "mind" as in "mind the gap," which in the U.S. would be "watch the gap" (as pictured on the same article). Mapsax (talk) 14:19, 28 November 2013 (UTC)

Mind in the sense of "be cautious about" is used in the UK and US (Webster lists it), "mind the gap" specific to London and not used elsewhere in the UK so I don't really see it as suitable for inclusion. Mutt Lunker (talk) 00:30, 29 November 2013 (UTC)
The phrase "Mind the gap" may have become most well-known through use of the of voice 1960s actor Oswald Laurence by London Underground: [2] but it is in general use throughout the UK. It's just a normal phrase that can apply to all kinds of gap nationwide! Martinevans123 (talk) 09:12, 2 July 2014 (UTC)
Could but doesn't really, as an expression and outside outside of London, in my experience. I have heard it mentioned as a nod to its idiomatic London usage on national media, by e.g. comedians or presenters who will have had experience of living or working in London, and wonder how many in the rest of the UK know the reference. Of course someone might caution that a gap is minded but I don't see that as more notable for inclusion than an appeal to mind a low ceiling, a step, or a sharp edge. Mutt Lunker (talk) 10:27, 2 July 2014 (UTC)
I'm with Martin. I don't know where the idea that the expression is specific to London comes from, although its actual frequency of usage may be greater there. Ghmyrtle (talk) 10:52, 2 July 2014 (UTC)
London, the underground, Oswald Laurence... are all interesting here, but esentially irrelevant. US and UK useage of "mind" is the same. So no entry is needed. A more distinct pattern of usage might be found with the construction ", mind you" to mark a note of caution at the end of a sentence. I think this is particularly prevalent in South Wales, but I'm sure it's also used all over the UK. Not so sure about the US though. Martinevans123 (talk) 11:29, 2 July 2014 (UTC)
Sorry, I'd assumed your revival of the discussion on the phrase meant that, in contradiction to the view expressed before it, you felt the term was relevant and suitable for inclusion after all. If not, fine, we're agreed. Without the context of a typical preceding sentence I'm not sure if your usage of "mind you" seems familiar as used across the UK (tending to that it is not really, particularly) but if it were, is it not just like "mind the gap" whereby, it's an expression which contains the same US and UK useage of "mind", so no entry needed?
Incidentally, this discussion and the one for "till" below ought really to be at the sister article. Mutt Lunker (talk) 12:51, 2 July 2014 (UTC)
Incidentally, does it have a Talk Page? Because whenever I navigate to that article and select "Talk", I come back here. Martinevans123 (talk) 15:02, 2 July 2014 (UTC)

Yes. Mutt Lunker (talk) 15:39, 2 July 2014 (UTC)

Ok, I see what you mean, now that you've augmented your question above (please don't alter earlier questions after they've been answered as it changes the perspective, e.g. making me look obtuse if the answer had been to the question as it now appears). It looks like there's a redirect so that they have a shared talk page, in which case the only place to put this discussion and that for "till" is here after all, in which case apologies.
I'm not sure if this is a standard sort of arrangement, to have an alphabetically split article with a shared talk page that appears to be the talk page for only one. Personally I find this a bit confusing and would rather have one article/one talk page or two articles with separate talk pages. Mutt Lunker (talk) 16:12, 2 July 2014 (UTC)
Your "yes" did not convince me. And now it's not convincing you either, is it? Thanks for the apology. But, incidentally, you asked me move something... ? Martinevans123 (talk) 16:34, 2 July 2014 (UTC)
Sorry if I'm still not making myself clear. I am not complaining about your, helpful, elaboration as to why there was confusion about the article's talk page. I am complaining that you did not put this elaboration in a new comment below my answer but altered your initial question, in effect altering my answer. I'm just asking you to take more care as you'd also earlier mixed up a new post of yours, splitting a post of mine to make it look like my initial paragraph was yours, here, as well as indenting in a confusing manner in other posts (i.e. making them in line with the previous post rather than by indenting by one). What's more you had drawn it to my attention that there is in fact not a separate talk page for the M-Z article, so my request to move M-Z -related discussions was infeasible, so I apologised for the redundant request. Mutt Lunker (talk) 17:11, 2 July 2014 (UTC)
Thanks for apologizing again. Oh dear, what a calamity. Do you want "Till" back or not? Cheers Martinevans123 (talk) 17:27, 2 July 2014 (UTC)
I was just asking - is it ever used in US? You'd never hear ", watch you" in it's place, would you? Martinevans123 (talk) 13:33, 2 July 2014 (UTC)
If it's not about improving the article I'm done then. Mutt Lunker (talk) 14:35, 2 July 2014 (UTC)
I suppose that depends on whether you see "mind" as a word with a single meaning/use, or as a word with a number of different meanings/uses. Martinevans123 (talk) 14:58, 2 July 2014 (UTC)


Does US usage include the meaning "cash register" found in UK usage? Martinevans123 (talk) 07:17, 2 July 2014 (UTC)

Yes, apparently. Mutt Lunker (talk) 09:05, 2 July 2014 (UTC)
Thanks. Martinevans123 (talk) 20:57, 2 July 2014 (UTC)


I searched the archives and found nothing. Could it be bike = 'motorbike' in AE and bike = 'bicycle' in BE? ※ Sobreira ◣◥ (parlez) 08:44, 2 October 2015 (UTC)


As related to Walking Stick. In the US I usually hear of a walking stick (used for support) referred to as a cane. In the UK I usually only hear 'cane' in this sense to refer to a white cane used by a blind person for feeling for obstacles. Paulcmhilton (talk) 07:20, 2 January 2016 (UTC)

The usage may possibly be greater in the US but I've checked six UK dictionaries and all list the usage without comment. Mutt Lunker (talk) 10:58, 2 January 2016 (UTC)


Should beaver not be defined as just "vagina" in the US? "Female vagina" as it is currently defined doesn't make much sense to me.

as far as my own experience beaver alone means vagina. But there's dozens of terms that go with it, bald, fuzzy, fury... etc. I am not positive but I remember reading it was hustler magazine that popularized the turn in it's early years. And yes I see no reason for "female". A bit repetitive. Lostinlodos (talk) 23:22, 28 June 2017 (UTC)


If I'm correct, "buffalo" should be in this list because exclusive to Americans it can refer to a bison; anywhere it can mean a cape buffalo. Anything wrong here?? Georgia guy (talk) 18:02, 25 March 2017 (UTC)


Should the American one cent "penny" not be included under the American heading. It's slid into archaic but is to some extent still used.Lostinlodos (talk) 23:19, 28 June 2017 (UTC)


 There is so much wrong with this.....
Perhaps if you tell us even one erratum, then we could correct it? Dbfirs 00:35, 27 January 2018 (UTC)


  • British English uses "liberal" to have an economics meaning in the sense of free trade, free markets, and right wing capitalistic connotations (see OED adj. 5c) and the British use is familiar to most of the old world countries including Australia and New Zealand. Americans are not familiar with that use of the word "liberal" which leads to odd arguments on international blog sites. Americans understand the word to mean left wing, economically socialistic, and socially open minded. The common meaning of both US and UK versions is open mindedness, not strict, and free from bias (see OED adj. 4)
  • The parenthetical reference to "politics" should be removed because the issue is about UK economical meaning vs. US political meaning even though UK has a political twist and the US has an economic twist - the core source of misunderstanding comes from the economics vs. political uses. -- (talk) 17:20, 6 March 2018 (UTC)
No, that is dealt with in the section regarding the American-only definitions. A lot of Americans may be ignorant of the broader, shared, arguably more technical meaning of liberalism in the classical sense but so would a lot of British (and Commonwealth) people be. That doesn't mean that it isn't a valid and shared definition. Mutt Lunker (talk) 17:35, 6 March 2018 (UTC)
  • Please see Wiktionary "liberal" noun 2 for the US and noun 4 for the UK those definitions should be entered here to replace current entries. -- (talk) 03:44, 7 March 2018 (UTC)
Per above, this is effectively (and more correctly) already covered here (and also, Wiktionary is not a WP:RS and the definitions there are open to question). Mutt Lunker (talk) 10:18, 7 March 2018 (UTC)
  • Replace "Liberal" with "liberal". The word with an initial upper case letter refers to a known or existing organization. The word with initial lower case letter is the generic concept of "liberal". Please see Oxford English Dictionary (online) "liberal" adj. 5c for the UK, "liberal" adj. 4 for the US, and "liberal" adj. 3a for common meaning. American dictionaries do not have any meanings related to economics; compare and for sources. The current entries define liberal in terms of liberalism which is a solecism representing poor quality. Please make the changes for sake of improving Wikipedia. -- (talk) 22:25, 7 March 2018 (UTC)
Is your intent "Replace "Liberalism" with "liberalism" in the shared meaning column?
You may be viewing a different site but I only see 4 adjective sub-sections in the Oxford entry, none of which support your contention and, aside from the mention of political party names, there is no distinction given between US and UK use for the meanings. Merriam-Webster itself gives a definition (6a) of liberal as "of, favoring, or based upon the principles of liberalism", linking to the latter and indeed specifically giving a definition (2b) in terms of economics " a theory in economics emphasizing individual freedom from restraint and usually based on free competition, the self-regulating market, and the gold standard". If it's good enough for these two reliable sources, it's good enough for this article. Mutt Lunker (talk) 23:29, 7 March 2018 (UTC)
  • You must use the web site at "" which is the true and honest web site. The other one at is a fake that's been engineered to appear resembling the real site and has nothing to do with the real Oxford English Dictionaries or Oxford University Press. is not a reliable source even worse than Wiktionary. As for the Merriam-Webster site, their definitions are fine because they stop at "liberalism". The definition of "liberal" does not include and should not include any connotations used to define a related word such as "liberalism". A definition in the form: "liberal means liberalism" fails to define what "liberal" actually means in terms not related to it's core syllables. I recommend:
1st col.Word: replace "Liberal(politics)" with "liberal(noun)" to emphasize the small-l liberal (not the big-L Liberal)
2nd col.UK: replace "a person who generally supports the ideas of the UK Liberal Democrats, a centre left-party"
with "a supporter of center right wing politics and laissez-faire economics"
3rd col.Common: replace "a person who holds the political ideals of Liberalism"
with "a supporter of liberty and open to change and reforms"
4th col.US: replace "a person who advocates modern liberalism; see also Liberalism in the United States for historic background"
with "a supporter of progressive left wing politics and socialist economics"

-- (talk) 20:44, 8 March 2018 (UTC)

I'm done with this "fake news" dismissal of reliable sources, or of their misrepresentation and of the pushing of your own unsupported and novel, original research preferences. Mutt Lunker (talk) 21:36, 8 March 2018 (UTC)
  • Please my friend with all full respect I assure you that I'm being perfectly honest. I don't want to step on anyone's toes. Perhaps you can recommend someone else to review this issue. I apologize for any insult which is purely accidental and never intended. -- (talk) 01:32, 10 March 2018 (UTC)
  • I think you're violating Neutral Point of View. This is not the place for your personal feelings. You have been given valuable information and it is your duty to act according to the goal of improving Wikipedia. I must repeat: defining "liberal" in terms of "liberalism" still has not defined what "liberal" actually means. There's nothing unsupported or novel - it's called just plain rational thinking and using language as intended. There's no political bias or agenda involved and it is insulting to accuse me of that. Please redefine the three classes in terms that do not rely upon the word "liberalism" or big-L Liberal. -- (talk) 16:26, 10 March 2018 (UTC)
Indicating that such an individual is someone who believes in a particular philosophy, conveniently linked, is about as pertinent, direct and explanatory as you can get. Read the linked article. One of the definitions of "liberal" is someone who believes in that thing. What is difficult about comprehending that?
You are baselessly accusing me of making accusations against you that I patently have not. Please retract them. I have not the faintest idea if you have a political bias or agenda but your arguments make no sense whatsoever. Mutt Lunker (talk) 17:11, 10 March 2018 (UTC)
  • Sir, please try to understand that I actually comprehend exactly what you are arguing but I am saying there is better and more accurate ways of saying it. Basically, we should not rely on only one definition because there are four or five connotations listed and an author is being unfair by ignoring the other connotations - that is a form of bias being forced upon the readers. Linking to the ideology is a dodge and offensive to readers who expect an author to do some of the thinking for their enjoyment. The point is the definitions listed next to the word "liberal" should say themselves what the believes are rather than redirecting. The act of redirecting is bad form and please don't take this personally but might even indicate that the author really does not know the correct answer themselves. We need to move towards better accuracy and precision in word usage. Do you understand what I'm getting at? -- (talk) 18:57, 10 March 2018 (UTC)
Redirection via links is a fundamental and crucial aspect of Wikipedia. Read Wikipedia:Manual of Style/Linking.
You have omitted to retract your baseless allegations. Mutt Lunker (talk) 20:55, 10 March 2018 (UTC)
  • I don't understand what you are talking about and you say: "your arguments make no sense whatsoever". Therefore I would like to request a third opinion. Can you help me do that please. -- Calif.DonTracy (talk) 16:35, 12 March 2018 (UTC)
WP:3. Mutt Lunker (talk) 17:04, 12 March 2018 (UTC)
  • According to "" . . . Confusingly, the term “liberal” meant “supportive of free markets” until the 20th century and still refers to pro-market parties in Europe and most of the rest of the world today. Thus a “classical liberal” in the U.S. is a libertarian or a “liberal” in Europe, i.e. an advocate of voluntary and market solutions to social problems. -- Calif.DonTracy (talk) 16:59, 15 March 2018 (UTC)

Where's cuppa?[edit]

Cuppa is a British meaning? What's this? (talk) 23:54, 22 August 2019 (UTC)

This article is for words that are found both in the US and Britain but have differences in meaning: the term cuppa is not used in America so not suitable for inclusion here. See Glossary of British terms not widely used in the United States#C. Mutt Lunker (talk) 00:35, 23 August 2019 (UTC)