Page 1 of 26 111 ... LastLast
Results 1 to 50 of 1287
  1. #1
    Premium Member

    Slow Traveler

    Join Date
    Jun 2001
    Location
    Gloucestershire
    Posts
    26,647
    Steve and I played this word game last week driving down the California coast.

    Find common words that are different in US English and English English. Post with both versions. One post per person - unless there have been no posts for 24 hours, then you can post again!!

    I will start:

    US: Gas
    UK: Petrol

    When we are done, I will gather time all for our US-UK dictionary!

  2. #2
    Premium Member

    Slow Traveler

    Join Date
    Aug 2005
    Location
    Palm Desert, CA
    Posts
    3,237
    US: cigarette
    UK: fag

    Palma

  3. #3
    Premium Member

    Slow Traveler

    Join Date
    Aug 2001
    Location
    The Beautiful San Francisco Bay Area
    Posts
    16,402
    US: potato chip
    UK: crisp

  4. #4


    Slow Traveler

    Join Date
    Jun 2006
    Location
    San Francisco Bay Area
    Posts
    890
    US: pants
    UK: trousers

    and its corollary:
    US: underpants
    UK: pants

  5. #5
    UK...lift
    US...elevator

  6. #6

    Traveler

    Join Date
    Jun 2006
    Location
    Depoe Bay, Oregon
    Posts
    26
    UK vest
    US undershirt

    US vest
    UK waistcoat (pronounced weskit)

  7. #7
    Premium Member

    Slow Traveler

    Join Date
    May 2004
    Location
    Los Angeles
    Posts
    2,962
    UK: Loo
    US: Bathroom/Restroom

  8. #8
    UK jumper
    US sweater

  9. #9


    Slow Traveler

    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Location
    Hampshire, UK
    Posts
    1,092
    Objection !

    you cannot have Fag or Loo as both are slang
    (unless you were comparing e.g loo with "john")

    UK Aluminium
    US Aluminum

    Tim

    And Whalewatcher - I have never heard Waistcoat being pronounced as Weskit. This maybe a regional thing.

  10. #10
    US: trunk
    UK: boot

  11. #11
    Premium Member
    Moderator

    Slow Traveler
    Kim's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2001
    Location
    NJ USA
    Posts
    24,132
    US: Horny
    UK: Randy


  12. #12


    Slow Traveler
    avvocato's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2003
    Location
    Palmyra, NJ, USA
    Posts
    930
    US = Sausage
    UK = Bangers

    "We (the British and Americans) are two countries separated by a common language."

    G.B. Shaw

  13. #13
    UK = roundabout
    US = traffic circle

  14. #14

    Traveler

    Join Date
    Oct 2005
    Location
    Jerez Spain and Fes Morocco
    Posts
    56
    Is this limited strictly to vocabulary or can this include different uses of verbs? I.E.:

    UK= Hire (a car)
    USA= Rent (a car)

  15. #15


    Slow Traveler

    Join Date
    May 2005
    Location
    Seattle for now...Mexico in Feb then England for a good long stay....
    Posts
    2,083
    Braces - UK
    Suspenders - US

    Ring - UK
    Call - US

    Mobile - UK
    Cell - US

    Bonnet - UK
    Hood - US

  16. #16
    Moderator Premium Member
    Moderator

    Slow Traveler

    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Location
    Berkeley, CA
    Posts
    11,203
    Can't believe no one has posted this so far

    UK - chips

    US - French Fries

  17. #17
    And to further confuse the issue:

    US: chips
    UK: crisps

  18. #18


    Slow Traveler

    Join Date
    Aug 2003
    Location
    Rehoboth, MA USA
    Posts
    609
    UK- Flat
    US- Apartment

    UK- Lift
    US- Elevator

  19. #19
    Premium Member

    Slow Traveler

    Join Date
    Jun 2001
    Location
    Gloucestershire
    Posts
    26,647
    One set of words at a time please! You can post again if no one posts for 12 hours.

  20. #20
    Moderator Premium Member
    Moderator

    Slow Traveler

    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Location
    Berkeley, CA
    Posts
    11,203
    And may I add for Pauline's sake -- read through all the posts before adding yours; we are starting to get duplicates, and Pauline doesn't need any more work than she has already volunteered for.

  21. #21


    Slow Traveler

    Join Date
    Mar 2006
    Location
    The North Cotswolds/Shakespeare Country and Dublin as often as possible.
    Posts
    995
    UK pavement
    US sidewalk

    and Whale.watcher and Tim W:
    re. the waistcoat pronounced weskit thing. This is not a regional thing but an archaeic form of upper class pronounciation, almost never heard nowadays except on the stage. It has disappeared along with huntin' shootin' and fishin' which used to be the 'correct' way to pronounce these pastimes.

  22. #22
    UK: "I'll knock you up in the morning..."
    US: ( "I'll knock on your door in the morning."

    UK: Sleeping policeman
    US: Speed bump

  23. #23
    Moderator Premium Member
    Moderator

    Slow Traveler
    teaberry's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2005
    Location
    Philadelphia, PA, USA
    Posts
    10,721
    UK - telly
    US - TV

    UK - Cheerio!
    US - Bye!

    Terry

  24. #24

    Slow Traveler

    Join Date
    Mar 2004
    Location
    Seattle, WA USA
    Posts
    137
    UK: subway

  25. #25

    Slow Traveler

    Join Date
    Mar 2004
    Location
    Seattle, WA USA
    Posts
    137
    US: underpass

  26. #26

    Traveler

    Join Date
    Jan 2006
    Location
    Southern CA
    Posts
    31
    UK: Bog Roll
    US: Toilet Paper

  27. #27
    UK: sort it out
    US: work it out

  28. #28
    Moderator Premium Member
    Moderator

    Slow Traveler

    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Location
    Berkeley, CA
    Posts
    11,203
    US: No problem
    UK: Not to worry

  29. #29


    Slow Traveler

    Join Date
    Apr 2006
    Location
    Chicago
    Posts
    904
    US: pacifier

    UK: dummy

  30. #30


    Slow Traveler

    Join Date
    Apr 2006
    Location
    Chicago
    Posts
    904
    US: diaper

    UK: nappy

  31. #31


    Slow Traveler

    Join Date
    Feb 2006
    Location
    Toronto
    Posts
    822
    US: dear

    UK: chuck

  32. #32
    Braces - UK
    Suspenders - US
    Garters (as on ladies' lingerie) - US
    Suspenders (as on ladies' lingerie) - UK

    Can make for some momentarily interesting shopping.
    Thanks!
    Bucky "Trying To Slow Down" Edgett

  33. #33
    US was supposed to
    UK was meant to

  34. #34


    Slow Traveler

    Join Date
    Feb 2005
    Location
    London (Isle of Dogs)
    Posts
    911
    Diana, we used "was supposed to" as well. I think there's some subtle difference, but it's too hot to think about it now...

    And Marg, for "dear", there's a whole raft of regional differences: "chuck" is Lancashire/ North-West. In London (or lots of places) it'd be "love", in the North East "pet" or "hinny", in Glasgow "hen", and in Devon "my lover"!

    Something that's struck me - not so much vocbulary as speech habit. In the UK, we would give a street its full name, where at least some Americans seem to drop the "Street", "Avenue" or whatever. In London, and probably most other towns and cities too, there could be confusion between a district and a street or square("Victoria", "Bloomsbury"); and often, posh Georgian and Victorian developments would have their associated Lane or Mews for service access, so you could easily have in the same district a Square, Avenue, Street, Lane and Mews all with the same name. And developers often lacked imagination too.
    My blog | My photos | My video clips
    "too literate to be spam"

  35. #35

    Slow Traveler

    Join Date
    Aug 2005
    Location
    London, UK
    Posts
    301
    Marianne pointed out the Subway/Underpass pair but in London:

    UK Underground
    US Subway

    Some American friends got very lost following my directions to Hangar Lane Underground Station because, on the way there is a signposted Subway underneath the A40 road (highway).

  36. #36
    Diana, we used "was supposed to" as well. I think there's some subtle difference, but it's too hot to think about it now...
    Patrick, when it cools down, please tell me!! I have picked up this difference from my British guests as well as my fellow English instructors when I taught English years ago. Now I am curious

  37. #37

    Slow Traveler

    Join Date
    Aug 2005
    Location
    London, UK
    Posts
    301
    If I said that I was supposed to do something it would refer to something that I had been instructed to do or had agreed with others.

    If I had meant to do something it would have been my own volition.

  38. #38
    I don't want to change this thread, so this will be my last post on this for now, but I have heard "I was meant to go teach that class..." instead of " I was supposed to go theach that class" many times...Not "I had meant", instead, "I was meant". This is the usage I was refering to. But no mind, on with the game.

  39. #39


    Slow Traveler

    Join Date
    Feb 2005
    Location
    London (Isle of Dogs)
    Posts
    911
    I'm think there's a sort of Venn diagram of meanings. "I was supposed to" means (to my mind) "someone else expected me to" (whether or not I'd chosen to, or even knew I was expected to: there's an even older meaning, I think, of "people believed I did"). "I was meant to" means (to my mind) "both I and someone else expected me to".

    But no doubt people actually use them interchangeably.
    My blog | My photos | My video clips
    "too literate to be spam"

  40. #40
    Premium Member

    Slow Traveler

    Join Date
    May 2004
    Location
    Los Angeles
    Posts
    2,962
    Hey all,

    This is supposed to be a GAME. Semantics take the fun out of it!

    In keeping with the only two words at a time rule (some of you are greedy folk ) here are two more:

    UK: Fancy
    US: Like

  41. #41

    Traveler

    Join Date
    Jan 2006
    Location
    Southern CA
    Posts
    31
    UK: Not fussed
    US: Don't like/care for

  42. #42

    Slow Traveler

    Join Date
    Nov 2005
    Location
    Spain, Andalucia, Grazalema
    Posts
    432
    Hola. I am so sorry for posting more than one thing but after I saw this thread I looked on the internet for words. This site made me laugh so hard I had to put my wine down..Especially the following....(25 and 31 are connected)

    25) Woody. In the UK, an acceptable description of a wine that has taken on the flavour of the barrels it has matured in. In the US *never* go a wine tasting and claim that this wonderful Californian Chardonnay has an excellent 'woody' flavour, unless you are the female co-star of the aforementioned male actor and you are in the process of filming an 'arty' movie.

    26) Hood. To our American cousins, the bit of a car that the engine sits under or place where you might live if you are a rapper. To us Brits, the part of a coat that is designed to cover your head when it rains. What you call the 'hood' we call the 'bonnet' on a car.

    27) Gas. To the citizens of the United Kingdom, an instrument of warfare, the stuff that you use to cook your dinner on or a state of matter that is neither liquid nor solid. To you guys, what we call petrol and the gaseous by product of bottom burps (wind).

    28) Pecker. To keep one's pecker up is a state of mind in the UK, an athletic feat in the US and a way of life for the common or garden woodpecker.

    29) Toilets. Although we have a lot of colourful euphenisms for the lavatory experience in the UK (e.g. spend a penny, watering the daisies) we lack the prissiness of our American chums. To us a toilet is a bog, a kharzi, a shithouse (or alternatively an outhouse in more polite company), a gents/ladies but mostly a toilet. It is perfectly acceptable to be in the Ritz and request to use the toilet. However, you guys seem ashamed of the t-word. Hence you go to the John (where no-one called John is there) and the bathroom (where there is no bath). ...And a word of warning for English chaps in the US - never admit to eating baked beans out of the can.

    30) Beer. What you call beer, we call lager. What we call beer, you call disgusting. This might be mutual.

    31) Hard. In the UK, you might see an unshaven tattooed uncouth man with big muscles in a pub. If you accidentally spill his beer, he might get upset and request you to join him outside. He might say `Come on then if you think you're hard enough!' Or even 'I'm hard, me, so you better watch your step, mate.' He is not casting aspersions on your sexual persuasion, nor does he have an erection. He is merely stating the fact that unless you buy him another pint of lager in the very immediate future he might beat seven shades of **** out of you. In the US, our friend the male actor would probably say 'I'm hard' while sharing a bottle of woody flavoured chardonnay with his co-star...

    the site is http://www.netfunny.com/rhf/jokes/95q4/uk.html

    Ok Pauline you can delete this post whenever you like but boy am I laughing so hard...(get it?)

    Clive

  43. #43
    Premium Member

    Slow Traveler

    Join Date
    Jun 2001
    Location
    Gloucestershire
    Posts
    26,647
    Well, it hasn't been 12 hours - but almost - so I will take a turn again.

    US: Zuchini
    UK: Courgette

    US: Eggplant
    UK: Aubergine

  44. #44
    Premium Member

    Slow Traveler

    Join Date
    Jul 2001
    Location
    Boston or Florence
    Posts
    4,727
    US: whine
    UK: whinge

    (Thanks Jonathan )

  45. #45
    Premium Member

    Slow Traveler

    Join Date
    Aug 2001
    Location
    The Beautiful San Francisco Bay Area
    Posts
    16,402
    US: Yikes!
    UK: Crikey!

    (I personally love hearing "crikey" ... it cracked me up when Colin Firth said it in the "Bridget Jones' Diary" movie!)

  46. #46
    Premium Member

    Slow Traveler

    Join Date
    Jun 2001
    Location
    Gloucestershire
    Posts
    26,647
    NOTE TO SELF: You are up to this post in copying to create a language page.

    I put up a page with our language word so far:
    Slow Travel UK - Instructions - Language

  47. #47
    US While
    UK Whilst

  48. #48


    Slow Traveler
    girasoli's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2004
    Location
    Oahu, Hawaii
    Posts
    1,761
    US: Arugula
    UK: Rocket

    (also growing up in Massachusetts, the only word I have heard of is Rotary for a Roundabout - have never heard the word traffic circle before??)

  49. #49


    Slow Traveler

    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Location
    Hampshire, UK
    Posts
    1,092
    Teachick - I think the semantics, the explanations and the discussions are part of the fun. There is almost as much variation in English between regions of the UK (and maybe America as well) as between countries.
    (In some areas,if you were to suggest to a young lady that you'd "knock her up in the morning", you may well end up with a slapped face)

    Diana - I believe Whilst is technically correct "English English", but don't believe I have heard or read it used outside of Literature.

  50. #50
    Tony (the PM) uses whilst all the time! I have heard it from many a Brit in my day. It always sort of sticks out for me as a tough of aristocracy. When I worked as an English Instructor in Germany, we were required to teach both whilst and while.

Bookmarks

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •