Irish history

Typical Irish slang, phrases and words!

I myself can speak some Irish slang, thanks to a dear friend of mine. But, I’m not as familiar with the slang and phrases as I am with Scottish and British ones. So, I discussed this with a friend via Zoom and we wrote this post together. So, enjoy reading!

  1. Wee

We use this term to describe something or someone, who is small.

2. Lethal or leefs

These terms are mainly used where I live (Laoise) in northwestern Ireland. Both mean great. Leefs is also short for lethal.

3. Craic

It’s pronounced crack, meaning general banter or fun. Originally it was spelled crack as it was used by Ulster Scots. The Gaelic spelling of the word however, wasn’t widely used in Ireland until it was popularised as the catchphrase in a TV show called SBB ina Shuí in the 1970s.

4. Feck off

It’s the perfect way to curse without technically cursing. Replace the e with a u and you’ll know what this slang term means.

5. Quare

It’s pronounced kware, and I know it looks kinda odd. It can be used in a variety of ways though, meaning great, very and terrific.

old medieval ruins of Dunluce Castle on ocean coast in northern Ireland famous place in uk

6. Dooter

A short or wee walk.

7. Wean

Pronounced wayne, and no I don’t mean Bruce Wayne. It means child.

8. Aye and naw

Aye means yes and naw means no. Not so hard, right?

9. Lashing

This means it’s raining heavily. Say it’s lashing rain, you should stay inside. No one wants to go out like that.

10. Saunter

This refers to a slightly brisker walk, almost like a strut. Though, with less self-confidence.

Aerial Photography of Rock Next to water body

11. Yes

This may be confusing, but yes actually means hello in Irish.

12. Wired to the moon

You know that feeling when you’ve enjoyed a night in a club and then have to work the next morning? So you down six espresso shots at the nearest Starbucks? Well, that’s what some call being wired to the moon.

13. Slag

This word is used as a verb and means making a joke at someone else’s expense.

14. Cat

You use this word to say something is bad or awful. Some say it’s coming from the phrase ‘cat on a melodeon.’ A melodeon is a small organ.

15. Brock

This word is what we use to also describe something that’s bad.

Red Stall

16. Jesus, Mary and Joseph

If we take a look at blasphemy, there are no half cups in Ireland. We’re a historically religious country, so blasphemy is relatively frowned upon. When an Irish person deems it absolutely necessary to take the Lord’s name in vain, they use the entire holy family.

17. Melter

A way to describe a person who’s a bit of an idiot. Or at least someone who’s very annoying.

18. While man/woman

It’s a term to describe a person who isn’t so bright.

19. Juke

A quick or wee look.

20. Eejit

You can use this term to describe someone as an idiot, but more in an affectionate sort of way.

Landscape Photography Of Mountain Near Body Of Water

21. Yonks

This means a long time.

22. Haven’t a baldy notion

It’s kind of a synonym when you want to say something else instead of ‘I have no idea.’

23. All lured

It’s a way to say you’re feeling delighted.

24. Wind your neck in

It’s the perfect way to take someone who’s overly arrogant down a peg or two. Because when you say this phrase to them, it basically means ‘be quiet!’

25. Bake

This is a word we use for face.

Buildings With Waterfront View

Love, Deem ❤

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