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Encyclopedia > Slang

Slang is the use of informal words and expressions to describe an object or condition. Slang is vocabulary that is meant to be interpreted quickly but not necessarily literally, as slang words or terms are often a metaphor or an allegory. Slang may refer to: slang the Def Leppard album Slang (album) S-Lang, a programming language and text-based user interface library developed by John E. Davis, and used in popular text-based software package such as slrn, lynx, and mutt. ... For other uses, see Word (disambiguation). ... A vocabulary is a set of words known to a person or other entity, or that are part of a specific language. ... This article is about metaphor in literature and rhetoric. ... Allegory of Music by Filippino Lippi. ...

Slang is sometimes regional in that it is used only in a particular territory. Slang terms are frequently particular to a certain subculture, such as musicians, and members of minority groups. A slang term could be like calling someone from China and Canada a Chinadian. Nevertheless, usage of slang expressions can spread outside their original arenas to become commonly used, such as "cool" and "jive". While some words eventually lose their status as slang, others continue to be considered as such by most speakers. In spite of this, the process tends to lead the original users to replace the words with other, less-recognized terms to maintain group identity. A territory (from the word terra, meaning land) is a defined area (including land and waters), usually considered to be a possession of an animal, person, organization, or institution. ... In sociology, anthropology and cultural studies, a subculture is a set of people with a set of behaviors and beliefs, culture, which could be distinct or hidden, that differentiate them from the larger culture to which they belong. ... For the popular-music magazine, see Musician (magazine). ... “Minority” redirects here. ... Look up cool in Wiktionary, the free dictionary. ...


Origins of slang

One use of slang is to circumvent social taboos, as mainstream language tends to shy away from evoking certain realities. For this reason, slang vocabularies are particularly rich in certain domains, such as , violence, crime and drugs and sex. An interesting fact about the word slang is that it was originally a slang term for the old French phrase "sale langue", which translated into English means "dirty language". Alternatively, slang can grow out of mere familiarity with the things described. Among wine connoisseurs, Cabernet Sauvignon might be known as "Cab Sav", Chardonnay as "Chard" and so on;[1] this means that naming the different wines expends less superfluous effort. It also serves as a shared code among connoisseurs. This article is about cultural prohibitions in general, for other uses, see Taboo (disambiguation). ... For the Björk song, see Human Behaviour Human behavior is the collection of behaviors exhibited by human beings and influenced by culture, attitudes, emotions, values, ethics, authority, rapport, hypnosis, persuasion, coercion and/or genetics. ... An assortment of psychoactive drugs A psychoactive drug or psychotropic substance is a chemical substance that acts primarily upon the central nervous system where it alters brain function, resulting in temporary changes in perception, mood, consciousness and behavior. ... This article or section does not cite its references or sources. ... A connoisseur (Fr. ... Oak-aged Chardonnay is particularly popular in the United States. ...

Even within a single language community, slang tends to vary widely across social, ethnic, economic, and geographic strata. Slang sometimes grows more and more common until it becomes the dominant way of saying something, at which time it is regarded as mainstream, acceptable language (e.g. the Spanish word caballo), while at other times it may fall into disuse. Numerous slang terms pass into informal mainstream speech, and sometimes into formal speech, though this may involve a change in meaning or usage.

Slang very often involves the creation of novel meanings for existing words. It is very common for such novel meanings to diverge significantly from the standard meaning. Thus, "cool" and "hot" can both mean "very good", "impressive" or "good looking".

Slang terms are often known only within a clique or ingroup. For example, Leet ("Leetspeak" or "1337"), originally was popular only among certain Internet sub-cultures, such as crackers (malicious "hackers") and online video gamers. During the 1990s and 2000s, however, Leet became increasingly more commonplace on the Internet, and has even spread outside of Internet-based communication and into spoken languages.[2] Another type of slang, with roots in Internet culture, is texting language (txt or chatspeak), which is widely used in instant messaging on the Internet (AOL speak) and mobile phones (SMS language). This article is about social groups. ... In sociology, an ingroup is a social group towards which an individual feels loyalty and respect, usually due to membership in the group. ... This article does not adequately cite its references or sources. ... Look up txt in Wiktionary, the free dictionary. ...

Certain dialects may be viewed by some people as slang, such as Hawaiian Creole English and African American Vernacular English. Hawaiian Pidgin English, also known as Hawaiian Creole English or simply Pidgin, is a creole language based on English that is widely used by residents of Hawai‘i. ... Note: This page or section contains IPA phonetic symbols in Unicode. ...

See also

Cockney rhyming slang is a form of English slang which originated in the East End of London. ... Dhondi/Kareali language [[1]] is spoken in all Circle Bakote, andjoining Murree Hills and Gallies [[2]] areas. ... Internet slang, Internet language, Netspeak, chat room shorthand, Computer Language or Nu English is slang that Internet users have coined and promulgated. ... John Camden Hotten (1832-1873) was a compiler of English language dictionary of slang. ... This article does not adequately cite its references or sources. ... Eric Honeywood Partridge (February 6, 1894-June 1, 1979) was a noted lexicographer of the English language, and particularly of its slang. ... Polari (or alternatively Parlare, Parlary, Palarie, Palari, Parlyaree[1], from Italian parlare, to talk) was a form of cant slang used in the gay subculture in Britain. ...


  1. ^ Croft, William (2000) Explaining Language Change: An Evolutionary Approach. Harlow: Longman: 75-6.
  2. ^ Mitchell, Anthony (December 6, 2005). A Leet Primer. Retrieved on [[November 5, 2007]].

is the 340th day of the year (341st in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... Year 2005 (MMV) was a common year starting on Saturday (link displays full calendar) of the Gregorian calendar. ... is the 309th day of the year (310th in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... Year 2007 (MMVII) was a common year starting on Monday of the Gregorian calendar in the 21st century. ...

External links

  • Urban Dictionary - A dictionary of contemporary slang with user-contributed definitions. Largely unreliable and amateurish, but often the only reference to include very recent slang.
  • Double-Tongued Dictionary - A collection of citations of slang captured from actual usage. Far from comprehensive, but trustworthy where it does have coverage.
  • Historical Dictionary of American Slang - A dictionary by Dr. Robert Beard providing approximate dates slang words entered the language.
  • Irish Slang - A list of words and expressions used in Ireland.
  • Slang Dictionary: Etymological, Historical, and Anecdotal By John Camden Hotten. Now largely out of date and superseded by subsequent works. 1874 ed. at Google books
  • The Alternative Dictionaries - Slang, profanities, insults and vulgarisms from all the world. Poorly documented. Includes many terms that cannot be substantiated.

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  Results from FactBites:
Dictionary of English slang and colloquialisms of the UK (262 words)
Dictionary of English slang and colloquialisms of the UK English slang and colloquialisms used in the United Kingdom
If you are unable to immediately find the term you are looking for, try the slang search.
slang links · other links · copyright · privacy policy · frames version
Slang of the Fifties (283 words)
Slang has always been the province of the young.
The Sixties, with its drug and protest culture to draw from, would be slang heaven.
In the Slang Dictionary below, I have tried to indicate which group used a term or at least it's derivation, if warranted.
  More results at FactBites »



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