Category

Boston to English Dictionary

AHM Arm.
AJIDA In the old North End and East Boston Italian-American neighborhoods, agida referred to heartburn or being mentally irritated. From the Italian word agitare which means to churn or agitate.
ALLAGY Allergy.
ANSA Answer.
ANTENOR Antenna. Inverse "r" example.
AUDER Order.
BAH A bar, or place that serves alcohol.
BAHF Barf. Slang for "vomit."
BAHBA A barber, or person that cuts hair.
BADING SUIT Bathing suit.
BEDDA Better.
BLINKERS Automobile directional signals.
BLOODY BEAN Obscure nickname for the streets of Boston, and often used within the state and county prison system.
BREAKDOWN LANE A highway shoulder.
BUBBLA An office water fountain (bottled), or public drinking fountain.
BULKIE A small round sandwich bread or "roll."
CAH An automobile.
CARRIAGE A supermarket shopping cart.
CHOWDA Clam chowder.
CLICKAH A TV remote control unit.
CON Corn.
CONNA Corner.
CRUISER A police car.
CUBBID Cupboard.
CULLA Color.
DECENT Cool or Unique; a popular term in the 1970s.
DISINTERGRATED Disintegrated.  Inverse "r" example.
DOOZY BATZ In the old North End and East Boston Italian-American neighborhoods, it described a person that was fearless or had violent tendencies. Pazzo means crazy in Italian. "Tu Sei" (you are) + "Pazzo" (crazy) is the probable origin. "Du Say Batzo" evolved to "Doozy Batz." How one pronounced it, and one's body language, conveyed how "fearless" that person was.
DUFF To deliberately avoid a person or break a promise to meet with someone. Old North End and East Boston term.
EASTUH Easter.
ELASTIC A rubber band.
ENVIAMENT Environment.
EYEIN Iron.
FOEWID Forward.
FOILAGE Foliage.
FOK Fork.
FOTTY Forty.
FRAPPE Pronounced "Frap." Whipped milk, ice cream, and flavoring. This editor used to mix hot coffee with vanilla ice cream and heavy cream back in the old days! Similar to a milkshake.
GAHBIDGE Garbage.
GAVONE In the old North End and East Boston Italian-American neighborhoods, it meant someone that was overdressed or completely out of place; from the Italian word Cafone which roughly translates to a loud and obnoxious person. Also pronounced gavoni which is phonetically closer to Italian.
GRAVY Spaghetti sauce.
GUVANNUH Governor.
HOODSIE A small cup of vanilla & chocolate ice cream sold by ice cream trucks. Eaten with a paper-wrapped small wooden spoon that resembled a short popsicle stick. Also (very offensive slang), a teenage girl.
HUSSES Horses; in the Irish-American neighborhoods it was pronounced Husses, and in the Italian-American neighborhoods it was pronounced Hosses (often with a nasal sound).
IDEEAR Idea.
ITALIAN ICE Shaved ice with various flavorings added; also known as Slush.
JIMMIES Ice cream sprinkles, usually chocolate.
LAYBUH Labor.
LIBERRY A book depository or library.
MACKRIL Mackerel.
MYIN Mine.
NACKINS Napkins.
NAYBUH Neighbor.
NAYCHA Nature.
NEKKALACE Necklace.
NO'REASTER A weather system that swirls counterclockwise over the New England coastline. Such weather patterns can cause huge blizzards or wind-driven rain with accompanying storm surge.
NOTH North. "R" is silent; add nasal sound.
OVA Over; as in "Over the Rainbow."
OUWWAH Hour.
OVICHA Overture.
PACKY A liquor store, or "package" store.
PAHDEE Party.
PAHDEE PLATTA A tray of cold cuts sold as one unit; party platter.
PAHLA The Family or Living Room in a house or  apartment; parlor.
PATS The New England Patriots football team.
PERPERTRATOR Perpetrator. Inverse "r" example.
PAYPAH Paper.
PIDJUN Pigeon.
PIMPLE BALL A 1950s and 1960s inflated off-white rubber ball about the size of a baseball. The exterior had horizontal rows of bumps, with an embossed star on the top and bottom. Used for handball or step (gutter) ball games. Often cut in half for half-ball games. A popular term in many Northeast cities.
PISSA Very good; often prefixed with WICKED.
PITCHEZ Pictures.
POCKET BOOK A woman's purse or handbag.
PODADAH Potato; also pronounced Podado depending on your town or neighborhood.
PRIVLEDGEZ Privileges.
PUNKIN Pumpkin.
PUSS To have a miserable expression on one's face; "Why the Puss on your face?"
RAG To exaggerate; tell ragtime stories.
ROTARY A traffic circle or round-about.
RUBBISH Trash or Garbage.
SATTADAY Saturday.
SCOOTCH In the old North End and East Boston Italian-American neighborhoods, it referred to someone that was annoying; from the Italian word Scocciare which roughly translates to the verb "to bother." Also, in old Yankee slang, to scooch was to crouch down. Often pronounced similarly in a way that rhymes with "Butch." Children and pets could be called "Scutches" for example. Irksome is a close match in English.
SCROD Fish; sometimes haddock, sometimes cod. Originally derived, most likely, by the combination of Scrawed (to cut and then dry) and Cod.
SELLA A cellar; or basement.
SELTS The Boston Celtics basketball team.
SHERBERT Sherbet. Inverse "r" example.
SHOTS Shorts, as in cut-off jeans.
SHOUWAH Shower.
SKEAVE Repulsive or disgusting (often describing another person). From the word schifo in Italian. Very popular term before 1990 in the old Italian-American North End and East Boston neighborhoods.
SLUSH Shaved ice with various flavorings added. Also known as Italian Ice.
SNEAKIZ Sneakers; tennis or athletic shoes.
SODER Soda Pop.  See "Tonic."
SOLDJA Soldier.
SOLDJIZ Soldiers.
SOX The Boston Red Sox baseball team.
SPA A mom & pop small luncheonette.
SPEEKAH Speaker.
SPUCKIE A short, stout French roll with pointy ends; bigger than a bulkie roll, but smaller than a submarine roll. If memory serves, grilled sandwiches such as Chicken Parmesan and Meatballs were popular in Spuckie rolls. A sub would be wrapped in paper, while a Spuckie may be wrapped in foil to keep it warm. Purportedly coined from a North End Spucadella roll, and the Italian word Spacatto which means cracked or cross-section.
SKWAYAH Square.
STAHVIN A person that is hungry; "starving."
STAYPUHLA Stapler.
SUB A hogie, hero, grinder, "submarine" sandwich.
SUPPA Dinner.
TEMPUHCHA Temperature.
TEYEID Tired; exhausted or fatigued.
TONIC Soda pop.
TRIPLE-DECKER 3 story wood house, usually all apartments. Also known as a Three-Deckah or Tree-Deckah house.
ULTZSIR Ulcer.
VARIETY STORE A mom and pop convenience store.
WEIUD Weird.
WICKED Extremely good.
WHIFFLE A short crew cut, or boy's or men's haircut done with clippers.
WOM Warm.
WOTTA Water.
YAWW "Yes" + "Yay" combined; very popular in the 1970s.
YAWS Yours; as in "yours truly" or "your's, mine, and our's" (an old slang cliche).
YOGITT Yogurt.
 
RAT (THE) A famous metal and punk rock night club in Kenmore Square, short for Rathskeller (closed). In German, rathskeller means "council cellar."
SANDS (THE) Short for Blue Sands. A famous bar on Summer Street that catered to patrons ranging from punk rockers to artists to blue collar workers (closed).
SPIT A famous 1970s punk rock & new wave night club on Lansdowne Street (closed).
 
BACK BAY The area west of the Public Garden.
B.C. Boston College.
B.P.L. Boston Public Library.
B.S.O. Boston Symphony Orchestra.
B.U. Boston University
CAPE (The) Cape Cod.
CHAHLZ RIVAH Charles River.
COMBAT ZONE The old burlesque area of Boston at the foot of Washington Street near Essex Street.
COMM AVE Truncation of Commonwealth Avenue.
HAHVID Harvard University.
I.C.A. Institute of Contemporary Art.
LANDSDOWN Lansdowne Street, Boston.
MASS AVE Truncation of Massachusetts Avenue.
M.F.A. Museum of Fine Arts
PRU (The) Prudential Center.
QUINCY MARKET Faneuil Hall Marketplace.
SCOLLAY SQUARE The old burlesque area of Boston at the junction of Tremont, Court, Hanover, and Cambridge Streets.
T (The) The MBTA transit authority.
 
CHATTIM Chatham, Massachusetts
CONKIDD Concord, Massachusetts
EVRIT Everett, Massachusetts.
FLORIDER The State of Florida.
GLOSSTA Gloucester, Massachusetts.
HOPKINGTON Hopkinton, Massachusetts
INDIANER The State of Indiana.
LEMMINSTAH Leominster, Massachusetts
MEDFID Medford, Massachusetts.
NEWHAMSHA The State of New Hampshire.
NEWHAMSHIN A Person From New Hampshire.
NEWYOK The State of New York.
PEEBAHDEE Peabody, Massachusetts.
P-TOWN Provincetown, Massachusetts.
QUINZEE Quincy, Massachusetts.
RHODEYELIN The State of Rhode Island
RUHVEEA Revere, Massachusetts.
SUMMAVILLE Somerville, Massachusetts.
VAHMONT The State of Vermont.
VAHJINYA The State of Virginia.
VINYID Martha's Vineyard island.
WATTATOWN Watertown, Massachusetts.
WINTRUP Winthrop, Massachusetts.
WHISTAH Worcester, Massachusetts.
WOOBIN Woburn, Massachusetts.
 
BURRY Roxbury neighborhood.
EASTIE East Boston neighborhood.
DOT Dorchester neighborhood.
J.P. Jamaica Plain neighborhood.
ROZZY Roslindale neighborhood.
SOUTHIE South Boston neighborhood.
TOWNIE A Charlestown neighborhood person.

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