Sometimes I think North American English is limited. So, since I can’t borrow Colin Firth or Prince William, I'm suggesting we adopt more British words. Let’s face it, English, the language we speak, already shares a root word with England. Why not just take a few more?

Here then are some of my favourite British-isms.

Imported Word #1: Knackered
Meaning: Exhausted, beyond tired
Application: Back to work after two weeks and still not feeling 100%...makes meknackered.

Imported Word #2: Cheeky
Meaning: Rude, insolent, smart-alec
Application: My cheeky so-worker told me my hair looked like a fluffy puppy. No Friday donuts for him. Ever.

Imported Word #3: Whinge
Meaning: To protest or complain, usually in a persistent manner
Application: Me: “Hey, pick up the tools by the patio door (that have been there for three weeks) or the Vacuum Zombie is going to eat them.”

Imported Word #4: Dishy
Meaning: Attractive, beautiful, good-looking
Application: I was once dishy, but then I started infertility treatments and medications, which meant I was super tired and started spending an average of five minutes per week on my appearance.

Imported Word #5: Faff About/Around
Meaning: To waste time doing unimportant things
Application: Adam: “Are you still faffing about on blogs?” Me: “Absolutely not. I am doing something useful, like, like, like…”

And I haven’t even mentioned snogging or those ones!

                             Vintage dictionary page art by Ex Libris Journals via Etsy


  1. And you can cockney rhyming slang them up too. Knackered becomes 'I am done in, absolutely cream-crackered'.

  2. My husband and I were playing scrabble, and looking up random words in the dictionary. He has now decided to call me "fubsy" meaning "chubby and somewhat squat". I am not sure how commonly this is actually used in British English, but he certainly cracks himself up every time he calls me "Oh Fubsy..."

  3. Ha! I didn't know half these words were obscure. My blog must be incomprehensible!


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