Wednesday, October 6, 2010

I'll never read Planescape's prose the same way again

From Steve Roud's discussion of Cockney rhyming slang in his excellent London Lore: The Legends and Traditions of the World's Most Vibrant City:
Several terms that started as rhyming slang have now entered the general language, albeit not at the posh end of the spectrum. It is not uncommon to hear the verb to rabbit (from rabbit and pork), meaning to talk a lot, or for someone to say, 'Let's have a butcher's at that', or 'That's a load of old cobblers'. There are many people who say 'He's a right berk', or 'He's a proper Charlie', without realising that the words originated as contractions of Berkshire Hunt and Charlie Hunt.