Appendix:Australian English rhyming slang

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List of Australian rhyming slang[edit]

The following is a list of well-known (to Australians) examples of Australian rhyming slang. It is not intended to be comprehensive.

Many terms are based on popular culture, and so the cant is constantly updated according to changing fashions. The terms listed here are well-established.


  • Adrian Quist - "pissed", i.e. drunk. Now rarely heard. Named after a well-known Australian tennis player of the 1930s and 1940s. Usually replaced now by "Olivers", from Oliver Twist.
  • Al Capone - "telephone". Strangely enough not used in US English. Also, someone who is always talking on his mobile phone is called Elliot, as in "Elliot Ness on the Al Capone".
  • Alger Hiss - "piss". Urinate. Named after . US government official. See also Les Kiss, Snake's Hiss, Swing and Miss.
  • Asafa Powell - "towel". Named after the former 100m Jamaican sprinter and world record holder.
  • Austin Murphy - "Furphy" i.e Wrong.
  • Ayrton Senna - "Tenner" i.e Ten dollars (Aust) Ten pounds (Cockney). Former racing driver.
  • bag of fruit – "suit" of clothes.
  • barry - "shocker", a poor performance, from the Australian comedian and actor Barry Crocker.
  • Barry Beath - teeth
  • Billy Hunt - "cunt", a stupid person, from the Australian cricketer who played in the first test against England in the 1930s. Similar to Cockney rhyming slang "berk" from "Berkeley Hunt". Also, Rex Hunt, after the famous Australian media personality and fisherman, and Karmichael Hunt, after the former NRL and AFL player. See also "dropkick" below.
  • billy lids - "kids". Also tin lids (also Cockney rhyming slang.) or, more rarely, saucepan lids. Tin Lids was used by Jimmy Barnes' four children as their recording name.
  • Blundstone (boot) - "ute", utility vehicle, a tradesman's vehicle, from a popular brand of workman's boots.
  • boat race - "face".
  • Bob Hope - "soap". Goes with "Davey Gower" & "Asafa Powell". Bob Hope was a famous US comedian.
  • bread crumb - "bum", a derelict.
  • Britney Spears - "beers". Britney Spears is a US singer.
  • Bugs Bunny - "money"
  • Bulahdelah - "Sheila" (girl) : named after the NSW town of Bulahdelah, very familiar to those who have taken the long holiday drive "up the coast".
  • Burke and Wills - "dills", after the names of the Australian explorers Burke and Wills who died in the Australian outback. Often confused with Cockney rhyming slang "berk" from "Berkeley Hunt".
  • butcher's (hook) - "crook", ill, unwell; also, "look".
  • butter corn porn
  • captain - "look", from Captain James Cook, as in "Having a good captain, are ya?"
  • Camberwell and Kew - "spew" (vomit). Camberwell and Kew are Melbourne suburbs: also 'Soloman Lew' (Melbourne businessman), Chris Mew (below) and Stuey Dew (below).
  • Charley Wheeler - "sheila" or "sheilah", Australian slang for a woman. After the famous Australian painter w:Charles Wheeler. Also "three wheeler".
  • cheese and kisses - "missus", wife. (as there is no connection of cheese to kisses this example would not be used by any self respecting Rhyming slang user, use "Love and kisses" or "Hug & kisses" instead)
  • china plate - "mate", friend, compatriot. Also Cockney rhyming slang; usually shortened to "china".
  • Chris Mew - to "spew", former AFL footballer for Hawthorn (see also "Camberwell and Kew" and "Solly Lew").
  • coffee scroll - "Moll", loose or promiscuous woman. Sometimes shortened to "coffee"
  • comic cuts or comics - "guts"; no longer in common use.
  • Cooper Vuna - "Schooner" after ex-NRL Rugby League and Rugby Union player.
  • corn cob - snob.
  • Dad 'n' Dave - "shave". From the famous comic characters created by Steele Rudd.
  • Dapto dog - "wog", someone of Mediterranean or eastern European descent.
  • Darby and Joan - "all alone"
  • Davey Gower - "shower"; named after former English cricket captain David Gower.
  • dead horse or race horse – tomato sauce
  • dig in the grave – "shave".
  • dog and bone - "phone".
  • dog's eye - "pie".
  • dog's eye with dead horse - meat pie with tomato sauce.
  • dropkick (and punt) – a stupid person; originally a despicable person, a "cunt". Refers to two types of kick in football.
  • eau-de-Cologne - "phone", after a deodorant that was popular in the 60s and 70s, often shortened to 'oadie'.
  • Edgar Britt - "shit", after the name of a famous Australian jockey.
  • Fiddly-did - "quid", after a one pound note. Not used since decimal currency was introduced in 1966.
  • four-by-two - "Jew", person of Jewish faith (4 inches x 2 inches is common timber board size - now 90x45mm).
  • Frances Bourke - "perk" (vomit). Frances Bourke was a Melbourne footballer.
  • frog and toad - "road", such as in the phrase "hit the frog 'n 'toad" (that is depart). Also Cockney rhyming slang.
  • froth and bubble - "trouble"
  • freddo - peddo
  • Gary Ablett - "tablet", (Gary Ablett was a Geelong footballer).
  • Gary Jack - "back", after the name famous Australian Rugby League player.
  • Germaine Greer - "ear", after the women's rights activist, commentator and author.
  • ginger (ale) - "tail", as in "Get off me ginger!" (stop following me), or "a swift kick up the ginger".
  • ginger beer – "engineer"; also "queer" (homosexual) in Cockney rhyming slang.
  • goanna - "piano" (pianner).
  • good cheer - "beer"
  • Gregory Peck - "cheque" (Gregory Peck was a US actor).
  • Hard Hit- shit - going for a hard hit!!
  • half-back flanker - "wanker", after a position in Australian rules football
  • hammer (and tack) - "back", as in "he's been on my hammer all day"
  • Harold Holt or Harry Holt - salt (no longer commonly used but still understood by most Australians). Also, to "bolt", disappear or depart quickly (as in to do a/the Harold (Holt)); referring to the Australian Prime Minister Harold Holt who disappeared while swimming at a beach in 1967.
  • hey diddle diddle - "middle", particularly in Australian rules football
  • horse's hoof - "poof", a homosexual
  • hugs 'n' kisses - "missus"
  • jack in the box - "pox" (venereal disease).
  • Jack the dancer – "cancer"
  • James Hird - "turd"
  • Jimmy Britts - "shits", either diarrhoea or annoyance (also "Jimmy Smits" a US actor).
  • Joe Blake - "snake"
  • Johnny Raper - "paper", a newspaper, from the Australian rugby league footballer Johnny Raper.
  • Kevin Sheedy - "seedy" (unwell) (Kevin Sheedy was a Melbourne footballer).
  • knees - "please".
  • Khyber Pass - "arse". often abbrev. such as "he needs a damn good kick up the Khyber".
  • 3 KZ - "head", after former Melbourne AM radio station (now Gold-FM)
  • late night shoppers - "coppers", itself a slang term for police officers.
  • Les Kiss - "piss", from former 1980s Australian rugby league international Les Kiss.
  • loaf of bread - "head".
  • Mal Meninga - "finger".
  • Meat Pie - "try", a score in Rugby football
  • Merri Creek - "Greek" (Merri Creek is a creek in Melbourne).
  • Mickey Mouse - "Grouse" (A Term used mostly in Melbourne for 'Great'),
  • Monkey's fist - "pissed",
  • Moreton Bay Fig - "wig", after the type of tree.
  • Noah's (Ark) - "shark".
  • Nelson Riddle - "piddle" (urinate).
  • Nuclear sub - "pub",
  • Onkaparinga - "finger", after the place in South Australia and blanket manufacturer.
  • Optic, optic nerve - "perve", leering look, as in "Eh, china, have an optic at that sheila!"
  • Oxford scholar - "dollar"
  • Pat (Malone) - "own" (alone), as in "left him on his Pat Malone" or "left him on his Pat", also "patma" (abbreviation).
  • Pen and Ink - "Stink"
  • Persian Rugs - "drugs"
  • Pig's Ear - "beer".
  • Polly Waffle - "brothel", from the proprietary name of a chocolate bar.
  • Pork Pie, porky pie or porky - "lie", typically a white lie, as in "When I looked into it I realised the whole story was a porky pie". Also Cockney rhyming slang.
  • red hots - "trots", that is, trotting horse races, or diarrhoea.
  • Reg Grundys - "undies", underpants, from Reg Grundy, well known Australian television producer, sometimes also "Reginalds".
  • rock and roll - "dole", unemployment benefit, social security payment, as in "He won't work in an iron lung as long as he can get on the rock 'n' roll."
  • Ronny Coote - "root", slang for sexual intercourse.
  • Royce Hart - "fart", gas or wind from the abdomen. Royce Hart was a Melbourne footballer.
  • Rubbity Dub - "pub".
  • Rubber stamp - "tamp", as in tampered, molested, kiddy fiddler.
  • Ruben Wiki - “Sickie”, as in taking the day off from work sick.
  • Ryan Mongan - "Tongan", as in a person from the country Tonga.
  • sandshoe - "thank you".
  • sausage roll – "goal", as in team sports.
  • scotch tape - "rape", generally used in shortened form "scotch".
  • septic tank (or seppo) – "yank", slang for American.
  • sky rocket – "pocket".
  • snake's hiss – "piss" (urinate), as in "I'm busting for a snake's." Also swing and miss (below).
  • steak and kidney - "Sydney".
  • Spanish dancer - "cancer".
  • Stuey Dew - "spew", after former AFL footballer for both Port Adelaide and Hawthorn.
  • Stuey Diver - "fiver", five-dollar (originally five-pound) note.
  • sour grape - "rape"
  • sway and swerve - "perv" (see above)
  • swing and a miss - "piss", from American baseball terminology, as in "Time for a swing and a miss."
  • tea leaf - "thief". Also Cockney rhyming slang.
  • tin tank - "bank".
  • to and from - "pom" (an English person).
  • trouble and strife – "wife". Also Cockney rhyming slang.
  • twist and twirl - "girl" (girlfriend)
  • Uncle Doug - "tug" i.e. Masturbate
  • Uncle Gus - "bus"
  • Uncle Merv - "perv" (look or stare, sometimes with sexual intent)
  • Wallaby Ted - "rooted" (Rooted), tired from strenuous activity.
  • Wally Grout - "shout", to buy a round of drinks, from the Australian cricketer by that name, as in "It’s your Wally". Depending on context, it could also mean "stout" or "snout".
  • Warwick Farm - "arm", from the racecourse in Sydney, as in "He grabbed her by the Warwick Farms".
  • Westpac banker - "wanker" (Westpac is a major Australian bank). Also 'merchant banker'.

Rhyming slang is often used in an abbreviated form, such as "Go and grab some bugs", meaning "bugs bunny", which rhymes with "money"; or "Stick that in your sky", meaning "sky rocket", which rhymes with "pocket".

As an extreme example, "Hello friend, here is the money I owe you, put it in your pocket, and give it to your wife" could be expressed as "'ello china, got some bugs for ya, sky 'em - give 'em to ya cheese." Dropping any more than one or two instances in conversation would be considered offensive — "coming the raw prawn".

See also[edit]