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Late 19th century UK. Etymology unknown.[1]


  • IPA(key): /ˈɹɒzə(ɹ)/
  • (file)
  • Rhymes: -ɒzə(ɹ)


rozzer (plural rozzers)

  1. (Britain, slang) A police officer.
    • 1888 May 26, The Sporting Times:
      "Another wrong un," says the carman. "Hi, Mr. Graham!"—and up walks a rozzer and buckles me tight.
    • 1893, Emerson, P. H., Signor Lippo, Burnt-Cork Artiste:
      If the rozzers was to see him in bona clobber they'd take him for a gun.
    • 2017 March 25, Errigo, Angie, “Dodgy detectives, Twitter trolls and whistleblowers: Line of Duty is back”, in The Guardian[1], TV & Radio blog:
      Jed Mercurio’s corrupt cop hit remains one of the best shows on TV, but surely every rozzer in the Midlands knows who Kate Fleming is by now?




  • Farmer, John Stephen (1903) Slang and Its Analogues[2], volume 6, page 65
  • “rozzer” in Albert Barrère and Charles G[odfrey] Leland, compilers and editors, A Dictionary of Slang, Jargon & Cant, volume II (L–Z), Edinburgh: The Ballantyne Press, 1889–1890, page 187.