Rasta Jamaican Patois Glossary E K

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EAST INDIAN: Indo-Jamaican, Indo-Trinidadian, etc ELDERS: The term given to individuals of longstanding commitment in the Rasta Movement In everyday speech, the status of male individuals as elders is often acknowledged by use of the term “Bongo” as an honorific (e.g., addressing someone as “Bongo Hill” or “Bongo Ketu”) ITAL: The Rastafari term for a saltless and vegetarian diet JAH: In Rasta speech, this term is used as a synonym for Emperor Haile Selassie as the manifestation of the Godhead EASE-UP: to forgive, to lighten up EVERYTING COOK & CURRY: all is well, all is taken care of FALLA FASHIN: Copycat.FAS’: to be fast with, meaning to be rude, impertinent, to meddle with sombody’s business, to be forward, etc FASSY: eczema-like scratchy sores on the skin; also a verb meaning to cause oneself to be covered with fassy by scratching FAASTI (FIESTY): impertinent, rude, impudent FAYVA: to favour, resemble, or look like; “fayva like” also means “it seems as if” FE (FI): the infinitive “to” as in “Have fe go”: “a fe” Have to “fe dem” their FEEL NO WAY: don’t take offense, don’t be sorry, don’t worry FENKY-FENKY: (from finicky) choosy, proud, stuck-up FENNEH: v. to feel physical distress, pain. From Twi fene-to vomit; Fante fena-to be troubled; Lumba feno-to faint FI (FE): possessive. “fi me”-“mine”. Can also mean : “for” or “to”, as in “I ha’ fi”, I have to. : Yu num fi du dat = You are not to do that. Fe is Fi as in fi ar means hers.. fi im – his.. fi dem – theirs.. fi you – yours.. fi me – mine FIESTY (FAASTI): impudent, rude, out of order, cheeky FIRST LIGHT: tomorrow (HIM A) FISH: a homosexual person FIT: when used of fruits and vegetables, it means ready to pick, full grown, though not necessarily fully ripe, also means in good shape. (“You haffe fit!”) FORWARD 1. to go, move on, set out 2. in the future FRONTA: tobacco leaf used to roll herb FUCKERY: wrong, unfair FULLNESS, TO THE FULLNESS: completely, absolutely, totally FUNDS: Money GAAN A BED: an adverbial phrase; following a verb of liking or loving, it has a superlative meaning; Can be used in any context, such as “I love hafu yam gaan to bed!”, means very much as in liking very much

GALANG: go along GANJA: herb, marijuana GANSEY: t-shirt, any knit shirt (TO) GET SALT: to be thwarted, to encounter misfortune GATES: home, yard GENERAL: cool operator GI: give GIG: spinning top GILL: unit of measure like pint GINNAL: n. trickster, con-man, an Amnancy figure as in “Sunday Ginnal”-a preacher or clergyman GLAMITY: a woman’s genitals GORGON: outstanding dreadlocks, a dragon (DON) GORGON: outstanding dreadlocks, a person who is respected GRAVALICIOUS: greedy, avaricious GRINDSMAN: one who displays great prowess in bed GROUNATION: large, island-wide meeting and celebration of Rastas GROUND: home, yard HACKLE: to hassle, bother, worry, trouble. As a noun, hackling HAFFI: to have to… HAIL: a greeting HARBOUR SHARK: “Mr. Want-All” glutton, greedy, someone who wants it all HARD excellent, proficient, skillful, uncompromising, tough HARD EARS: stubborn, doesn’t listen HEETCH: itch. Many such words could be listed under H, as initial H is added to scores of words at will HEAD MAN JANCRO: n. albino buzzard HERB marijuana HIEZ-HAAD ears-hard, thick skulled, stubborn, unwilling or unable to hear HIEZ ears HIGGLERS higglers, who are primarly woman who buy and sell goods that they have imported into the country. Some higglers, however, do not make trips out of the country to buy goods, but sell the goods that others import. The connection between higglers and dancehall culture is crucial as they form one of the strongest international links between JA, North America, and the Caribbean

HITEY-TITEY: upper class, high tone, “stoosh”, someone who pretends to be better than they are HOMELY: to be relaxed, comfortable, enjoying your home surrounding HOOD: penis HORTICAL (DON): respected, acclaimed HOT-STEPPER: fugitive from jail or gun court I-DREN: (n.)- male Rastafarian I-MAN: I, me, mine I-NEY: a greeting I-REY: 1. a greeting 2. excellent, cool, highest I-SHENCE: herb I-TAL: 1. vital, organic, natural, wholesome; refers to way of cooking and way of life, 2. in colors, red, green and gold I: replaces “me”, “you”, “my”; replaces the first syllable of seleted words (1) I and I, I&I: I, me, you and me, we. Rastafari speech eliminates you, me we, they, etc., as divisive and replaces same with communal I and I. I and I embraces the congregation in unity with the Most I (high) in an endless circle of inity (unity) IEZ-HAAD: ears-hard, thick skulled, stubborn, unwilling or unable to hear IEZ: ears ILIE: adj. literally, “highly”, valuable, exalted, even sacred IGNORANT: short-tempered, easy to vex, irate INNA DI MORROWS: tomorrow INNA: In the IRIE: A Greeting. excellent, cool, highest, adj. powerful and pleasing.ISES/IZES/ISIS: Praises to the almighty given by Rasta, when calling on the name of Jah for strength and assistance for achieving progress in life ISMS and SKISMS: negative term denoting Babylon’s classificatory systems ITES: 1. the heights 2. a greeting 3. the color red great 4. another word for irie. Or you use it to mean “OK” as in when someone asks you to do something for you, you would reply, “Ites.” IWA: certain time or hour JA, JAM-DOWN: Jamaica JACKASS ROPE: homegrown tobacco, twisted into a rope JAH KNOW: Lord knows JAH: God; possibly derived as a shortened form of Jahweh or Jehovah. Jah Ras Tafari, Haille Selassie, King of Kings, Lord of Lords, conquering Lion of Judah; rastas revere Haile Selassie as the personification of the Almighty

JAMDUNG: Jamaica, “Jam” to press down “dung” down. Ironic reference to social and economic conditions of the masses JAMMIN: to be having a good time, to be dancing calypso/soca JANCRO: n. literally John Crow, buzzard ANGA: shrimp, crayfish JELLY: a young coconut, full of jelly JON CONNU: n. (John Canoe). Bands of elaborately masked dancers appearing around Christmas. They ressemble the ancestral dancers of West Africa, but the ety. of the word is unclear JOOK: to pierce or stick, as with a thorn or a long pointed stick, also used in a sexual context JOOKS: hangout, relax JUDGIN’: adjective, everyday or ordinary clothes or shoes worn in the yard or in the bush, as in “judgin’ boot”. Also as a verb, to judge, with a similar meaning JUU: as a verb, rain a juu; as a noun, juu rain. It means a light rain or drizzle KALI COOLY: marijuana KALLALOO: a dark, green leafy vegetable, very nutritious and cheap KASS KASS: n. quarrel or contention. From combination of English curse or cuss, and Twi kasa kasa-to dispute verbally KATA: a roll of cloth or vegetation placed on top of the head to cushion the skull from the weight of a head load KAYA: see ganja KETCH UP: grapple, get in a fight KETCHY-CHUBY: It can be a sexual term meaning the man throw it and the woman catch it! It can also mean a game – life’s game, how to see through today to meet tomorrow and all the games of life as in “life is just a ketchy-chuby game.” KEMPS: a little bit, a tiny piece, from skimps KIN TEET: “skin teeth” to laugh at someone or give them a plastic smile, sometimes used derogatorily as in “A little kin-teet bwoy.” KISS ME NECK!: common exclamation of surprise KISS TEET: to kiss one’s teeth or to suck one’s teeth is to make the very common hissing noise of disappoval, dislike, vexation or disappointment KOUCHIE: bowl of a chalice or chillum pipe KRENG-KRENG: an old-fashioned meat rack, hung up high over the fire to catch the smoke KUMINA: n. Ecstatic dance for the purpose of communicating with ancestors. From Twi akom-to be possessed and ana-by an ancestor


Thanks to some of the sources of this glossary…Reggae International, Stephen Davis, Peter Simon, R&B, 1982 – KSBR 88.5 FM, Laguna Beach, CA. Handout. – posted on rec.music.reggae – Mike Pawka, Jammin Reggae Archives Cybrarian – Understanding Jamaican Patois, L. Emilie Adams, Kingston – Richard Dennison/Michio Ogata – Glossary from “The Harder They Come” (Bo Peterson) – Norman Redington – The Beat – Allen Kaatz – Jah Bill (William Just) – Arlene Laing – Jennifer G. Graham – Norma Brown/Zoe Una Vella Veda – Richard V. Helmbrecht – Norman Stolzoff – Christopher Edmonds – Lisa Watson – Dr. Carolyn Cooper – Ras Adam – Chip Platt – Michael Turner from an article in “The Beat” – Nicky “Dread” Taylor – Simrete McLean – The Unofficial Web Site on Jamaica – Paul Mowatt – Carlos Culture – Liner Notes – Blood & Fire release: Jah Stitch:”Original Ragga Muffin”, presumably Steve Barrow – Clinton Fearon -Original member of the Gladiators/ – Barbara Kennedy – Itations of Jamaica and i Rastafari – Phil “Bassy” Ajaj – Karlene Rogers – Dean Holland – Scottie Lake – Roger Steffen’s Supersite – Sara Gurgen – Kevin Robison – Christopher Durning – Ronald E. Lam – Trainer Adams – Editor of Dub Missive magazine. – Karlene Rogers – Howard Henry – Messian Dread – Roger Steffens – Bunny Wailer (related to Roger Steffens) – Jahworks.org – Jamaican Handbook of Proverbs – www.jamaicans.com-The Reggae Box – Hip-O Records
A Great big thanks to Mike Pawka http://niceup.com/patois.txt

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