Tringbago Humour: The Alphabet

The complete Trinbago Alphabet - your guide to slang and colloquialisms on Tobago

Little Tobago

The Creole dialect spoken by Tobagonians is a wonderful cosmopolitan mixture of words and expressions from many parts of the world, resulting from Trinidad's rich ethnic mix.

A

Ah - Substitute for "I"

Allyuh - All of you people. A group

Ax (pron.Ask) - To ask a question

Aye-yah-yie - An expression of anticipation or pain, etc.

B

Bacchanal - Scandal, heavy quarrelling, big party, confusion

Back chat - Insolent response, especially from a child to an adult

Bad eye (cut-eye) - A look of anger, especially when looking from the corner of the eye

Ba-John - A bully or a really tough customer

Bamsee - The rear end, what you sit on

Bam-se Lambe - Rather attractive bamsee

Bol'face - A pushy person, unreasonably demanding

Broughtupsy - Showing that a person was properly brought up, decorum

Buh wait nah - But wait a minute, now hold on/it

C

Callaloo - A thick soup made from dasheen leaves, ochroes, coconut milk, seasoned to taste, invariably includes crab

Calypso - A musical and lyrical comment on any subject, usually composed for, but not limited to, the Carnival season

Calypsonian - One who sings calypsos

Cheups (Steups) - A noise made by sucking your teeth

Chinkee - Very tiny portions of anything

Chupid - Stupid

Chupidee - A foolish person

Coki-eye - Cross-eyed

Commesse - Confusion associated with arguments, gossip and slander

Cuff - Hitting someone or something with a clenched fist

Cyah - Can't

D

Bamboo Grove Da is you? - Is that you?

Dan-dan - Any sharp looking outfit

Dat good for yuh - Serves you right

Dat - That

Doh - Don't

Dotish - Silly, stupid, foolish and dumb

Dougla - Mixture of East Indians and African parentage

Drevait (dree-vay) - Wayward person who likes to "knock about"

E

Eh - What did you say?

Eh-eh - No, no way, oh no

Eh-heh - Oh really? I understand. Yes

En'less - Plenty, endless

Ent? - Is that not so? That's true, isn't it?

F

Fall out - To stop speaking with someone or to terminate a friendship

Faddah - Father

Fed up - The state of being bored

Fete - A party, loud music, lots to eat and drink, dancing to wee hours of the morning

Fig - Banana (ripe fig and green fig)

Flim - Film

Founkie (foong-key) - Foul-smelling, stink odour

Fuh true/troot? - Yes that is true. Is that really so?

G

Goin'orf - Someone who appears to be going out of their mind, acting strangely

Gun talk - Fighting words, to threaten verbally

Gyul - Girl

H

Harden -Disobedient

Hototo (hotoetoe) - A very large amount of anything

I

I eh payin' tax fuh mih mout' - I could say anything I want

In ting - To be involved in current activity

Is so? - Is that so?

J

Baby on BeachJeez-an-ages - Used for any reason where an outburst is appropriate

Jook - To stab at anything

Jumbie - Spirit, ghost

Jus' now - In a little while

Jus' so? - Just like that?

Jus' so - Out of the blue, totally unexpected

K

Ketch - Catch

Klim - Any brand of powdered milk

L

Lef dat - Leave that

Leh - Let, let's

Leh go - Let go

Leh we - Let us

Lick dong - To accidentally hit someone or something

Licks - A beating, physical punishment

Like t'ing - To be somewhat mischievous

Lil'bit - In small meaningless portions

Lime - When a small group of people engage in a sometimes pre-arranged activity

Long eye - A person who is envious of the possessions of others

Look nuh! - An expression of annoyance

M

Maco - A person who minds other people's business for the purpose of gossip.

Macocious - A person having the trait of a maco

Maga - Very thin, skinny

Mamaguy - To make fun of, to ridicule

Mama Yo! - Expression denoting shock and surprise

Matter Fix - Everything is well organized

Mih han' slip - An expression used when too much of an ingredient is used

Mooma - Mother

Mout'er - A boaster

Much up - To pamper, to butter up

Fig LeafN

Nah - No

Nastiness - An expression of disgust applied to a good-for-nothing person

Never see come see - Someone who has recently been exposed to something new and who overdoes it to ridiculous proportions

Ning ning - Tired eyes

Now fuh now - Instantly

Nowherian - A person who does not have any fixed place of abode

O

Obzokee - Awkward in appearance, anything bent or twisted out of shape

Oh geed! - An expression used when an offensive smell arises

OH gosh! - Expression denoting shock, surprise indignation and admiration

Oh gorm man! - as above

Oh shimps man! - as above

Ol' talk - Idle chatter, social chit-chat

One set ah - A lot of anything

Own-way - Stubborn person

P

Pallet - Frozen lolly

Papa yo! - Exclamation of surprise

Pesh - Money

Pissin' tail - A person of no class or importance

Planasse - To hit someone continuously with the flat part of a cutlass

Playin' social - Someone who pretends to be of a higher social strata than they are

Pong - Pound

Po-po - Very small child, baby

Prim-prim - Disgustingly proper and formal

Q

Quenk - An irritating person

Qualey - Withered, dried up

R

Leatherback TurtleRaff - To grab suddenly

Ragadang - Broken down

Ram-cram - Packed to capacity

Rumfle - Ruffled or wrinkled

S

Saga boy/girl - Flashy dresser, dandy

Shades - Sunglasses

Shif' yuh carcass - Move over, get going

Shub - Shove, move or cast aside

Skinnin' yuh teet' - Grinning

Skin up yuh nose - To turn up one's nose at anything

Sometimeish - Moody

Strims - Shrimps

Sweetie - Any confectionary

Swell up yuh face - To look angry, to pout

T

Tabanca - The forlorn feeling one gets when a love affair is over

Tanty - Aunt

Tight - Intoxicated, drunk, stoned

T'ing - Thing

To besides - Besides which

Too-tool-bay - A confused state, in a daze, also head over heels in love

Tot tots - Female breasts

U

Umpteen - Plenty of anything

V

Vampin' - An offensive smell

Vaps - To suddenly behave excitedly or in a strange manner

W

Smallest KiteWajang - A rowdy, uncouth person

Warap - A very weak mixture

Well yes! - An expression of disbelief

Whappen? - What's the matter with you?

Wha-happenin' dey? - What's happening

Whey - Where

Whey yuh say? - What did you say?

Y

Yampee - Mucus, found in the corner of the eye

You an' all? - You too?

You so - People like you

Yuh faddah head - An  expression of annoyance

Yuh faddah is a glassmaker? - You are blocking my view

Yuh look fuh dat - It's your own fault

Yuh makin' joke! - You can't be serious!

Z

Zug-up - A rough and uneven cutting of anything

If more than three of these words are not familiar to you

YOU ARE OBVIOUSLY NOT A TRUE TOBAGONIAN!

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Page Updated: 05 Nov 13