The 1920s have some of the most creative and funniest slangs you can find in the English language (aside from the sexist, misogynist, racist, and prohibitive ones, of course). So many of them are hilariously entertaining, and there are some slangs that could fit so nicely in this time.
So, if you wanted to speak like the actors in the oldies, or sound like the characters in The Great Gatsby, here’s your chance to shine!
1. air tight: very attractive
2. alarm clock: a chaperone
3. banana oil!: I doubt that!
4. big timer: A charming and romantic man
5. bimbo: a tough guy
6. blotto: drunk, especially to an extreme
7. Butt me: I’ll take a cigarette.
8. Cash or check?: Do we kiss now or later?
9. cast a kitten: to have a fit
10. Charlie: a man with a mustache
11. cheaters: eyeglasses
12. chin music: gossip
13. coffin varnish: bootleg liquor, often poisonous.
14. dead soldier: an empty beer bottle.
15. declaration of independence: a divorce
16. dimbox jaunt: a taxi ride
17. drugstore cowboy: A well-dressed man who loiters in public areas trying to pick up women.
18. dumb Dora: an absolute idiot, a dumbbell, especially a woman; flapper.
19. face stretcher: an old woman trying to look young
20. fire extinguisher: a chaperone
21. flat tire: a bore
22. flour lover: a girl with too much face powder
23. giggle water: booze
24. go chase yourself: get lost, scram.
25. goofy: in love
26. hair of the dog: a shot of alcohol.
27. handcuff: engagement ring
28. hen coup: a beauty parlor
29. hokum: nonsense
30. hope chest: a pack of cigarettes
31. “I have to go see a man about a dog.”: “I’ve got to leave now,” often meaning to go buy whiskey.
32. insured: engaged
33. iron one’s shoelaces: to go to the restroom
34. joe: coffee
35. john: a toilet
36. kneeduster: skirt
37. lip stick: a cigarette
38. lollygagger: an idle person
39. manacle: wedding ring
40. mind your potatoes: mind your own business.
41. mop: a handkerchief
42. Nobody Home: Describes someone who is dumb
43. noodle juice: tea
44. on a toot: a drinking binge
45. panther sweat: whiskey
46. petting pantry: movie theater
47. prune pit: anything that is old-fashioned
48. rain pitchforks: a downpour
49. screaming meemies: the shakes
50. water-proof: a face that doesn’t require make-up
51. zozzled: drunk
I don’t know about you, but whenever I have a joe, I immediately go to iron my shoelaces. And if there’s someone in the john for too long, I tend to cast a kitten.
If you want to read more slang expressions from the 20’s, visit this link. As for me, I have to go see a man about a dog. Have fun!
A professional writer with over a decade of incessant writing skills. Her topics of interest and expertise range from psychology, to all sorts of disciplines such as science and news.