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Thread: Thieves Cant Dictionary

  1. #1
      Redrobes is offline
    Software Dev/Rep Redrobes's Avatar
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    Post Thieves Cant Dictionary

    Did you see this article about a 1736 dictionary which includes thieves cant ? I thought that much of this was just rumor so this is an eye opener.

    Info here...
    http://www.fromoldbooks.org/NathanBa...ingDictionary/

    But link to Cant words here
    http://www.fromoldbooks.org/NathanBa...ngDictionary/A

  2. #2
      ravells is offline
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    Interesting find, redrobes!

    I think I'll call my wife a GIMCRACK when she gets home (a spruce Wench), and see what her reaction is!

  3. #3
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    Post Cant is real, not rumor!

    Quote Originally Posted by Redrobes View Post
    Did you see this article about a 1736 dictionary which includes thieves cant ? I thought that much of this was just rumor so this is an eye opener.

    Info here...
    http://www.fromoldbooks.org/NathanBa...ingDictionary/

    But link to Cant words here
    http://www.fromoldbooks.org/NathanBa...ngDictionary/A
    Redrobes, in America, we've got those Irish Clan scam-artists called "Travelers", and they speak Cant. There was a woman, former Traveler, now outcast from her family that revealed much of the Cant dialect.

    Cant is definitely real - not a rumor.

    Threadjack: what I'd like to see is a reference for Pigeon English - the bastardized language spoken by Hawaiians. It is composed on English, Hawaiian, Japanese, Portuguese and a couple other languages. It was developed at the turn of the 19th to 20th centuries. Plantation workers were kept isolated within their own work camps to better control them. When the union movement started, the camp inhabitants broke out and established connections with other camp workers. They developed the language as a way conspire against the plantation owners.

    To this day, most Hawaiian locals speak Pigeon, in addition to English and Hawaiian. I've heard Pigeon words, but no complete reference to the dialect. I would love to learn more.

    GP
    Last edited by Gamerprinter; 08-30-2008 at 11:14 AM.
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      Turgenev is offline
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    That's pretty cool, Redrobes. Nice find. I can't help but think of Cockney Rhyming Slang when one mentions Thieves Cant (note: I'm not calling those from London's East End thieves, but it is the masking of the language that makes the connection for me ).
    Cheers,
    Tim

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