Difference between revisions of "British-American English"

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(P)
 
Line 242: Line 242:
 
* parting [Hair] (British) = part [Hair] (American)
 
* parting [Hair] (British) = part [Hair] (American)
 
* patience (British) = solitaire (American)
 
* patience (British) = solitaire (American)
 +
* patrol wagon (British) = paddy wagon (slang) (American)
 
* pavement (British) = sidewalk (American)
 
* pavement (British) = sidewalk (American)
 
* pedestrian crossing (British) = crosswalk (American)
 
* pedestrian crossing (British) = crosswalk (American)
Line 264: Line 265:
 
* pushchair (British) = stroller (American)
 
* pushchair (British) = stroller (American)
 
* put off (British) = put over (American)
 
* put off (British) = put over (American)
 +
 
== Q ==
 
== Q ==
 
* quadrillion (British) = septillion (American)
 
* quadrillion (British) = septillion (American)

Latest revision as of 16:07, 28 March 2009

Here are some British/American differences based in part on information from the Collins English Dictionary (1979):

A

  • action replay (British) = instant replay (American)
  • adrenaline (British) = epinephrine (American)
  • Akela (British) = Den Mother (American)
  • Alsatian (British) = German shepherd (American)
  • anaesthetics (British) = anesthesiology (American)
  • anaesthetist (British) = anesthesiologist (American)
  • ankle sock (British) = anklet (American)
  • anticlockwise (British) = counterclockwise (American)
  • Armistice Day (British) = Veterans Day (American)
  • arse (British) = ass (American)
  • articulated lorry (British) = trailer truck (American)
  • aubergine (British) = eggplant (American)

B

  • Baby-walker [TM] (British) = go-cart (American)
  • back boiler (British) = water back (American)
  • bank clerk (British) = teller (American)
  • bank holiday (British) = legal holiday (American)
  • bearing rein (British) = checkrein (American)
  • beetroot (British) = red beet (American)
  • bill (British) = check (American)
  • bill of lading (British) = waybill (American)
  • billion (British) = trillion (American)
  • biscuit (British) = cookie (American)
  • Black Maria (British) = patrol wagon (American)
  • black pudding (British) = blood sausage (American)
  • blackboard (British) = chalkboard (American)
  • blinkers [Horses,etc.] (British) = blinders [Horses,etc.] (American)
  • blow one's own trumpet (British) = horn (American)
  • blowlamp (British) = blowtorch (American)
  • blowpipe (British) = blowgun (American)
  • blue-eyed boy (British) = fair-haired boy (American)
  • bookstall (British) = newsstand (American)
  • boot (British) = trunk (American)
  • bottom drawer (British) = hope chest (American)
  • bowler (British) = derby (American)
  • braces (British) = suspenders (American)
  • brake van (British) = caboose (American)
  • break (British) = recess (American)
  • Breathalyzer (British) = drunkometer (American)
  • buttonhole (British) = boutonniere (American)

C

  • calamine (British) = smithsonite (American)
  • Camberwell beauty (British) = mourning cloak (American)
  • candyfloss (British) = cotton candy (American)
  • cannon (British) = carom (American)
  • car park (British) = parking lot (American)
  • caravan (British) = trailer (American)
  • cartoon (British) = comic strip (American)
  • cash on delivery (British) = collect on delivery (American)
  • catapult (British) = slingshot (American)
  • catch pit (British) = catch basin (American)
  • cattle truck (British) = stock car (American)
  • central reserve (British) = median strip (American)
  • chips (British) = French fries (American)
  • cine camera (British) = movie camera (American)
  • cine film (British) = movie film (American)
  • claw setting (British) = Tiffany setting (American)
  • combinations (British) = union suit (American)
  • cornflour (British) = cornstarch (American)
  • cos (British) = romaine (American)
  • cotton wool (British) = absorbent cotton (American)
  • counterfoil (British) = stub (American)
  • county town (British) = county seat (American)
  • coupling [Electronics] (British) = coupler [Electronics] (American)
  • courgette (British) = zucchini (American)
  • court card (British) = face card (American)
  • creeping thistle (British) = Canada thistle (American)
  • crisp (British) = potato chip (American)
  • crotchet (British) = quarter note (American)
  • current account (British) = checking account (American)
  • cutthroat (British) = straight razor (American)

D

  • delivery van (British) = panel truck (American)
  • demisemiquaver (British) = thirty-second note (American)
  • dicky (British) = rumble seat (American)
  • dinner jacket (British) = tuxedo (American)
  • dip (British) = dim (American)
  • dip [Lighting] (British) = dim [Lighting] (American)
  • diver (British) = loon (American)
  • docker (British) = longshoreman (American)
  • dosshouse (British) = flophouse (American)
  • double-declutch (British) = double-clutch (American)
  • double saucepan (British) = double boiler (American)
  • double up (British) = parlay (American)
  • downpipe (British) = downspout (American)
  • draught (British) = checker (American)
  • draughts (British) = checkers (American)
  • draughtsman (British) = checker (American)
  • drawknife (British) = spokeshave (American)
  • dual carriageway (British) = divided highway (American)
  • dumbwaiter (British) = lazy Susan (American)
  • dummy (British) = pacifier (American)
  • dust coat (British) = duster (American)
  • dustbin (British) = ash can (American)
  • dustbin (British) = garbage can (American)
  • dustcart (British) = garbage truck (American)
  • duster (British) = dust cloth (American)

E

  • earth (n.) [Electrical] (British) = ground (n.) [Electrical] (American)
  • earth (vb.) [Aircraft/pilot/etc.] (British) = ground (vb.) [Aircraft/Pilot/etc.] (American)
  • electric chair (British) = hot seat (American slang)
  • engaged tone (British) = busy signal (American)
  • episcope (British) = opaque projector (American)
  • ergonomics (British) = biotechnology (American)
  • estate agent (British) = realtor (American)
  • ex-directory (British) = unlisted (American)
  • filling station (British) = gas station (American)
  • film (British) = motion picture (American)
  • filmset (British) = photocompose (American)
  • filmsetting (British) = photocomposition (American)
  • fin (British) = vertical stabilizer (American)
  • financial year (British) = fiscal year (American)
  • fireman (British) = fire boss (American)
  • first floor (British) = second floor (American)
  • flannel (British) = washcloth (American)
  • flat (British) = apartment (American)
  • flatten (vb.) [Music] (British) = flat (vb.) [Music] (American)
  • fleabane (British) = horseweed (American)
  • flex (British) = cord (American)
  • flick knife (British) = switchblade (American)
  • float (British) = flutterboard (American)
  • follow-my-leader (British) = follow-the-leader (American)
  • foreign minister (British) = secretary of state (American)
  • foreign office (British) = state department (American)
  • four-stroke (British) = four-cycle (American)
  • frame (British) = rack (American)
  • French fried potatoes (British) = French fries (American)
  • French windows (British) = French doors (American)
  • friendly society (British) = benefit association (American)
  • friendly society (British) = benefit society (American)
  • Friesian (British) = Holstein (American)
  • full stop (British) = period (American)
  • funeral parlour (British) = funeral home (American)

G

  • gammy (British) = gimpy (American)
  • garden (British) = yard (American)
  • germander speedwell (British) = bird's-eye speedwell (American)
  • gillion (British) = billion (American)
  • glaze ice (British) = glaze (American)
  • glazing-bar (British) = muntin (American)
  • go-slow (British) = slowdown (American)
  • grammar school (British) = elementary school (American)
  • gramophone (British) = phonograph (American)
  • green fingers (British) = green thumb (American)
  • grey mullet (British) = mullet (American)
  • grill (British) = broil (American)
  • guard's van (British) = caboose (American)
  • gudgeon pin (British) = wrist pin (American)
  • Guide (British) = Girl Scout (American)

H

  • hairtail (British) = cutlass fish (American)
  • have a canary (British) = have a cow (American)
  • have kittens (British) = have a cow (American)
  • hemidemisemiquaver (British) = sixty-fourth note (American)
  • hemlock (British) = poison hemlock (American)
  • herdsman (British) = herder (American)
  • hide (British) = blind (American)
  • hipsters (British) = hip-huggers (American)
  • hire-purchase (British) = installment buying (American)
  • holdall (British) = carryall (American)
  • holiday (British) = vacation (American)
  • horseman (British) = caballero (American)
  • hot up (British) = hop up (American slang)
  • houseman (British) = intern (American)

I

  • icing sugar (British) = confectioners' sugar (American)
  • industrial estate (British) = industrial park (American)
  • Inland Revenue (British) = Internal Revenue (American)
  • insulating tape (British) = friction tape (American)
  • invigilate (British) = proctor (American)
  • ironmonger (British) = hardware dealer (American)

J

  • jelly (British) = jello (American)
  • jelly (British) = Jello [TM] brand gelatin
  • jug (British) = pitcher (American)
  • juice extractor (British) = juicer (American)
  • jumble sale (British) = rummage sale (American)
  • jump leads (British) = jumper cables (American)

K

  • kennel (British) = doghouse (American)
  • King's Scout (British) = Eagle Scout (American)
  • kiss curl [Hair] (British) = spit curl [Hair] (American)

L

  • ladybird (British) = ladybug (American)
  • leader [Journalism] (British) = leading article [Journalism] (American)
  • left-luggage office (British) = checkroom (American)
  • level crossing (British) = grade crossing (American)
  • lift (British) = elevator (American)
  • light engine (British) = wildcat (American)
  • lignocaine (British) = lidocaine (American)
  • linesman (British) = lineman (American)
  • local authority (British) = local government (American)
  • long jump (British) = broad jump (American)
  • loose cover (British) = slipcover (American)
  • lorry (British) = truck (American)
  • loud-hailer (British) = bullhorn (American)
  • loudspeaker van (British) = sound truck (American)
  • Ltd. (British) = Inc. (American)
  • luggage van (British) = baggage car (American)
  • lumberjacket (British) = lumberjack (American)
  • luncheon voucher (British) = meal ticket (American)

M

  • maize (British) = corn (American)
  • market gardening (British) = truck farming (American)
  • mepacrine (British) = quinacrine (American)
  • mileometer (British) = odometer (American)
  • millefeuille (British) = napoleon (American)
  • milliard (British) = billion (American)
  • mineral (British) = soda (American)
  • minim (British) = half-note (American)
  • misplaced modifier (British) = dangling participle (American)
  • mobile library (British) = bookmobile (American)
  • motorway (British) = superhighway (American)
  • MTB (Motor Torpedo Boat) (British) = PT (Patrol Torpedo) boat (American)
  • mudguard (British) = fender (American)
  • music hall (British) = vaudeville (American)

N

  • nappy (British) = diaper (American)
  • natural [Music] (British) = cancel [Music] (American)
  • new wool (British) = virgin wool (American)
  • Nissen hut (British) = Quonset hut (American)
  • noradrenaline (British) = norepinephrine (American)
  • notice board (British) = bulletin board (American)
  • noughts and crosses (British) = crisscross (American)
  • noughts and crosses (British) = tick-tack-toe (American)
  • numberplate (British) = license plate (American)

O

  • odd fish (British) = oddball (American)
  • off-licence (British) = package store (American)
  • on the cards (British) = in the cards (American)
  • open day (British) = open house (American)
  • ordinary shares (British) = common stock (American)
  • overhead-valve engine (British) = valve-in-head engine (American)

P

  • packet [Container] (British) = package [Container] (American)
  • pants (British) = shorts (American)
  • parting (British) = part (American)
  • parting [Hair] (British) = part [Hair] (American)
  • patience (British) = solitaire (American)
  • patrol wagon (British) = paddy wagon (slang) (American)
  • pavement (British) = sidewalk (American)
  • pedestrian crossing (British) = crosswalk (American)
  • peg (British) = clothespin (American)
  • penny-farthing [Bicycle] (British) = ordinary (American)
  • pepperwort (British) = peppergrass (American)
  • pernickety (British) = persnickety (American)
  • petrol (British) = gas (American)
  • petrol (British) = gasoline (American)
  • pharmacist (British) = druggist (American)
  • pinafore dress (British) = jumper (American)
  • platelayer (British) = trackman (American)
  • Plough (British) = the Big Dipper (American)
  • point [Railway] (British) = switch [Railroad] (American)
  • pointsman [Railway] (British) = switchman [Railroad] (American)
  • post (British) = mail (American)
  • postcode (British) = zip code (American)
  • pram (British) = baby carriage (American)
  • preference shares (British) = preferred stock (American)
  • press-up [Exercise] (British) = push-up [Exercise](American)
  • prise (British) = pry (American)
  • pushchair (British) = stroller (American)
  • put off (British) = put over (American)

Q

  • quadrillion (British) = septillion (American)
  • quaver (British) = eighth note (American)
  • queen's evidence (British) = state's evidence (American)
  • Queen's Scout (British) = Eagle Scout (American)
  • queue (British) = line (American)
  • quin (British) = quint (American)
  • quintillion (British) = nonillion (American)

R

  • racecourse (British) = racetrack (American)
  • rag-and-bone man (British) = junkman (American)
  • ragworm (British) = clamworm (American)
  • railway (British) = railroad (American)
  • rained off (British) = rained out (American)
  • razor-shell (British) = razor clam (American)
  • real tennis (British) = court tennis (American)
  • red mullet (British) = goatfish (American)
  • reel (British) = spool (American)
  • relative majority (British) = plurality (American)
  • repertory company (British) = stock company (American)
  • request stop (British) = flag stop (American)
  • resale price maintenance (British) = fair trade (American)
  • reserve price (British) = upset price (American)
  • return ticket (British) = round-trip ticket (American)
  • right-angled triangle (British) = right triangle (American)
  • rise (British) = raise (American)
  • roundabout (British) = traffic circle (American)
  • rowing boat (British) = rowboat (American)
  • rowlock (British) = oarlock (American)
  • rucksack (British) = backpack (American)

S

  • saloon [Vehicle] (British) = sedan [Vehicle] (American)
  • sawhorse (British) = buck (American)
  • sea ranger (British) = mariner (American)
  • second floor (British) = third floor (American)
  • semibreve [Music] (British) = whole note [Music] (American)
  • semiquaver [Music] (British) = sixteenth note [Music] (American)
  • share certificate (British) = stock certificate (American)
  • sharpen (vb.) [Music] (British) = sharp (vb.) [Music] (American)
  • sherbet (British) = sorbet (American)
  • shopsoiled (British) = shopworn (American)
  • shopwalker (British) = floorwalker (American)
  • shorthand typist (British) = stenographer (American)
  • side [Billiards] (British) = english [Billiards] (American)
  • sideboards (British) = sideburns (American)
  • silencer (British) = muffler (American)
  • single ticket (British) = one-way ticket (American)
  • sit out (vb.) [Sailing] (British) = hike out (vb.) [Sailing] (American)
  • skirting board (British) = baseboard (American)
  • skirting board (British) = mopboard (American)
  • skirting board (British) = washboard (American)
  • slap-bang (British) = slam-bang (American)
  • sleeper (British) = tie (American)
  • sleeve (British) = jacket (American)
  • sleeving (British) = spaghetti (American)
  • slide (British) = barrette (American)
  • slowcoach (British) = slowpoke (American)
  • socket (British) = outlet (American)
  • splodge (British) = splotch (American)
  • spur (British) = gad (American West)
  • stable door (British) = Dutch door (American)
  • staff (British) = rod (American)
  • steam organ (British) = calliope (American)
  • stick insect (British) = walking stick (American)
  • sticking plaster (British) = adhesive tape (American)
  • stockbroker belt (British) = exurbia (American)
  • stony-broke (British) = stone-broke (American)
  • storm (British) = tempest in a teapot (American)
  • straight (British) = straightaway (American)
  • subscriber trunk dialling (British) = direct distance dialing (American)
  • sunray pleats (British) = sunburst pleats (American)
  • suspender (British) = garter (American)
  • suspender belt (British) = garter belt (American)
  • swallow dive (British) = swan dive (American)
  • swede (British) = rutabaga (American)
  • sweet shop (British) = candy store (American)
  • swimming costume (British) = bathing suit (American)
  • swine fever (British) = hog cholera (American)

T

  • takeaway (British) = takeout (American)
  • tallboy (British) = highboy (American)
  • tap (British) = faucet (American)
  • tape machine (British) = ticker (American)
  • tapping (British) = tap (American)
  • tea towel (British) = dishtowel (American)
  • tea trolley (British) = tea cart (American)
  • teleprinter (British) = teletypewriter (American)
  • terraced house (British) = row house (American)
  • thorn apple (British) = jimson weed (American)
  • tick (British) = check (American)
  • tie (British) = necktie (American)
  • timber (British) = lumber (American)
  • timberyard (British) = lumberyard (American)
  • torch (British) = flashlight (American)
  • torsk (British) = cusk (American)
  • town planning (British) = city planning (American)
  • trapezium (British) = trapezoid (American)
  • trillion (British) = quintillion (American)
  • trouser suit (British) = pantsuit (American)
  • trousers (British) = wear the pants (American)
  • tube (British) = subway (American)
  • turn up (British) = cuff (American)
  • turntable ladder (British) = aerial ladder (American)
  • two-stroke (British) = two-cycle (American)

U

  • underground (British) = subway (American)
  • underseal (British) = undercoat (American)

V

  • valve (British) = vacuum tube (American)
  • van [Tennis] (British) = ad [Tennis] (American)
  • Venture Scout (British) = Explorer (American)
  • vest (British) = T-shirt, undershirt (American)
  • vest (British) = undershirt (American)
  • veterinary surgeon (British) = veterinarian (American)
  • Virginia creeper (British) = Boston ivy (American)
  • visiting card (British) = calling card (American)

W

  • waistcoat (British) = vest (American)
  • wallet (British) = billfold (American)
  • War of American Independence (British) = American Revolution (American)
  • warden (British) = ranger (American)
  • wastepaper basket (British) = wastebasket (American)
  • watchstrap (British) = watchband (American)
  • water diviner (British) = waterfinder (American)
  • wholemeal (British) = whole-wheat (American)
  • windmill (British) = pinwheel (American)
  • windscreen (British) = windshield (American)
  • windscreen wiper (British) = windshield wiper (American)
  • wing (British) = fender (American)
  • wintergreen (British) = shinleaf (American)
  • working day (British) = workday (American)

Z

  • zed (British) = zee (American)
  • zip (British) = zipper (American)