Salty Sam’s Fun Blog for Children

Number 129

Cockney Rhyming Slang


Hello Everyone 



Last week, l told you about my brother Windy Wally who lives in a windmill on a hill near Rocky Bay.


This week, l am going to tell you about my cousin Smiley Sid who lives in London.


He is in fact, what is called a Cockney. The definition of a Cockney is someone who was born within the sound of Bow Bells. St Mary-le-Bow is a church in London.


He speaks differently from the people around here, and when he talks very often uses words and phrases which seem quite strange to the people who live in Rocky Bay – he uses something called Cockney rhyming slang.


Apparently it was originally a code language invented by costermongers many years ago.


Costermongers were street-traders who sold goods like fruit and vegetables (costards were apples). This was so that they could talk about things without other people understanding what they were saying – maybe the police.


The language is no longer a secret; it is possible to buy translation books or look at translation dictionaries on the lnternet to find out all about Cockney rhyming slang. This can be useful if you have not been brought up to understand it like Smiley Sid has.


lt works like this…


Two or more words are put together into a phrase and the last word rhymes with the word it is supposed to represent. Sometimes the whole phrase is given and sometimes only the beginning of it.


For example the phrase ‘apples and pears’ means stairs. So the sentence ‘get up those apples’ means ‘get up those stairs’ (maybe you are being sent to bed).


A cup of ‘Rosie Lee’ is ‘tea’.


‘Rabbit and Pork’ is ‘talk’ so ‘she was rabbiting all night’ means ‘she was talking all night’.


There are some funny ones you will probably like to know: ‘trouble and strife’ means ‘wife’ and ‘dustbin lids’ means ‘kids’.  smile1 (2)


China plate = mate (friend)

Plates of meat = feet

Currant bun = sun

Loaf of bread = head (usually brain as in ‘use your loaf’ – meaning be sensible/think through what you are doing)

Grasshopper = copper (policeman)

Sherbet dab = cab (taxi)

Dog and bone = ’phone

Uncle Dick = sick (l’m feeling Uncle Dick)


‘A tea leaf has half inched my Ayrton Senna’ means ‘a thief has pinched my tenner’ which means ‘a thief has stolen my ten pound note’.


Of course some of this language is known and used all over the country now (because we hear the way people from other regions speak on television). For example everyone knows ‘porky pie’ means lie – l tell you no porkies!  smile1 (2)


As far as money is concerned, Smiley Sid has special names for that too.


A thousand pounds is a grand, a monkey is £500 and a pony is £25. A ton is £100 and a score is £20. A quid or a nugget is £1, a super nugget is £2 and a plum is £100,000. Shrapnel is loose change and folding money is notes.


l need to know all these things so that l can understand Smiley Sid when he comes to visit!  smile1 (2)



Bye bye everyone – don’t forget to subscribe to my blog!


Love and kisses


Salty Sam








Bill and Bob’s Joke of the Weekjokejoke


Bill: What do you get when you cross a painter with a policeman?


Bob: l don’t know. What do you get when you cross a painter with a policeman?


Bill: A brush with the law!




Salty Sam © Christina Sinclair 2015

Unauthorized use and/or duplication of material from this blog without express and written permission from this blog’s author and owner is strictly prohibited.

Links may be used to


Picture Gallery


St Mary-le-Bow church


image009 A costermonger’s barrow


image010 Pearly kings and queens represent different areas of London

They have pearl buttons sewn onto their clothes to create words and patterns

They do a lot to raise money for charity

(You may remember some Pearlies from the film Mary Poppins)


image012 A Victorian barrow


image014 A pearly king costume

(Museum of London)








Bill and Bob play a game in the playground sometimes which has a London theme. Have you ever played it? 

The song talks about some of the churches in London speaking to each other.



Once London had a skyline of church steeples; they were the only tall structures to be seen. When all the church bells rang it must have sounded as though they were talking to each other.



How to play oranges and lemons:-


Oranges and lemons,

Say the bells of St. Clement’s.

You owe me five farthings,

Say the bells of St. Martin’s.

When will you pay me?

Say the bells of Old Bailey.

When I grow rich,

Say the bells of Shoreditch.

When will that be?

Say the bells of Stepney.

I do not know,

Says the great bell of Bow.

Here comes a candle to light you to bed,

And here comes a chopper to chop off your head!



This song is used in a singing game where the players file, in pairs, through an arch made by two of the players holding each other’s hands up high to make an arch.

When the players sing the last two lines of the song the first two players drop their arms and catch a pair.

These two people line up next to the ‘catchers’ to extend the arch.



As the game goes on, the moving players have to run faster and faster through the ever growing tunnel to avoid getting caught.

Or players move through the arch in single file and when they are caught they stand behind one of the players making the arch.

The last person who is not caught wins the game.

This game was invented when people really did have their heads chopped off so it must have seemed a lot scarier then!


Smiley Sid



This sleeveless doll dress is perfect for a hot summer’s day. There is a matching bag to complete the outfit.







*Slip stitch the first stitch of every row


Using 4mm knitting needles and orange dk yarn cast on 32 stitches

K2 (p1 k1) repeat the last 2 stitches until 2 stitches remain p2


Repeat this row 27 times


Change to lemon dk yarn

Garter stitch 4 rows


Knit 16 and turn

Garter stitch 15 rows on these 16 stitches

Cast off


Attach the lemon yarn to the 16 remaining stitches

Garter stitch 16 rows

Cast off



Sew up shoulders 1cm from the arm hole (right sides together).      

Sew from the base of the lemon knitting sew 1cm up side seams to under arms

(3cm armholes).


Over-sew side seams of orange knitting.


Turn right side out.



Cut a piece of lemon felt 5cm by 8cm.

Cut a shape of orange felt and attach it to one end with a small lemon button.


Crochet 30 chains into a length of lemon yarn.


Sew up side seams using sewing thread and small over-sew stitches with wrong sides together incorporating the ends of the crocheted strap.













Quick Quiz 


Do you know what the following Cockney Rhyming Slang words mean?


  1. boracic
  2. donkey’s
  3. on your Jack
  4. syrup
  5. taters
  6. Ruby
  7. Scapa
  8. titfer
  9. butcher’s
  10. Hampsteads








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lt’s the Weekend!





  1. Take a fresh orange (or lemon or lime) and draw a pattern onto it using a pen that will mark the skin. As you draw your pattern leave blank spaces up the sides in four places to accommodate a ribbon – bearing in mind that the fruit will shrink to two thirds its original size when it dries.
  2. Using a knitter’s needle or skewer puncture holes along these lines and inside the panels you want to fill with cloves.
  3. Press a clove into each hole – you may find you can put the cloves straight into the skin without making a hole first but don’t put the cloves too closely together because the skin needs space to shrink.
  4. Put some orris powder into a paper bag and add some more dried, powdered spices if you would like to (e.g. cinnamon, nutmeg, coriander).
  5. Put the orange in the bag with the powder and toss it around inside keeping the mouth of the bag tightly shut in your hand – don’t do this so vigorously that the bag splits.
  6. Leave your orange in a dark, dry, airy place for a month.
  7. Decorate your pomander any way that you like – you can tie ribbon around it with a big loop at the top to hang it up by.
  8. Your pomander should last for years (if kept dry) but if the smell fades you can invigorate it with a few drops of orange oil or some other kind of perfumed oil.



Please note that the material on this blog is for personal use and for use in classrooms only.

It is a copyright infringement and, therefore, illegal under international law to sell items made with these patterns.

Use of the toys and projects is at your own risk.

©Christina Sinclair Designs 2015sand



Quick Quiz Answers 


  1. boracic – boracic lint = skint = to have no money
  2. donkey’s – donkey’s ears = years = something hasn’t happened for a long time
  3. on your Jack – Jack Jones = own – “l was on my Jack”
  4. syrup – syrup of figs = wig
  5. taters – taters in the mould = potatoes in the mould = cold – “lt’s taters out there!”
  6. Ruby – Ruby Murray = curry
  7. Scapa – Scapa Flow = go = telling someone to go away
  8. titfer – tit for tat = hat
  9. butcher’s – butcher’s hook = look
  10. Hampstead Heath = teeth


Scapa Flow 


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