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´╗┐Title: Romano Lavo-Lil: word book of the Romany; or, English Gypsy language
Author: Borrow, George Henry, 1803-1881
Language: English
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Copyright Status: Not copyrighted in the United States. If you live elsewhere check the laws of your country before downloading this ebook. See comments about copyright issues at end of book.

*** Start of this Doctrine Publishing Corporation Digital Book "Romano Lavo-Lil: word book of the Romany; or, English Gypsy language" ***

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from the 1905 John Murray edition.


by George Borrow


The English Gypsy Language
Romano Lavo-Lil:  Word-book of the Romany
Rhymed List of Gypsy Verbs
Betie Rokrapenes:  Little Sayings
Cotorres of Mi-dibble's Lil.  Chiv'd Adrey Romanes:  Pieces of
Scripture cast into Romany
The Lord's Prayer in the Gypsy Dialect of Transylvania
Lil of Romano Jinnypen:  Book of the Wisdom of the Egyptians
Romane Navior of Temes and Gavior:  Gypsy Names of Countries and
Thomas Rossar-Mescro, or Thomas Herne
Kokkodus Artarus
Mang, Prala:  Beg on, Brother
English Gypsy Songs
    Welling Kattaney:  The Gypsy Meeting
    Lelling Cappi:  Making a Fortune
    The Dui Chalor:  The Two Gypsies
    Miro Romany Chi:  My Roman Lass
    Ava, Chi:  Yes, my Girl
    The Temeskoe Rye:  The Youthful Earl
    Camo-Gillie:  Love Song
    Tugnis Amande:  Woe is me
    The Rye and the Rawne:  The Squire and Lady
    Romany Suttur Gillie:  Gypsy Lullaby
    Sharrafi Kralyissa:  Our Blessed Queen
    Plastra Lesti:  Run for it!
Foreign Gypsy Songs
    The Romany Songstress
    L'Erajai:  The Frair
    Malbrun:  Malbrouk
The English Gypsies
    Tugney Beshor:  Sorrowful Years
    Their History
Gypsy Names
    The Hukni
Metropolitan Gypsyries
    The Potteries
    The Mount
Ryley Bosvil
Kirk Yetholm

"Can you rokra Romany?
Can you play the bosh?
Can you jal adrey the staripen?
Can you chin the cost?"

"Can you speak the Roman tongue?
Can you play the fiddle?
Can you eat the prison-loaf?
Can you cut and whittle?"

The Author of the present work wishes to state that the Vocabulary,
which forms part of it, has existed in manuscript for many years.  It
is one of several vocabularies of various dialects of the Gypsy
tongue, made by him in different countries.  The most considerable--
that of the dialect of the Zincali or Rumijelies (Romany Chals) of
Spain--was published in the year 1841.  Amongst those which remain
unpublished is one of the Transylvanian Gypsy, made principally at
Kolosvar in the year 1844.

December 1, 1873.

characters are used which cannot easily be reproduced.  Rather than
omit these entirely I have commented where they occur in the text.
If there's sufficient demand I'll try to produce an updated text with
these characters.  David Price, 28 June 2000}


The Gypsies of England call their language, as the Gypsies of many
other countries call theirs, Romany or Romanes, a word either derived
from the Indian Ram or Rama, which signifies a husband, or from the
town Rome, which took its name either from the Indian Ram, or from
the Gaulic word, Rom, which is nearly tantamount to husband or man,
for as the Indian Ram means a husband or man, so does the Gaulic Pom
signify that which constitutes a man and enables him to become a

Before entering on the subject of the English Gypsy, I may perhaps be
expected to say something about the original Gypsy tongue.  It is,
however, very difficult to say with certainty anything on the
subject.  There can be no doubt that a veritable Gypsy tongue at one
time existed, but that it at present exists there is great doubt
indeed.  The probability is that the Gypsy at present exists only in
dialects more or less like the language originally spoken by the
Gypsy or Zingaro race.  Several dialects of the Gypsy are to be found
which still preserve along with a considerable number of seemingly
original words certain curious grammatical forms, quite distinct from
those of any other speech.  Others are little more than jargons, in
which a certain number of Gypsy words are accommodated to the
grammatical forms of the languages of particular countries.  In the
foremost class of the purer Gypsy dialects, I have no hesitation in
placing those of Russia, Wallachia, Bulgaria, and Transylvania.  They
are so alike, that he who speaks one of them can make himself very
well understood by those who speak any of the rest; from whence it
may reasonably be inferred that none of them can differ much from the
original Gypsy speech; so that when speaking of Gypsy language, any
one of these may be taken as a standard.  One of them--I shall not
mention which--I have selected for that purpose, more from fancy than
any particular reason.

The Gypsy language, then, or what with some qualification I may call
such, may consist of some three thousand words, the greater part of
which are decidedly of Indian origin, being connected with the
Sanscrit or some other Indian dialect; the rest consist of words
picked up by the Gypsies from various languages in their wanderings
from the East.  It has two genders, masculine and feminine; o
represents the masculine and i the feminine:  for example, boro rye,
a great gentleman; bori rani, a great lady.  There is properly no
indefinite article:  gajo or gorgio, a man or gentile; o gajo, the
man.  The noun has two numbers, the singular and the plural.  It has
various cases formed by postpositions, but has, strictly speaking, no
genitive.  It has prepositions as well as postpositions; sometimes
the preposition is used with the noun and sometimes the postposition:
for example, cad o gav, from the town; chungale mannochendar, evil
men from, i.e. from evil men.  The verb has no infinitive; in lieu
thereof, the conjunction 'that' is placed before some person of some
tense.  'I wish to go' is expressed in Gypsy by camov te jaw,
literally, I wish that I go; thou wishest to go, caumes te jas, thou
wishest that thou goest; caumen te jallan, they wish that they go.
Necessity is expressed by the impersonal verb and the conjunction
'that':  hom te jay, I must go; lit. I am that I go; shan te jallan,
they are that they go; and so on.  There are words to denote the
numbers from one up to a thousand.  For the number nine there are two
words, nu and ennyo.  Almost all the Gypsy numbers are decidedly
connected with the Sanscrit.

After these observations on what may be called the best preserved
kind of Gypsy, I proceed to a lower kind, that of England.  The
English Gypsy speech is very scanty, amounting probably to not more
than fourteen hundred words, the greater part of which seem to be of
Indian origin.  The rest form a strange medley taken by the Gypsies
from various Eastern and Western languages:  some few are Arabic,
many are Persian; some are Sclavo-Wallachian, others genuine
Sclavonian.  Here and there a Modern Greek or Hungarian word is
discoverable; but in the whole English Gypsy tongue I have never
noted but one French word--namely, tass or dass, by which some of the
very old Gypsies occasionally call a cup.

Their vocabulary being so limited, the Gypsies have of course words
of their own only for the most common objects and ideas; as soon as
they wish to express something beyond these they must have recourse
to English, and even to express some very common objects, ideas, and
feelings, they are quite at a loss in their own tongue, and must
either employ English words or very vague terms indeed.  They have
words for the sun and the moon, but they have no word for the stars,
and when they wish to name them in Gypsy, they use a word answering
to 'lights.'  They have a word for a horse and for a mare, but they
have no word for a colt, which in some other dialects of the Gypsy is
called kuro; and to express a colt they make use of the words tawno
gry, a little horse, which after all may mean a pony.  They have
words for black, white, and red, but none for the less positive
colours--none for grey, green, and yellow.  They have no definite
word either for hare or rabbit; shoshoi, by which they generally
designate a rabbit, signifies a hare as well, and kaun-engro, a word
invented to distinguish a hare, and which signifies ear-fellow, is no
more applicable to a hare than to a rabbit, as both have long ears.
They have no certain word either for to-morrow or yesterday, collico
signifying both indifferently.  A remarkable coincidence must here be
mentioned, as it serves to show how closely related are Sanscrit and
Gypsy.  Shoshoi and collico are nearly of the same sound as the
Sanscrit sasa and kalya, and exactly of the same import; for as the
Gypsy shoshoi signifies both hare and rabbit, and collico to-morrow
as well as yesterday, so does the Sanscrit sasa signify both hare and
rabbit, and kalya tomorrow as well as yesterday.

The poverty of their language in nouns the Gypsies endeavour to
remedy by the frequent use of the word engro.  This word affixed to a
noun or verb turns it into something figurative, by which they
designate, seldom very appropriately, some object for which they have
no positive name.  Engro properly means a fellow, and engri, which is
the feminine or neuter modification, a thing.  When the noun or verb
terminates in a vowel, engro is turned into mengro, and engri into
mengri.  I have already shown how, by affixing engro to kaun, the
Gypsies have invented a word to express a hare.  In like manner, by
affixing engro to pov, earth, they have coined a word for a potato,
which they call pov-engro or pov-engri, earth-fellow or thing; and by
adding engro to rukh, or mengro to rooko, they have really a very
pretty figurative name for a squirrel, which they call rukh-engro or
rooko-mengro, literally a fellow of the tree.  Poggra-mengri, a
breaking thing, and pea-mengri, a drinking thing, by which they
express, respectively, a mill and a teapot, will serve as examples of
the manner by which they turn verbs into substantives.  This method
of finding names for objects, for which there are properly no terms
in Gypsy, might be carried to a great length--much farther, indeed,
than the Gypsies are in the habit of carrying it:  a slack-rope
dancer might be termed bittitardranoshellokellimengro, or slightly-
drawn-rope-dancing fellow; a drum, duicoshtcurenomengri, or a thing
beaten by two sticks; a tambourine, angustrecurenimengri, or a thing
beaten by the fingers; and a fife, muipudenimengri, or thing blown by
the mouth.  All these compound words, however, would be more or less
indefinite, and far beyond the comprehension of the Gypsies in

The verbs are very few, and with two or three exceptions expressive
only of that which springs from what is physical and bodily, totally
unconnected with the mind, for which, indeed, the English Gypsy has
no word; the term used for mind, zi--which is a modification of the
Hungarian sziv--meaning heart.  There are such verbs in this dialect
as to eat, drink, walk, run, hear, see, live, die; but there are no
such verbs as to hope, mean, hinder, prove, forbid, teaze, soothe.
There is the verb apasavello, I believe; but that word, which is
Wallachian, properly means being trusted, and was incorporated in the
Gypsy language from the Gypsies obtaining goods on trust from the
Wallachians, which they never intended to pay for.  There is the verb
for love, camova; but that word is expressive of physical desire, and
is connected with the Sanscrit Cama, or Cupid.  Here, however, the
English must not triumph over the Gypsies, as their own verb 'love'
is connected with a Sanscrit word signifying 'lust.'  One pure and
abstract metaphysical verb the English Gypsy must be allowed to
possess--namely, penchava, I think, a word of illustrious origin,
being derived from the Persian pendashtan.

The English Gypsies can count up to six, and have the numerals for
ten and twenty, but with those for seven, eight, and nine, perhaps
not three Gypsies in England are acquainted.  When they wish to
express those numerals in their own language, they have recourse to
very uncouth and roundabout methods, saying for seven, dui trins ta
yeck, two threes and one; for eight, dui stors, or two fours; and for
nine, desh sore but yeck, or ten all but one.  Yet at one time the
English Gypsies possessed all the numerals as their Transylvanian,
Wallachian, and Russian brethren still do; even within the last fifty
years there were Gypsies who could count up to a hundred.  These were
tatchey Romany, real Gypsies, of the old sacred black race, who never
slept in a house, never entered a church, and who, on their death-
beds, used to threaten their children with a curse, provided they
buried them in a churchyard.  The two last of them rest, it is
believed, some six feet deep beneath the moss of a wild, hilly
heath,--called in Gypsy the Heviskey Tan, or place of holes; in
English, Mousehold,--near an ancient city, which the Gentiles call
Norwich, and the Romans the Chong Gav, or the town of the hill.

With respect to Grammar, the English Gypsy is perhaps in a worse
condition than with respect to words.  Attention is seldom paid to
gender; boro rye and boro rawnie being said, though as rawnie is
feminine, bori and not boro should be employed.  The proper Gypsy
plural terminations are retained in nouns, but in declension
prepositions are generally substituted for postpositions, and those
prepositions English.  The proper way of conjugating verbs is seldom
or never observed, and the English method is followed.  They say, I
dick, I see, instead of dico; I dick'd, I saw, instead of dikiom; if
I had dick'd, instead of dikiomis.  Some of the peculiar features of
Gypsy grammar yet retained by the English Gypsies will be found noted
in the Dictionary.

I have dwelt at some length on the deficiencies and shattered
condition of the English Gypsy tongue; justice, however, compels me
to say that it is far purer and less deficient than several of the
continental Gypsy dialects.  It preserves far more of original Gypsy
peculiarities than the French, Italian, and Spanish dialects, and its
words retain more of the original Gypsy form than the words of those
three; moreover, however scanty it may be, it is far more copious
than the French or the Italian Gypsy, though it must be owned that in
respect to copiousness it is inferior to the Spanish Gypsy, which is
probably the richest in words of all the Gypsy dialects in the world,
having names for very many of the various beasts, birds, and creeping
things, for most of the plants and fruits, for all the days of the
week, and all the months in the year; whereas most other Gypsy
dialects, the English amongst them, have names for only a few common
animals and insects, for a few common fruits and natural productions,
none for the months, and only a name for a single day--the Sabbath--
which name is a modification of the Modern Greek [Greek text:  ].

Though the English Gypsy is generally spoken with a considerable
alloy of English words and English grammatical forms, enough of its
proper words and features remain to form genuine Gypsy sentences,
which shall be understood not only by the Gypsies of England, but by
those of Russia, Hungary, Wallachia, and even of Turkey; for

Kek man camov te jib bolli-mengreskoenaes,
Man camov te jib weshenjugalogonaes.

I do not wish to live like a baptized person.  {1}
I wish to live like a dog of the wood.  {2}

It is clear-sounding and melodious, and well adapted to the purposes
of poetry.  Let him who doubts peruse attentively the following

Coin si deya, coin se dado?
Pukker mande drey Romanes,
Ta mande pukkeravava tute.

Rossar-mescri minri deya!
Wardo-mescro minro dado!
Coin se dado, coin si deya?
Mande's pukker'd tute drey Romanes;
Knau pukker tute mande.

Petulengro minro dado,
Purana minri deya!
Tatchey Romany si men -
Mande's pukker'd tute drey Romanes,
Ta tute's pukker'd mande.

The first three lines of the above ballad are perhaps the oldest
specimen of English Gypsy at present extant, and perhaps the purest.
They are at least as old as the time of Elizabeth, and can pass among
the Zigany in the heart of Russia for Ziganskie.  The other lines are
not so ancient.  The piece is composed in a metre something like that
of the ancient Sclavonian songs, and contains the questions which two
strange Gypsies, who suddenly meet, put to each other, and the
answers which they return.

In using the following Vocabulary the Continental manner of
pronouncing certain vowels will have to be observed:  thus ava must
be pronounced like auva, according to the English style; ker like
kare, miro like meero, zi like zee, and puro as if it were written



ABRI, ad. prep.  Out, not within, abroad:  soving abri, sleeping
abroad, not in a house.  Celtic, Aber (the mouth or outlet of a

Acai / Acoi, ad.  Here.

Adje, v. n.  To stay, stop.  See Atch, az.

Adrey, prep.  Into.

Ajaw, ad.  So.  Wallachian, Asha.

Aladge, a.  Ashamed.  Sans.  Latch, laj.

Aley, ad.  Down:  soving aley, lying down; to kin aley, to buy off,
ransom.  Hun.  Ala, alat.

Amande, pro. pers. dat.  To me.

An, v. a. imp.  Bring:  an lis opre, bring it up.

Ana, v. a.  Bring.  Sans.  Ani.

Ando, prep.  In.

Anglo, prep.  Before.

Apasavello, v. n.  I believe.

Apopli, ad.  Again.  Spanish Gypsy, Apala (after).  Wal. Apoi (then,

Apre, ad. prep.  Up:  kair lis apre, do it up.  Vid. Opre.

Aranya / Araunya, s.  Lady.  Hungarian Gypsy, Aranya.  See Rawnie.

Artav / Artavello, v. a.  To pardon, forgive.  Wal. Ierta.  Span.
Gyp.  Estomar.

Artapen, s.  Pardon, forgiveness.

Artaros.  Arthur.

Asa / Asau, ad.  Also, likewise, too:  meero pal asau, my brother

Asarlas, ad.  At all, in no manner.

Asa.  An affix used in forming the second person singular of the
present tense; e.g. camasa, thou lovest.

Astis, a.  Possible, it is possible:  astis mangue, I can; astis
lengue, they can.

Asha / Ashaw, ad.  So:  ashaw sorlo, so early.  Wal. Asha.  See Ajaw.

Atch, v. n.  To stay, stop.

Atch opre.  Keep up.

Atraish, a. part.  Afraid.  Sans.  Tras (to fear), atrasit
(frightened).  See Traish.

Av, imperat. of Ava, to come:  av abri, come out.

Ava, ad.  Yes.  Sans.  Eva.

Ava, v. a.  To come.

Avata acoi.  Come thou here.

Avali, ad.  Yes.  Wal. Aieva (really).

Avava.  An affix by which the future tense of a verb is formed, e.g.
mor-avava, I will kill.  See Vava.

Aukko, ad.  Here.

Az, v. n.  To stay.


BAL, s.  Hair.  Tibetian, Bal (wool).  Sans.  Bala (hair).

Baleneskoe, a.  Hairy.

Balormengro.  A hairy fellow; Hearne, the name of a Gypsy tribe.

Balanser, s.  The coin called a sovereign.

Ballivas, s.  Bacon.  Span. Gyp.  Baliba.

Bangalo, a.  Devilish.  See Beng, bengako.

Bango, a.  Left, sinister, wrong, false:  bango wast, the left hand;
to saulohaul bango, like a plastra-mengro, to swear bodily like a
Bow-street runner.  Sans.  Pangu (lame).  Hun.  Pang, pango (stiff,
lazy, paralysed).

Bar, s.  A stone, a stoneweight, a pound sterling.  Span. Gyp. Bar.
Hun. Gyp. Bar.  Hindustani, Puthur.  Wal. Piatre.  Fr.  Pierre.  Gr.
[Greek:  ] (weight).

Bareskey, a.  Stony.

Bark, s.  Breast, woman's breast.

Bas / Base, s.  Pound sterling.  Wal. Pes (a weight, burden).

Bas-engro, s.  A shepherd.  Run.  Bacso.

Bashadi, s.  A fiddle.

Bata, s.  A bee.  Sans.  Pata.

Bau, s.  Fellow, comrade.  See Baw.

Baul, s.  Snail.  See Bowle.

Baulo, s.  Pig, swine.  The proper meaning of this word is anything
swollen, anything big or bulky.  It is connected with the English
bowle or bole, the trunk of a tree; also with bowl, boll, and belly;
also with whale, the largest of fish, and wale, a tumour; also with
the Welsh bol, a belly, and bala, a place of springs and eruptions.
It is worthy of remark that the English word pig, besides denoting
the same animal as baulo, is of the same original import, being
clearly derived from the same root as big, that which is bulky, and
the Turkish buyuk, great, huge, vast.

Baulie-mas, s.  Pork, swine's flesh.

Bavano.  Windy, broken-winded.

Bavol, s.  Wind, air.  Sans.  Pavana.  See Beval.

Bavol-engro, s.  A wind-fellow; figurative name for a ghost.

Baw, bau, s.  Fellow, comrade:  probably the same as the English
country-word baw, bor.  Ger.  Bauer.  Av acoi, baw, Come here,
fellow.  Boer, in Wallachian, signifies a boyard or lord.

Beano, part. pass.  Born.

Beano abri.  Born out of doors, like a Gypsy or vagrant.

Bebee, s.  Aunt.  Rus. Baba (grandmother, old woman, hag); Baba Yaga,
the female demon of the Steppes.

Beng / Bengui, s.  Devil.  Sans.  Pangka (mud).  According to the
Hindu mythology, there is a hell of mud; the bengues of the Gypsies
seem to be its tenants.

Bengako tan, s.  Hell.  Lit. place belonging to devils.

Bengeskoe potan.  Devil's tinder, sulphur.

Bengeskoe / Benglo, a.  Devilish.

Bengree, s.  Waistcoat.  Span. Gyp. Blani.  Wal. (Blani fur).

Berro, bero, s.  A ship, a hulk for convicts.  Span. Gyp. Bero, las
galeras, the galleys; presidio, convict garrison.

Ber-engro, s.  A sailor.

Bero-rukh, s.  A mast.

Bersh / Besh, s.  A year.  Sans. Varsha.  He could cour drey his
besh, he could fight in his time.

Bershor, pl.  Years.

Besh, v. n.  To sit:  beshel, he sits.

Beshaley / Beshly, Gypsy name of the Stanley tribe.

Besh-engri, s.  A chair.  See Skammen.

Beti, a.  Little, small.

Beval, s.  Wind.  See Bavol.

Bi, prep.  Without:  bi luvvu, without money.

Bicunyie, a.  Alone, undone:  meklis or mukalis bicunyie, let it

Bikhin / Bin v. a.  To sell.  Hin.  Bikna.

Bikhnipen, s.  Sale.

Birk, s.  Woman's breast.  See Bark.

Bis, a.  Twenty.

Bisheni, s.  The ague.

Bitch / Bitcha, v. a.  To send.  Sans.  Bis, bisa.

Bitched / Bitcheno, part. pass.  Sent

Bitcheno pawdel.  Sent across, transported.

Bitti, s. a.  Small, piece, a little.  This word is not true Gypsy.

Bloen / Blowing, A cant word, but of Gypsy origin, signifying a
sister in debauchery, as Pal denotes a brother in villainy.  It is
the Plani and Beluni of the Spanish Gypsies, by whom sometimes Beluni
is made to signify queen; e.g. Beluni de o tarpe (tem opre), the
Queen of Heaven, the Virgin.  Blower is used by Lord Byron, in his
'Don Juan.'  Speaking of the highwayman whom the Don shoots in the
vicinity of London, he says that he used to go to such-and-such
places of public resort with--his blowen.

Bob, s.  A bean.  Wal. Bob:  pl. bobbis, bobs.

Boccalo, a.  Hungry:  boccale pers, hungry bellies.

Bokht, s.  Luck, fortune:  kosko bokht, good luck.  Sans. Bhagya.
Pers. Bakht.

Bokra, s.  A sheep.  Hun. Birka.

Bokra-choring.  Sheep-stealing.

Bokkar-engro, s.  A shepherd:  bokkar-engro drey, the dude, man in
the moon.

Bokkari-gueri, s.  Shepherdess.

Bokkeriskoe, a.  Sheepish, belonging to a sheep:  bokkeriskey pire,
sheep's feet.

Bolla, v. a.  To baptize.

Bonnek, s.  Hold:  lel bonnek, to take hold.

Booko, s.  Liver.  See Bucca.

Bolleskoe divvus.  Christmas-day; query, baptismal day.  Wal. Botez

Bollimengreskoenaes.  After the manner of a Christian.

Boogones, s.  Smallpox, pimples.  See Bugnior.

Bor, s.  A hedge.

Boona, a.  Good.  Lat. Bonus.  Wal. Boun.

Booty, s.  Work.

Bori, a. fem.  Big with child, enceinte.

Booty, v. a.  To work, labour.

Boro, a.  Great, big.  Hin. Bura.  Mod. Gr. [Greek:  ] (heavy).

Borobeshemeskeguero, s.  Judge, great-sitting-fellow.

Boro Gav.  London, big city.  See Lundra.

Boronashemeskrutan.  Epsom race-course.

Bosh, s.  Fiddle.  Pers. [Persian:  ] Bazee, baz (play, joke), whence
the English cant word 'bosh.'  See Bashadi.

Boshomengro, s.  Fiddler.

Bosno / Boshno, s.  A cock, male-bird.  Sans. Puchchin.  Wal. Bosh
(testicle).  Gaelic, Baois (libidinousness).

Boshta, s.  A saddle.

Bostaris, s.  A bastard.

Bovalo, a.  Rich.  Sans. Bala (strong).

Bowle, s.  Snail.  See Baul.

Brishen / Brisheno, s.  Rain.  Hun. Gyp. Breshino.  Sans. Vrish.
Mod. Gr. [Greek:  ].

Brisheneskey, a.  Rainy:  brisheneskey rarde, a rainy night;
brisheneskey chiros, a time of rain.  Mod. Gr. [Greek:  ].

Bucca, s.  Liver.  Sans. Bucca (heart).  Wal. Phikat.

Bucca naflipen, s.  Liver-complaint.

Buchee, s.  Work, labour.  See Butsi.

Buddigur, s.  A shop.  Span.  Bodega.

Buddikur divvus, s.  Shopping-day:  Wednesday, Saturday.

Bugnes / Bugnior, s. pl.  Smallpox, blisters.  Gael. Boc (a pimple),
bolg (a blister), bolgach (small-pox).  Wal. Mougour (a bud).  Fr.

Buklo, a.  Hungry:  buklo tan, hungry spot, a common.  Hun. Gyp.
Buklo tan (a wilderness).

Bul, s.  Rump, buttock.

Bungshoror / Bungyoror, s. pl.  Corks.

Busnis / Busnior, s. pl.  Spurs, prickles.  Mod. Gr. [Greek:  ]
(pain, torment).

Buroder, ad.  More:  ad. ne buroder, no more.

Bute, a. ad.  Much, very.  Hin.  But.

Butsi / Buty, s.  Work, labour.

Butying.  Working.


CAEN / Cane, v. n.  To stink.

Caenipen / Canipen, s.  A stench.

Caeninaflipen, s.  Stinking sickness, the plague, gaol-fever.  The
old cant word Canihen, signifying the gaol-fever, is derived from
this Gypsy term.

Candelo / Cannelo, a.  Stinking:  cannelo mas, stinking meat.  Sans.
Gandha (smell).

Callico / Collico, s.  To-morrow, also yesterday:  collico sorlo, to-
morrow morning.  Sans. Kalya.  Hin. Kal (to-morrow, yesterday).

Cana, ad.  Now:  cana sig, now soon.  See Kanau, knau.

Cam, s.  The sun.  Hin.  Khan.  Heb. Khama (the sun), kham (heat).

Cam.  To wish, desire, love.

Cam / Camello / Camo, v. a.  To love.  Sans.  Cama (love).  Cupid;
from which Sanscrit word the Latin Amor is derived.

Cambori / Cambri, a.  Pregnant, big with child.

Camlo / Caumlo, Lovel, name of a Gypsy tribe.  Lit. amiable.  With
this word the English "comely" is connected.

Camo-mescro, s.  A lover; likewise the name Lovel.

Can, s.  The sun.

Can, s.  An ear.  See Kaun.

Cana, ad.  Now:  cana sig, now soon.  See Kanau.

Canafi / Canapli, Turnip.

Canairis.  A Gypsy name.

Canior / Caunor, s. pl.  Pease.

Canni.  A hen.  Span. Gyp. Cani.  Hun. Gyp. Cackni.  Gael. Cearc.

Cannis.  Hens.

Cappi, s.  Booty, gain, fortune:  to lel cappi, to acquire booty,
make a capital, a fortune.

Cas, s.  Hay:  cas-stiggur, haystack; cas kairing, hay-making.

Cas, s.  Cheese.  Lat. Caseus.  This word is used by the pikers or
tramps, as well as by the Gypsies.  See Kael.

Catches / Catsau, s. pl. Scissors.  Hun.  Kasza.  Wal. Kositsie
(sickle).  Mod.  Gr.  [Greek:  ] Rus. Kosa.

Cato, prep.  To; more properly From.  Hun. Gyp. Cado.  Wal. Katre

Cavo, pron. dem.  This.

Cavocoi.  This here.

Cavocoiskoenoes.  In this manner.

Caur, v. a.  To filch, steal in an artful manner by bending down.
Heb. [Hebrew:  ] Cara, incurvavit se.  Eng. Cower.

Cayes, s.  Silk.  Pers. [Persian:]  Span. Gyp. Quequesa.  Sans.

Chal, s.  Lad, boy, son, fellow.  Connected with this word is the
Scottish Chiel, the Old English Childe, and the Russian Chelovik.
See Romani chal.

Charo, s.  Plate, dish.

Chavali, s.f.  Girl, damsel.

Chavi, s.f.  Child, girl, daughter.

Cham, s.  Leather:  chameskie rokunies, leather breeches.  Sans.
Charma (skin).

Chavo, s. m.  Child, son:  pl. chaves.  Cheaus is an old French
hunting term for the young ones of a fox.

Charos / Cheros, s.  Heaven.  Wal. Cher.

Chauvo, s.  See Chavo.

Chaw, s.  Grass.

Chawhoktamengro, s.  Grasshopper.  See Hokta.

Chee, a.  No, none:  chee butsi, no work.  See Chi, chichi.

Chericlo, s.  Bird.  See Chiriclo.

Chiricleskey tan, s.  Aviary, birdcage.

Chi, s.f.  Child, daughter, girl:  Romany chi, Gypsy girl.

Chi / Chichi / Chiti, s.  Nothing.

Chin, v. a.  To cut:  chin lis tuley, cut it down.  Sans. Chun (to
cut off).  Hin. Chink.  Gaelic, Sgian (a knife).

Chin the cost.  To cut the stick; to cut skewers for butchers and
pegs for linen-lines, a grand employment of the Gypsy fellows in the
neighbourhood of London.

China-mengri, s.f.  A letter; a thing incised, marked, written in.

China-mengro, s.  Hatchet.  Lit. cutting-thing.

Chinipen, s.  A cut.

Ching / Chingaro, v. a.  To fight, quarrel.

Chinga-guero, s.  A warrior.

Chingaripen, s.  War, strife.  Sans. Sangara.

Chingring, part. pres.  Fighting, quarrelling.

Chik, s.  Earth, dirt.  Span. Gyp. Chique.  Hin. Chikkar.

Chiklo, a.  Dirty.

Chiriclo, s. m.  Bird.  Hin. Chiriya.

Chiricli, s.f.  Hen-bird.

Chiros, s.  Time.  Mod. Gr. [Greek:  ].

Chiv / Chiva / Chuva, v. a.  To cast, fling, throw, place, put:  chiv
lis tuley, fling it down; chiv oprey, put up.  Rus. Kyio (to forge,
cast iron).  Sans. Kship.

Chiving tulipen prey the chokkars.  Greasing the shoes.

Chofa, s.f.  Petticoat.

Chohawni, s.  Witch.  See Chovahano.

Chohawno, s.  Wizard.

Chok, s.  Watch, watching.

Chok-engro, s.  Watchman.

Chok, s.  Shoe:  chokkor, chokkors, shoes.  Hun. Czoko (wooden shoe).

Choko-mengro.  Shoemaker.

Choka, s.  Coat.

Chokni / Chukni, s.  Whip.  Wal. Chokini (a strap, leather).  Hun.
Csakany (a mace, sledge hammer).  Hun. Gyp. Chokano (a staff).  Wal.
Chokan, chokinel (a hammer).

Chukni wast, s.  The whip-hand, the mastery.

Chollo, a. s.  Whole.

Chomany, s.  Something.  Span. Gyp. Cormuni (some); chimoni
(anything).  Wal. Chineba (some one).  For every chomany there's a
lav in Romany:  there's a name in Gypsy for everything.

Chong, s.  Knee.  Hun. Czomb.  Sans. Chanu.  Lat. Genu.

Chongor, pl.  Knees.

Choom / Choomava, v. a.  To kiss.  Sans. Chumb.  Choomande, kiss me.
Span. Gyp. Chupendi (a kiss), a corruption of Choomande.

Choomia, s.  A kiss.

Choomo-mengro, one of the tribe Boswell.

Choon, s.  Moon.  Hun. Gyp. Chemut.  Sans. Chandra.

Choot, s.  Vinegar.  See Chute.

Chore, v. a.  To steal.  Sans. Chur.

Chore, s.  Thief.  Hin. Chor.

Chories, pl.  Thieves.

Chor-dudee-mengri, s.  [Greek:  ] (thieves' lantern, dark lantern).

Choredo, a.  Poor, poverty stricken.  Sans. Daridra.

Choredi, fem. of Choredo.

Choriness, s.  Poverty.

Choro, a.  Poor.  Span. Gyp. Chororo.  Hin. Shor.

Chovahan, v. a.  To bewitch.

Chovahani / Chowian, s.f.  Witch.

Chovahano, s.  Wizard.

Choveno, a.  Poor, needy, starved.  Perhaps derived from the Russian
Tchernoe (black, dirty, wretched); or from the Hungarian Csunya
(hateful, frightful); whence the Chungalo of the Hungarian, and also
of the Spanish Gypsies.

Choveni, fem. of Choveno.

Choveno ker, s.  Workhouse, poorhouse.

Chukkal, s.  Dog.  Span. Gyp. Chuquel.  Sans. Kukkura.  Basque,
Chacurra.  See Juggal.

Chumba, s.  Bank, hill.  Russ. Xolm (a hill).

Chungarava / Chungra, v. a.  To spit.  Wal. Ckouina.  Hun. Gyp.
Chudel (he spits).

Churi, s.  Knife.  Sans. Chhuri.  Hin. Churi.

Churi-mengro, s.  Knife-grinder, cutler.

Churo-mengro, s.  A soldier, swordsman.

Chute, s.  Vinegar.  Mod. Gr. [Greek:  ] Wal. Otset.

Chute-pavi, s.  Cyder; perhaps a crab-apple.  Lit. vinegar-apple.

Chuvvenhan, s.  Witch.  See Chovahani.

Cinerella.  Female Gypsy name.

Cocal, s.  Bone.  Mod. Gr. [Greek:  ]

Cocalor, pl.  Bones.

Coco / Cocodus, s.  Uncle.  Hin. Caucau.

Cocoro / Cocoros, a. pro.  Alone, self:  tu cocoro, thyself.

Coin, pro. interrog.  Who?  Hin. Kaun.

Collor, s. pl.  Shillings:  dui collor a crookos, two shillings a
week.  In Spanish Germania or cant, two ochavos, or farthings, are
called:  dui cales.

Comorrus, s.  A room, hall.  Hun. Kamara.  Hin. Cumra.  Ger. Kammer.

Cong, congl, v. a.  To comb.

Congli / Congro, s.f.  A comb.  Sans. Kanagata.

Congri, s.f.  A church.

Coor / Coorava, v. a.  To fight.  Irish, Comhrac [courac].  Welsh,
Curaw (to beat).

Coorapen, s.  Fight, a beating:  I shall lel a curapen, I shall get a

Cooroboshno, s.  A fighting cock.

Cooromengro, s.  Fighter, boxer, soldier.

Coppur, s.  Blanket.  Rus. Kover (a carpet).  Wal. Kovor, id.

Corauni / Corooni, s.  A crown:  mekrauliskie corauni, royal crown.
Wal. Coroan.

Cori, s.  Thorn.  Membrum virile.  Span. Carajo [caraco].  Gascon,

Coro / Coru, s.  Pot, pitcher, cup:  coru levinor, cup of ale; boro
coro, a quart.  Span. Gyp. Coro.  Hin. Ghara.

Coro-mengro, s.  Potter.

Coro-mengreskey tem.  Staffordshire.

Corredo, a.  Blind.  Span. Gyp. Corroro.  Pers. [Persian:]  Wal. Kior

Cosht / Cost, s.  Stick.  Sans.  Kashtha.

Cost-engres, s. pl.  Branch-fellows, people of the New Forest,

Coshtno, a.  Wooden.

Covar / Covo, s.  Thing:  covars, things; covar-bikhning-vardo, a
caravan in which goods are carried about for sale.

Crafni, s.  Button.  Ger. Knopf.

Crafni-mengro, s.  Buttonmaker.

Creeor, s. pl.  Ants, pismires.  Span. Gyp. Ocrianse (the ant),
quiria (ant).

Cricni / Crookey / Crookauros / Crookos, s.  Week.  See Curco.

Cuesni, s.  Basket.  See Cushnee.

Culvato (Gypsy name).  Claude.

Curaken, s.  Fighting.  See Coorapen.

Curepen, s.  Trouble, affliction:  curepenis, afflictions.

Curkey / Curko, s.  Week, Sunday.  Mod. Gr. [Greek:  ]

Curlo, s.  Throat.  Pers.  [Persian:  ] Chin his curlo, cut his

Curlo-mengri, s.  A ruff, likewise a pillow; anything belonging to
the throat or neck.

Cushnee / Cushni / Cusnee, s.  Basket.  Wal. Koshnitse.

Cuttor, s.  A piece, a guinea-piece:  dui cuttor, two guineas; will
you lel a cuttor, will you take a bit? sore in cuttors, all in rags.


DAD, s.  Father.  Welsh, Tad.  Wal. Tat.  Rus. Gyp.  Dad.

Dado, s.  Father.  Rus. Gyp. Dado.

Dand, s.  Tooth.  Sans. Danta.

Danior, pl.  Teeth.

Dand, v. a.  To bite.

Daya / Dieya, s.  Mother, properly nurse.  Sans. Dhayas (fostering).
Pers. [Persian:  ]  Daya.  Mod. Gr. [Greek:  ].  Rus. Gyp. Daia.
Wal. Doika.

Deav, v. a.  Give.  Sans. Da.  Wal. Da.

Del.  He gives.

Del-engro, s.  A kicking-horse.

Del-oprey, v. a.  To read.

Denne, ad.  Than.

Der.  An affix, by which the comparative is formed; e.g. Wafodu, bad:
wafoduder than dovor, worse than they.

Desch, a.  Ten.  Sans. Dasan.  Wal. Zetche.

Desh ta yeck.  Eleven.

Desh ta dui.  Twelve.

Desh ta trin.  Thirteen.

Desh ta store.  Fourteen.

Desh ta pansch.  Fifteen.

Desh ta sho.  Sixteen.

Desh ta eft.  Seventeen.

Deshko.  Eighteen (?):  deshko hori, eighteenpence; properly, Desh ta
octo hori.

Devel, s.  God.  Sans. Deva.  Lith. Dewas.  Lat. Deus.  See Dibble,
Dovvel, Dubbel.

Develeskoe, s.  Holy, divine.  Sans. Deva.

Deyed, pret. of Deav.  He gave.

Dibble, s.  God.  See Devel.

Dic / Dico, v. n.  To look:  dic tuley, look down; dicking misto,
looking well.  Sans. Iksh (to see, look).  Gaelic, Dearcam (to see);
dearc (eye).

Dickimengro, s.  Overlooker, overseer.

Dicking hev, s.  A window, seeing-hole.

Die, s.  Mother.  Rus. Gyp. Die.  See Daya.

Dikkipen, s.  Look, image.  Sans. Driksha (aspect).  Welsh, Drych

Diklo, s.  Cloth, sheet, shift.

Dinnelo, s.  A fool, one possessed by the devil.  Wal. Diniele (of
the devil); louat diniele (possessed by the devil).

Dinneleskoe, a.  Foolish.

Dinneleskoenoes.  Like a fool.

Dinnelipenes, s. pl.  Follies, nonsense.

Diverous.  A Gypsy name.

Diviou, a.  Mad:  jawing diviou, going mad.  Sans. Deva (a god, a

Diviou-ker, s.  Madhouse.

Diviou kokkodus Artaros.  Mad Uncle Arthur.

Divvus, s.  Day.  Sans. Divasa.

Divveskoe / Divvuskoe, a.  Daily:  divvuskoe morro, daily bread.

Diximengro, s.  Overseer.  See Dickimengro.

Dook, v. a.  To hurt, bewitch:  dook the gry, bewitch the horse.
Wal. Deokira (to fascinate, bewitch).  See Duke, dukker.

Dooriya / Dooya, s.  Sea.  Pers. [Persian:  ]   Irish, Deire (the
deep).  Welsh, Dwr (water).  Old Irish, Dobhar.

Dooriya durril, s.  Currant, plum.  Lit. Sea-berry.

Dooriya durrileskie guyi, s.  Plum pudding.

Dori, s.  Thread, lace:  kaulo dori, black lace.  Hin. Dora.

Dosch / Dosh, s.  Evil, harm:  kek dosh, no harm.  Sans. Dush (bad).

Dosta, s.   Enough.  Wal. Destoul.  Rus.  Dostaet (it is sufficient).
See Dusta.

Dou, imp.  Give:  dou mande, give me.  See Deav.

Dou dass.  Cup and saucer.  See Dui das.

Dovo, pro. dem.  That:  dovo si, that's it.

Dovor.  Those, they:  wafoduder than dovor, worse than they.

Dov-odoy / Dovoy-oduvva, ad.  Yonder.

Dov-odoyskoenaes.  In that manner.

Doovel, s.  God.  See Duvvel.

Drab / Drav, s.  Medicine, poison.  Pers. [Persian:  ] Daru.  Wal.

Drab-engro / Drav-engro, s.  A pothecary, poison-monger.

Drab, v. a.  To poison.  Wal. Otribi.

Drey, prep.  In.

Dubble, s.  God:  my dearie Dubbleskey, for my dear God's sake.

Dude, s.  The moon.

Dudee, s.  A light, a star.  Sans. Dyuti.

Dude-bar, s.  Diamond, light-stone.

Drom, s.  Road.  Wal. Drom.  Mod. Gr. [Greek:  ]

Drom-luring, s.  Highway robbery.

Dui, a.  Two.

Duito, s.  Second.

Duito divvus, s.  Tuesday.  Lit.  Second day.

Dui das / Dui tas, s.  Cup and saucer.

Duke, v. a.  To hurt, bewitch.  Sans. Duhkha (pain).  Heb. Dui
(languor, deadly faintness).

Dukker, v. a.  To bewitch, tell fortunes.  Wal. Deokiea (to
fascinate, enchant).

Dukker drey my vast.  Tell my fortune by my hand.

Dukkering, s.  Fortune-telling.  Wal. Deokiere (fascination).  Mod.
Gr. [Greek:  ] (fortune).

Dukkipen, s.  Fortune-telling.

Dukker, v. n.  To ache:  my sherro dukkers, my head aches.  See Duke,

Dum / Dumo, s.  Black.  Pers. [Persian:  ] (tail).

Dur, ad.  Far.  Sans. Dur.  Pers. [Persian:  ]

Dur-dicki mengri, s.  Telescope.  Lit. far-seeing-thing.

Durro, ad.  Far.

Durro-der, ad.  Farther.

Durriken, s.  Fortune-telling.

Durril, s.  Any kind of berry, a gooseberry in particular.

Durrilau / Durilyor, pl.  Berries.

Durrileskie guyi, s.  Gooseberry pudding.

Dusta, a. s.  Enough, plenty:  dusta foky, plenty of people.  See

Duvvel, s.  God.


EANGE, s.  Itch.

Ebyok, s.  The sea.  Sans. Aapa (water).  Wal. Ape.

Eft, a.  Seven.  Few of the English Gypsies are acquainted with this
word; consequently, the generality, when they wish to express the
number seven, without being understood by the Gorgios or Gentiles,
say Dui trins ta yeck, two threes and one.

En.  A kind of genitive particle used in compound words, being placed
between a noun and the particle 'gro' or 'guero,' which signifies a
possessor, or that which governs a thing or has to do with it:  e.g.
lav-en-gro, a linguist or man of words, lit. word-of-fellow; wesh-en-
gro, a forester, or one who governs the wood; gurush-en-gre, things
costing a groat, lit. groat-of-things.

Engri.  A neuter affix, composed of the particles 'en' and 'gro,'
much used in the formation of figurative terms for things for which
there are no positive names in English Gypsy:  for example, yag-
engri, a fire-thing, which denotes a gun; poggra-mengri, a breaking-
thing or mill; 'engri' is changed into 'mengri' when the preceding
word terminates in a vowel.

Engro.  A masculine affix, used in the formation of figurative names;
for example, kaun-engro, an ear-fellow, or creature with ears,
serving to denote a hare; ruk-engro, or ruko-mengro, a tree-fellow,
denoting a squirrel; it is also occasionally used in names for
inanimate objects, as pov-engro, an earth-thing or potato.  See

Escunyo, s.  A wooden skewer, a pin.  Span. Gyp. Chingabar (a pin).

Escunyes, pl.  Skewers.

Escunye-mengro, s.  A maker of skewers.

Eskoe, fem.  Eskie.  A particle which affixed to a noun turns it into
an adjective:  e.g. Duvel, God; duveleskoe, divine.  It seems to be
derived from the Wal. Esk, Easkie.

Eskey.  An affix or postposition, signifying, for the sake of:  e.g.
Mi-dubble-eskey, for God's sake.

Ever-komi, ad.  Evermore.


FAKE, v. a.  To work, in a dishonest sense; to steal, pick pockets.

Fakement, s.  A robbery, any kind of work:  a pretty fakement that, a
pretty piece of work.  A scoundrel--you ratfelo fakement, you
precious scoundrel; a man of any kind--he's no bad fakement after
all; a girl, St. Paul's Cathedral--what a rinkeny fakement, what a
pretty girl, what a noble church.

Fashono, a.  False, fashioned, made up.  Wal. Fatche (to make); fatze
(face, surface).

Fashono wangustis.  Pretended gold rings, made in reality of brass or

Fashono wangust engre.  Makers of false rings.

Fenella.  A female Gypsy name.

Ferreder, a.  Better, more.  Gaelic, Feairde.

Feter, ad.  Better.  Pers. [Persian:  ]  Span. Gyp. Feter.

Figis, s.  Fig.

Figis-rookh, s.  Fig-tree.

Filisen, s.  Country-seat.

Fino, a.  Fine.  This word is not pure Gypsy:  fino covar, a fine

Floure, s.  Flower; a female Gypsy name.

Fordel, v. a.  Forgive; generally used for Artav, or Artavello, q.v.,
and composed of the English 'for' and the Gypsy 'del.'

Fordias / Fordios, part. pass.  Forgiven.

Foros, s.  City.  See Vauros.

Ful, s.  Dung:  ful-vardo, muck cart.

Fuzyanri, s.  Fern.  Hun. Fuz (willow), facska (a shrub), fuszar (a


GAD, s.  A shirt:  pauno gad, a clean shirt.

Gare, v. n., v. a.  To take care, beware; to hide, conceal.  Sans.
Ghar, to cover.

Garridan.  You hid:  luvvu sor garridan, the money which you hid.

Garrivava, v. a.  I hide or shall hide, take care:  to gare his
nangipen, to hide his nakedness.

Gav, s.  A town, village.  Pers. [Persian:  ]

Gav-engro, s.  A constable, village officer, beadle, citizen.

Gillie, s.  A song.  Sans. Kheli.

Gillies.  Songs.  Sometimes used to denote newspapers; because these
last serve, as songs did in the old time, to give the world
information of remarkable events, such as battles, murders, and

Gilyava.  I sing, or shall sing.  Hin. Guywuya.  Mod. Gr. [Greek:  ].

Gin, v. a.  To count, reckon.  Sans. Gan.  Hin. Ginna.

Ginnipen, s.  A reckoning.

Giv, s.  Wheat.  Sans. Yava (barley).  See Jobis.

Giv-engro, s.  Wheat-fellow, figurative name for farmer.

Giv-engro ker, s.  Farmhouse.

Giv-engro puv, s.  Farm.

Godli, s.  A warrant, perhaps hue and cry.  See Gudlie.  Span. Gyp.
Gola (order).

Gono, s.  A sack.  Hin. Gon.

Gorgio, s.  A Gentile, a person who is not a Gypsy; one who lives in
a house and not in a tent.  It is a modification of the Persian word
[Persian:  ] Cojia, which signifies a gentleman, a doctor, a
merchant, etc.  Span. Gyp. Gacho.

Gorgiken rat.  Of Gentile blood.

Gorgie, s.  A female Gentile or Englishwoman.

Gorgikonaes, ad.  After the manner of the Gentiles.

Gooee, s.  Pudding.  See Guyi.

Gran, s.  A barn:  I sov'd yeck rarde drey a gran, I slept one night
within a barn (Gypsy song).

Gran-wuddur, s.  A barn door.

Gran-wuddur-chiriclo.  Barn-door fowl.

Grasni / Grasnakkur, s.  Mare, outrageous woman:  what a grasni shan
tu, what a mare you are!  Grasnakkur is sometimes applied to the
mayor of a town.

Grestur / Gristur, s.  A horse.  Span. Gyp. Gras, graste.

Gry, s.  A horse.  Sans. Kharu.  Hin. Ghora.  Irish and Scottish
Gaelic, Greadh.

Gry-choring, s.  Horse-stealing.

Gry-engro, s.  Horse-dealer.

Gry-nashing.  Horse-racing.

Gudlee / Godli, s.  Cry, noise, shout.  Hin. Ghooloo.  Irish, Gul.
Rus. Gyl=gool (shout); Golos (voice).

Grommena / Grovena / Grubbena, s. and v. Thunder, to thunder.  Sans.
Garjana.  Rus. Groin (thunder).  Heb. Ream, raemah.  Gaelic, Gairm (a

Gudlo, a., s.  Sweet; honey, sugar.

Gudlo-pishen, s.  Honey-insect, bee.  See Bata.

Gue.  An affix, by which the dative case is formed:  e.g. Man, I;
mangue, to me.

Guero, s.  A person, fellow, that which governs, operates.  Sans.
Kara (a maker).  Pers. [Persian:  ]  Welsh, Gwr (a man).  In the
Spanish cant language, Guro signifies an alguazil, a kind of civil
officer.  See Engro.

Gueri, s.f.  Female person, virgin:  Mideveleskey gueri Mary, Holy
Virgin Mary.

Gush / Gurush / Gurushi, a.  Groat:  gurushengri, a groat's worth.

Guveni, s.  Cow.  Sans. Go.

Guveni-bugnior, s.  Cow-pox.

Guveno, s.  A bull.  Sans. Gavaya.  Gaelic, Gavuin, gowain (year-old

Guyi, s.  Pudding, black pudding.  Hin. Gulgul.  Span. Gyp. Golli.

Guyi-mengreskie tan, s.  Yorkshire.  Lit. pudding-eaters' country; in
allusion to the puddings for which Yorkshire is celebrated.


Ha / Haw, v. a.  To eat.

Habben, s.  Food, victuals.

Hal, v. a.  To eat:  mande can't hal lis, I can't eat it.  Sans.

Hanlo, s.  A landlord, innkeeper.  Span. Gyp. Anglano.

Hatch, v. a.  To burn, light a fire.

Hatchipen, s.  A burning.

Hatch, v. n.  To stay, stop.  See Adje, atch, az.

Hatchi-witchu, s.  A hedgehog.  This is a compound word from the Wal.
Aritche, a hedgehog, and the Persian Besha, a wood, and signifies
properly the prickly thing of the wood.  In Spanish Gypsy, one of the
words for a pig or hog is Eriche, evidently the Wallachian Aritche, a

Hekta, s.  Haste:  kair hekta, make haste; likewise a leap.  See
Hokta.  Sans. Hat'ha (to leap).

Heres / Heris, s. pl.  Legs.  Span. Gyp. Jerias.  Coshtni herri (a
wooden leg).

Hetavava, v. a.  To slay, beat, hit, carry off, plunder:  if I can
lel bonnek of tute hetavava tute, if I can lay hold of you I will
slay you.  Heb. Khataf (rapuit).  Sans. Hat'ha (to ill-use, rapere).

Hev, s.  Hole:  pawnugo hev, a water hole, a well; hev, a window;
hevior, windows.  Sans. Avata.

Heviskey, a.  Full of holes:  heviskey tan, a place full of holes.

Hin, s.  Dirt, ordure.  Mod. Gr. [Greek:  ]  Wal. Gounoiou.  Irish,
Gaineamh (sand).

Hin, v. a.  To void ordure.  Sans. Hanna.  Mod. Gr. [Greek:  ]

Hindity-mengre / Hindity-mescre, s. pl.  Irish.  Dirty, sordid

Hoffeno, s.  A liar.

Hok-hornie-mush, s.  A policeman.  Partly a cant word.

Hokka, v. n.  To lie, tell a falsehood:  hokka tute mande, if you
tell me a falsehood.

Hokkano, s.  A lie.  Sans. Kuhana (hypocrisy).

Hokta, v. a.  To leap, jump.  See Hekta.

Hokta-mengro, s.  Leaper, jumper.

Hoofa, s.  A cap.

Hor / Horo, s.  A penny.  Span. Gyp. Corio an ochavo (or farthing).

Horry, s. pl.  Pence:  shohorry, showhawry, sixpence.

Horsworth, s.  Pennyworth.

Horkipen, s.  Copper.  Hun. Gyp. Harko.

Huffeno, s.  A liar.  See Hoffeno.

Hukni, s.  Ringing the changes, the fraudulent changing of one thing
for another.


I, pro.  She, it.

I.  A feminine and neuter termination:  e.g. Yag engri, a fire-thing
or gun; coin si, who is she? so si, what is it?

Inna / Inner, prep.  In, within:  inner Lundra, in London.  Span.
Gyp. Enre.

Iouzia, s.  A flower.

Is, conj.  If; it is affixed to the verb--e.g. Dikiomis, if I had

Iv, s.  Snow.  Hun. Gyp. Yiv.  Span. Gyp. Give.

Iv-engri / Ivi-mengri, s.  Snow-thing, snowball.

Iuziou, a.  Clean.  Mod. Gr. [Greek:  ] (sound, healthy).  See


JAL.  To go, walk, journey.  This verb is allied to various words in
different languages signifying movement, course or journey: --to the
Sanscrit Il, ila, to go; to the Russian Gulliat, to stroll, to walk
about; to the Turkish Iel, a journey; to the Jol of the Norse, and
the Yule of the Anglo-Saxons, terms applied to Christmas-tide, but
which properly mean the circular journey which the sun has completed
at that season:  for what are Jol and Yule but the Ygul of the
Hebrews? who call the zodiac 'Ygul ha mazaluth,' or the circle of the
signs.  It is, moreover, related to the German Jahr and the English
Year, radically the same words as Jol, Yule, and Ygul, and of the
same meaning--namely, the circle travelled by the sun through the

Ja, v. imp.  Go thou!

Jal amande.  I shall go.

Jal te booty.  Go to work.

Jalno / Java / Jaw, v.a.  I go.  Sans. Chara.

Jas, jasa.  Thou goest:  tute is jasing, thou art going.

Jal, 3rd pers. pres.  He goes.

Jalla, f.  She goes.

Jalno ando pawni, v. a.  I swim.  Lit. I go in water.

Jaw, ad.  So:  jaw si, so it is.  See Ajaw, asa, asha.

Jib, s.  Tongue.  Sans. Jihva.

Jib, v. n.  To live, to exist.  Sans. Jiv.  Rus. Jit.  Lithuanian,

Jibben, s.  Life, livelihood.  Sans. Jivata (life), Jivika
(livelihood).  Rus. Jivot, Tchivot.

Jivvel, v. n.  He lives:  kai jivvel o, where does he live?

Jin / Jinava, v. n.  To know.  Sans. Jna.

Jinnepen, s.  Wisdom, knowledge.  Sans. Jnapti (understanding).

Jinney-mengro, s.  A knowing fellow, a deep card, a Grecian, a wise
man, a philosopher.

Jinney-mengreskey rokrapenes.  Sayings of the wise:  the tatcho drom
to be a jinney-mengro is to dick and rig in zi, the true way to be a
wise man is to see and bear in mind.

Jongar, v. n.  To awake.  Sans. Jagri.  Hin. Jugana.

Jobis, s.  Oats.  Sans. Java (barley).  Wal. Obia.  See Giv.

Joddakaye, s.  Apron; anything tied round the middle or hips.  Sans.
Kata (the hip, the loins), Kataka (a girdle).

Ju, s.  A louse.  Sans. Yuka.

Juvalo, a.  Lousy.

Juvior, s. pl.  Lice.

Juggal / Jukkal, s.  Dog.  Sans. Srigala (jackal).

Jukkalor.  Dogs.

Jukkaelsti cosht, s.  Dog-wood; a hard wood used for making skewers.

Juva / Juvali, Woman, wife.

Juvli, s.  Girl.  See Chavali.


KAEL, s.  Cheese.

Kaes, s.  Cheese.

Kah / Kai, ad.  Where:  kai tiro ker, where's your house? kai si the
churi, where is the knife?  Sans. Kva.

Kair, v. a.  To do.  Sans. Kri, to do; kara (doing).

Kair misto.  To make well, cure, comfort.

Kairipen, s.  Work, labour.  Sans. Karman.

Kakkaratchi, s.  Magpie; properly a raven.  Mod. Gr. [Greek:  ]

Kanau / Knau, ad.  Now.

Karring.  Crying out, hawking goods.  Span. Gyp. Acarar (to call).
See Koring.

Kaulo, a.  Black.  Sans. Kala.  Arab. [Arabic:  ]

Kaulo chiriclo, s.  A blackbird.

Kaulo cori, s.  A blackthorn.

Kaulo durril, s.  Blackberry.

Kaulo Gav, s.  Black-town, Birmingham.

Kaulo guero, s.  A black, negro.

Kaulo guereskey tem, s.  Negroland, Africa.

Kaulo-mengro, s.  A blacksmith.

Kaulo ratti.  Black blood, Gypsy blood:  kaulo ratti adrey leste, he
has Gypsy blood in his veins.

Kaun, s.  An ear.  Sans. Karna.

Kaun-engro, s.  An ear-fellow, thing with long ears; a figurative
name for a hare.

Ke, prep.  Unto.  Likewise a postposition--e.g. lenke, to them.

Keir / Ker, s.  A house.  Sans. Griha.

Ker / Kerey / Ken, ad.  Home, homeward:  java keri, I will go home.

Keir-poggring.  House-breaking.

Keir-rakli, s.  A housemaid.

Kek, ad. a.  No, none, not:  kek tatcho, it is not true.

Kekkeno, a.  None, not any:  kekkeni pawni, no water.

Kekkeno mushe's poov, s.  No man's land; a common.

Kekkauvi, s.f.  Kettle.  Mod. Gr. [Greek:  ]

Kekkauviskey saster, s.  Kettle-iron; the hook by which the kettle is
suspended over the fire.

Kekko, ad.  No, it is not, not it, not he.

Kekkomi.  No more.  See Komi, Ever-komi.

Kek-cushti.  Of no use; no good.  See Koshto.

Kem, s.  The sun.  See Cam.

Ken.  A particle affixed in English Gypsy to the name of a place
terminating in a vowel, in order to form a genitive; e.g. Eliken bori
congri, the great church of Ely.  See En.

Ken, s.  A house, properly a nest.  Heb. [Hebrew:  ] Kin.

Kenyor, s. pl.  Ears.  See Kaun.

Ker  / Kerava v. a.  To do; make:  kair yag, make a fire.  Sans. Kri.
Pers. [Perisan:  ]  Gaelic, Ceaird (a trade), ceard (a tinker).  Lat.
Cerdo (a smith).  English, Char, chare (to work by the day).

Kerdo.  He did.

Kedast, 2nd pers. pret.  Thou didst.

Kedo, part. pass.  Done.

Kerri-mengro, s.  Workman.

Kerrimus, s.  Doing, deed:  mi-Doovel's kerrimus, the Lord's doing.
Sans. Karman (work).

Kerrit, p. pass.  Cooked, boiled.  Anglo-Indian word, Curried.  Fr.
Cuire.  Gaelic, Greidh (to cook victuals).

Kettaney, ad.  Together.  Wal. Ketziba (many).  See Kisi.

Kidda, v. a.  To pluck.

Kil, v. a.  To dance, play.  Hin. Kelna.  Sans. Kshvel.

Killi-mengro, s.  A dancer, player.

Kil, s.  Butter.

Kin, v. a.  To buy:  kinning and bikkning, buying and selling.  Heb.
Kana (he bought).

Kin aley.  To ransom, redeem, buy off.

Kinnipen, s.  A purchase.

Kinnipen-divvus, s.  Purchasing-day, Saturday.

Kindo, a.  Wet.

Kipsi, s.  Basket.  Span. Gyp. Quicia.

Kinyo.  Tired.  Span. Gyp. Quinao.

Kisaiya.  A female Gypsy name.

Kisi, ad.  How much, to what degree:  kisi puro shan tu, how old are
you?  Wal. Kitze.  Span. Gyp. Quichi.  Sans. Kati (how many?)

Kisseh / Kissi, s.  A purse.  Sans. Kosa.  Pers. [Persian:  ]

Kistur, v. a.  To ride.  Wal. Keleri.

Kistri-mengro / Kistro-mengro, s.  Rider, horseman.

Kitchema, s.  Public-house, inn.  Hun. Korcsma.  Wal. Keirtchumie.

Kitchema-mengro, s.  Innkeeper.

Klism / Klisn, s.  A key.  Rus. Cliotche.  Mod. Gr. [Greek:  ]
(shutting up).

Klism-engri, s.  A lock.  Lit. key-thing.

Klism-hev, s.  A keyhole.

Klop, s.  A gate, seemingly a cant word; perhaps a bell.  Wal.

Kokkodus.  Uncle:  kokkodus Artaros, Uncle Arthur.

Komi, adv.  More:  ever-komi, evermore.

Koosho, a.  Good:  kooshi gillie, a good song.  Sans. Kusala.

Kora / Kore, v. a.  To riot.  Wal. Kiorei (to cry out, bawl, make a
tumult).  Heb. Kara (he convoked, cried out).

Koring, part. pres.  Rioting.  Heb. Kirivah (proclamation).

Kora-mengro, s.  A rioter.

Kore, v. a.  To hawk goods about, to cry out, to proclaim.

Koring lil, s.  Hawking-licence.

Koring chiriclo, s.  The cuckoo.

Koshto, a.  Good.  Pers. [Persian:  ]

Koshtipen, s.  Goodness, advantage, profit:  kek koshtipen in
dukkering knau, it is of no use to tell fortunes now.

Kosko, a.  Good.

Koskipen, s.  Goodness.

Krallis, s.  King.  Rus. Korol.  Hun. Kiraly.  Wal. Kraiu.

Kushto, a.  Good:  kushto si for mangui, I am content.


LA, pro. pers.  Her; accusative of 'i' or ' yoi,' she.

Laki, pro. poss.  Her:  laki die, her mother.

Lasa / Lasar, With her; instrumental case of 'i.'

Later.  From her; ablative of 'i.'

Lati.  Genitive of 'i'; frequently used as the accusative--e.g. cams
tu lati, do you love her?

Lang / Lango, a.  Lame.  Sans. Lang.  Pers.  [Persian:  ] Lenk.

Lashi / Lasho, Louis.  Hungarian, Lajos, Lazlo.  Scotch, Lesley.

Latch, v. a.  To find.  Wal. Aphla.

Lav, s.  Word.  Sans. Lapa (to speak).  Eng. Lip.

Lavior, pl.  Words.

Lav-chingaripen, s.  Dispute, word-war.

Lav-engro, s.  Word-master, linguist.

Len, pro. pers. pl.  To them:  se len, there is to them, the have.

Lendar, ablative.  From them.

Lende / Lunde, gen. and acc.  Of them, them.

Lensar.  With them.

Lengue, pro. poss.  Their:  lengue tan, their tent.

Les, pro. pers.  To him; dative of 'yo,' he:  pawno stadj se les, he
has a white hat.

Lescro, pro. poss.  His, belonging to him:  lescro prala, his

Leste.  Of him, likewise him; genitive and accusative of 'yo.'

Lester.  From him.

Leste's.  His:  leste's wast, his hand; properly, lescro wast.

Lesti.  Her or it:  pukker zi te lesti, tell her your mind; he can't
rokkra lesti, he can't speak it.

Leav / Ley, v. a.  To take.  Wal. Loua.

Lel.  He takes.

Lel cappi.  Get booty, profit, capital.

Lennor, s.  Summer, spring.

Levinor, s.  Ale; drinks in which there is wormwood.  Heb. Laenah
(wormwood).  Irish, Lion (ale).

Levinor-ker, s.  Alehouse.

Levinor-engri.  Hop.  Lit. ale-thing.

Levinor-engriken tem.  Kent.  Lit. hop-country.

Li, pron.  It:  dovo se li, that's it.

Lidan, v. a.  You took; 2nd pers. pret. of Ley.

Lil, s.  Book; a letter or pass.  Hun. Level.  Sans. Likh (to write).
Hindustani, Likhan (to write).

Lillai, s.  Summer.  Hun. Gyp. Nilei.

Linnow, part. pass.  Taken, apprehended.

Lis, pro. dat.  To it:  adrey lis, in it.

Lollo / Lullo, a.  Red.  Pers. [Persian:  ] Lal.

Lolle bengres, s. pl.  Red waistcoats, Bow Street runners.

Lollo matcho, s.  Red herring.  Lit. red fish.

Lolli plaishta, s.  A red cloak.

Lolli, s.  A farthing.

Lon / Lun, s.  Salt.  Sans. Lavana.  Hin. Lon.

Lou, pro.  It:  oprey-lou, upon it.  Wal. Lou.

Loure, v. a.  To steal.  See Luripen.

Lubbeny, s.  Harlot.  Rus. Liabodieitza (adultress), liobodeinoe
(adulterous).  Sans. Lubha (to inflame with lust, to desire).  The
English word Love is derived from this Sanscrit root.

Lubbenipen, s.  Harlotry.

Lubbenified.  Become a harlot.

Lundra.  London.  Mod. Gr. [Greek:  ].

Luripen, s.  Robbery, a booty.  Lit. a seizure.  Wal. Luare (seizure,
capture), Louarea Parizouloui (the capture of Paris).

Lutherum, s.  Sleep, repose, slumber.

Luvvo, s.  Money, currency.  Rus. Lovok (convenient, handy, quick,
agile).  In Spanish Gypsy, a real (small coin) is called Quelati, a
thing which dances, from Quelar, to dance.

Luvvo-mengro, s.  Money-changer, banker.

Luvvo-mengro-ker, s.  Banker's house, bank.


Ma, ad.  Not; only used before the imperative:  ma muk, let not.
Sans. Ma.  Pers. [Persian:  ]

Maas, s.  Sans. Mansa Mans.  Rus. Maso.  See Mas.

Maas-engro / Maaso-mengro, s.  Butcher.

Mailla, s.  Ass, donkey.  Wal. Megaroul.  Sans. Baluya.

Mailla and posh.  Ass and foal.

Malleco, a.  False.

Maluno / Maloney, s.  Lightning.  Rus. Molniya.

Mam, s.  Mother.  Wal. Moume.  Welsh, Mam.  Irish and Scottish
Gaelic, Muime (a nurse).

Man, pron. pers.  I; very seldom used.  Hin. Muen.

Mande, pron. pers. oblique of Man; generally used instead of the
nominative Man.

Mander.  Ablative of Man, from me:  ja mander, go from me.

Mande's.  My.  Mande's wast, my hand; used improperly for miro.

Mangue.  Dative of Man, to me; sometimes used instead of the

Mansa.  With me.

Mang, v. a.  To beg.  Hin. Mangna.  Sans. Marg.

Mango-mengro, s.  A beggar.

Mangipen, s.  The trade of begging.  Sans. Margana (begging).

Manricley, s.  A cake.  Span. Gyp. Manricli.

Manush, s.  Man.  Sans. Manasha.  Span. Gyp. Manus.  See Monish.

Manushi, s.  Woman, wife.  Sans. Manushi.

Maricli, s.  A cake.  See Maricley.

Mash, s.  Umbrella.  A cant word.

Matcho, s.  A fish.  Sans. Matsya.  Hin. Muchee.

Matcheneskoe Gav.  Yarmouth.  Lit. the fishy town.

Matcheneskoe guero, s.  A fisherman.

Matchka, s.f.  A cat.  Hun. Macska.

Matchko, s. m.  A he-cat.

Mattipen, s.  Drunkenness.  Sans. Matta (to be intoxicated).  Mod.
Gr. [Greek:  ] (intoxication).  Welsh, Meddwy (to intoxicate).

Matto, a.  Drunk, intoxicated.  Welsh, Meddw.

Matto-mengro, s.  Drunkard.

Mea, s.  Mile:  dui mear, two miles.  Wal. Mie.

Mea-bar, s.  Milestone.

Medisin, s.  Measure, bushel.  Sans. Mana.

Mek, v. n.  Leave, let:  meklis, leave off, hold your tongue, have
done.  Sans. Moksh.

Men, pr.  We; pl. of Man.

Men, s.  Neck.  Gaelic, Muineal.  Welsh, Mwng.  Mandchou, Meifen.

Men-pangushi, s.  Neckcloth.  See Pangushi.

Mengro.  A word much used in composition.  See Engro and Mescro.

Mensalli, s.  A table.  Wal. Masi.

Mer / Merava, v. n.  To die.  Sans. Mri.

Merricley, s.  A cake.  See Manricley.

Merripen, s.  Death.  Sans. Mara.

Merripen, s.  Life, according to the Gypsies, though one feels
inclined to suppose that the real signification of the word is Death;
it may, however, be connected with the Gaulic or Irish word Mairam,
to endure, continue, live long:  Gura' fada mhaireadh tu! may you
long endure, long life to you!  In Spanish Gypsy Merinao signifies an

Mescro.  A particle which, affixed to a verb, forms a substantive
masculine:- e.g. Camo, I love; camo-mescro, a lover.  Nash, to run;
nashi-mescro, a runner.  It is equivalent to Mengro, q.v.

Messalli, s.  A table.  Wal. Masi.

Mestipen, s.  Life, livelihood, living, fortune, luck, goodness.
Span. Gyp. Mestipen, bestipen.  Wal. Viatsie.

Mi, pron.  I, my.

Mi cocoro, pron. poss.  I myself, I alone.

Mi dearie Dubbeleskey.  For my dear God's sake.

Mi develeskie gueri, s.f.  A holy female.

Mi develeskie gueri Mary.  Holy Virgin Mary.

Mi develeskoe Baval Engro.  Holy Ghost.

Mi dubbelungo, a.  Divine.

Mi duvvelungo divvus, s.  Christmas Day.

Millior, s.  Miles; panj millior, five miles.

Minge / Mintch, s.  Pudendum muliebre.

Miro, pron. poss.  My, mine.

Miri, pron. poss. f.  My, mine.

Misto / Mistos, ad.  Well.

Misto dusta.  Very well.

Mistos amande.  I am glad.

Mitch, s.  See Minge.

Mizella.  Female Gypsy name.

Mokkado, a.  Unclean to eat.  Wal. Mourdar (dirty).

Monish, s.  Man.  See Manush.

Mol, s.  Wine.  See Mul.

Mollauvis, s.  Pewter.

Moomli, s.  Candle, taper.  See Mumli.

Moomli-mengro, s.  Candlestick, lantern.

Moar, v. a.  To grind.  See Morro.

More / Morava, v. a.  To kill, slay.  Sans. Mri.  Wal. Omori.

Moreno, part. pass.  Killed, slain.

More, v. a.  To shave, shear.  Hun. Gyp. Murinow.

Mormusti, s.f.  Midwife.  Wal. Maimoutsi.  Rus. Mameichka (nurse).

Moro, pron. poss.  Our:  moro dad, our father.

Morro, s.  Bread.  Lit. that which is ground.  See Moar.  Span. Gyp.
Manro.  Hun. Gyp. Manro, also Gheum:  sin gheum manro, gheum is manro
(bread).  Rus. Gyp. Morroshka (a loaf).

Morro-mengro, s.  A baker.

Mort, s.  Woman, concubine; a cant word.

Mosco / Moshko, A fly.  Lat. Musca.  Wal. Mouskie.  Span. Gyp.
Moscabis (fly-blown, stung with love, picado, enamorado).

Moskey, s.  A spy:  to jal a moskeying, to go out spying.  Fr.

Mufta, s.f.  Box, chest.  See Muktar.

Mui, s.  Face, mouth:  lollo leste mui, his face is red.  Sans. Mukha
(face, mouth).  Fr. Mot (a word).  Provenzal, Mo.

Muk, v. n.  To leave, let.  See Mek.

Mukkalis becunye.  Let it be.

Muktar / Mukto, s.  Box, chest.

Mul, s.  Wine.  Pers. Mul.

Mul divvus.  Christmas Day.  Lit. wine day.

Mul-engris, s. pl.  Grapes:  mul-engri tan, vineyard.

Mulleni muktar, s.  Coffin.  Lit. dead-chest.

Mullodustie mukto.  Id.

Mulleno hev, s.  Grave.

Mulleno ker, s.  Sepulchre, cemetery.

Mullo, s., a.  Dead man, dead.

Mullo mas, s.  Dead meat; flesh of an animal not slain, but which
died alone.

Mumli, s.f.  Candle.

Mumli-mescro, s.  Chandler.

Munjee, s.  A blow on the mouth, seemingly a cant word.  Hin. Munh,
mouth.  Ger. Mund.

Murces / Mursior, s. pl.  Arms.  Span. Gyp. Murciales.

Muscro, s.  Constable.  See Muskerro.

Mush, s.  Man.  Rus. Mouge.  Finnish, Mies.  Tibetian, Mi.  Lat. Mas
(a male).

Mushi, s.  Woman.

Mushipen, s.  A little man, a lad.  Toulousian, Massip (a young man),
massipo (a young woman).

Muskerro, s.  Constable.

Muskerriskoe cost, s.  Constable's staff.

Mutra, s.  Urine.

Mutrava, v. a.  To void urine.  Sans. Mutra.

Mutra-mengri, s.  Tea.

Mutzi, s.  Skin.  Span. Gyp. Morchas.

Mutzior, s. pl.  Skins.


NA, ad.  Not.

Naflipen, s.  Sickness.  Span. Gyp.  Nasallipen.  Mod. Gr. [Greek:  ]

Naflo, a.  Sick.

Nai.  Properly Na hi, there is not:  nai men chior, we have no girls.

Naior, s. pl.  Nails of the fingers or toes.  Mod. Gr. [Greek:  ]

Nangipen, s.  Nakedness.

Nango, a.  Naked.

Narilla / Narrila, A female Gypsy name.

Nash, v. a.  To run.  Span. Gyp. Najar.

Nashimescro, s.  Runner, racer.

Nashimescro-tan, s.  Race-course.

Nash, v. a.  To lose, destroy, to hang.  Sans. Nasa.  Span. Gyp.
Najabar (to lose).  Sans. Nakha (to destroy).  Eng. Nacker (a killer
of old horses).

Nashado, part. pret.  Lost, destroyed, hung.

Nashimescro, s.  Hangman.

Nashko, part. pass.  Hung:  nashko pre rukh, hung on a tree.

Nasho, part. pass.  Hung.

Nastis, a.  Impossible.  See Astis.

Nav, s.  Name.  Hun. Nev.

Naval, s.  Thread.  Span. Gyp. Nafre.

Naes / Nes, postpos.  According to, after the manner of:
gorgikonaes, after the manner of the Gentiles; Romano-chalugo-naes,
after the manner of the Gypsies.

Ne, ad.  No, not:  ne burroder, no more; ne riddo, not dressed.

Nevo, a.  New.

Nevi, a. fem.  New:  nevi tud from the guveni, new milk from the cow.

Nevey Rukhies.  The New Forest.  Lit. new trees.

Nevi Wesh.  The New Forest.

Nick, v. a.  To take away, steal.  Span. Gyp. Nicabar.

Nick the cost.  To steal sticks for skewers and linen-pegs.

Nogo, s.  Own, one's own; nogo dad, one's own father; nogo tan, one's
own country.

Nok, s.  Nose.  Hin. Nakh.

Nok-engro, s.  A glandered horse.  Lit. a nose-fellow.

Nokkipen, s.  Snuff.


O, art. def.  The.

O, pron.  He.

Odoi, ad.  There.  Hun. Ott, oda.

Oduvvu, pron. dem.  That.  Span. Gyp. Odoba.

Olevas / Olivas / Olivor, s. pl.  Stockings.  Span. Gyp. Olibias.
Wal. Chorapul.

Opral / Opre / Oprey, prep.  Upon, above.  Wal. Pre, asoupra.

Or.  A plural termination; for example, Shock, a cabbage, pl. shock-
or.  It is perhaps derived from Ouri, the plural termination of
Wallachian neuter nouns ending in 'e.'

Ora, s.f.  A watch.  Hun. Ora.

Ora, s.  An hour:  so si ora, what's o'clock?

Orlenda.  Gypsy female name.  Rus. Orlitza (female eagle).

Os.  A common termination of Gypsy nouns.  It is frequently appended
by the Gypsies to English nouns in order to disguise them.

Owli, ad.  Yes.  See Avali.


PA, prep.  By:  pa mui, by mouth.  Rus. Po.

Padlo, ad.  Across:  padlo pawnie, across the water, transported.

Pahamengro, s.  Turnip.

Pailloes, s.  Filberts.

Pal, s.  Brother.

Pal of the bor.  Brother of the hedge, hedgehog.

Palal, prep. ad.  Behind, after, back again:  av palal, come back,
come again:  palal the welgorus, after the fair.  Mod. Gr. [Greek:  ]
(again).  Rus. Opiat (id.).

Pali, ad.  Again, back.

Pand, v. a.  To bind.  Sans. Bandh.

Pandipen, s.  Pinfold, prison, pound.

Pandlo, part. pass.  Bound, imprisoned, pounded.

Pand opre, v. a.  To bind up.

Pandlo-mengro, s.  Tollgate, thing that's shut.

Pangushi, s.f.  Handkerchief.

Pani, s.  Water.  See Pawni.

Panishey shock, s.  Watercress.  Lit. water-cabbage.  See Shok.

Panj, a.  Five.  See Pansch.

Pani-mengro, s.  Sailor, waterman.

Panni-mengri, s.  Garden.

Panno, s.  Cloth.  Lat. Pannus.  Wal. Penzie.

Pansch, s.  Five.  Hin. Panch.

Pappins / Pappior, s. pl.  Ducks.  Mod. Gr. [Greek:  ]

Paracrow, v. a.  To thank:  paracrow tute, I thank you.

Parava / Parra, v. a.  To change, exchange.  See Porra.

Parriken, s.  Trust, credit.  Mod. Gr. [Greek:  ] (trusted goods).

Parno, a.  White.  See Pauno.

Pas, s.  Half.  See Posh.

Pasherro, s.  Halfpenny; pl. pasherie.  Pers. [Persian:  ]  Pasheez
(a farthing).

Pas-more, v. a.  Half-kill.

Patch, s.  Shame.  Span. Gyp. Pachi, modesty, virginity.  Sans.

Patnies, s. pl.  Ducks.

Patrin, s.  A Gypsy trail; handfuls of leaves or grass cast by the
Gypsies on the road, to denote to those behind the way which they
have taken.

Pattin, s.  A leaf.  Span. Gyp. Patia.  Sans. Patra.

Pattinor.  Leaves.

Paub / Paubi, s.  An apple.  Hung. Gyp. Paboy.

Paub tan, s.  Orchard.

Pauno, a.  White.  Sans. Pandu.  Gaelic, Ban.

Pauno gad.  Clean shirt.

Pauno sherro.  Grey head, white head.

Pauno, s.  Flour.  Lit. what is white.  The Latin 'panis' seems to be
connected with this word.

Pauno-mengro, s.  A miller, white fellow.

Pauno-mui, s.  Pale face; generally applied to a vain, foolish girl,
who prefers the company of the pallid Gentiles to that of the dark

Pauvi, s.  An apple.

Pauvi-pani, s.  Cyder, apple-water.

Pawdel, ad.  Across, over:  pawdel puve and pawni, across land and
water; pawdel the chumba, over the hill.

Pawnee / Pawni, s.  Water.  Sans. Paniya.  Hin. Panie.  Eng. Pond.
See Pani.

Pawnugo, a.  Watery:  pawnugo hev, water-hole, well.

Pazorrhus, part. pass.  Indebted.  See Pizarris.

Peava, v. a.  To drink.  Sans. Pa.

Pea-mengri, s.  Tea-pot.  Wal. Bea.  Lit. drinking thing.

Peeapen, s.  Health:  ako's your peeapen! here's your health!

Pea-mengro, s.  Drunkard.

Pedloer, s.  Nuts; prop.  Acorns.  Pers.  Peleed.

Peerdie, s.  Female tramper.

Peerdo, s.  Male tramper.

Pek'd / Pekt, part. pass.  Roasted.  Span. Gyp. Peco.  Sans. Paka
(cooking).  Pers. Pekhtan.  Rus. Petsch (oven).

Pele, s. pl.  Testicles.  Sans. P'hala.

Pelengo gry / Pelengro gry, s.  Stone-horse.

Pen, a particle affixed to an adjective or a verb when some property
or quality, affection or action is to be expressed, the termination
of the first word being occasionally slightly modified:  for example,
Kosko, good, koskipen, goodness; Tatcho, true, tatchipen, truth;
Camo, I love, camipen, love; Chingar, to fight, chingaripen, war.  It
is of much the same service in expressing what is abstract and ideal
as Engro, Mescro, and Engri are in expressing what is living and
tangible.  It is sometimes used as a diminutive, e.g. Mushipen, a
little fellow.

Pen, s.  Sister.

Pen / Penav, v. a.  To say, speak.  Wal. Spoune.

Penchava, v. n.  To think.  Pers. Pendashten.  Sans. Vi-cit.

Penliois, s.  Nuts.  See Pedloer.

Per, s.  Belly.

Per, v. n.  To fall.  Span. Gyp. Petrar.  Sans. Pat.

Per tuley.  To fall down.

Perdo, a.  Full.  Sans. Purva, to fill.

Pes / Pessa, v. a.  To pay.  Span. Gyp. Plaserar.  Rus. Platit.  Wal.
Pleti.  Hun. Fizetni.

Pes apopli.  To repay.

Petul, s.  A horse-shoe.  Mod. Gr. [Greek:  ]  Wal. Potkoavie.  Heb.
Bedel (tin).

Petul-engro, s.  Horseshoe-maker, smith, tinker; the name of a Gypsy

Pi, v. a.  To drink.  Sans. Piva (drinking).  See Peava.

Pias, s.  Fun.  Mod. Gr. [Greek:  ] (to play).

Pikkis / Pikkaris, s. pl.  Breasts.  See Birk, bark.  Wal. Piept.

Pikko, s.  Shoulder.

Pios, part. pass.  Drunken.  Only employed when a health is drunk:
e.g. aukko tu pios adrey Romanes, your health is drunk in Romany.

Pire, s. pl.  Feet.

Pire, s. pl.  Trampers.

Pire-gueros, s. pl.  Travellers, trampers.  Lit. foot-fellows.

Pireni, s.f.  Sweetheart.

Pireno, s. m.  Sweetheart.

Piro, v. a.  To walk:  pirel, he walks.

Piro-mengro, s.  Walker.

Pirry, s.  Pot, boiler.  This is a west-country Gypsy word.  Span.
Gyp. Piri.  Sans. Pithara, patra.

Pishen, s.  Flea, any kind of insect:  guldo pishen, honey-insect,
bee, honey.

Pivli, s.  A widow.

Pivlo, s.  A widower.

Pivley-gueri, s.  A widowed female.

Pivley-guero, s.  A widowed fellow.

Pivley-raunie, s.  A widow lady.

Piya-mengro, s.  Drunkard.  See Pea-mengro.

Pizarris / Pizaurus, part. pass.  Trusted, credited, in debt.  Sans.
Vishvas (to trust).  Wal. Se bizoui (to trust, to credit).  Mod. Gr.
[Greek:  ] (he who has been credited).  Span. Gyp. Bisarar (to owe),
bisauras (debts), pista (an account).

Pizarri-mengro, s.  A trusted person, a debtor.

Plakta, s.  Sheet:  bero-rukiskie plakta, a ship's sail.

Plashta, s.  Cloak:  lolli plashta, red cloak.  Span. Gyp. Plata.
Plakta and plashta are probably both derived from the Wallachian
postat, a sheet.

Plastra, v. a.  To run.

Plastra lesti.  Run it; run for your life.

Plastra-mengro, s. a.  A Bow Street runner, a pursuer.  In Spanish
Gypsy, Plastani means a company which pursues robbers.

Poggado, part. pass.  Broken.

Poggado bavol-engro, s.  Broken-winded horse.

Poggado habben, s.  Broken victuals.

Poggra, v. a.  To break.  Wal. Pokni.

Poggra-mengri, s.  A mill.  Lit. a breaking thing.

Poknies, s.  Justice of the peace.  Rus. Pokoio (to pacify).

Pokiniskoe ker, s.  House of a justice of the peace.

Pooshed / Poosheno, part. pass.  Buried:  mulo ta poosheno, dead and

Por, s.  Feather.  Pers. Par.  Sans. Parna.

Por-engro, s.  Pen-master, penman, one able to write.

Por-engri-pen, s.  Penmanship, writing.

Porior, s. pl.  Feathers.

Pordo, a.  Heavy.  Wal. Povarie (a weight).  Lat.  Pondus.

Porra, v. a.  To exchange.

Posh, s.  Half.

Posherro / Poshoro, s.  Halfpenny.

Possey-mengri, s.  Pitchfork; improperly used for any fork.  The
literal meaning is a straw-thing; a thing used for the removal of
straw.  See Pus.

Potan, s.  Tinder.  Wal. Postabh (sheet, cloth).  Sans. Pata (cloth).

Poov / Pov, s.  Earth, ground.  Sans. Bhu.

Poov, v.  To poov a gry, to put a horse in a field at night.

Pov-engro, s.  An earth thing, potato.

Pov-engreskoe, a.  Belonging to the potato.

Povengreskoe gav.  Potato town--Norwich.

Povengreskoe tem.  Potato country--Norfolk.

Povo-guero, s.  Mole, earth-fellow.

Praio, a.  Upper:  praio tem, upper country, heaven.  Span. Gyp.
Tarpe (heaven).  See Opre.

Prala, s.  Brother.

Pude, v. a.  To blow.

Pude-mengri, s.  Blowing thing, bellows.

Pudge, s.  Bridge.  Wal. Pod, podoul.  Pers. Pul.  Sans. Pali.

Pukker, v. a.  To tell, declare, answer, say, speak.  Span. Gyp.
Pucanar (to proclaim).  Hin. Pukar, pukarnar.

Pur, s.  Belly.  See Per.

Pureno, a.  Ancient, old:  pureno foky, the old people.  Sans. Purvya

Puro, a.  Old.  Sans. Pura.

Puro dad, s.  Grandfather.

Purrum, s.  Leek, onion.  Lat. Porrum.

Purrum / Purrun, n. pr.  Lee, or Leek; the name of a numerous Gypsy
tribe in the neighbourhood of London.  Wal. Pur (onion).  Lat.
Porrum.  Sans. Purana (ancient).

Pus, s.  Straw.  Sans. Busa, chaff.

Putch, v. a.  To ask.  Hin. Puchhna.

Putsi, s.  Purse, pocket.  Sans. Puta, pocket.  Wal. Pountsi.  Old
cant, Boung.

Putsi-lil, s.  Pocket-book.

Puvvo, s.  Earth, ground.  See Poov.

Puvvesti churi, s. a.  Plough.


RAIA, s.  Gentleman, lord.  See Rye.

Rak, v. n.  To beware, take care; rak tute, take care of yourself.
Sans. Raksh (to guard, preserve).

Rakli, s.f.  Girl.

Raklo, s.  Boy, lad.

Ran, s.  Rod:  ranior, rods.  Sans. Ratha (cane, ratan).

Rarde, s.  Night.  Sans. Ratri.

Rardiskey, a.  Nightly.

Rardiskey kair poggring, s.  Housebreaking by night, burglary.

Rashengro, s.  Clergyman.

Rashi, s.  Clergyman, priest.  Sans. Rishi (holy person).

Rashieskey rokkring tan, s.  Pulpit.

Ratcheta, s.  A goose, duck.  See Retsa.

Ratti, s.  Blood.  Sans. Rudhira.

Ratniken chiriclo, s.  Nightingale.

Rawnie, s.  Lady.

Rawniskie dicking gueri, s.  Lady-like looking woman.

Rawniskie tatti naflipen, s.  The lady's fever, maladie de France.

Retza, s.  Duck.  Wal. Rierzoiou.  See Rossar-mescro.  Hun. Recze.

Reyna.  A female Gypsy name.

Riddo, part. pass.  Dressed.  Span. Gyp. Vriardao.

Rig / Riggur / Riggurava, v. a.  To bear, carry, bring.

Rig in zi.  To remember, bear in mind.

Rig to zi.  To bring to mind.

Rinkeno, a.  Handsome.

Rivipen, s.  Dress.  Lit. linen clothes, women's dress.  Wal. Ruphe.
Mod. Gr. [Greek:  ] (a tailor).  In Spanish Gypsy clothes are called
Goneles, from the Wallachian Khainele.

Rodra, v. a.  To search, seek.

Roi, s.  Spoon.

Rokra, v. a.  To talk, speak.  Rus. Rek (he said).  Lat. Loquor.

Rokrenchericlo, s.  Parrot, magpie.

Rokrenguero, s.  A lawyer, talker.  Gaelic, Racaire (a chatterer).

Rokrengueriskey gav.  Talking fellows' town--Norwich.

Rokunyes, s.  Trousers, breeches.  Hun. Gyp.  Roklia (gown).  Mod.
Gr. [Greek:  ] (cloth).

Rom, s.  A husband.  Sans. Rama (a husband), Rama (an incarnation of
Vishnu), Rum (to sport, fondle).  Lat. Roma (City of Rama).  Gaelic,
Rom (organ of manhood).  Eng. Ram (aries, male sheep).  Heb. Ream
(monoceros, unicorn).

Rommado, part. pass. s.  Married, husband.

Romm'd, part. pass.  Married.

Romano Chal / Romany Chal, A Gypsy fellow, Gypsy lad.  See Chal.

Romani chi.  Gypsy lass, female Gypsy.

Romanes / Romany, Gypsy language.

Romaneskoenaes.  After the Gypsy fashion.  Wal. Roumainesk
(Roumainean, Wallachian.)

Romano Rye / Romany Rye, Gypsy gentleman.

Romipen, s.  Marriage.

Rook / Rukh, s.  Tree.  Sans. Vriksha.  Hun. Gyp. Rukh.  Span. Gyp.
Erucal (an olive-tree).

Rookeskey cost.  Branch of a tree.

Rooko-mengro, s.  Squirrel.  Lit. tree-fellow.

Roshto, a.  Angry.  Wal. Resti (to be angry).

Rossar-mescro, s.  Gypsy name of the tribe Heron, or Herne.  Lit.

Roujiou, a.  Clean.  See Iuziou.

Rove, v. n.  To weep.  Sans. Rud.

Rup, s.  Silver.  Sans. Raupya.  Hin. Rupee.

Rupenoe, a.  Silver:  rupenoe pea-mengri, silver tea-pots.

Ruslipen, s.  Strength.

Ruslo, a.  Strong.  Mod. Gr. [Greek:  ] (roborabo).  Rus. Rosluy
(great, huge of stature).  Hun. Ero (strength), eros (strong).

Rye, s.  A lord, gentleman.  Sans. Raj, Raya.

Ryeskoe, a.  Gentlemanly.

Ryeskoe dicking guero.  Gentlemanly looking man.

Ryoriskey rokkaring keir, s.  The House of Commons.  Lit. the
gentlemen's talking house.


SACKI.  Name of a Gypsy man.

Sainyor, s.  Pins.  Span. Gyp. Chingabar (a pin).

Sal, v. n.  To laugh; properly, he laughs.  Span. Gyp. Asaselarse.
Sans. Has.

Salla.  She laughs.

Salivaris, s.f.  Bridle.  See Sollibari.

Sap / Sarp, s.  Snake, serpent.  Wal. Sharpele.  Span. Gyp.

Sappors, s. pl.  Snakes.

Sap drey chaw.  A snake in the grass:  sap drey bor, a snake in the

Sapnis, s.  Soap.  Mod. Gr. [Greek:  ]  Wal. Sipoun.

Sar, postpos., prepos.  With:  mensar, with us; sar amande, with me.

Sar, conjunct.  As.

Sar, ad.  How.

Sar shin, How are you?  Sar shin, meero rye?  Sar shin, meeri rawnie?
How are you, sir?  How are you, madam?

Sas.  If it were.  See Is.

Sas, s.  Nest.  See Tass.

Sarla, s.  Evening:  koshti sarla, good evening.  See Tasarla.  Wal.
Seara.  Mod. Gr. [Greek:  ].

Saster, s.  Iron.

Saster-mengri, s.  A piece of iron worn above the knee by the skewer-
makers whilst engaged in whittling.

Saster-mengro, s.  Ironmonger.

Sasters, sastris.  Nails:  chokkiskey sastris, shoe-nails.

Sau, adv.  How.

Sau kisi.  How much?

Saulohaul / Sovlehaul, v. a.  To swear.

Saulohaul bango.  To swear falsely.

Sauloholomus, s.  Oath.  Span. Gyp. Solaja (a curse).  Arab. [Arabic:
] Salat (prayer).  Lat. Solemnis.  Fr. Serment.  Wal. Jourirnint

Savo, pron.  Who, that, which.

Saw, v. n.  I laugh.  Sawschan tu, you laugh.

Scamp.  Name of a small Gypsy tribe.  Sans. Kshump (to go).

Scourdilla, s.f.  Platter.  Lat. Scutella.

Scunyes / Scunyor, s. pl.  Pins, skewers.  See Escunyes.

Se, 3rd pers. sing. pres.  Is, there is:  kosko guero se, he is a
good fellow; se les, there is to him, he has.

Shab, v. a.  Cut away, run hard, escape.  Hun. Szabni.  This word is
chiefly used by the tobair coves, or vagrants.

Shan.  You are, they are.  See Shin.

Shauvo, v.  To get with child.  See Shuvvli.

Shehaury.  Sixpence.  See Shohaury.

Shello, s.  Rope.  Span. Gyp. Jele.

Shello-hokta-mengro, s.  Rope-dancer.

Sher-engro, s.  A head-man, leader of a Gypsy tribe.

Sher-engri, s.  A halter.

Shero, s.  A head.  Pers. [Persian:  ]

Sherro's kairipen, s.  Learning, head-work.

Sheshu, s.  Hare, rabbit.  See Shoshoi.

Sherrafo, a.  Religious, converted.  Arab. Sherif.

Shilleno / Shillero / Shillo, a.  Cold:  shillo chik, cold ground.

Shillipen, s.  Cold.

Shin.  Thou art:  sar shin, how art thou?

Sho, s.  Thing.

Sho, a.  Six.

Shohaury, s.  Sixpence.

Shok, s.  Cabbage:  shockor, cabbages.  Span. Gyp. Chaja.

Shom, v. 1st pers. pres.  I am.  Used in the pure Roman tongue to
express necessity:  e.g. shom te jav, I must go.  Lat. Sum.  Hun.
Gyp. Hom.

Shoob, s.  Gown.  Rus. Shoob.  See Shubbo.

Shoon, v. n.  To hear.  Pers. Shiniden.  Sans. Sru.

Shoonaben, s.  Hearing, audience.  To lel shoonaben of the covar, to
take hearing of the matter.

Shoshoi, s.  A hare or rabbit, but generally used by the Gypsies for
the latter.  Sans. Sasa (a hare or rabbit).  Hun. Gyp. Shoshoi.

Shubbo, s.  A gown.  Rus. Shoob.  Wal. Djoube.

Shubley patnies, s. pl.  Geese.

Shun.  A female Gypsy name.

Shuvvali, a.  Enceinte, with child.

Si, 3rd pers. sing. pres.  It is, she is:  tatchipen si, it is truth;
coin si rawnie, who is the lady? sossi your nav, what is your name?

Sicovar, ad.  Evermore, eternally.  Hun. Gyp. Sekovar.

Si covar ajaw.  So it is.

Sig, ad.  Quick, soon:  cana sig, now soon.  Span. Gyp. Singo.  Hun.

Sig, s.  Haste.

Sikker, v. a.  To show:  sikker-mengri, a show.

Simen, s. a.  Equal, alike.  Sans. Samana.

Simen.  We are, it is we.  Wal. Semeina (to resemble).

Simmeno, s.  Broth.  See Zimmen.

Simmer, v. a.  Pledge, pawn.

Simmery-mengre, s. pl.  Pawnbrokers.

Sis.  Thou art:  misto sis riddo, thou art well dressed.

Siva, v. a.  To sew.  Sans. Siv.

Siva-mengri, s.  A needle, sewing-thing.

Siva-mengri, s.  Sempstress.

Siva-mengro, s.  Tailor.

Skammen, s.  Chair.  Wal. Skaun.  Mod. Gr. [Greek:  ]

Skammen-engro, s.  Chair-maker.

Skraunior, s. pl.  Boots.

Slom / Slum, v. a.  Follow, trace, track.  Rus. Sliedovat.

Smentini, s.  Cream.  Wal. Zmentenie.  Rus. Smetana.

So, pron. rel.  Which, what:  so se tute's kairing, what are you

Sollibari, s.  Bridle.  Mod. Gr. [Greek:  ]

Sonakey / Sonneco, s.  Gold.  Sans. Svarna.

Sore / Soro, a.  All, every.  Sans. Sarva.

Sorlo, a.  Early.  Arab. [Arabic:] Sohr, Sahr (morning, day-break).
Wal. Zorile.

Soro-ruslo, a.  Almighty.  Dad soro-ruslo, Father Almighty.

Se se?  Who is it?

So si?  What is it?  So si ora, what's o'clock?

Soskey, ad.  Wherefore, for what.

Sovaharri, s.  Carpet, blanket.

Sove, v. n.  To sleep.  Hun. Gyp. Sovella (he sleeps).  Span. Gyp.
Sobelar (to sleep).  Danish, Sove (to sleep).

Sove tuley.  To lie down.

Sovie, s.  Needle.  See Su.

Soving aley.  Lying down to sleep.

Spikor, s. pl.  Skewers.  Wal. Spik.

Spinyor, s. pl.  Carrots.

Spinyor, s. pl.  Pins.  Span. Gyp. Chingabar (a pin).

Stadj, s.  Hat.

Stanya / Stanye, s.  A stable.  Hun. Sanya.  Wal. Staula, steinie

Stanya-mengro, s.  Groom, stable-fellow.

Stardo, part. pass.  Imprisoned.

Staripen, s.  Prison.

Staro-mengro, s.  Prisoner.

Stannyi / Staunyo, s.  A deer.

Stiggur, s.  Gate, turnpike.  Old cant, Giger (a door).

Stiggur-engro, s.  Turnpike-keeper.

Stor, a.  Four.

Storey, s.  Prisoner.

Stuggur, s.  A stack.

Su, s.  Needle.  Hun. Tu.

Subie / Subye, s.  Needle:  subye ta naval, needle and thread.

Sueti, s.  People.  Lithuanian, Swetas.

Sungella, v.  It stinks.

Sutta / Suttur / Suta, s.  Sleep.  Sans. Subta (asleep).  Hin. Sutta
(sleeping).  Lat. Sopitus.

Suttur-gillie, s.  Sleep-song, lullaby.

Swegler / Swingle, s.  Pipe.

Syeira.  A female Gypsy name.


Ta, conj.  And.

Talleno, a.  Woollen:  talleno chofa, woollen or flannel petticoat.

Tan, s.  Place, tent.  Hun. Tanya.

Tard / Tardra, v. a.  To raise, build, pull, draw:  the kair is
tardrad opre, the house is built; tard the chaw opre, pull up the
grass.  Hin. Torna (to pluck).  Wal. Tratze.  Gaelic, Tarruinn.

Tardra-mengre.  Hop-pickers.

Tas, s.  Cup, nest of a bird.  See Dui tas, doo das.

Tasarla / Tasorlo, s.  To-morrow.  Lit. to-early.  See Sorlo.

Tasarla, s.  The evening.  This word must not be confounded with the
one which precedes it; the present is derived from the Wallachian
Seari (evening), whilst the other is from the Arabic Sohr, Sahar

Tassa-mengri, s.  A frying-pan.  See Tattra-mengri.

Tatchipen, s.  Truth.  Sans. Satyata.

Tatcho, a.  True.  Sans. Sat.

Tatti-pani / Tatti-pauni, s.  Brandy.  Lit. hot water.

Tatti-pen, s.  Heat.

Tatto, a.  Hot, warm.  Sans. Tapta.  Tap (to be hot).  Gaelic, Teth.

Tatto yeck, s.  A hot un, or hot one; a stinging blow given in some
very sensitive part.

Tattra-mengri, s.  A frying-pan.

Tawno m. / Tawnie f., a.  Little, small, tiny.  Sans. Tarana (young).
Wal. Tienir (young).  Lat. Tener.  Span. Gyp. Chinoro.

Tawnie yecks, s. pl.  Little ones, grandchildren.

Te, prep.  To:  te lesti, to her; this word is not properly Gypsy.

Te, conjunct.  That:  te jinnen, that they may know, an optative
word; O beng te poggar his men, may the devil break his neck.  Wal.

Tel, v. a. imp.  Hold:  tel te jib, hold your tongue.

Tem, s.  Country.

Temeskoe, a.  Belonging to a country.

Temno, a.  Dark.  Rus. Temnoy.  Sans. Tama (darkness).

Ten, s.  See Tan.

Tikno, s.  A child.  Mod. Gr. [Greek:  ]

Tikno, a.  Small, little.  Span. Gyp. Chinoro.  Lat. Tener.

Tippoty, a.  Malicious, spiteful:  tippoty drey mande, bearing malice
against me.

Tiro, pron.  Thine.

Tobbar, s.  The Road; a Rapparee word.  Boro-tobbarkillipen (the Game
of High Toby--highway robbery).  Irish, Tobar (a source, fountain).

Tornapo.  Name of a Gypsy man.

Tororo, s.  A poor fellow, a beggar, a tramp.  Sans. Daridra.

Tove, v. a.  To wash:  tovipen, washing.  Sans. Dhav.

Toving divvus, s.  Washing day, Monday.

Traish, v. a.  To frighten, terrify:  it traishes mande, it frightens

Trihool, s.  Cross:  Mi doveleskoe trihool, holy cross.  Span. Gyp.
Trijul.  Hin. Trisool.

Trin, a.  Three.

Tringrosh / Tringurushee, Shilling.  Lit. three groats.

Tringurushengre, s. pl.  Things costing a shilling.

Tringush, s.  Shilling.

Trito, a.  Third.  Sans. Tritiya.

Truffeni.  Female Gypsy name:  Truffeni Kaumlo, Jack Wardomescres
dieyas nav--Truffeni Lovel, the name of John Cooper's mother.  Mod.
Gr. [Greek:  ]

Truppior, s. pl.  Stays.

Trupo, s.  Body.  Wal. Troup.  Rus. Trup

Trushni, s.  Faggot.

Trusno, a.  Thirsty, dry.  Sans. Trishnaj.

Tu, pron.  Thou:  shoon tu, dieya! do thou hear, mother!

Tud, s.  Milk.  Sans. Duh (to milk).

Tudlo gueri.  Milkmaid.

Tug, a.  Sad, afflicted.

Tugnipen, s.  Affliction.

Tugnis amande.  Woe is me; I am sad.

Tugno, a.  Sad, mournful.

Tule / Tuley, prep.  Below, under:  tuley the bor, under the hedge.
Slavonian, doly.

Tulipen, s.  Fat, grease.

Tulo, a.  Fat.

Tute, pron.  Accusative of Tu; generally used instead of the

Tuv, s.  Smoke, tobacco.

Tuvalo / Tuvvalo, a.  Smoky.  Span. Gyp. Chibalo (a cigar).


VANGUS, s.  Finger.  Sans. Angula.

Vangustri, s.  Ring.  Sans. Angulika, anguri.  See Wangustri.

Vaneshu, s.  Nothing.  From the Wallachian Ba nitchi, not at all.

Var, s.  Flour:  var-engro, a miller.  See Waro.

Vardo, s.  Cart.  See Wardo.

Vassavo / Vassavy, a.  Bad, evil.

Vast, s.  Hand.

Vava.  An affix, by which the future of a verb is formed, as Heta-
vava.  It seems to be the Wallachian Wa-fi, he shall or will be.

Vellin, s.  A bottle.

Vauros, s.  A city.  Hun. Varos.  Sans. Puri.  Hin. Poor.  Wal.

Venor / Vennor, Bowels, entrails.  See Wendror,


WAFO, a.  Another.  Sans. Apara.

Wafo divvus, s.  Yesterday.  Lit. the other day.

Wafo tem.  Another country, foreign land.

Wafo temeskoe mush, s.  A foreigner, another countryman.

Wafo tem-engre.  Foreigners.

Wafodu / Wafudo, a.  Bad, evil.

Wafoduder.  Worse:  wafoduder than dovor, worse than they.

Wafodu-pen, s.  Wickedness.

Wafodu guero, s.  The Evil One, Satan.

Wafodu tan, s.  Hell, bad place.

Wangar, s.  Coals, charcoal.  Sans. Angara.  See Wongar.

Wangustri, s.  Ring.

Warda, v.  To guard, take care:  warda tu coccorus, take care of

Wardo, s.  Cart.  Sans. Pattra.

Wardo-mescro, s.  Carter, cartwright, cooper, name of a Gypsy tribe.

Waro, s.  Flour.

Waro-mescro, s.  Miller.

Wast, s.  Hand.  See Vast.  Wastrors, hands.  Gaelic, Bas (the palm
of the hand).

Weggaulus / Welgorus / Welgaulus, s.  A fair.  Wal. Bieltchiou.

Wel, v. a.  He comes; from Ava.  Sometimes used imperatively; e.g.
Wel adrey, come in.

Welling pali.  Coming back, returning from transportation.

Wen, s.  Winter.

Wendror, s. pl.  Bowels, inside.  Wal. Pentetche.  Lat. Venter.

Wentzelow.  Name of a Gypsy man.

Werriga, s.  Chain.  Rus. Veriga.  Wal. Verigie (bolt).

Wesh, s.  Forest, wood.  Pers. [Persian:  ]

Wesh-engro, s.  Woodman, gamekeeper.

Weshen-juggal, s.  Fox.  Lit. dog of the wood.

Woddrus / Wuddrus, s.  Bed.  Hun. Gyp. Patos.  Wal. Pat.  The Spanish
Gypsies retain the pure Indian word Charipe.

Wongar, s.  Coal.  Also a term for money; probably because Coal in
the cant language signifies money.  See Wangar.

Wongar-camming mush, s.  A miser.  Lit. one who loves coal.

Wuddur, s.  Door.  Span. Gyp. Burda.  Wal. Poartie.

Wuddur-mescro, s.  Doorkeeper.

Wust, v. a.  To cast, throw.

Wusto-mengro, s.  Wrestler, hurler.


YACK, s.  Eye.  Sans. Akshi.  Germ. Auge.  Rus. Oko.  Lithuanian,
Akis.  Lat. Oculus.

Yackor.  Eyes.

Yag, s.  Fire.  Sans. Agni.  Rus. Ogon.  Lithuanian, Ugnis.  Lat.
Ignis.  Irish, An (water, fire).

Yag-engri, s.  Gun, fire-thing.

Yag- engro / Yago-mengro, s.  Gamekeeper, sportsman, fireman.

Yag-kairepenes, s.  Fireworks.

Yag-vardo, s.  Fire-car, railroad carriage.

Yarb, s.  Herb.

Yarb-tan, s.  Garden.

Yeck, a.  One.  Sans. Eka.  Hin. Yak.

Yeckoro, a.  Only:  yeckoro chavo, only son.

Yeckorus, ad.  Once.

Yo, pron.  He.

Yoi, pron.  She.  Sometimes used for La or Las, her; e.g. Mande
putch'd yoi, I asked she, her.

Yokki, a.  Clever, expert:  a yokki juva, a yokki woman--a female
expert at filching, ringing the changes, telling fortunes, and other
Gypsy arts.  Sans. Yoga (artifice, plan), Yuj (to combine, put
together, plan).

Yora, s.  Hour.  See Ora.

Yoro, s.  An egg.  Wal. Ou.


ZI, s.  The heart, mind.  Hun. Sziv.  Sans. Dhi.

Zimmen, s.  Broth.  Wal. Zmenteni (cream).

Zoomi, s. f.  Broth, soup.  Mod. Gr. [Greek:  ]  Wal. Zamie (juice).

Zingaro.  A Gypsy, a person of mixed blood, one who springs from
various races, a made-up person.  Sans. Sangkara, compositus (made-


To dick and jin,
To bikn and kin;
To pee and hal,
And av and jal;
To kair and poggra,
Shoon and rokra;
To caur and chore,
Heta and cour,
Moar and more,
To drab and dook,
And nash on rook;
To pek and tove,
And sove and rove,
And nash on poove;
To tardra oprey,
And chiv aley;
To pes and gin,
To mang and chin,
To pootch and pukker,
Hok and dukker;
To besh and kel,
To del and lel,
And jib to tel;
Bitch, atch, and hatch,
Roddra and latch;
To gool and saul,
And sollohaul;
To pand and wustra,
Hokta and plastra,
Busna and kistur,
Maila and grista;
To an and riggur;
To pen and sikker,
Porra and simmer,
Chungra and chingra,
Pude and grommena,
Grovena, gruvena;
To dand and choom,
Chauva and rom,
Rok and gare,
Jib and mer
With camova,
And paracrova,
And mekello,
And kitsi wasror,
Sore are lavior,
For kairing chomany,
In jib of Romany.


If foky kek jins bute,
Ma sal at lende;
For sore mush jins chomany
That tute kek jins.

Whatever ignorance men may show,
From none disdainful turn;
For every one doth something know
Which you have yet to learn.


So must I ker, daiya, to ker tute mistos?
It is my Dovvel's kerrimus, and we can't help asarlus.
Mi Dovvel opral, dick tuley opre mande.
If I could lel bonnek tute, het-avava tute.
Misto kedast tute.
Dovey si fino covar, ratfelo jukkal, sas miro.

The plastra-mengro sollohaul'd bango.
Me camava jaw drey the Nevi Wesh to dick the purey Bare-mescrey.
You jin feter dovey oduvu.
Will you pes for a coro levinor?
Ma pi kekomi.
Ma rokra kekomi.
Bori shil se mande.
Tatto tu coccori, pen.
Kekkeno pawni dov odoi.
Sore simensar si men.

Tatto ratti se len.
Wafudu lavior you do pen, miry deary Dovvel.
Kair pias to kair the gorgies sal.
Nai men chior.
So se drey lis?
Misto sis riddo.
Muk man av abri.
Ma kair jaw.
Si covar ajaw.
An men posseymengri.
Colliko sorlo me deavlis.
Pukker zi te lesti.
Soving lasa.
Tatto si can.
Mande kinyo, nastis jalno durroder.
Ma muk de gorgey jinnen sore lidan dovvu luvvu so garridan.
Dui trins ta yeck ta pas.
Pes apopli.
Chiv'd his vast adrey tiro putsi.
Penchavo chavo savo shan tu.

I'd sooner shoon his rokrapen than shoon Lally gil a gillie.
Kekkeno jinava mande ne burreder denne chavo.
Aukko tu pios adrey Romanes.


What must I do, mother, to make you well?
It is my God's doing, and we can't help at all.

My God above, look down upon me!
If I could get hold of you, I would slay you.
Thou hast done well.
That is a fine thing, you bloody dog, if it were mine.
The Bow-street runner swore falsely.
I will go into the New Forest to see the old Stanleys.
You know better than that.
Will you pay for a pot of ale?
Don't drink any more.
Do not speak any more.
I have a great cold.
Warm thyself, sister.
There is no water there.
We are all relations:  all who are with us are ourselves.
They have hot blood.
Evil words you do speak, O my dear God.
Make fun, to make the Gentiles laugh.
I have no girls.
What is in it?
Thou art well dressed.
Let me come out.
Don't do so.
The thing is so:  so it is.
Bring me a fork.
To-morrow morning I will give it.
Tell her your mind.
Sleeping with her.
The sun is hot.
I am tired, I can go no farther.
Don't let the Gentiles know all the money you took which you hid.
Seven pound ten.
Pay again.
Put his hand into your pocket.
The boy is thinking who you are.

I would rather hear him speak than hear Lally sing.
I know no more than a child.
Here's your health in Romany!


THE FIRST DAY--Genesis i. 1, 2, 3, 4

Drey the sherripen Midibble kair'd the temoprey ta the puv;
Ta the puv was chungalo, ta chichi was adrey lis;
Ta temnopen was oprey the mui of the boro put.
Ta Midibble's bavol-engri besh'd oprey the panior;
Ta Midibble penn'd:  Mook there be dute! ta there was dute.
Ta Midibble dick'd that the doot was koosho-koshko.
Ta Midibble chinn'd enrey the dute ta the temnopen;
Ta Midibble kor'd the dute divvus, ta the temnopen kor'd yo rarde;
Ta the sarla, ta the sorlo were yeckto divvus.

THE FIFTH DAY--Genesis i. 20, 21, 22, 23

Then Midibble penn'd; Mook sore the panior
Chinn tairie jibbing engris bute dosta,
Ta prey puv be bute dosta chiricles
To vol adrey the rek of the tarpe.

Then Midibble kair'd the borie baulo-matches,
Ta sore covar that has jibbing zi adreylis,
The bute, bute tairie covars drey the panior
Sore yeck drey its genos kair'd Midibble,

The chiricles that vol adrey the tarpe
Sore yeck drey its genos kair'd he lende:
Then Midibble dick'd that sore was koosho-koshko,
And he chiv'd his koshto rokrapen opreylen:

Penn'd Midibble:  Dey ye frute ever-komi,
Ever-komi be burreder your nummer,
Per with covars the panior ta durior,
Ta prey puv be burreder the chiricles!

Then was sarla ta sorlo panschto divvus.

THE CREATION OF MAN--Genesis i. 27, 28

Then Mi-dibble kair'd Manoo drey his dikkipen,
Drey Mi-dibble's dikkipen kair'd he leste;
Mush and mushi kair'd Dibble lende
And he chiv'd his koshto rokrapen opreylen:

Penn'd Mi-dibble:  Dey ye frute ever-komi,
Ever-komi be burreder your nummer;
Per with chauves and chiyor the puvo
And oprey sore the puvo be krallior,

Oprey the dooiya and its matches,
And oprey the chiricles of the tarpe,
And oprey soro covar that's jibbing
And peers prey the mui of the puvo.


Meery dearie Dad, sauvo jivves drey the tem oprey, be sharrafo teero
nav, te awel teero tem, be kedo sore so caumes oprey ye poov, sar
kairdios drey the tem oprey.  Dey man to divvus meery divvuskey
morro; ta for-dey mande mande's pizzaripenes, sar mande fordeava
wafor mushes lende's pizzaripenes; ma mook te petrav drey kek
tentacionos, but lel mande abri from sore wafodupen; for teero se o
tem, Mi-dibble, teero o ruslopen, ta yi corauni knaw ta ever-komi.
Si covar ajaw.


Apasavello drey Mi-dovel; Dad sore-ruslo savo kerdo o praio tem, ta
cav acoi tuley:  ta drey lescro yekkero Chauvo Jesus Christus moro
erray, beano of wendror of Mi-develeskey Geiry Mary; was curredo by
the wast of Poknish Pontius Pilatos; was nash'd oprey ye Trihool; was
mored, and chived adrey ye puve; jall'd tuley ye temno drom ke wafudo
tan, bengeskoe starriben; ta prey ye trito divvus jall'd yo oprey ke
koshto tan, Mi-dovels ker; beshel yo knaw odoy prey Mi-dovels tatcho
wast, Dad sore-ruslo; cad odoy avellava to lel shoonapen oprey jibben
and merripen; Apasavello drey Mi-dibbleskey Ducos; drey the Bori Mi-
develesky Bollisky Congri; that sore tatcho fokey shall jib in
mestepen kettaney; that Mi-dibble will fordel sore wafudopenes; that
soror mulor will jongor, and there will be kek merripen asarlus.  Si
covar ajaw.  Avali.


Miro gulo Devel, savo hal ote ando Cheros, te avel swuntunos tiro
nav; te avel catari tiro tem; te keren saro so cames oppo puv, sar
ando Cheros.  De man sekhonus miro diveskoe manro, ta ierta mangue
saro so na he plaskerava tuke, sar me ierstavava wafo manuschengue
saro so na plaskerelen mangue.  Ma muk te petrow ando chungalo
camoben; tama lel man abri saro doschdar.  Weika tiro sin o tem, tiri
yi potea, tiri yi proslava akana ta sekovar.

Te del amen o gulo Del eg meschibo pa amara choribo.

Te vas del o Del amengue; te n'avel man pascotia ando drom, te na
hoden pen mandar.

Ja Develehi!
Az Develehi!
Ja Develeskey!
Az Develeskey!
Heri Devlis!

My sweet God, who art there in Heaven, may thy name come hallowed;
may thy kingdom come hither; may they do all that thou wishest upon
earth, as in Heaven.  Give me to-day my daily bread, and forgive me
all that I cannot pay thee, as I shall forgive other men all that
they do not pay me.  Do not let me fall into evil desire; but take me
out from all wickedness.  For thine is the kingdom, thine the power,
thine the glory now and ever.

May the sweet God give us a remedy for our poverty.

May God help us!  May no misfortune happen to me in the road, and may
no one steal anything me.

Go with God!
Stay with God!
Go, for God's sake!
Stay, for God's sake!
By God!


The tawno fokey often putches so koskipen se drey the Romano jib?
Mande pens ye are sore dinneles; bute, bute koskipen se adrey lis, ta
dusta, dosta of moro foky would have been bitcheno or nash'd, but for
the puro, choveno Romano jib.  A lav in Romany, penn'd in cheeros to
a tawnie rakli, and rigg'd to the tan, has kair'd a boro kisi of
luvvo and wafor covars, which had been chor'd, to be chived tuley
pov, so that when the muskerres well'd they could latch vanisho, and
had kek yeckly to muk the Romano they had lell'd opre, jal his drom,
but to mang also his artapen.

His bitchenipenskie cheeros is knau abri, and it were but kosko in
leste to wel ken, if it were yeckly to lel care of lescri puri,
choveny romady; she's been a tatchi, tatchi romady to leste, and kek
man apasavello that she has jall'd with a wafu mush ever since he's
been bitcheno.

When yeck's tardrad yeck's beti ten oprey, kair'd yeck's beti yag
anglo the wuddur, ta nash'd yeck's kekauvi by the kekauviskey saster
oprey lis, yeck kek cams that a dikkimengro or muskerro should wel
and pen:  so's tute kairing acai?  Jaw oprey, Romano juggal.

Prey Juliken yeckto Frydivvus, anglo nango muyiskie staunyi naveni
kitchema, prey the chong opral Bororukeskoe Gav, drey the Wesh, tute
dickavavasa bute Romany foky, mushor ta juvar, chalor ta cheiar.

Jinnes tu miro puro prala Rye Stanniwix, the puro rye savo rigs a
bawlo-dumo-mengri, ta kair'd desh ta stor mille barior by covar-

He jall'd on rokkring ta rokkring dinneleskoenaes till mande pukker'd
leste:  if tute jasas on dovodoiskoenaes mande curavava tute a tatto
yeck prey the nok.

You putches mande so si patrins.  Patrins are Romany drom sikkering
engris, by which the Romany who jal anglo muk lende that wels palal
jin the drom they have jall'd by:  we wusts wastperdes of chaw oprey
the puv at the jalling adrey of the drom, or we kairs sar a wangust a
trihool oprey the chik, or we chins ranior tuley from the rukhies,
and chivs lende oprey drey the puv aligatas the bor; but the tatcho
patrin is wast-perdes of leaves, for patrin or patten in puro Romano
jib is the uav of a rukheskoe leaf.

The tatcho drom to be a jinney-mengro is to shoon, dick, and rig in

The mush savo kek se les the juckni-wast oprey his jib and his zi is
keck kosko to jal adrey sweti.

The lil to lel oprey the kekkeno mushe's puvior and to keir the
choveno foky mer of buklipen and shillipen, is wusted abri the
Raioriskey rokkaring ker.

The nav they dins lati is Bokht drey Cuesni, because she rigs about a
cuesni, which sore the rardies when she jals keri, is sure to be
perdo of chored covars.

Cav acoi, pralor, se the nav of a lil, the sherrokairipen of a puro
kladjis of Roumany tem.  The Borobeshemescrotan, or the lav-
chingaripen between ye jinneynengro ta yi sweti; or the merripenskie
rokrapen chiv'd by the zi oprey the trupo.

When the shello was about his men they rigg'd leste his artapen, and
muk'd leste jal; but from dovo divvus he would rig a men-pangushi
kekkomi, for he penn'd it rigg'd to his zee the shello about his men.

Jack Vardomescro could del oprey dosta to jin sore was oprey the mea-
bars and the drom-sikkering engris.

The Romano drom to pek a chiriclo is to kair it oprey with its porior
drey chik, and then to chiv it adrey the yag for a beti burroder than
a posh ora.  When the chik and the hatch'd porior are lell'd from the
chiriclesky trupos, the per's chinn'd aley, and the wendror's wusted
abri, 'tis a hobben dosta koshto for a crallissa to hal without lon.

When Gorgio mushe's merripen and Romany Chal's merripen wels
kettaney, kek kosto merripen see.

Yeckorus he pukker'd mande that when he was a bis beschengro he mored
a gorgio, and chived the mulo mas tuley the poov; he was lell'd oprey
for the moripen, but as kekkeno could latch the shillo mas, the
pokiniuses muk'd him jal; he penn'd that the butsi did not besh pordo
pre his zi for bute chiros, but then sore on a sudden he became
tugnis and atraish of the mulo gorgio's bavol-engro, and that often
of a rarde, as he was jalling posh motto from the kitchema by his
cocoro, he would dick over his tatcho pikko and his bango pikko, to
jin if the mulo mush's bavol-engro was kek welling palal to lel
bonnek of leste.

Does tute jin the Romano drom of lelling the wast?

Avali, prala.

Sikker mande lis.

They kairs it ajaw, prala.

A chorredo has burreder peeas than a Romany Chal.

Tute has shoon'd the lav pazorrus.  Dovodoy is so is kored
gorgikonaes "Trusted."  Drey the puro cheeros the Romano savo lelled
lovvu, or wafor covars from lescro prala in parriken, ta kek pess'd
leste apopli, could be kair'd to buty for leste as gry, mailla or
cost-chinnimengro for a besh ta divvus.  To divvus kek si covar ajaw.
If a Romano lelled lovvu or wafu covars from meero vast in parriken,
ta kek pessed mande apopli, sar estist for mande te kair leste buty
as gry, mailla, or cost-chinnimengro for mande for yek divvus, kek to
pen for sore a besh?

Do you nav cavacoi a weilgorus?  Ratfelo rinkeno weilgorus cav acoi:
you might chiv lis sore drey teero putsi.

Kek jinnipenskey covar se to pen tute's been bango.  If tute pens
tute's been bango, foky will pen:  Estist tute's a koosho koshko
mushipen, but tatchipe a ratfelo dinnelo.

Car's tute jibbing?

Mande's kek jibbing; mande's is atching, at the feredest; mande's a
pirremengri, prala!

Cauna Romany foky rokkerelan yeck sar wafu penelan pal ta pen; cauna
dado or deya rokkerelan ke lendes chauves penelan meero chauvo or
meeri chi; or my child, gorgikonaes, to ye dui; cauna chauves
rokkerelan te dad or deya penelan meero dad or meeri deya!

Meero dado, soskey were creminor kair'd?  Meero chauvo, that puvo-
baulor might jib by haIling lende.  Meero dado, soskey were
puvobaulor kair'd?  Meero chauvo, that tute and mande might jib by
lelling lende.  Meero dado, soskey were tu ta mande kair'd?  Meero
chauvo, that creminor might jib by halling mende.

Sore giv-engres shan dinneles.  When they shoons a gav-engro drey the
tem pen:  Dov-odoy's a fino grye! they pens:  Kekkeno grye se; grasni
si; whether the covar's a grasni or kekkeni.  Kek jinellan the
dinneles that a grasni's a grye, though a grye is kek a grasni.

Kekkeni like Romano Will's rawnie for kelling drey a chauro.

Cauna Constance Petulengri merr'd she was shel ta desch beshor puri.

Does tute jin Rawnie Wardomescri?

Mande jins lati misto, prala.

Does tute cam lati?

Mande cams lati bute, prala; and mande has dosta, dosta cheeros
penn'd to the wafor Romany Chals, when they were rokkering wafudo of
lati:  She's a rawnie; she lels care of sore of you; if it were kek
for lati, you would sore jal to the beng.

So kerella for a jivipen?

She dukkers, prala; she dukkers.

Can she dukker misto?

There's kekkeny Romany juva tuley the can for dukkering sar Rawnie
Wardomescri; nastis not to be dukker'd by lati; she's a tatchi
chovahan; she lels foky by the wast and dukkers lende, whether they
cams or kek.

Kek koskipen si to jal roddring after Romany Chals.  When tute cams
to dick lende nestist to latch yeck o' lende; but when tute's
penching o' wafor covars tute dicks o' lende dosta dosta.

Mande will sollohaul neither bango nor tatcho against kekkeno; if
they cams to latch abri chomoni, muk lende latch it abri their

If he had been bitcheno for a boro luripen mande would have penn'd
chi; but it kairs mande diviou to pentch that he was bitcheno, all
along of a bori lubbeny, for trin tringurishis ta posh.

When he had kair'd the moripen, he kair'd sig and plastrar'd adrey
the wesh, where he gared himself drey the hev of a boro, puro rukh;
but it was kek koskipen asarlus; the plastra-mengres slomm'd his pire
sore along the wesh till they well'd to the rukh.

Sau kisi foky has tute dukker'd to divvus?

Yeck rawnie coccori, prala; dov ody she wels palal; mande jins lati
by the kaulo dori prey laki shubba.

Sau bute luvvu did she del tute?

Yeck gurush, prala; yeck gurush coccoro.  The beng te lilly a truppy!

Shoon the kosko rokkrapen so Micail jinney-mengro penn'd ke Rawnie
Trullifer:  Rawnie Trollopr, you must jib by your jibben:  and if a
base se tukey you must chiv lis tuley.

Can you rokkra Romanes?
Avali, prala!
So si Weshenjuggalslomomengreskeytemskey tudlogueri?
Mande don't jin what you pens, prala.
Then tute is kek Romano lavomengro.


The young people often ask:  What good is there in the Romany tongue?
I answers:  Ye are all fools!  There is plenty, plenty of good in it,
and plenty, plenty of our people would have been transported or hung,
but for the old, poor Roman language.  A word in Romany said in time
to a little girl, and carried to the camp, has caused a great purse
of money and other things, which had been stolen, to be stowed
underground; so that when the constables came they could find
nothing, and had not only to let the Gypsy they had taken up go his
way, but also to beg his pardon.

His term of transportation has now expired, and it were but right in
him to come home, if it were only to take care of his poor old wife:
she has been a true, true wife to him, and I don't believe that she
has taken up with another man ever since he was sent across.

When one's pitched up one's little tent, made one's little fire
before the door, and hung one's kettle by the kettle-iron over it,
one doesn't like that an inspector or constable should come and say:
What are you doing here?  Take yourself off, you Gypsy dog.

On the first Friday of July, before the public-house called the Bald-
faced Stag, on the hill above the town of the great tree in the
Forest, you will see many Roman people, men and women, lads and

Do you know my old friend Mr. Stanniwix, the old gentleman that wears
a pigtail, and made fourteen thousand pounds by smuggling?

He went on talking and talking foolishness till I said to him:  If
you goes on in that 'ere way I'll hit you a hot 'un on the nose.

You ask me what are patrins.  Patrin is the name of the signs by
which the Gypsies who go before show the road they have taken to
those who follow behind.  We flings handfuls of grass down at the
head of the road we takes, or we makes with the finger a cross-mark
on the ground, we sticks up branches of trees by the side the hedge.
But the true patrin is handfuls of leaves flung down; for patrin or
patten in old Roman language means the leaf of a tree.

The true way to be a wise man is to hear, see, and bear in mind.

The man who has not the whip-hand of his tongue and his temper is not
fit to go into company.

The Bill to take up the no-man's lands (comons), and to make the poor
people die of hunger and cold, has been flung out of the House of

The name they gives her is "Luck in a basket," because she carries
about a basket, which every night, when she goes home, is sure to be
full of stolen property.

This here, brothers, is the title of a book, the head-work of an old
king of Roumany land:  the Tribunal, or the dispute between the wise
man and the world:  or, the death-sentence passed by the soul upon
the body.

When the rope was about his neck they brought him his pardon, and let
him go; but from that day he would wear a neck-kerchief no more, for
he said it brought to his mind the rope about his neck.

Jack Cooper could read enough to know all that was upon the
milestones and the sign-posts.

The Roman way to cook a fowl is to do it up with its feathers in
clay, and then to put it in fire for a little more than half an hour.
When the clay and the burnt feathers are taken from the fowl, the
belly cut open, and the inside flung out, 'tis a food good enough for
a queen to eat without salt.

When the Gentile way of living and the Gypsy way of living come
together, it is anything but a good way of living.

He told me once that when he was a chap of twenty he killed a
Gentile, and buried the dead meat under ground.  He was taken up for
the murder, but as no one could find the cold meat, the justices let
him go.  He said that the job did not sit heavy upon his mind for a
long time, but then all of a sudden he became sad, and afraid of the
dead Gentile's ghost; and that often of a night, as he was coming
half-drunk from the public-house by himself, he would look over his
right shoulder and over his left shoulder, to know if the dead man's
ghost was not coming behind to lay hold of him.

Do you know the Gypsy way of taking the hand?
Aye, aye, brother.
Show it to me.
They does it so, brother.

A tramp has more fun than a Gypsy.

You have heard the word pazorrus.  That is what is called by the
Gentiles "trusted," or in debt.  In the old time the Roman who got
from his brother money or other things on trust, and did not pay him
again, could be made to work for him as horse, ass, or wood cutter
for a year and a day.  At present the matter is not so.  If a Roman
got money, or other things, from my hand on credit, and did not repay
me, how could I make him labour for me as horse, ass, or stick-cutter
for one day, not to say for a year?

Do you call this a fair?  A very pretty fair is this:  you might put
it all into your pocket.

It is not a wise thing to say you have been wrong.  If you allow you
have been wrong, people will say:  You may be a very honest fellow,
but are certainly a very great fool.

Where are you living?

Mine is not living; mine is staying, to say the best of it; I am a
traveller, brother!

When Roman people speak to one another, they say brother and sister.
When parents speak to their children, they say, my son, or my
daughter, or my child, gorgiko-like, to either.  When children speak
to their parents, they say, my father, or my mother.

My father, why were worms made?  My son, that moles might live by
eating them.  My father, why were moles made?  My son, that you and I
might live by catching them.  My father, why were you and I made?  My
son, that worms might live by eating us.

All farmers are fools.  When they hear a citizen in the country say:
That's a fine horse! they say:  'Tis no horse, 'tis a mare; whether
the thing's a horse or not.  The simpletons don't know that a mare's
a horse, though a horse is not a mare.

No one like Gypsy Will's wife for dancing in a platter.

When Constance Smith died, she was a hundred ten years old.

Do you know Mrs. Cooper?

I knows her very well, brother.

Do you like her?

I loves her very much, brother; and I have often, often said to the
other Gypsies, when they speaking ill of her:  She's a gentlewoman;
takes care of all of you; if it were not for her, you would all go to
the devil.

What does she do for a living?

She tells fortunes, brother; she tells fortunes.

Is she a good hand at fortune-telling?

There's no Roman woman under the sun so good at fortune-telling as
Mrs. Cooper; it is impossible not to have your fortune told by her;
she's a true witch; she takes people by the hand, and tells their
fortunes, whether they will or no.

'Tis no use to go seeking after Gypsies.  When you wants to see them
'tis impossible to find one of them; but when you are thinking of
other matters you see plenty, plenty of them.

I will swear neither falsely nor truly against any one; if they
wishes to find out something, let them find it out themselves.

If he had been transported for a great robbery, I would have said
nothing; but it makes me mad to think that he has been sent away, all
along of a vile harlot, for the value of three-and-sixpence.

When he had committed the murder he made haste, and ran into the
wood, where he hid himself in the hollow of a great old tree; but it
was no use at all; the runners followed his track all along the
forest till they came to the tree.

How many fortunes have you told to-day?

Only one lady's, brother; yonder she's coming back; I knows her by
the black lace on her gown.

How much money did she give you?

Only one groat, brother; only one groat.  May the devil run away with
her bodily!

Hear the words of wisdom which Mike the Grecian said to Mrs.
Trullifer:  Mrs. Trollopr, you must live by your living; and if you
have a pound you must spend it.

Can you speak Romany?
Aye, aye, brother!
What is Weshenjuggalslomomengreskeytemskeytudlogueri?
I don't know what you say, brother.
Then you are no master of Romany.


Baulo-mengreskey tem          Swineherds' country, Hampshire
Bitcheno padlengreskey tem    Transported fellows' country, Botany
Bokra-mengreskey tem          Shepherds' country, Sussex
Bori-congriken gav            Great church town, York
Boro-rukeneskey gav           Great tree town, Fairlop
Boro gueroneskey tem          Big fellows' country, Northumberland
Chohawniskey tem              Witches' country, Lancashire
Choko-mengreskey gav          Shoemakers' town, Northampton
Churi-mengreskey gav          Cutlers' town, Sheffield
Coro-mengreskey tem           Potters' country, Staffordshire
Cosht-killimengreskey tem     Cudgel players' country, Cornwall
Curo-mengreskey gav           Boxers' town, Nottingham
Dinelo tem                    Fools' country, Suffolk
Giv-engreskey tem             Farmers' country, Buckinghamshire
Gry-engreskey gav             Horsedealers' town, Horncastle
Guyo-mengreskey tem           Pudding-eaters' country, Yorkshire
Hindity-mengreskey tem        Dirty fellows' country, Ireland
Jinney-mengreskey gav         Sharpers' town, Manchester
Juggal-engreskey gav          Dog-fanciers' town, Dudley
Juvlo-mengreskey tem          Lousy fellows' country, Scotland
Kaulo gav                     The black town, Birmingham
Levin-engriskey tem           Hop country, Kent
Lil-engreskey gav             Book fellows' town, Oxford
Match-eneskey gav             Fishy town, Yarmouth
Mi-develeskey gav             My God's town, Canterbury
Mi-krauliskey gav             Royal town, London
Nashi-mescro gav              Racers' town, Newmarket
Pappin-eskey tem              Duck country, Lincolnshire
Paub-pawnugo tem              Apple-water country, Herefordshire
Porrum-engreskey tem          Leek-eaters' country, Wales
Pov-engreskey tem             Potato country, Norfolk
Rashayeskey gav               Clergyman's town, Ely
Rokrengreskey gav             Talking fellows' town, Norwich
Shammin-engreskey gav         Chairmakers' town, Windsor
Tudlo tem                     Milk country, Cheshire
Weshen-eskey gav              Forest town, Epping
Weshen-juggal-slommo-mengreskey tem Fox-hunting fellows' country,
Wongareskey gav               Coal town, Newcastle
Wusto-mengresky tem           Wrestlers' country, Devonshire


Prey Juniken bis diuto divvus, drey the besh yeck mille ochto shel
shovardesh ta trin, mande jaw'd to dick Thomas Rossar-mescro, a puro
Romano, of whom mande had shoon'd bute.  He was jibbing drey a tan
naveno Rye Groby's Court, kek dur from the Coromengreskoe Tan ta
Bokkar-engreskey Wesh.  When mande dick'd leste he was beshing prey
the poov by his wuddur, chiving misto the poggado tuleskey part of a
skammin.  His ker was posh ker, posh wardo, and stood drey a corner
of the tan; kek dur from lesti were dui or trin wafor ker-wardoes.
There was a wafudo canipen of baulor, though mande dick'd kekkeney.
I penn'd "Sarshin?" in Romany jib, and we had some rokrapen kettaney.
He was a boro mush, as mande could dick, though he was beshing.  But
though boro he was kek tulo, ta lescre wastes were tarney sar yek
rawnie's.  Lollo leste mui sar yeck weneskoe paub, ta lescro bal
rather lollo than parno.  Prey his shero was a beti stadj, and he was
kek wafudo riddo.  On my putching leste kisi boro he was, ta kisi
puro, he penn'd that he was sho pire sore but an inch boro, ta
enyovardesh ta dui besh puro.  He didn't jin to rokkra bute in
Romano, but jinn'd almost sore so mande rokkar'd te leste.  Moro
rokkrapen was mostly in gorgiko jib.  Yeck covar yecklo drey lescro
drom of rokkring mande pennsch'd kosko to rig in zi.  In tan of
penning Romany, sar wafor Romany chals, penn'd o Roumany, a lav which
sig, sig rigg'd to my zi Roumain, the tatcho, puro nav of the
Vallackiskie jib and foky.  He seem'd a biti aladge of being of
Romany rat.  He penn'd that he was beano drey the Givengreskey Tem,
that he was kek tatcho Romano, but yeckly posh ta posh:  lescro dado
was Romano, but lescri daya a gorgie of the Lilengreskoe Gav; he had
never camm'd bute to jib Romaneskoenaes, and when tarno had been a
givengreskoe raklo.  When he was boro he jall'd adrey the
Lilengrotemskey militia, and was desh ta stor besh a militia
curomengro.  He had jall'd bute about Engli-tem and the juvalo-
mengreskey, Tem, drey the cheeros of the puri chingaripen, and had
been adrey Monseer-tem, having volunteered to jal odoy to cour agen
the parley-woo gueros.  He had dick'd Bordeaux and the boro gav
Paris.  After the chingaripen, he had lell'd oprey skamminengring,
and had jall'd about the tem, but had been knau for buter than
trianda beshor jibbing in Lundra.  He had been romado, but his romadi
had been mullee bute, bute cheeros; she had dinn'd leste yeck chavo,
so was knau a heftwardesh beshengro, dicking bute puroder than yo
cocoro, ta kanau lying naflo of a tatti naflipen drey yeck of the
wardes.  He penn'd that at yeck cheeros he could kair dosta luvvu by
skammin-engring, but kanau from his bori puripen could scarcely kair
yeck tringurushee a divvus.  "Ladjipen si," I penn'd, "that a mush so
puro as tute should have to booty."  "Kosko zi! kosko zi!" he penn'd;
"Paracrow Dibble that mande is dosta ruslo to booty, and that mande
has koskey camomescres; I shan't be tugnis to jib to be a shel
beshengro, though tatchipen si if mande was a rye mande would kair
kek booty."  His chaveskoe chavo, a trianda ta pansch beshengro,
well'd kanau ta rokkar'd mansar.  He was a misto dicking ta rather
misto riddo mush, sar chimouni jinneymengreskey drey lescro mui.  He
penn'd that his dadeskoe dad was a fino puro mush, savo had dick'd
bute, and that dosta, dosta foky well'd odoy to shoon lescre
rokkrapenes of the puro cheeros, of the Franciskie ta Amencanskie
chingaripenes, and of what yo had dick'd drey wafu tems.  That
tatchipen to pen there was a cheeros when his drom was dur from
kosko, for that he camm'd to cour, sollohaul ta kair himself motto,
but that kanau he was a wafu mush, that he had muk'd sore curopen and
wafudo rokkrapen, and, to corauni sore, was yeck tee-totaller, yo
cocoro having kair'd leste sollohaul that he would pi kekomi neither
tatti panie nor levinor:  that he jall'd sore the curques either to
congri or Tabernacle, and that tho' he kek jinn'd to del oprey he
camm'd to shoon the Miduveleskoe lil dell'd oprey to leste; that the
panishkie ryor held leste drey boro camopen, and that the congriskoe
rashi, and oprey sore Dr. P. of the Tabernacle had a boro opinionos
of leste, ta penn'd that he would hal the Miduveleskoe habben sar
moro Araunyo Jesus drey the kosko tem opral.  Mande putch'd whether
the Romany Chals well'd often to dick leste?  He penn'd that they
well'd knau and then to pen Koshto divvus and Sarshin? but dov' odoy
was sore; that neither his dadeskoe dad nor yo cocoro camm'd to dick
lende, because they were wafodu foky, perdo of wafodupen and bango
camopen, ta oprey sore bute envyous; that drey the wen they jall'd
sore cattaney to the ryor, and rokkar'd wafodu of the puno mush, and
pukker'd the ryor to let lester a coppur which the ryor had lent
leste, to kair tatto his choveno puro truppo drey the cheeros of the
trashlo shillipen; that tatchipen si their wafodupen kaired the puro
mush kek dosh, for the ryor pukker'd lende to jal their drom and be
aladge of their cocore, but that it was kek misto to pensch that yeck
was of the same rat as such foky.  After some cheeros I dinn'd the
puro mush a tawno cuttor of rupe, shook leste by ye wast, penn'd that
it would be mistos amande to dick leste a shel-beshengro, and jaw'd
away keri.


On the twenty-second day of June, in the year one thousand eight
hundred and sixty-three, I went to see Thomas Herne, an old Gypsy, of
whom I had heard a great deal.  He was living at a place called Mr.
Groby's Court, not far from the Potteries and the Shepherd's Bush.
When I saw him, he was sitting on the ground by his door, mending the
broken bottom of a chair.  His house was half-house half-waggon, and
stood in a corner of the court; not far from it were two or three
other waggon-houses.  There was a disagreeable smell of hogs, though
I saw none.  I said, "How you do?" in the Gypsy tongue, and we had
discourse together.  He was a tall man, as I could see, though he was
sitting.  But, though tall, he was not stout, and his hands were
small as those of a lady.  His face was as red as a winter apple, and
his hair was rather red than grey.  He had a small hat on his head,
and he was not badly dressed.  On my asking him how tall he was, and
how old, he said that he was six foot high, all but an inch, and that
he was ninety-two years old.  He could not talk much Gypsy, but
understood almost all that I said to him.  Our discourse was chiefly
in English.  One thing only in his manner of speaking I thought
worthy of remembrance.  Instead of saying Romany, like other Gypsies,
he said Roumany, a word which instantly brought to my mind Roumain,
the genuine, ancient name of the Wallachian tongue and people.  He
seemed to be rather ashamed of being of Gypsy blood.  He told me that
he was born in Buckinghamshire, that he was no true Gypsy, but only
half-and-half:  his father was a Gypsy, but his mother was a Gentile
of Oxford; he had never had any particular liking for the Gypsy
manner of living, and when little had been a farmer's boy.  When he
grew up he enlisted into the Oxford militia, and was fourteen years a
militia soldier.  He had gone much about England and Scotland in the
time of the old war, and had been in France, having volunteered to go
thither to fight against the French.  He had seen Bordeaux and the
great city of Paris.  After war he had taken up chair-making, and had
travelled about the country, but had been now for more than thirty
years living in London.  He had been married, but his wife had long
been dead.  She had borne him a son, who was now a man seventy years
of age, looking much older than himself, and at present lying sick of
a burning fever in one of the caravans.  He said that at one time he
could make a good deal of money by chair-making, but now from his
great age could scarcely earn a shilling a day.  "What a shame," said
I, "that a man so old as you should have to work at all!"  "Courage!
courage!" he cried; "I thank God that I am strong enough to work, and
that I have good friends; I shan't be sorry to live to be a hundred
years old, though true it is that if I were a gentleman I would do no
work."  His grandson, a man of about five-and-thirty, came now and
conversed with me.  He was a good-looking and rather well-dressed
man, with something of a knowing card in his countenance.  He said
that his grandfather was a fine old man, who had seen a great deal,
and that a great many people came to hear his stories of the old
time, of the French and American wars, and of what he had seen in
other countries.  That, truth to say, there was a time when his way
was far from commendable, for that he loved to fight, swear, and make
himself drunk; but that now he was another man, that he had abandoned
all fighting and evil speaking, and, to crown all, was a tee-
totaller, he himself having made him swear that he would no more
drink either gin or ale:  that he went every Sunday either to church
or Tabernacle, and that, though he did not know how to read, he loved
to hear the holy book read to him; that the gentlemen of the parish
entertained a great regard for him, and that the church clergyman
and, above all, Dr. P. of the Tabernacle had a high opinion of him,
and said that he would partake of the holy banquet with our Lord
Jesus in the blessed country above.  On my inquiring whether the
Gypsies came often to see him, he said that they came now and then to
say "Good day" and "How do you do?" but that was all; that neither
his grandfather nor himself cared to see them, because they were evil
people, full of wickedness and left-handed love, and, above all, very
envyous; that in the winter they all went in a body to the gentlemen
and spoke ill of the old man, and begged the gentlemen to take from
him a blanket which the gentlemen had lent him to warm his poor old
body with in the time of the terrible cold; that it is true their
wickedness did the old man no harm, for the gentlemen told them to go
away and be ashamed of themselves, but that it was not pleasant to
think that one was of the same blood as such people.  After some time
I gave the old man a small piece of silver, shook him by the hand,
said that I should be glad to see him live to be a hundred, and went
away home.


Drey the puro cheeros there jibb'd a puri Romani juva, Sinfaya laki
nav.  Tatchi Romani juva i; caum'd to rokkra Romany, nav'd every mush
kokkodus, ta every mushi deya.  Yeck chavo was laki; lescro nav
Artaros; dinnelo or diviou was O; romadi was lesgue; but the rommadi
merr'd, mukking leste yeck chavo.  Artaros caum'd to jal oprey the
drom, and sikker his nangipen to rawnies and kair muior.  At last the
ryor chiv'd leste drey the diviou ker.  The chavo jibb'd with his
puri deya till he was a desch ta pantsch besh engro.  Yeck divvus a
Romani juva jalling along the drom dick'd the puri juva beshing tuley
a bor roving:  What's the matter, Sinfaya, pukker'd i?

My chavo's chavo is lell'd oprey, deya.
What's he lell'd oprey for?
For a meila and posh, deya.
Why don't you jal to dick leste?
I have nash'd my maila, deya.
O ma be tugni about your maila; jal and dick leste.

I don't jin kah se, deya! diviou kokkodus Artaros jins, kek mande.
Ah diviou, diviou, jal amande callico.


Romano chavo was manging sar bori gudli yeck rye te del les pasherro.
Lescri deya so was beshing kek dur from odoy penn'd in gorgikey
rokrapen:  Meklis juggal, ta av acoi! ma kair the rye kinyo with your
gudli! and then penn'd sig in Romany jib:  Mang, Prala, mang!  Ta o
chavo kair'd ajaw till the rye chiv'd les yeck shohaury.

[Something like the following little anecdote is related by the
Gypsies in every part of Continental Europe.]


A Gypsy brat was once pestering a gentleman to give him a halfpenny.
The mother, who was sitting nigh, cried in English:  Leave off, you
dog, and come here! don't trouble the gentleman with your noise; and
then added in Romany:  Beg on, brother! and so the brat did, till the
gentleman flung him a sixpence.



Coin si deya, coin se dado?
Pukker mande drey Romanes,
Ta mande pukkeravava tute.

Rossar-mescri minri deya!
Vardo-mescro minro dado!
Coin se dado, coin si deya?
Mande's pukker'd tute drey Romanes;
Knau pukker tute mande.

Petuiengro minro dado!
Purana minri deya!
Tatchey Romany si men -
Mande's pukker'd tute drey Romanes,
Ta tute's pukker'd mande.


Who's your mother, who's your father?
Do thou answer me in Romany,
And I will answer thee.

A Hearne I have for mother!
A Cooper for my father!
Who's your father, who's your mother?
I have answer'd thee in Romany,
Now do thou answer me.

A Smith I have for father!
A Lee I have for mother!
True Romans both are we -
For I've answer'd thee in Romany,
And thou hast answer'd me.


"Av, my little Romany chel!
Av along with mansar!
Av, my little Romany chel!
Koshto si for mangue."

"I shall lel a curapen,
If I jal aley;
I shall lel a curapen
From my dear bebee."

"I will jal on my chongor,
Then I'll pootch your bebee.
'O my dear bebee, dey me your chi,
For koshto si for mangue.'

"'Since you pootch me for my chi,
I will dey you lati.'"
Av, my little Romany chel!
We will jal to the wafu tem:

"I will chore a beti gry,
And so we shall lel cappi."
"Kekko, meero mushipen,
For so you would be stardo;

"But I will jal a dukkering,
And so we shall lel cappi."
"Koshto, my little Romany chel!
Koshto si for mangue."


"Come along, my little gypsy girl,
Come along, my little dear;
Come along, my little gypsy girl -
We'll wander far and near."

"I should get a leathering
Should I with thee go;
I should get a leathering
From my dear aunt, I trow."

"I'll go down on my two knees,
And I will beg your aunt.
'O auntie dear, give me your child;
She's just the girl I want!'

"'Since you ask me for my child,
I will not say thee no!'
Come along, my little gypsy girl!
To another land we'll go:

"I will steal a little horse,
And our fortunes make thereby."
"Not so, my little gypsy boy,
For then you'd swing on high;

"But I'll a fortune-telling go,
And our fortunes make thereby."
"Well said, my little gypsy girl,
You counsel famously."


"Av, my little Rumni chel,
Av along with mansar;
We will jal a gry-choring
Pawdle across the chumba.

"I'll jaw tuley on my chongor
To your deya and your bebee;
And I'll pootch lende that they del
Tute to me for romadi."

"I'll jaw with thee, my Rumni chal,
If my dye and bebee muk me;
But choring gristurs traishes me,
For it brings one to the rukie.

"'Twere ferreder that you should ker,
Petuls and I should dukker,
For then adrey our tanney tan,
We kek atraish may sova."

"Kusko, my little Rumni chel,
Your rokrapen is kusko;
We'll dukker and we'll petuls ker
Pawdle across the chumba.

"O kusko si to chore a gry
Adrey the kaulo rarde;
But 'tis not kosko to be nash'd
Oprey the nashing rukie."


"Come along, my little gypsy girl,
Come along with me, I pray!
A-stealing horses we will go,
O'er the hills so far away.

"Before your mother and your aunt
I'll down upon my knee,
And beg they'll give me their little girl
To be my Romadie."

"I'll go with you, my gypsy boy,
If my mother and aunt agree;
But a perilous thing is horse-stealinge,
For it brings one to the tree.

"'Twere better you should tinkering ply,
And I should fortunes tell;
For then within our little tent
In safety we might dwell."

"Well said, my little gypsy girl,
I like well what you say;
We'll tinkering ply, and fortunes tell
O'er the hills so far away.

"'Tis a pleasant thing in a dusky night
A horse-stealing to go;
But to swing in the wind on the gallows-tree,
Is no pleasant thing, I trow."


Dui Romany Chals were bitcheney,
Bitcheney pawdle the bori pawnee.
Plato for kawring,
Lasho for choring
The putsi of a bori rawnee.

And when they well'd to the wafu tem,
The tem that's pawdle the bori pawnee,
Plato was nasho
Sig, but Lasho
Was lell'd for rom by a bori rawnee.

You cam to jin who that rawnie was,
'Twas the rawnie from whom he chor'd the putsee:
The Chal had a black
Chohauniskie yack,
And she slomm'd him pawdle the bori pawnee.


Two Gypsy lads were transported,
Were sent across the great water.
Plato was sent for rioting,
And Louis for stealing the purse
Of a great lady.

And when they came to the other country,
The country that lies across the great water,
Plato was speedily hung,
But Louis was taken as a husband
By a great lady.

You wish to know who was the lady,
'Twas the lady from whom he stole the purse:
The Gypsy had a black and witching eye,
And on account of that she followed him
Across the great water.


As I was a jawing to the gav yeck divvus
I met on the drom miro Romany chi;
I pootch'd las whether she come sar mande,
And she penn'd tu sar wafo rommadis;
O mande there is kek wafo romady,
So penn'd I to miro Romany chi,
And I'll kair tute miro tatcho romadi
If you but pen tu come sar mande.


As I to the town was going one day
My Roman lass I met by the way;
Said I:  Young maid, will you share my lot?
Said she:  Another wife you've got.
Ah no! to my Roman lass I cried:
No wife have I in the world so wide,
And you my wedded wife shall be
If you will consent to come with me.


Hokka tute mande
Mande pukkra bebee
Mande shauvo tute -
Ava, Chi!


If to me you prove untrue,
Quickly I'll your auntie tell
I've been over-thick with you -
Yes, my girl, I will.


Penn'd the temeskoe rye to the Romany chi,
As the choon was dicking prey lende dui:
Rinkeny tawni, Romany rawni,
Mook man choom teero gudlo mui.


Said the youthful earl to the Gypsy girl,
As the moon was casting its silver shine:
Brown little lady, Egyptian lady,
Let me kiss those sweet lips of thine.


Pawnie birks
My men-engni shall be;
Yackors my dudes
Like ruppeney shine:
Atch meery chi!
Ma jal away:
Perhaps I may not dick tute
Kek komi.


I'd choose as pillows for my head
Those snow-white breasts of thine;
I'd use as lamps to light my bed
Those eyes of silver shine:
O lovely maid, disdain me not,
Nor leave me in my pain:
Perhaps 'twill never be my lot
To see thy face again.


I'm jalling across the pani -
A choring mas and morro,
Along with a bori lubbeny,
And she has been the ruin of me.

I sov'd yeck rarde drey a gran,
A choring mas and morro,
Along with a bori lubbeny,
And she has been the ruin of me.

She pootch'd me on the collico,
A choring mas and morro,
To jaw with lasa to the show,
For she would be the ruin of me.

And when I jaw'd odoy with lasa,
A choring mas and morro,
Sig she chor'd a rawnie's kissi,
And so she was the ruin of me.

They lell'd up lata, they lell'd up mande,
A choring mas and morro,
And bitch'd us dui pawdle pani,
So she has been the ruin of me.

I'm jalling across the pani,
A choring mas and morro,
Along with a bori lubbeny,
And she has been the ruin of me.


I'm sailing across the water,
A-stealing bread and meat so free,
Along with a precious harlot,
And she has been the ruin of me.

I slept one night within a barn,
A-stealing bread and meat so free,
Along with a precious harlot,
And she has been the ruin of me.

Next morning she would have me go,
A-stealing bread and meat so free,
To see with her the wild-beast show,
For she would be the ruin of me.

I went with her to see the show,
A-stealing bread and meat so free,
To steal a purse she was not slow,
And so she was the ruin of me.

They took us up, and with her I,
A-stealing bread and meat so free:
Am sailing now to Botany,
So she has been the ruin of me.

I'm sailing across the water,
A-stealing bread and meat so free,
Along with a precious harlot,
And she has been the ruin of me.


The rye he mores adrey the wesh
The kaun-engro and chiriclo;
You sovs with leste drey the wesh,
And rigs for leste the gono.

Oprey the rukh adrey the wesh
Are chiriclo and chiricli;
Tuley the rukh adrey the wesh
Are pireno and pireni.


The squire he roams the good greenwood,
And shoots the pheasant and the hare;
Thou sleep'st with him in good green wood,
And dost for him the game-sack bear.

I see, I see upon the tree
The little male and female dove;
Below the tree I see, I see
The lover and his lady love.


Jaw to sutturs, my tiny chal;
Your die to dukker has jall'd abri;
At rarde she will wel palal
And tute of her tud shall pie.

Jaw to lutherum, tiny baw!
I'm teerie deya's purie mam;
As tute cams her tud canaw
Thy deya meerie tud did cam.


Sleep thee, little tawny boy!
Thy mother's gone abroad to spae,
Her kindly milk thou shalt enjoy
When home she comes at close of day.

Sleep thee, little tawny guest!
Thy mother is my daughter fine;
As thou dost love her kindly breast,
She once did love this breast of mine.


Finor coachey innar Lundra,
Bonor coachey innar Lundra,
Finor coachey, bonor coachey
Mande dick'd innar Lundra.

Bonor, finor coachey
Mande dick'd innar Lundra
The divvus the Kralyissa jall'd
To congri innar Lundra.


Coaches fine in London,
Coaches good in London,
Coaches fine and coaches good
I did see in London.

Coaches good and coaches fine
I did see in London,
The blessed day our blessed Queen
Rode to church in London.


Gare yourselves, pralor!
Ma pee kek-komi!
The guero's welling -
Plastra lesti!


Up, up, brothers!
Cease your revels!
The Gentile's coming -
Run like devils!


Oy die-la, oy mama-la oy!
Cherie podey mangue penouri.
Russian Gypsy Song.


Her temples they are aching,
As if wine she had been taking;
Her tears are ever springing,
Abandoned is her singing!
She can neither eat nor nest
With love she's so distress'd;
At length she's heard to say:
"Oh here I cannot stay,
Go saddle me my steed,
To my lord I must proceed;
In his palace plenteously
Both eat and drink shall I;
The servants far and wide,
Bidding guests shall run and ride.
And when within the hall the multitude I see,
I'll raise my voice anew, and sing in Romany."


Un erajai
Sinaba chibando un sermon;
Y lle falta un balicho
Al chindomar de aquel gao,
Y lo chanelaba que los Cales
Lo abian nicabao;
Y penela l'erajai, "Chaboro!
Guillate a tu quer
Y nicabela la peri
Que terela el balicho,
Y chibela andro
Una lima de tun chabori,
Una lima de tun chabori."


A Friar
Was preaching once with zeal and with fire;
And a butcher of the town
Had lost a flitch of bacon;
And well the friar knew
That the Gypsies it had taken;
So suddenly he shouted:  "Gypsy, ho!
Hie home, and from the pot!
Take the flitch of bacon out,
The flitch good and fat,
And in its place throw
A clout, a dingy clout of thy brat,
Of thy brat,
A clout, a dingy clout of thy brat."


Chalo Malbrun chingarar,
Birandon, birandon, birandera!
Chalo Malbrun chingarar;
No se bus trutera!
No se bus trutera!

La romi que le camela,
Birandon, birandon, birandera!
La romi que le camela
Muy curepenada esta,
Muy curepenada esta.

S'ardela a la felicha,
Birandon, birandon, birandera!
S'ardela a la felicha
Y baribu dur dica,
Y baribu dur dica.

Dica abillar su burno,
Birandon, birandon, birandera!
Dica abillar su burno,
En ropa callarda,
En ropa callarda.

"Burno, lacho quirbo;
Birandon, birandon, birandera!
Burno, lacho quiribo,
Que nuevas has dinar?
Que nuevas has dinar?"

"Las nuevas que io terelo,
Birandon, birandon, birandera!
Las nuevas que io terelo
Te haran orobar,
Te haran orobar.

"Mero Malbrun mi eray,
Birandon, birandon, birandera!
Mero Malbrun mi eray
Mero en la chinga,
Mero en la chinga.

"Sinaba a su entierro,
Birandon, birandon, birandera!
Sinaba a su entierro
La plastani sara,
La plastani sara.

"Seis guapos jundunares,
Birandon, birandon, birandera!
Seis guapos jundunares
Le llevaron cabanar,
Le llevaron cabanar.

"Delante de la jestari,
Birandon, birandon, birandera!
Delante de la jestari
Chalo el sacrista,
Chalo el sacrista.

"El sacrista delante,
Birandon, birandon, birandera!
El sacrista delante,
Y el errajai pala,
Y el errajai pala.

"Al majaro ortalame,
Birandon, birandon, birandera!
Al majaro ortalame
Le llevaron cabanar,
Le llevaron cabanar.

"Y ote le cabanaron
Birandon, birandon, birandera!
Y ote le cabanaron
No dur de la burda,
No dur de la burda.

"Y opre de la jestari
Birandon, birandon, birandera!
Guillabela un chilindrote;
Soba en paz, soba!
Soba en paz, soba!


Malbrouk is gone to the wars,
Birrandon, birrandon, birrandera!
Malbrouk is gone to the wars;
He'll never return no more!
He'll never return no more!

His lady-love and darling,
Birrandon, birrandon, birrandera
His lady-love and darling
His absence doth deplore,
His absence doth deplore.

To the turret's top she mounted,
Birrandon, birrandon, birrandera!
To the turret's top she mounted
And look'd till her eyes were sore,
And look'd till her eyes were sore.

She saw his squire a-coming,
Birrandon, birrandon, birrandera!
She saw his squire a-coming;
And a mourning suit he wore,
And a mourning suit he wore.

"O squire, my trusty fellow;
Birrandon, birrandon, birrandera!
O squire, my trusty fellow,
What news of my soldier poor?
What news of my soldier poor?"

"The news which I bring thee, lady,
Birrandon, birrandon, birrandera!
The news which I bring thee, lady,
Will cause thy tears to shower,
Will cause thy tears to shower.

"Malbrouk my master's fallen,
Birrandon, birrandon, birrandera!
Malbrouk my master's fallen,
He fell on the fields of gore,
He fell on the fields of gore.

"His funeral attended,
Birrandon, birrandon, birrandera!
His funeral attended
The whole reg'mental corps,
The whole reg'mental corps.

"Six neat and proper soldiers,
Birrandon, birrandon, birrandera!
Six neat and proper soldiers
To the grave my master bore,
To the grave my master bore.

"The parson follow'd the coffin,
Birrandon, birrandon, birrandera!
The parson follow'd the coffin,
And the sexton walk'd before,
And the sexton walk'd before.

"They buried him in the churchyard,
Birrandon, birrandon, birrandera!
They buried him in the churchyard,
Not far from the church's door,
Not far from the church's door.

"And there above his coffin,
Birrandon, birrandon, birrandera!
There sings a little swallow:
Sleep there, thy toils are o'er,
Sleep there, thy toils are o'er."



The Romany Chals
Should jin so bute
As the Puro Beng
To scape of gueros
And wafo gorgies
The wafodupen.

They lels our gryor,
They lels our wardoes,
And wusts us then
Drey starripenes
To mer of pishens
And buklipen.

Cauna volelan
Muley pappins
Pawdle the len
Men artavavam
Of gorgio foky
The wafodupen.
Ley teero sollohanloinus opreylis!


The wit and the skill
Of the Father of ill,
Who's clever indeed,
If they would hope
With their foes to cope
The Romany need.

Our horses they take,
Our waggons they break,
And us they fling
Into horrid cells,
Where hunger dwells
And vermin sting.

When the dead swallow
The fly shall follow
Across the river,
O we'll forget
The wrongs we've met,
But till then O never:
Brother, of that be certain.

The English Gypsies call themselves Romany Chals and Romany Chies,
that is, Sons and Daughters of Rome.  When speaking to each other,
they say "Pal" and "Pen"; that is, brother and sister.  All people
not of their own blood they call "Gorgios," or Gentiles.  Gypsies
first made their appearance in England about the year 1480.  They
probably came from France, where tribes of the race had long been
wandering about under the names of Bohemians and Egyptians.  In
England they pursued the same kind of merripen {3} which they and
their ancestors had pursued on the Continent.  They roamed about in
bands, consisting of thirty, sixty, or ninety families, with light,
creaking carts, drawn by horses and donkeys, encamping at night in
the spots they deemed convenient.  The women told fortunes at the
castle of the baron and the cottage of the yeoman; filched gold and
silver coins from the counters of money-changers; caused the death of
hogs in farmyards, by means of a stuff called drab or drao, which
affects the brain, but does not corrupt the blood; and subsequently
begged, and generally obtained, the carcases.  The men plied
tinkering and brasiery, now and then stole horses, and occasionally
ventured upon highway robbery.  The writer has here placed the Chies
before the Chals, because, as he has frequently had occasion to
observe, the Gypsy women are by far more remarkable beings than the
men.  It is the Chi and not the Chal who has caused the name of Gypsy
to be a sound awaking wonder, awe, and curiosity in every part of the
civilised world.  Not that there have never been remarkable men of
the Gypsy race both abroad and at home.  Duke Michael, as he was
called, the leader of the great Gypsy horde which suddenly made its
appearance in Germany at the beginning of the fifteenth century, was
no doubt a remarkable man; the Gitano Condre, whom Martin del Rio met
at Toledo a hundred years afterwards, who seemed to speak all
languages, and to be perfectly acquainted with the politics of all
the Courts of Europe, must certainly have been a remarkable man; so,
no doubt, here at home was Boswell; so undoubtedly was Cooper, called
by the gentlemen of the Fives Court--poor fellows! they are all gone
now--the "wonderful little Gypsy";--but upon the whole the poetry,
the sorcery, the devilry, if you please to call it so, are vastly on
the side of the women.  How blank and inanimate is the countenance of
the Gypsy man, even when trying to pass off a foundered donkey as a
flying dromedary, in comparison with that of the female Romany,
peering over the wall of a par-yard at a jolly hog!

Sar shin Sinfye?
Koshto divvus, Romany Chi!
So shan tute kairing acoi?

Sinfye, Sinfye! how do you do?
Daughter of Rome, good day to you!
What are you thinking here to do?

After a time the evil practices of the Gypsies began to be noised
about, and terrible laws were enacted against people "using the
manner of Egyptians"--Chies were scourged by dozens, Chals hung by
scores.  Throughout the reign of Elizabeth there was a terrible
persecution of the Gypsy race; far less, however, on account of the
crimes which they actually committed, than from a suspicion which was
entertained that they harboured amidst their companies priests and
emissaries of Rome, who had come to England for the purpose of sowing
sedition and inducing the people to embrace again the old discarded
superstition.  This suspicion, however, was entirely without
foundation.  The Gypsies call each other brother and sister, and are
not in the habit of admitting to their fellowship people of a
different blood and with whom they have no sympathy.  There was,
however, a description of wandering people at that time, even as
there is at present, with whom the priests, who are described as
going about, sometimes disguised as serving-men, sometimes as broken
soldiers, sometimes as shipwrecked mariners, would experience no
difficulty in associating, and with whom, in all probability, they
occasionally did associate--the people called in Acts of Parliament
sturdy beggars and vagrants, in the old cant language Abraham men,
and in the modern Pikers.  These people have frequently been
confounded with the Gypsies, but are in reality a distinct race,
though they resemble the latter in some points.  They roam about like
the Gypsies, and, like them, have a kind of secret language.  But the
Gypsies are a people of Oriental origin, whilst the Abrahamites are
the scurf of the English body corporate.  The language of the Gypsies
is a real language, more like the Sanscrit than any other language in
the world; whereas the speech of the Abrahamites is a horrid jargon,
composed for the most part of low English words used in an
allegorical sense--a jargon in which a stick is called a crack; a
hostess, a rum necklace; a bar-maid, a dolly-mort; brandy, rum booze;
a constable, a horny.  But enough of these Pikers, these Abrahamites.
Sufficient to observe that if the disguised priests associated with
wandering companies it must have been with these people, who admit
anybody to their society, and not with the highly exclusive race the

For nearly a century and a half after the death of Elizabeth the
Gypsies seem to have been left tolerably to themselves, for the laws
are almost silent respecting them.  Chies, no doubt, were
occasionally scourged for cauring, that is filching gold and silver
coins, and Chals hung for grychoring, that is horse-stealing; but
those are little incidents not much regarded in Gypsy merripen.  They
probably lived a life during the above period tolerably satisfactory
to themselves--they are not an ambitious people, and there is no word
for glory in their language--but next to nothing is known respecting
them.  A people called Gypsies are mentioned, and to a certain extent
treated of, in two remarkable works--one a production of the
seventeenth, the other of the eighteenth century--the first entitled
the 'English Rogue, or the Adventures of Merriton Latroon,' the other
the 'Life of Bamfield Moore Carew'; but those works, though clever
and entertaining, and written in the raciest English, are to those
who seek for information respecting Gypsies entirely valueless, the
writers having evidently mistaken for Gypsies the Pikers or
Abrahamites, as the vocabularies appended to the histories, and which
are professedly vocabularies of the Gypsy language, are nothing of
the kind, but collections of words and phrases belonging to the
Abrahamite or Piker jargon.  At the commencement of the last century,
and for a considerable time afterwards, there was a loud cry raised
against the Gypsy women for stealing children.  This cry, however,
was quite as devoid of reason as the suspicion entertained of old
against the Gypsy communities of harbouring disguised priests.  Gypsy
women, as the writer had occasion to remark many a long year ago,
have plenty of children of their own, and have no wish to encumber
themselves with those of other people.  A yet more extraordinary
charge was, likewise, brought against them--that of running away with
wenches.  Now, the idea of Gypsy women running away with wenches!
Where were they to stow them in the event of running away with them?
and what were they to do with them in the event of being able to stow
them?  Nevertheless, two Gypsy women were burnt in the hand in the
most cruel and frightful manner, somewhat about the middle of the
last century, and two Gypsy men, their relations, sentenced to be
hanged, for running away with a certain horrible wench of the name of
Elizabeth Canning, who, to get rid of a disgraceful burden, had left
her service and gone into concealment for a month, and on her return,
in order to account for her absence, said that she had been run away
with by Gypsies.  The men, however, did not undergo their sentence;
for, ere the day appointed for their execution arrived, suspicions
beginning to be entertained with respect to the truth of the wench's
story, they were reprieved, and, after a little time, the atrocious
creature, who had charged people with doing what they neither did nor
dreamt of doing, was tried for perjury, convicted, and sentenced to
transportation.  Yet so great is English infatuation that this
Canning, this Elizabeth, had a host of friends, who stood by her, and
swore by her to the last, and almost freighted the ship which carried
her away with goods, the sale of which enabled her to purchase her
freedom of the planter to whom she was consigned, to establish
herself in business, and to live in comfort, and almost in luxury, in
the New World during the remainder of her life.

But though Gypsies have occasionally experienced injustice; though
Patricos and Sherengroes were hanged by dozens in Elizabeth's time on
suspicion of harbouring disguised priests; though Gypsy women in the
time of the Second George, accused of running away with wenches, were
scorched and branded, there can be no doubt that they live in almost
continual violation of the laws intended for the protection of
society; and it may be added, that in this illegal way of life the
women have invariably played a more important part than the men.  Of
them, amongst other things, it may be said that they are the most
accomplished swindlers in the world, their principal victims being
people of their own sex, on whose credulity and superstition they
practise.  Mary Caumlo, or Lovel, was convicted a few years ago at
Cardiff of having swindled a surgeon's wife of eighty pounds, under
pretence of propitiating certain planets by showing them the money.
Not a penny of the booty was ever recovered by the deluded victim;
and the Caumli, on leaving the dock, after receiving sentence of a
year's imprisonment, turned round and winked to some brother or
sister in court, as much as to say:  "Mande has gared the luvvu;
mande is kek atugni for the besh's starripen"--"I have hid the money,
and care nothing for the year's imprisonment."  Young Rawnie P. of
N., the daughter of old Rawnie P., suddenly disappeared with the
whole capital of an aged and bedridden gentlewoman, amounting to
nearly three hundred pounds, whom she had assured that if she were
intrusted with it for a short time she should be able to gather
certain herbs, from which she could make decoctions, which would
restore to the afflicted gentlewoman all her youthful vigour.  Mrs.
Townsley of the Border was some time ago in trouble at Wick, only
twenty-five miles distant from Johnny Groat's House, on a charge of
fraudulently obtaining from a fisherman's wife one shilling, two
half-crowns, and a five-pound note by promising to untie certain
witch-locks, which she had induced her to believe were entwined in
the meshes of the fisherman's net, and would, if suffered to remain,
prevent him from catching a single herring in the Firth.  These
events occurred within the last few years, and are sufficiently
notorious.  They form a triad out of dozens of a similar kind, in
some of which there are features so odd, so strangely droll, that
indignation against the offence is dispelled by an irresistible
desire to laugh.

But Gypsyism is declining, and its days are numbered.  There is a
force abroad which is doomed to destroy it, a force which never
sleepeth either by day or night, and which will not allow the Roman
people rest for the soles of their feet.  That force is the Rural
Police, which, had it been established at the commencement instead of
towards the middle of the present century, would have put down
Gypsyism long ago.  But, recent as its establishment has been,
observe what it has produced.  Walk from London to Carlisle, but
neither by the road's side, nor on heath or common, will you see a
single Gypsy tent.  True Gypsyism consists in wandering about, in
preying upon the Gentiles, but not living amongst them.  But such a
life is impossible in these days; the Rural Force will not permit it.
"It is a hard thing, brother," said old Agamemnon Caumlo to the
writer, several years ago; "it is a hard thing, after one has pitched
one's little tent, lighted one's little fire, and hung one's kettle
by the kettle-iron over it to boil, to have an inspector or constable
come up, and say, 'What are you doing here?  Take yourself off, you
Gypsy dog!'"  A hard thing, indeed, old Agamemnon; but there is no
help for it.  You must e'en live amongst the Gorgios.  And for years
past the Gypsies have lived amongst the Gorgios, and what has been
the result?  They do not seem to have improved the Gentiles, and have
certainly not been improved by them.  By living amongst the Gentiles
they have, to a certain extent, lost the only two virtues they
possessed.  Whilst they lived apart on heaths and commons, and in
shadowy lanes, the Gypsy women were paragons of chastity, and the
men, if not exactly patterns of sobriety, were, upon the whole, very
sober fellows.  Such terms, however, are by no means applicable to
them at the present day.  Sects and castes, even of thieves and
murderers, can exist as long as they have certain virtues, which give
them a kind of respect in their own eyes; but, losing those virtues,
they soon become extinct.  When the salt loses its savour, what
becomes of it?  The Gypsy salt has not altogether lost its savour,
but that essential quality is every day becoming fainter, so that
there is every reason to suppose that within a few years the English
Gypsy caste will have disappeared, merged in the dregs of the English


There are many curious things connected with the Gypsies, but perhaps
nothing more so than what pertains to their names.  They have a
double nomenclature, each tribe or family having a public and a
private name, one by which they are known to the Gentiles, and
another to themselves alone.  Their public names are quite English;
their private ones attempts, some of them highly singular and
uncouth, to render those names by Gypsy equivalents.  Gypsy names may
be divided into two classes, names connected with trades, and
surnames or family names.  First of all, something about trade names.

There are only two names of trades which have been adopted by English
Gypsies as proper names, Cooper and Smith:  these names are expressed
in the English Gypsy dialect by Vardo-mescro and Petulengro.  The
first of these renderings is by no means a satisfactory one, as
Vardo-mescro means a cartwright, or rather a carter.  To speak the
truth, it would be next to impossible to render the word 'cooper'
into English Gypsy, or indeed into Gypsy of any kind; a cooper,
according to the common acceptation of the word, is one who makes
pails, tubs, and barrels, but there are no words in Gypsy for such
vessels.  The Transylvanian Gypsies call a cooper a bedra-kero or
pail-maker, but bedra is not Gypsy, but Hungarian, and the English
Gypsies might with equal propriety call a cooper a pail-engro.  On
the whole the English Gypsies did their best when they rendered
'cooper' into their language by the word for 'cartwright.'

Petulengro, the other trade name, is borne by the Gypsies who are
known to the public by the English appellation of Smith.  It is not
very easy to say what is the exact meaning of Petulengro:  it must
signify, however, either horseshoe-fellow or tinker:  petali or
petala signifies in Gypsy a horseshoe, and is probably derived from
the Modern Greek [Greek:  ]; engro is an affix, and is either derived
from or connected with the Sanscrit kara, to make, so that with great
feasibility Petulengro may be translated horseshoe-maker.  But bedel
in Hebrew means 'tin,' and as there is little more difference between
petul and bedel than between petul and petalon, Petulengro may be
translated with almost equal feasibility by tinker or tin-worker,
more especially as tinkering is a principal pursuit of Gypsies, and
to jal petulengring signifies to go a-tinkering in English Gypsy.
Taken, however, in either sense, whether as horseshoe-maker or tin-
worker (and, as has been already observed, it must mean one or the
other), Petulengro may be considered as a tolerably fair rendering of
the English Smith.

So much for the names of the Gypsies which the writer has ventured to
call the trade names; now for those of the other class.  These are
English surnames, and for the most part of a highly aristocratic
character, and it seems at first surprising that people so poor and
despised as Gypsies should be found bearing names so time-honoured
and imposing.  There is, however, a tolerable explanation of the
matter in the supposition that on their first arrival in England the
different tribes sought the protection of certain grand powerful
families, and were permitted by them to locate themselves on their
heaths and amid their woodlands, and that they eventually adopted the
names of their patrons.  Here follow the English names of some of the
principal tribes, with the Romany translations or equivalents:-

BOSWELL.--The proper meaning of this word is the town of Bui.  The
initial Bo or Bui is an old Northern name, signifying a colonist or
settler, one who tills and builds.  It was the name of a great many
celebrated Northern kempions, who won land and a home by hard blows.
The last syllable, well, is the French ville:  Boswell, Boston, and
Busby all signify one and the same thing--the town of Bui--the well
being French, the ton Saxon, and the by Danish; they are half-
brothers of Bovil and Belville, both signifying fair town, and which
ought to be written Beauville and Belville.  The Gypsies, who know
and care nothing about etymologies, confounding bos with buss, a
vulgar English verb not to be found in dictionaries, which signifies
to kiss, rendered the name Boswell by Chumomisto, that is, Kisswell,
or one who kisses well--choom in their language signifying to kiss,
and misto well--likewise by choomomescro, a kisser.  Vulgar as the
word buss may sound at present, it is by no means of vulgar origin,
being connected with the Latin basio and the Persian bouse.

GREY.--This is the name of a family celebrated in English history.
The Gypsies who adopted it, rendered it into their language by Gry, a
word very much resembling it in sound, though not in sense, for gry,
which is allied to the Sanscrit ghora, signifies a horse.  They had
no better choice, however, for in Romany there is no word for grey,
any more than there is for green or blue.  In several languages there
is a difficulty in expressing the colour which in English is called
grey.  In Celtic, for instance, there is no definite word for it;
glas, it is true, is used to express it, but glas is as frequently
used to express green as it is to express grey.

HEARNE, HERNE.--This is the name of a family which bears the heron
for its crest, the name being either derived from the crest, or the
crest from the name.  There are two Gypsy renderings of the word--
Rossar-mescro or Ratzie-mescro, and Balorengre.  Rossar-mescro
signifies duck-fellow, the duck being substituted for the heron, for
which there is no word in Romany.  The meaning of Balor-engre is
hairy people; the translator or translators seeming to have
confounded Hearne with 'haaren,' old English for hairs.  The latter
rendering has never been much in use.

LEE.--The Gypsy name of this tribe is Purrum, sometimes pronounced
Purrun.  The meaning of Purrurn is an onion, and it may be asked what
connection can there be between Lee and onion?  None whatever:  but
there is some resemblance in sound between Lee and leek, and it is
probable that the Gypsies thought so, and on that account rendered
the name by Purrum, which, if not exactly a leek, at any rate
signifies something which is cousin-german to a leek.  It must be
borne in mind that in some parts of England the name Lee is spelt
Legh and Leigh, which would hardly be the case if at one time it had
not terminated in something like a guttural, so that when the Gypsies
rendered the name, perhaps nearly four hundred years ago, it sounded
very much like 'leek,' and perhaps was Leek, a name derived from the
family crest.  At first the writer was of opinion that the name was
Purrun, a modification of pooro, which in the Gypsy language
signifies old, but speedily came to the conclusion that it must be
Purrum, a leek or onion; for what possible reason could the Gypsies
have for rendering Lee by a word which signifies old or ancient?
whereas by rendering it by Purrum, they gave themselves a Gypsy name,
which, if it did not signify Lee, must to their untutored minds have
seemed a very good substitute for Lee.  The Gypsy word pooro, old,
belongs to Hindostan, and is connected with the Sanscrit pura, which
signifies the same.  Purrum is a modification of the Wallachian pur,
a word derived from the Latin porrum, an onion, and picked up by the
Gypsies in Roumania or Wallachia, the natives of which region speak a
highly curious mixture of Latin and Sclavonian.

LOVEL.--This is the name or title of an old and powerful English
family.  The meaning of it is Leo's town, Lowe's town, or Louis'
town.  The Gypsies, who adopted it, seem to have imagined that it had
something to do with love, for they translated it by Camlo or Caumlo,
that which is lovely or amiable, and also by Camomescro, a lover, an
amorous person, sometimes used for 'friend.'  Camlo is connected with
the Sanscrit Cama, which signifies love, and is the appellation of
the Hindoo god of love.  A name of the same root as the one borne by
that divinity was not altogether inapplicable to the Gypsy tribe who
adopted it:  Cama, if all tales be true, was black, black though
comely, a Beltenebros, and the Lovel tribe is decidedly the most
comely and at the same time the darkest of all the Anglo-Egyptian
families.  The faces of many of them, male and female, are perfect
specimens of black beauty.  They are generally called by the race the
Kaulo Camloes, the Black Comelies.  And here, though at the risk of
being thought digressive, the writer cannot forbear saying that the
darkest and at one time the comeliest of all the Caumlies, a
celebrated fortune-teller, and an old friend of his, lately expired
in a certain old town, after attaining an age which was something
wonderful.  She had twenty-one brothers and sisters, and was the
eldest of the family, on which account she was called "Rawnie P.,
pooroest of bis ta dui," Lady P.--she had married out of the family--
eldest of twenty-two.

MARSHALL.--The name Marshall has either to do with marshal, the title
of a high military personage, or marches, the borders of contiguous
countries.  In the early Norman period it was the name of an Earl of
Pembroke.  The Gypsies who adopted the name seem in translating it to
have been of opinion that it was connected with marshes, for they
rendered it by mokkado tan engre, fellows of the wet or miry place,
an appellation which at one time certainly became them well, for they
are a northern tribe belonging to the Border, a country not very long
ago full of mosses and miry places.  Though calling themselves
English, they are in reality quite as much Scotch as English, and as
often to be found in Scotland as the other country, especially in
Dumfriesshire and Galloway, in which latter region, in Saint
Cuthbert's churchyard, lies buried 'the old man' of the race,--
Marshall, who died at the age of 107.  They sometimes call themselves
Bungyoror and Chikkeneymengre, cork-fellows and china people, which
names have reference to the occupations severally followed by the
males and females, the former being cutters of bungs and corks, and
the latter menders of china.

STANLEY.--This is the name or title of an ancient English family
celebrated in history.  It is probably descriptive of their original
place of residence, for it signifies the stony lea, which is also the
meaning of the Gaelic Auchinlech, the place of abode of the Scottish
Boswells.  It was adopted by an English Gypsy tribe, at one time very
numerous, but at present much diminished.  Of this name there are two
renderings into Romany; one is Baryor or Baremescre, stone-folks or
stonemasons, the other is Beshaley.  The first requires no comment,
but the second is well worthy of analysis, as it is an example of the
strange blunders which the Gypsies sometimes make in their attempts
at translation.  When they rendered Stanley by Beshaley or Beshley,
they mistook the first syllable stan for 'stand,' but for a very good
reason rendered it by besh, which signifies 'to sit, and the second
for a word in their own language, for ley or aley in Gypsy signifies
'down,' so they rendered Stanley by Beshley or Beshaley, which
signifies 'sit down.'  Here, of course, it will be asked what reason
could have induced them, if they mistook stan for 'stand,' not to
have rendered it by the Gypsy word for 'stand'?  The reason was a
very cogent one, the want of a word in the Gypsy language to express
'stand'; but they had heard in courts of justice witnesses told to
stand down, so they supposed that to stand down was much the same as
to sit down, whence their odd rendering of Stanley.  In no dialect of
the Gypsy, from the Indus to the Severn, is there any word for
'stand,' though in every one there is a word for 'sit,' and that is
besh, and in every Gypsy encampment all along the vast distance,
Beshley or Beshaley would be considered an invitation to sit down.

So much for the double-name system in use among the Gypsies of
England.  There is something in connection with the Gypsies of Spain
which strangely coincides with one part of it--the translation of
names.  Among the relics of the language of the Gitanos or Spanish
Gypsies are words, some simple and some compound, which are evidently
attempts to translate names in a manner corresponding to the plan
employed by the English Romany.  In illustration of the matter, the
writer will give an analysis of Brono Aljenicato, the rendering into
Gitano of the name of one frequently mentioned in the New Testament,
and once in the Apostles' Creed, the highly respectable, but much
traduced individual known to the English public as Pontius Pilate, to
the Spanish as Poncio Pilato.  The manner in which the rendering has
been accomplished is as follows:  Poncio bears some resemblance to
the Spanish puente, which signifies a bridge, and is a modification
of the Latin pons, and Pilato to the Spanish pila, a fountain, or
rather a stone pillar, from the top of which the waters of a fountain
springing eventually fall into a stone basin below, the two words--
the Brono Aljenicato--signifying bridge-fountain, or that which is
connected with such a thing.  Now this is the identical, or all but
the identical, way in which the names Lee, Lovel, and Stanley have
been done into English Romany.  A remarkable instance is afforded in
this Gitano Scripture name, this Brono Aljenicato, of the
heterogeneous materials of which Gypsy dialects are composed:  Brono
is a modification of a Hindoo or Sanscrit, Aljenicato of an Arabic
root.  Brono is connected with the Sanscrit pindala, which signifies
a bridge, and Aljenicato is a modification of the Gypsy aljenique,
derived from the Arabic alain, which signifies the fountain.  But of
whatever materials composed, a fine-sounding name is this same Brono
Aljenicato, perhaps the finest sounding specimen of Spanish Gypsy
extant, much finer than a translation of Pontius Pilate would be,
provided the name served to express the same things, in English,
which Poncio Pilato serves to express in Spanish, for then it would
be Pudjico Pani or Bridgewater; for though in English Gypsy there is
the word for a bridge, namely pudge, a modification of the Persian
pul, or the Wallachian podul, there is none for a fountain, which can
be only vaguely paraphrased by pani, water.


Gypsy women, as long as we have known anything of Gypsy history, have
been arrant fortune-tellers.  They plied fortune-telling about France
and Germany as early as 1414, the year when the dusky bands were
first observed in Europe, and they have never relinquished the
practice.  There are two words for fortune-telling in Gypsy, bocht
and dukkering.  Bocht is a Persian word, a modification of, or
connected with, the Sanscrit bagya, which signifies 'fate.'
Dukkering is the modification of a Wallaco-Sclavonian word signifying
something spiritual or ghostly.  In Eastern European Gypsy, the Holy
Ghost is called Swentuno Ducos.

Gypsy fortune-telling is much the same everywhere, much the same in
Russia as it is in Spain and in England.  Everywhere there are three
styles--the lofty, the familiar, and the homely; and every Gypsy
woman is mistress of all three and uses each according to the rank of
the person whose vast she dukkers, whose hand she reads, and adapts
the luck she promises.  There is a ballad of some antiquity in the
Spanish language about the Buena Ventura, a few stanzas of which
translated will convey a tolerable idea of the first of these styles
to the reader, who will probably with no great reluctance dispense
with any illustrations of the other two:-

Late rather one morning
In summer's sweet tide,
Goes forth to the Prado
Jacinta the bride:

There meets her a Gypsy
So fluent of talk,
And jauntily dressed,
On the principal walk.

"O welcome, thrice welcome,
Of beauty thou flower!
Believe me, believe me,
Thou com'st in good hour."

Surprised was Jacinta;
She fain would have fled;
But the Gypsy to cheer her
Such honeyed words said:

"O cheek like the rose-leaf!
O lady high-born!
Turn thine eyes on thy servant,
But ah, not in scorn.

"O pride of the Prado!
O joy of our clime!
Thou twice shalt be married,
And happily each time.

"Of two noble sons
Thou shalt be the glad mother,
One a Lord Judge,
A Field-Marshal the other."

Gypsy females have told fortunes to higher people than the young
Countess Jacinta:  Modor--of the Gypsy quire of Moscow--told the
fortune of Ekatarina, Empress of all the Russias.  The writer does
not know what the Ziganka told that exalted personage, but it appears
that she gave perfect satisfaction to the Empress, who not only
presented her with a diamond ring--a Russian diamond ring is not
generally of much value--but also her hand to kiss.  The writer's old
friend, Pepita, the Gitana of Madrid, told the bahi of Christina, the
Regentess of Spain, in which she assured her that she would marry the
son of the King of France, and received from the fair Italian a
golden ounce, the most magnificent of coins, a guerdon which she
richly merited, for she nearly hit the mark, for though Christina did
not marry the son of the King of France, her second daughter was
married to a son of the King of France, the Duke of M-, one of the
three claimants of the crown of Spain, and the best of the lot; and
Britannia, the Caumli, told the good luck to the Regent George on
Newmarket Heath, and received 'foive guineas' and a hearty smack from
him who eventually became George the Fourth--no bad fellow by the by,
either as regent or king, though as much abused as Pontius Pilate,
whom he much resembled in one point, unwillingness to take life--the
sonkaype or gold-gift being, no doubt, more acceptable than the
choomape or kiss-gift to the Beltenebrosa, who, if a certain song be
true, had no respect for gorgios, however much she liked their

Britannia is my nav;
I am a Kaulo Camlo;
The gorgios pen I be
A bori chovahaunie;
And tatchipen they pens,
The dinneleskie gorgies,
For mande chovahans
The luvvu from their putsies.

Britannia is my name;
I am a swarthy Lovel;
The Gorgios say I be
A witch of wondrous power;
And faith they speak the truth,
The silly, foolish fellows,
For often I bewitch
The money from their pockets.

Fortune-telling in all countries where the Gypsies are found is
frequently the prelude to a kind of trick called in all Gypsy
dialects by something more or less resembling the Sanscrit kuhana;
for instance, it is called in Spain jojana, hokano, and in English
hukni.  It is practised in various ways, all very similar; the
defrauding of some simple person of money or property being the
object in view.  Females are generally the victims of the trick,
especially those of the middle class, who are more accessible to the
poor woman than those of the upper.  One of the ways, perhaps the
most artful, will be found described in another chapter.


The Gypsy makes some poor simpleton of a lady believe that if the
latter puts her gold into her hands, and she makes it up into a
parcel, and puts it between the lady's feather-bed and mattress, it
will at the end of a month be multiplied a hundredfold, provided the
lady does not look at it during all that time.  On receiving the
money she makes it up into a brown paper parcel, which she seals with
wax, turns herself repeatedly round, squints, and spits, and then
puts between the feather-bed and mattress--not the parcel of gold,
but one exactly like it, which she has prepared beforehand,
containing old halfpence, farthings, and the like; then, after
cautioning the lady by no means to undo the parcel before the stated
time, she takes her departure singing to herself:-

O dear me!  O dear me!
What dinnelies these gorgies be.

The above artifice is called by the English Gypsies the hukni, and by
the Spanish hokhano baro, or the great lie.  Hukni and hokano were
originally one and the same word; the root seems to be the Sanscrit
huhana, lie, trick, deceit.


The Gypsy has some queer, old-fashioned gold piece; this she takes to
some goldsmith's shop, at the window of which she has observed a
basin full of old gold coins, and shows it to the goldsmith, asking
him if he will purchase it.  He looks at it attentively, and sees
that it is of very pure gold; whereupon he says that he has no
particular objection to buy it; but that as it is very old it is not
of much value, and that he has several like it.  "Have you indeed,
Master?" says the Gypsy; "then pray show them to me, and I will buy
them; for, to tell you the truth, I would rather buy than sell pieces
like this, for I have a great respect for them, and know their value:
give me back my coin, and I will compare any you have with it."  The
goldsmith gives her back her coin, takes his basin of gold from the
window, and places it on the counter.  The Gypsy puts down her head,
and pries into the basin.  "Ah, I see nothing here like my coin,"
says she.  "Now, Master, to oblige me, take out a handful of the
coins and lay them on the counter; I am a poor, honest woman, Master,
and do not wish to put my hand into your basin.  Oh! if I could find
one coin like my own, I would give much money for it; barributer than
it is worth."  The goldsmith, to oblige the poor, simple, foreign
creature (for such he believes her to be), and, with a considerable
hope of profit, takes a handful of coins from the basin and puts them
upon the counter.  "I fear there is none here like mine, Master,"
says the Gypsy, moving the coins rapidly with the tips of her
fingers.  "No, no, there is not one here like mine--kek yeck, kek
yeck--not one, not one.  Stay, stay!  What's this, what's this?  So
se cavo, so se cavo?  Oh, here is one like mine; or if not quite
like, like enough to suit me.  Now, Master, what will you take for
this coin?"  The goldsmith looks at it, and names a price
considerably above the value; whereupon she says:  "Now, Master, I
will deal fairly with you:  you have not asked me the full value of
the coin by three three-groats, three-groats, three-groats; by trin
tringurushis, tringurushis, tringurushis.  So here's the money you
asked, Master, and three three-groats, three shillings, besides.  God
bless you, Master!  You would have cheated yourself, but the poor
woman would not let you; for though she is poor she is honest":  and
thus she takes her leave, leaving the goldsmith very well satisfied
with his customer--with little reason, however, for out of about
twenty coins which he laid on the counter she had filched at least
three, which her brown nimble fingers, though they seemingly scarcely
touched the gold, contrived to convey up her sleeves.  This kind of
pilfering is called by the English Gypsies cauring, and by the
Spanish ustilar pastesas, or stealing with the fingers.  The word
caur seems to be connected with the English cower, and the Hebrew
kara, a word of frequent occurrence in the historical part of the Old
Testament, and signifying to bend, stoop down, incurvare.


What may be called the grand Metropolitan Gypsyry is on the Surrey
side of the Thames.  Near the borders of Wandsworth and Battersea,
about a quarter of a mile from the river, is an open piece of ground
which may measure about two acres.  To the south is a hill, at the
foot of which is a railway, and it is skirted on the north by the
Wandsworth and Battersea Road.  This place is what the Gypsies call a
kekkeno mushes puv, a no man's ground; a place which has either no
proprietor, or which the proprietor, for some reason, makes no use of
for the present.  The houses in the neighbourhood are mean and
squalid, and are principally inhabited by artisans of the lowest
description.  This spot, during a considerable portion of the year,
is the principal place of residence of the Metropolitan Gypsies, and
of other people whose manner of life more or less resembles theirs.
During the summer and autumn the little plain, for such it is, is
quite deserted, except that now and then a wretched tent or two may
be seen upon it, belonging to some tinker family, who have put up
there for a few hours on their way through the metropolis; for the
Gypsies are absent during summer, some at fairs and races, the men
with their cocoa-nuts and the women busy at fortune-telling, or at
suburban places of pleasure--the former with their donkeys for the
young cockneys to ride upon, and the latter as usual dukkering and
hokkering, and the other travellers, as they are called, roaming
about the country following their particular avocations, whilst in
the autumn the greater part of them all are away in Kent, getting
money by picking hops.  As soon, however, as the rains, the
precursors of winter, descend, the place begins to be occupied, and
about a week or two before Christmas it is almost crammed with the
tents and caravans of the wanderers; and then it is a place well
worthy to be explored, notwithstanding the inconvenience of being up
to one's ankles in mud, and the rather appalling risk of being bitten
by the Gypsy and travelling dogs tied to the tents and caravans, in
whose teeth there is always venom and sometimes that which can bring
on the water-horror, for which no European knows a remedy.  The
following is an attempt to describe the odd people and things to be
met with here; the true Gypsies, and what to them pertaineth, being
of course noticed first.

On this plain there may be some fifteen or twenty Gypsy tents and
caravans.  Some of the tents are large, as indeed it is highly
necessary that they should be, being inhabited by large families--a
man and his wife, a grandmother a sister or two and half a dozen
children, being, occasionally found in one; some of them are very
small, belonging to poor old females who have lost their husbands,
and whose families have separated themselves from them, and allow
them to shift for themselves.  During the day the men are generally
busy at their several avocations, chinning the cost, that is, cutting
the stick for skewers, making pegs for linen-lines, kipsimengring or
basket-making, tinkering or braziering; the children are playing
about, or begging halfpence by the road of passengers; whilst the
women are strolling about, either in London or the neighbourhood,
engaged in fortune-telling or swindling.  Of the trades of the men,
the one by far the most practised is chinning the cost, and as they
sit at the door of the tents, cutting and whittling away, they
occasionally sweeten their toil by raising their voices and singing
the Gypsy stanza in which the art is mentioned, and which for
terseness and expressiveness is quite equal to anything in the whole
circle of Gentile poetry:

Can you rokra Romany?
Can you play the bosh?
Can you jal adrey the staripen?
Can you chin the cost?

Can you speak the Roman tongue?
Can you play the fiddle?
Can you eat the prison-loaf?
Can you cut and whittle?

These Gypsies are of various tribes, but chiefly Purruns,
Chumomescroes and Vardomescroes, or Lees, Boswells and Coopers, and
Lees being by far the most numerous.  The men are well made, active
fellows, somewhat below the middle height.  Their complexions are
dark, and their eyes are full of intelligence; their habiliments are
rather ragged.  The women are mostly wild-looking creatures, some
poorly clad, others exhibiting not a little strange finery.  There
are some truly singular beings amongst those women, which is more
than can be said with respect to the men, who are much on a level,
and amongst whom there is none whom it is possible to bring
prominently out, and about whom much can be said.  The women, as has
been already observed, are generally out during the day, being
engaged in their avocations abroad.  There is a very small tent about
the middle of the place; it belongs to a lone female, whom one
frequently meets wandering about Wandsworth or Battersea, seeking an
opportunity to dukker some credulous servant-girl.  It is hard that
she should have to do so, as she is more than seventy-five years of
age, but if she did not she would probably starve.  She is very short
of statue, being little more than five feet and an inch high, but she
is wonderfully strongly built.  Her head is very large, and seems to
have been placed at once upon her shoulders without any interposition
of neck.  Her face is broad, with a good-humoured expression upon it,
and in general with very little vivacity; at times, however, it
lights up, and then all the Gypsy beams forth.  Old as she is, her
hair, which is very long, is as black as the plumage of a crow, and
she walks sturdily, though with not much elasticity, on her short,
thick legs, and, if requested, would take up the heaviest man in
Wandsworth or Battersea and walk away with him.  She is, upon the
whole, the oddest Gypsy woman ever seen; see her once and you will
never forget her.  Who is she? you ask.  Who is she?  Why, Mrs.
Cooper, the wife of Jack Cooper, the fighting Gypsy, once the terror
of all the Light Weights of the English Ring; who knocked West
Country Dick to pieces, and killed Paddy O'Leary, the fighting pot-
boy, Jack Randall's pet.  Ah, it would have been well for Jack if he
had always stuck to his true, lawful Romany wife, whom at one time he
was very fond of, and whom he used to dress in silks and satins, and
best scarlet cloth, purchased with the money gained in his fair,
gallant battles in the Ring!  But he did not stick to her, deserting
her for a painted Jezebel, to support whom he sold his battles, by
doing which he lost his friends and backers; then took from his poor
wife all he had given her, and even plundered her of her own
property, down to the very blankets which she lay upon; and who
finally was so infatuated with love for his paramour that he bore the
blame of a crime which she had committed, and in which he had no
share, suffering ignominy and transportation in order to save her.
Better had he never deserted his tatchie romadie, his own true
Charlotte, who, when all deserted him, the painted Jezebel being the
first to do so, stood by him, supporting him with money in prison,
and feeing counsel on his trial from the scanty proceeds of her
dukkering.  All that happened many years ago; Jack's term of
transportation, a lengthy one, has long, long been expired, but he
has not come back, though every year since the expiration of his
servitude he has written her a letter, or caused one to be written to
her, to say that he is coming, that he is coming; so that she is
always expecting him, and is at all times willing, as she says, to
re-invest him with all the privileges of a husband, and to beg and
dukker to support him if necessary.  A true wife she has been to him,
a tatchie romadie, and has never taken up with any man since he left
her, though many have been the tempting offers that she has had,
connubial offers, notwithstanding the oddity of her appearance.  Only
one wish she has now in this world, the wish that he may return; but
her wish, it is to be feared, is a vain one, for Jack lingers and
lingers in the Sonnakye Tem, golden Australia, teaching, it is said,
the young Australians to box, tempted by certain shining nuggets, the
produce of the golden region.  It is pleasant, though there is
something mournful in it, to visit Mrs. Cooper after nightfall, to
sit with her in her little tent after she has taken her cup of tea,
and is warming her tired limbs at her little coke fire, and hear her
talk of old times and things:  how Jack courted her 'neath the trees
of Loughton Forest, and how, when tired of courting, they would get
up and box, and how he occasionally gave her a black eye, and how she
invariably flung him at a close; and how they were lawfully married
at church, and what a nice man the clergyman was, and what funny
things he said both before and after he had united them; how stoutly
West Country Dick contended against Jack, though always losing; how
in Jack's battle with Paddy O'Leary the Irishman's head in the last
round was truly frightful, not a feature being distinguishable, and
one of his ears hanging down by a bit of skin; how Jack vanquished
Hardy Scroggins, whom Jack Randall himself never dared fight.  Then,
again, her anecdotes of Alec Reed, cool, swift-hitting Alec, who was
always smiling, and whose father was a Scotchman, his mother an
Irishwoman, and who was born in Guernsey; and of Oliver, old Tom
Oliver, who seconded Jack in all his winning battles, and after whom
he named his son, his only child, Oliver, begotten of her in lawful
wedlock, a good and affectionate son enough, but unable to assist
her, on account of his numerous family.  Farewell, Mrs. Cooper, true
old Charlotte! here's a little bit of silver for you, and a little
bit of a gillie to sing:

Charlotta is my nav,
I am a puro Purrun;
My romado was Jack,
The couring Vardomescro.
He muk'd me for a lubbeny,
Who chor'd a rawnie's kissi;
He penn'd 'twas he who lell'd it,
And so was bitched pawdel.

Old Charlotte I am called,
Of Lee I am a daughter;
I married Fighting Jack,
The famous Gypsy Cooper.
He left me for a harlot,
Who pick'd a lady's pocket;
He bore the blame to save her,
And so was sent to Bot'ny.

Just within the bounds of the plain, and close by the road, may
occasionally be seen a small caravan of rather a neat appearance.  It
comes and goes suddenly, and is seldom seen there for more than three
days at a time.  It belongs to a Gypsy female who, like Mrs. Cooper,
is a remarkable person, but is widely different from Mrs. Cooper in
many respects.  Mrs. Cooper certainly does not represent the beau
ideal of a Gypsy female, this does--a dark, mysterious, beautiful,
terrible creature!  She is considerably above the middle height,
powerfully but gracefully made, and about thirty-seven years of age.
Her face is oval, and of a dark olive.  The nose is Grecian, the
cheek-bones rather high; the eyes somewhat sunk, but of a lustrous
black; the mouth small, and the teeth exactly like ivory.  Upon the
whole the face is exceedingly beautiful, but the expression is evil--
evil to a degree.  Who she is no one exactly knows, nor what is her
name, nor whether she is single woman, wife, or widow.  Some say she
is a foreign Gypsy, others from Scotland, but she is neither--her
accent is genuine English.  What strikes one as most singular is the
power she possesses of appearing in various characters--all Romany
ones it is true, but so different as seemingly to require three
distinct females of the race to represent them:  sometimes she is the
staid, quiet, respectable Gypsy; sometimes the forward and impudent;
at others the awful and sublime.  Occasionally you may see her
walking the streets dressed in a black silk gown, with a black silk
bonnet on her head; over her left arm is flung a small carpet, a
sample of the merchandise which is in her caravan, which is close at
hand, driven by a brown boy; her address to her customers is highly
polite; the tones of her voice are musical, though somewhat deep.  At
Fairlop, on the first Friday of July, in the evening, she may be
found near the Bald-faced Hind, dressed in a red cloak and a large
beaver; her appearance is bold and reckless--she is dukkering low
tradesmen and servant girls behind the trees at sixpence a head, or
is bandying with the voice of a raven slang and obscenity with
country boors, or with the blackguard butcher-boys who throng in from
Whitechapel and Shoreditch to the Gypsy Fair.  At Goodwood, a few
weeks after, you may see her in a beautiful half-riding dress, her
hair fantastically plaited and adorned with pearls, standing beside
the carriage of a Countess, telling the fortune of her ladyship with
the voice and look of a pythoness.  She is a thing of incongruities;
an incomprehensible being! nobody can make her out; the writer
himself has tried to make her out but could not, though he has spoken
to her in his deepest Romany.  It is true there is a certain old
Gypsy, a friend of his, who thinks he has made her out.  "Brother,"
said he one day, "why you should be always going after that woman I
can't conceive, unless indeed you have lost your wits.  If you go
after her for her Romany you will find yourself in the wrong box:
she may have a crumb or two of Romany, but for every crumb that she
has I am quite sure you have a quartern loaf.  Then as for her
beauty, of which it is true she has plenty, and for which half a
dozen Gorgios that I knows of are running mad, it's of no use going
after her for that, for her beauty she keeps for her own use and that
of her master the Devil; not but that she will sell it--she's sold it
a dozen times to my certain knowledge--but what's the use of buying a
thing, when the fool who buys it never gets it, never has the
'joyment of it, brother?  She is kek tatcho, and that's what I like
least in her; there's no trusting her, neither Gorgio nor Romano can
trust her:  she sells her truppos to a Rye-gorgio for five bars, and
when she has got them, and the Gorgio, as he has a right to do,
begins to kelna lasa, she laughs and asks him if he knows whom he has
to deal with; then if he lels bonnek of lati, as he is quite
justified in doing, she whips out a churi, and swears if he doesn't
leave off she will stick it in his gorlo.  Oh! she's an evil mare, a
wafodu grasni, though a handsome one, and I never looks at her,
brother, without saying to myself the old words:

"Rinkeno mui and wafodu zee
Kitzi's the cheeros we dicks cattane."
A beautiful face and a black wicked mind
Often, full often together we find.

Some more particular account than what has been already given of the
habitations of these Wandsworth Gypsies, and likewise of their way of
life, will perhaps not be unacceptable here.

To begin with the tents.  They are oblong in shape and of very simple
construction, whether small or great.  Sticks or rods, called in the
Gypsy language ranior, between four and five feet in length, and
croming or bending towards the top, are stuck in the ground at about
twenty inches from each other, a rod or two being omitted in that
part where the entrance is intended to be.  The cromes or bends serve
as supporters of a roof, and those of the side rods which stand over
against one another are generally tied together by strings.  These
rods are covered over with coarse brown cloths, pinned or skewered
together; those at the bottom being fastened to the ground by pegs.
Around the tent is generally a slight embankment, about two or three
inches high, or a little trench about the same depth, to prevent
water from running into the tent in time of rain.  Such is the tent,
which would be exactly like the Indian wigwam but for the cloth which
forms the covering:  the Indians in lieu of cloth using bark, which
they carry about with them in all their migrations, though they leave
the sticks standing in the ground.

The furniture is scanty.  Like the Arabs, the Gypsies have neither
chairs nor tables, but sit cross-legged, a posture which is perfectly
easy to them, though insufferable to a Gorgio, unless he happens to
be a tailor.  When they eat, the ground serves them for a board,
though they occasionally spread a cloth upon it.  Singularly enough,
though they have neither chairs nor tables, they have words for both.
Of pots, pans, plates, and trenchers, they have a tolerable quantity.
Each grown-up person has a churi, or knife, with which to cut food.
Eating-forks they have none, and for an eating-fork they have no
word, the term pasengri signifying a straw- or pitch-fork.  Spoons
are used by them generally of horn, and are called royis.  They have
but two culinary articles, the kekkauvi and pirry, kettle and boiler,
which are generally of copper, to which, however, may perhaps be
added the kekkauviskey saster, or kettle-iron, by which the kettle
and boiler are hung over the fire.  As a fireplace they have a large
iron pan on three legs, with holes or eyes in the sides, in order
that the heat of the fire may be cast around.  Instead of coals they
use coke, which emits no flame and little smoke, and casts a
considerable heat.  Every tent has a pail or two, and perhaps a small
cask or barrel, the proper name for which is bedra, though it is
generally called pani-mengri, or thing for water.  At the farther end
of the tent is a mattress, with a green cloth, or perhaps a sheet
spread upon it, forming a kind of couch, on which visitors are
generally asked to sit down:- Av adrey, Romany Rye, av adrey ta besh
aley pawdle odoy!  Come in, Gypsy gentleman (said a polite Gypsy one
day to the writer); come in and sit down over yonder!  They have a
box or two in which they stow away their breakable articles and
whatever things they set any particular value upon.  Some of them
have small feather-beds, and they are generally tolerably well
provided with blankets.

The caravans are not numerous, and have only been used of late years
by any of the English Gypsy race.  The caravan called by the Gypsies
keir vardo, or waggon-house, is on four wheels, and is drawn by a
horse or perhaps a couple of donkeys.  It is about twelve feet long
by six broad and six high.  At the farther end are a couple of
transverse berths, one above the other, like those in the cabin of a
ship; and a little way from these is a curtain hanging by rings from
an iron rod running across, which, when drawn, forms a partition.  On
either side is a small glazed window.  The most remarkable object is
a stove just inside the door, on the left hand, with a metal chimney
which goes through the roof.  This stove, the Gypsy term for which is
bo, casts, when lighted, a great heat, and in some cases is made in a
very handsome fashion.  Some caravans have mirrors against the sides,
and exhibit other indications of an aiming at luxury, though in
general they are dirty, squalid places, quite as much as or perhaps
more than the tents, which seem to be the proper and congenial homes
of the Gypsies.

The mode of life of these people may be briefly described.  They have
two regular meals--breakfast and supper.  The breakfast consists of
tea, generally of the best quality, bread, butter, and cheese; the
supper, of tea and a stew.  In spring time they occasionally make a
kind of tea or soup of the tender leaves of a certain description of
nettle.  This preparation, which they call dandrimengreskie zimmen,
or the broth of the stinging-thing, is highly relished by them.  They
get up early, and go to bed betimes.  After breakfast the men sit
down to chin the cost, to mend chairs or make baskets; the women go
forth to hok and dukker, and the children to beg, or to go with the
donkeys to lanes and commons to watch them, whilst they try to fill
their poor bellies with grass and thistles.  These children sometimes
bring home hotchiwitches, or hedgehogs, the flesh of which is very
sweet and tender, and which their mothers are adepts at cooking.

The Gypsies, as has been already observed, are not the sole occupiers
of Wandsworth grounds.  Strange, wild guests are to be found there,
who, without being Gypsies, have much of Gypsyism in their habits,
and who far exceed the Gypsies in number.  To pass them by without
notice would be unpardonable.  They may be divided into three
classes:  Chorodies, Kora-mengre, and Hindity-mengre.  Something
about each:-

The Chorodies are the legitimate descendants of the rogues and
outcasts who roamed about England long before its soil was trodden by
a Gypsy foot.  They are a truly detestable set of beings; both men
and women being ferocious in their appearance, and in their
conversation horrible and disgusting.  They have coarse, vulgar
features, and hair which puts one wonderfully in mind of refuse flax,
or the material of which mops are composed.  Their complexions, when
not obscured with grime, are rather fair than dark, evidencing that
their origin is low, swinish Saxon, and not gentle Romany.  Their
language is the frowsiest English, interlarded with cant expressions
and a few words of bastard Romany.  They live in the vilest tents,
with the exception of two or three families, who have their abode in
broken and filthy caravans.  They have none of the comforts and
elegancies of the Gypsies.  They are utterly destitute of civility
and good manners, and are generally squalid in their dress, though
the women sometimes exhibit not a little dirty tawdriness.  The
trades of the men are tinkering and basket-making, and some few "peel
the stick."  The women go about with the articles made by their
husbands, or rather partners, and sometimes do a little in the
fortune-telling line--pretty prophetesses!  The fellows will
occasionally knock a man down in the dark, and rob him; the women
will steal anything they can conveniently lay their hands on.
Singular as it may seem to those not deeply acquainted with human
nature, these wretches are not without a kind of pride.  "We are no
Gypsies--not we! no, nor Irish either.  We are English, and decent
folks--none of your rubbish!"  The Gypsies hold them, and with
reason, in supreme contempt, and it is from them that they got their
name of Chorodies, not a little applicable to them.  Choredo, in
Gypsy, signifies a poor, miserable person, and differs very little in
sound from two words, one Sanscrit and the other Hebrew, both
signifying, like the Gypsy term, something low, mean, and

Kora-mengre are the lowest of those hawkers who go about the country
villages and the streets of London, with caravans hung about with
various common articles, such as mats, brooms, mops, tin pans and
kettles.  These low hawkers seem to be of much the same origin as the
Chorodies, and are almost equally brutal and repulsive in their
manners.  The name Kora-mengre is Gypsy, and signifies fellows who
cry out and shout, from their practice of shouting out the names of
their goods.  The word kora, or karra, is by no means bad Hebrew:
kora, in the Holy Language, signifies he cried out, called, or
proclaimed:  and a partridge is called in Hebrew kora, from its
continually crying out to its young, when leading them about to feed.
Koran, the name of the sacred book of the Mahomedans, is of the same

Lastly come the Hindity-mengre, or Filthy People.  This term has been
bestowed upon the vagrant Irish by the Gypsies, from the dirty ways
attributed to them, though it is a question whether the lowest Irish
are a bit more dirty in their ways than the English Chorodies, or
indeed so much, and are certainly immeasurably superior to them in
many respects.  There are not many of them here, seldom more than two
families, and sometimes, even during the winter, not a single Irish
tent or cart is to be seen.  The trade they ostensibly drive is
tinkering, repairing old kettles, and making little pots and pans of
tin.  The one, however, on which they principally depend, is not
tinkering, but one far more lucrative, and requiring more cleverness
and dexterity; they make false rings, like the Gypsy smiths, the
fashiono vangustengre of old, and whilst speaking Celtic to one whom
they deem their countryman, have no hesitation in acknowledging
themselves to be "Cairdean droich oir," workers of false gold.  The
rings are principally made out of old brass buttons; those worn by
old Chelsea pensioners being considered the very best for the
purpose.  Many an ancient Corporal Trim, alter having spent all his
money at the public-house, and only become three-parts boozy, has
been induced by the Hindity-mengro to sell all his buttons at the
rate of three-halfpence a-piece, in order to have wherewithal to make
himself thoroughly royal.  Each of these Hindity-mengre has his blow-
pipe, and some of them can execute their work in a style little
inferior to that of a first-rate working goldsmith.  The rings, after
being made, are rubbed with a certain stuff out of a phial, which
gives them all the appearance of gold.  This appearance, however,
does not long endure, for after having been worn two or three months,
the ring loses its false appearance entirely, and any one can see
that it is worthless metal.  A good many of these rings are disposed
of at good prices by the Hindity women, the wives of these false-gold
workers, to servant girls and the wives of small shopkeepers, and not
a few, at a lower rate, to certain gentry who get their livelihood by
the honourable profession of ring-dropping.

What is ring-dropping?

Ring-dropping is this.  A gentleman overtakes you as you are walking
in some quiet street, passes by you, and at the distance of some
fifteen yards stops, and stooping down, seemingly picks up something,
which he inspects, and then uttering a "Dear me!" he turns to you,
and says, "Sir, we have been fortunate to-day.  See!  I have picked
up this valuable!"  He then shows you a small case, in which is a
large ring, seemingly of the finest gold, with a little label
attached to it, on which is marked 2 pounds 15s.  "Now, sir," he
continues, "I said we were fortunate, because as we were close to
each other, I consider you as much entitled to gain by this windfall
as myself.  I'll tell you how it shall be:  the price of the ring,
which was probably dropped by some goldsmith's man, is, as you see,
two pound fifteen; however, as I am in a hurry, you shall only give
me a quid, a pound, and then the valuable shall be all your own; it
shall indeed, sir!"  And then he stares you in the face.  Such is
ring-dropping, to which many silly but greedy individuals, fall
victims; giving a pound for a fine-looking ring, which, however, with
its scarlet case--for the case is always of a scarlet colour--is not
worth sixpence.  The best thing you can do in such a case is to put
your thumb to your nose, flattening your hand and sticking out your
fingers far apart, moving on at the same time, or to utter the
cabalistic word "hookey"; in either case the ring-dropper will at
once drop astern, with a half-stifled curse, for he knows that he has
to do with "no flat," and that you are "awake to his little game."
Doing so is much better than moving rapidly on, and affecting to take
no notice of him, for then he will infallibly follow you to the end
of the street, offering you the ring on more reasonable terms at
every step, perhaps concluding at last, as a ring-dropper once did to
the writer, "I'll tell you what, sir; as I am in a hurry, and rather
hard up, you shall have the valuable for a bull, for a crown; you
shall indeed, sir, so help me--"

Three of the most famous of the Hindity smiths have been immortalised
by the Gypsies in the following bit of verse:

Mickie, Huwie and Larry,
Trin Hindity-mengre fashiono vangust-engre.

Mickie, Huwie and Larry bold,
Three Irish brothers, as I am told,
Who make false rings, that pass for gold.

Of these fashiono-vangust brothers, the most remarkable is Mike--Old
Mike, as he is generally called.  He was born in the county Kerry,
and educated at a hedge-school, where he learned to read and write
English, after a fashion, and acquired the seventeen letters of the
Irish alphabet, each of which is named after a particular tree.
Leaving school he was apprenticed to a blacksmith, from whom he ran
away, and enlisted into the service of that illustrious monarch,
George the Third, some of whose battles he had the honour of fighting
in the Peninsula and France.  Discharged from the army at the Peace,
with the noble donation of thirty shillings, or one month's pay, he
returned to Ireland, took to himself a wife, and commenced tinker.
Becoming dissatisfied with his native soil he passed over to England,
and settling for some time at "Brummagem," took lessons from certain
cunning smiths in the art of making fashiono vangusties.  The next
forty years of his life he spent in wandering about Britain, attended
by his faithful partner, who not only disposed of his tin articles
and false rings, but also bore him seventeen children, all of whom
are alive, somewhere or other, and thriving too, one of them indeed
having attained to the dignity of American senator.  Some of his
adventures, during his wanderings, were in the highest degree
extraordinary.  Of late years he has chiefly resided in the vicinity
of London, spending his winters at Wandsworth, and his summers on the
Flats, near Epping Forest; in one or the other of which places you
may see Old Mike on a Sunday evening, provided the weather is
tolerably fine, seated near his little caravan, with his wife by his
side--not the wife who bore him the seventeen children, who has been
dead for some years, but his second wife, a nice, elderly Irish ban
from the county of Cork, who can tell fortunes, say her prayers in
Irish, and is nearly as good a hand at selling her lord and master's
tin articles and false rings as her predecessor.  Lucky for Mike that
he got such a second partner! and luckier still that at his age of
seventy-nine he retains all his faculties, and is able to work for
his daily bread, with at least the skill and cunning of his two
brothers, both of whom are much younger men than himself, whose
adventures have been somewhat similar to his own, and who, singularly
enough, have come to live near him in his latter days.  Both these
brothers are highly remarkable men.  Huwie is the most civil-spoken
person in or about London, and Larry a man of the most terrible
tongue, and perhaps the most desperate fighter ever seen; always
willing to attack half a dozen men, if necessary, and afraid of no
one in the world, save one--Mike, old Mike, who can tame him in his
fiercest moods by merely holding up his finger.  Oh, a truly
remarkable man is old Mike! and a pleasure and an advantage it is to
any one of a philosophical mind to be acquainted with him, and to
listen to him.  He is much more than a fashiono-vangust-engro.
Amongst other things he is a theologian--Irish theologian--and quite
competent to fill the chair of theology at the University of
Maynooth.  He can tell you a great many things connected with a
certain person, which, with all your research, you would never find
in Scripture.  He can tell you how the Saviour, when hanging on the
cross, became athirst, and told St. Peter, who stood at the foot of
it, to fetch Him a cup of water from a dirty puddle in the
neighbourhood, and how St. Peter--however, better not relate the
legend, though a highly curious one.  Then he can repeat to you
blessed verses, as he calls them, by dozens; not of David, but of one
quite as good, as he will tell you, namely, Timothy O'Sullivan; and
who, you will say, was Timothy O'Sullivan?  Why, Ty Gaelach, to be
sure.  And who was Ty Gaelach?  An Irish peasant-poet of the last
century, who wrote spiritual songs, some of them by no means bad
ones, and who was called Gaelach, or Gael, from his abhorrence of the
English race and of the English language, of which he scarcely
understood a word.  Then is Ty Irish for Timothy?  Why, no! though
very stupidly supposed to be so.  Ty is Teague, which is neither
Greek nor Irish, but a glorious old Northern name, carried into
Ireland by the brave old heathen Danes.  Ty or Teague is the same as
Tycho.  Ty or Teague Gaelach is as much as to say Tycho Gaelach; and
Tycho Brahe is as much as to say Teague Brahe.


The second great Gypsyry is on the Middlesex side of the river, and
is distant about three miles, as the crow flies, from that of
Wandsworth.  Strange as it may seem, it is not far distant from the
most fashionable part of London; from the beautiful squares, noble
streets, and thousand palaces of Tyburnia, a region which, though
only a small part of the enormous metropolis, can show more beautiful
edifices, wealth, elegance, and luxury, than all foreign capitals put
together.  After passing Tyburnia, and going more than halfway down
Notting Hill, you turn to the right, and proceed along a tolerably
genteel street till it divides into two, one of which looks more like
a lane than a street, and which is on the left hand, and bears the
name of Pottery Lane.  Go along this lane, and you will presently
find yourself amongst a number of low, uncouth-looking sheds, open at
the sides, and containing an immense quantity of earthen chimney-
pots, pantiles, fancy-bricks, and similar articles.  This place is
called the Potteries, and gives the name of Pottery Lane to the lane
through which you have just passed.  A dirty little road goes through
it, which you must follow, and presently turning to your left, you
will enter a little, filthy street, and going some way down it, you
will see, on your right hand, a little, open bit of ground, chock-
full of crazy, battered caravans of all colours--some yellow, some
green, some red.  Dark men, wild-looking, witch-like women, and
yellow-faced children are at the doors of the caravans, or wending
their way through the narrow spaces left for transit between the
vehicles.  You have now arrived at the second grand Gypsyry of
London--you are amongst the Romany Chals of the Potteries, called in
Gypsy the Koromengreskoe Tan, or the place of the fellows who make
pots; in which place certain Gypsies have settled, not with the view
of making pots, an employment which they utterly eschew, but simply
because it is convenient to them, and suits their fancy.

A goodly collection of Gypsies you will find in that little nook,
crowded with caravans.  Most of them are Tatchey Romany, real
Gypsies, "long-established people, of the old order."  Amongst them
are Ratzie-mescroes, Hearnes, Herons, or duck-people; Chumo-mescroes
or Bosvils; a Kaulo Camlo (a Black Lovel) or two, and a Beshaley or
Stanley.  It is no easy thing to find a Stanley nowadays, even in the
Baulo Tem, or Hampshire, which is the proper home of the Stanleys,
for the Bugnior, pimples or small-pox, has of late years made sad
havoc amongst the Stanleys; but yonder tall old gentlewoman,
descending the steps of a caravan, with a flaming red cloak and a
large black beaver bonnet, and holding a travelling basket in her
hand, is a Tatchey Beshaley, a "genuine" Stanley.  The generality,
however, of "them Gyptians" are Ratzie-mescroes, Hearnes, or duck-
people; and, speaking of the Hearnes, it is but right to say that he
who may be called the Gypsy Father of London, old Thomas Ratzie-
mescro, or Hearne, though not exactly residing here, lives close by
in a caravan, in a little bit of a yard over the way, where he can
breathe more freely, and be less annoyed by the brats and the young
fellows than he would be in yonder crowded place.

Though the spot which it has just been attempted to describe, may be
considered as the head-quarters of the London Gypsies, on the
Middlesex side of the Thames, the whole neighbourhood, for a mile to
the north of it, may to a certain extent be considered a Gypsy
region--that is, a district where Gypsies, or gentry whose habits
very much resemble those of Gypsies, may at any time be found.  No
metropolitan district, indeed, could be well more suited for Gypsies
to take up their abode in.  It is a neighbourhood of transition; of
brickfields, open spaces, poor streets inhabited by low artisans,
isolated houses, sites of intended tenements, or sites of tenements
which have been pulled down; it is in fact a mere chaos, where there
is no order and no regularity; where there is nothing durable, or
intended to be durable; though there can be little doubt that within
a few years order and beauty itself will be found here, that the
misery, squalidness, and meanness will have disappeared, and the
whole district, up to the railroad arches which bound it on the west
and north, will be covered with palaces, like those of Tyburnia, or
delightful villas, like those which decorate what is called Saint
John's Wood.  At present, however, it is quite the kind of place to
please the Gypsies and wandering people, who find many places within
its bounds where they can squat and settle, or take up their quarters
for a night or two without much risk of being interfered with.  Here
their tents, cars, and caravans may be seen amidst ruins, half-raised
walls, and on patches of unenclosed ground; here their children may,
throughout the day, be seen playing about, flinging up dust and dirt,
some partly naked, and others entirely so; and here, at night, the
different families, men, women, and children, may be seen seated
around their fires and their kettles, taking their evening meal, and
every now and then indulging in shouts of merriment, as much as to
say, -

What care we, though we be so small?
The tent shall stand when the palace shall fall;

which is quite true.  The Gypsy tent must make way for the palace,
but after a millennium or two, the Gypsy tent is pitched on the ruins
of the palace.

Of the open spaces above mentioned, the most considerable is one
called Latimer's Green.  It lies on the north-western side of the
district, and is not far from that place of old renown called the
Shepherd's Bush, where in the good ancient times highwaymen used to
lurk for the purpose of pouncing upon the travellers of the Oxford
Road.  It may contain about five or six acres, and, though nominally
under the control of trustees, is in reality little more than a "no
man's ground," where anybody may feed a horse, light a fire, and boil
a kettle.  It is a great resort of vagrant people, less of Gypsies
than those who call themselves travellers, and are denominated by the
Gypsies Chorodies, and who live for the most part in miserable
caravans, though there is generally a Gypsy tent or two to be seen
there, belonging to some Deighton or Shaw, or perhaps Petulengro,
from the Lil-engro Tan, as the Romany call Cambridgeshire.  Amidst
these Chorody caravans and Gypsy tents may frequently be seen the
ker-vardo, the house on wheels, of one who, whenever he takes up his
quarters here, is considered the cock of the walk, the king of the
place.  He is a little under forty years of age, and somewhat under
five feet ten inches in height.  His face is wonderfully like that of
a mastiff of the largest size, particularly in its jowls; his neck is
short and very thick, and must be nearly as strong as that of a bull;
his chest is so broad that one does not like to say how broad it is;
and the voice which every now and then proceeds from it has much the
sound of that of the mighty dog just mentioned; his arms are long and
exceedingly muscular, and his fists huge and bony.  He wears a low-
crowned, broad-brimmed hat, a coarse blue coat with short skirts,
leggings, and high-lows.  Such is the kral o' the tan, the rex loci,
the cock of the green.  But what is he besides?  Is he Gypsy,
Chorody, or Hindity mush?  I say, you had better not call him by any
one of those names, for if you did he would perhaps hit you, and
then, oh dear!  That is Mr. G. A., a travelling horse-dealer, who
lives in a caravan, and finds it frequently convenient to take up his
abode for weeks together on Latimer's Green.  He is a thorough-bred
Englishman, though he is married to a daughter of one of the old,
sacred Gypsy families, a certain Lurina Ratziemescri, duck or heron
female, who is a very handsome woman, and who has two brothers, dark,
stealthy-looking young fellows, who serve with almost slavish
obedience their sister's lord and husband, listening uncomplainingly
to his abuse of Gypsies, whom, though he lives amongst them and is
married to one by whom he has several children, he holds in supreme
contempt, never speaking of them but as a lying, thievish, cowardly
set, any three of whom he could beat with one hand; as perhaps he
could, for he is a desperate pugilist, and has three times fought in
"the ring" with good men, whom, though not a scientific fighter, he
beat with ease by dint of terrible blows, causing them to roar out.
He is very well to do in the world; his caravan, a rather stately
affair, is splendidly furnished within; and it is a pleasure to see
his wife, at Hampton Court races, dressed in Gypsy fashion, decked
with real gems and jewels and rich gold chains, and waited upon by
her dark brothers dressed like dandy pages.  How is all this expense
supported?  Why, by horsedealing.  Mr. G. is, then, up to all kinds
of horsedealers' tricks, no doubt.  Aye, aye, he is up to them, but
he doesn't practise them.  He says it's of no use, and that honesty
is the best policy, and he'll stick to it; and so he does, and finds
the profit of it.  His traffic in horses, though confined entirely to
small people, such as market-gardeners, travellers, show-folks, and
the like, is very great; every small person who wishes to buy a
horse, or to sell a horse, or to swop a horse, goes to Mr. G., and
has never reason to complain, for all acknowledge that he has done
the fair thing by them; though all agree that there is no
overreaching him, which indeed very few people try to do, deterred by
the dread of his manual prowess, of which a Gypsy once gave to the
writer the following striking illustration: --"He will jal oprey to a
gry that's wafodu, prawla, and coure leste tuley with the courepen of
his wast."  (He will go up to a vicious horse, brother, and knock him
down with a blow of his fist.)

The arches of the railroad which bounds this region on the west and
north serve as a resort for Gypsies, who erect within them their
tents, which are thus sheltered in summer from the scorching rays of
the sun, and in winter from the drenching rain.  In what close
proximity we sometimes find emblems of what is most rude and simple,
and what is most artificial and ingenious!  For example, below the
arch is the Gypsy donkey-cart, whilst above it is thundering the
chariot of fire which can run across a county in half an hour.  The
principal frequenters of these arches are Bosvils and Lees; the
former are chiefly tinkers, and the latter esconyemengres, or skewer-
makers.  The reason for this difference is that the Bosvils are
chiefly immigrants from the country, where there is not much demand
for skewers, whereas the Lees are natives of the metropolis or the
neighbourhood, where the demand for skewers has from time immemorial
been enormously great.  It was in the shelter of one of these arches
that the celebrated Ryley Bosvil, the Gypsy king of Yorkshire,
breathed his last a few years ago.


Before quitting the subject of Metropolitan Gypsies there is another
place to which it will be necessary to devote a few words, though it
is less entitled to the appelation of Gypsyry than rookery.  It is
situated in the East of London, a region far more interesting to the
ethnologist and the philologist than the West, for there he will find
people of all kinds of strange races,--the wildest Irish; Greeks,
both Orthodox and Papistical; Jews, not only Ashkenazim and
Sephardim, but even Karaite; the worst, and consequently the most
interesting, description of Germans, the sugar-bakers; lots of
Malays; plenty of Chinamen; two or three dozen Hottentots, and about
the same number of Gypsies, reckoning men, women, and children.  Of
the latter, and their place of abode, we have now only to do, leaving
the other strange, odd people to be disposed of on some other

Not far from Shoreditch Church, and at a short distance from the
street called Church Street, on the left hand, is a locality called
Friars' Mount, but generally for shortness called The Mount.  It
derives its name from a friary built upon a small hillock in the time
of Popery, where a set of fellows lived in laziness and luxury on the
offerings of foolish and superstitious people, who resorted thither
to kiss and worship an ugly wooden image of the Virgin, said to be a
first-rate stick at performing miraculous cures.  The neighbourhood,
of course, soon became a resort for vagabonds of every description,
for wherever friars are found rogues and thieves are sure to abound;
and about Friars' Mount, highwaymen, coiners, and Gypsies dwelt in
safety under the protection of the ministers of the miraculous image.
The friary has long since disappeared, the Mount has been levelled,
and the locality built over.  The vice and villainy, however, which
the friary called forth still cling to the district.  It is one of
the vilest dens of London, a grand resort for housebreakers,
garotters, passers of bad money, and other disreputable people,
though not for Gypsies; for however favourite a place it may have
been for the Romany in the old time, it no longer finds much favour
in their sight, from its not affording open spaces where they can
pitch their tents.  One very small street, however, is certainly
entitled to the name of a Gypsy street, in which a few Gypsy families
have always found it convenient to reside, and who are in the habit
of receiving and lodging their brethren passing through London to and
from Essex and other counties east of the metropolis.  There is
something peculiar in the aspect of this street, not observable in
that of any of the others, which one who visits it, should he have
been in Triana of Seville, would at once recognise as having seen in
the aspect of the lanes and courts of that grand location of the
Gypsies of the Andalusian capital.

The Gypsies of the Mount live much in the same manner as their
brethren in the other Gypsyries of London.  They chin the cost, make
skewers, baskets, and let out donkeys for hire.  The chief difference
consists in their living in squalid houses, whilst the others inhabit
dirty tents and caravans.  The last Gypsy of any note who resided in
this quarter was Joseph Lee; here he lived for a great many years,
and here he died, having attained the age of ninety.  During his
latter years he was generally called Old Joe Lee, from his great age.
His wife or partner, who was also exceedingly old, only survived him
a few days.  They were buried in the same grave, with much Gypsy
pomp, in the neighbouring churchyard.  They were both of pure Gypsy
blood, and were generally known as the Gypsy king and queen of
Shoreditch.  They left a numerous family of children and
grandchildren, some of whom are still to be found at the Mount.  This
old Joe Lee in his day was a celebrated horse and donkey witch--that
is, he professed secrets which enabled him to make any wretched
animal of either species exhibit for a little time the spirit and
speed of "a flying drummedary."  He was illustriously related, and
was very proud on that account, especially in being the brother's son
of old James, the cauring mush, whose exploits in the filching line
will be remembered as long as the venerable tribe of Purrum, or Lee,
continues in existence.


Ryley Bosvil was a native of Yorkshire, a country where, as the
Gypsies say, "there's a deadly sight of Bosvils."  He was above the
middle height, exceedingly strong and active, and one of the best
riders in Yorkshire, which is saying a great deal.  He was a thorough
Gypsy, versed in all the arts of the old race, had two wives, never
went to church, and considered that when a man died he was cast into
the earth, and there was an end of him.  He frequently used to say
that if any of his people became Gorgios he would kill them.  He had
a sister of the name of Clara, a nice, delicate, interesting girl,
about fourteen years younger than himself, who travelled about with
an aunt; this girl was noticed by a respectable Christian family,
who, taking a great interest in her, persuaded her to come and live
with them.  She was instructed by them in the rudiments of the
Christian religion, appeared delighted with her new friends, and
promised never to leave them.  After the lapse of about six weeks
there was a knock at the door; a dark man stood before it who said he
wanted Clara.  Clara went out trembling, had some discourse with the
man in an unknown tongue, and shortly returned in tears, and said
that she must go.  "What for?" said her friends.  "Did you not
promise to stay with us?"  "I did so," said the girl, weeping more
bitterly; "but that man is my brother, who says I must go with him,
and what he says must be."  So with her brother she departed, and her
Christian friends never saw her again.  What became of her?  Was she
made away with?  Many thought she was, but she was not.  Ryley put
her into a light cart, drawn by "a flying pony," and hurried her
across England, even to distant Norfolk, where he left her, after
threatening her, with three Gypsy women who were devoted to him.
With these women the writer found her one night encamped in a dark
wood, and had much discourse with her, both on Christian and Egyptian
matters.  She was very melancholy, bitterly regretted having been
compelled to quit her Christian friends, and said that she wished she
had never been a Gypsy.  The writer, after exhorting her to keep a
firm grip of her Christianity, departed, and did not see her again
for nearly a quarter of a century, when he met her on Epsom Downs, on
the Derby day when the terrible horse Gladiateur beat all the English
steeds.  She was then very much changed, very much changed indeed,
appearing as a full-blown Egyptian matron, with two very handsome
daughters flaringly dressed in genuine Gypsy fashion, to whom she was
giving motherly counsels as to the best means to hok and dukker the
gentlefolks.  All her Christianity she appeared to have flung to the
dogs, for when the writer spoke to her on that very important
subject, she made no answer save by an indescribable Gypsy look.  On
other matters she was communicative enough, telling the writer,
amongst other things, that since he saw her she had been twice
married, and both times very well, for that her first husband, by
whom she had the two daughters whom the writer "kept staring at," was
a man every inch of him, and her second, who was then on the Downs
grinding knives with a machine he had, though he had not much
manhood, being nearly eighty years old, had something much better,
namely a mint of money, which she hoped shortly to have in her own

Ryley, like most of the Bosvils, was a tinker by profession; but,
though a tinker, he was amazingly proud and haughty of heart.  His
grand ambition was to be a great man among his people, a Gypsy King.
To this end he furnished himself with clothes made after the
costliest Gypsy fashion:  the two hinder buttons of the coat, which
was of thick blue cloth, were broad gold pieces of Spain, generally
called ounces; the fore-buttons were English "spaded guineas"; the
buttons of the waistcoat were half-guineas, and those of the collar
and the wrists of his shirt were seven-shilling gold pieces.  In this
coat he would frequently make his appearance on a magnificent horse,
whose hoofs, like those of the steed of a Turkish sultan, were cased
in shoes of silver.  How did he support such expense? it may be
asked.  Partly by driving a trade in wafodu luvvu, counterfeit coin,
with which he was supplied by certain honest tradespeople of
Brummagem; partly and principally by large sums of money which he
received from his two wives, and which they obtained by the practice
of certain arts peculiar to Gypsy females.  One of his wives was a
truly remarkable woman:  she was of the Petulengro or Smith tribe;
her Christian name, if Christian name it can be called, was Xuri or
Shuri, and from her exceeding smartness and cleverness she was
generally called by the Gypsies Yocky Shuri,--that is, smart or
clever Shuri, yocky being a Gypsy word, signifying 'clever.'  She
could dukker--that is, tell fortunes--to perfection, by which alone
during the racing season she could make a hundred pounds a month.
She was good at the big hok, that is, at inducing people to put money
into her hands, in the hope of its being multiplied; and, oh dear!
how she could caur--that is, filch gold rings and trinkets from
jewellers' cases; the kind of thing which the Spanish Gypsy women
call ustilar pastesas, filching with the hands.  Frequently she would
disappear, and travel about England, and Scotland too, dukkering,
hokking, and cauring, and after the lapse of a month return and
deliver to her husband, like a true and faithful wife, the proceeds
of her industry.  So no wonder that the Flying Tinker, as he was
called, was enabled to cut a grand appearance.  He was very fond of
hunting, and would frequently join the field in regular hunting
costume, save and except that, instead of the leather hunting-cap, he
wore one of fur with a gold band around it, to denote that though he
mixed with Gorgios he was still a Romany-chal.  Thus equipped and
mounted on a capital hunter, whenever he encountered a Gypsy
encampment he would invariably dash through it, doing all the harm he
could, in order, as he said, to let the juggals know that he was
their king and had a right to do what he pleased with his own.
Things went on swimmingly for a great many years, but, as prosperity
does not continue for ever, his dark hour came at last.  His wives
got into trouble in one or two expeditions, and his dealings in
wafodu luvvu began to be noised about.  Moreover, by his grand airs
and violent proceedings he had incurred the hatred of both Gorgios
and Gypsies, particularly of the latter, some of whom he had ridden
over and lamed for life.  One day he addressed his two wives:-

"The Gorgios seek to hang me,
The Gypsies seek to kill me:
This country we must leave."


I'll jaw with you to heaven,
I'll jaw with you to Yaudors -
But not if Lura goes."


"I'll jaw with you to heaven,
And to the wicked country,
Though Shuri goeth too."


"Since I must choose betwixt ye,
My choice is Yocky Shuri,
Though Lura loves me best."


"My blackest curse on Shuri!
Oh, Ryley, I'll not curse you,
But you will never thrive."

She then took her departure with her cart and donkey, and Ryley
remained with Shuri.


"I've chosen now betwixt ye;
Your wish you now have gotten,
But for it you shall smart."

He then struck her with his fist on the cheek, and broke her jawbone.
Shuri uttered no cry or complaint, only mumbled:

"Although with broken jawbone,
I'll follow thee, my Ryley,
Since Lura doesn't jal."

Thereupon Ryley and Yocky Shuri left Yorkshire, and wended their way
to London, where they took up their abode in the Gypsyry near the
Shepherd's Bush.  Shuri went about dukkering and hokking, but not
with the spirit of former times, for she was not quite so young as
she had been, and her jaw, which was never properly cured, pained her
much.  Ryley went about tinkering, but he was unacquainted with
London and its neighbourhood, and did not get much to do.  An old
Gypsy-man, who was driving about a little cart filled with skewers,
saw him standing in a state of perplexity at a place where four roads

Old Gypsy.

"Methinks I see a brother!
Who's your father?  Who's your mother?
And what may be your name?"


"A Bosvil was my father;
A Bosvil was my mother;
And Ryley is my name."

Old Gypsy.

"I'm glad to see you, brother!
I am a Kaulo Camlo. {4}
What service can I do?"


"I'm jawing petulengring, {5}
But do not know the country;
Perhaps you'll show me round."

Old Gypsy.

"I'll sikker tute, prala!
I'm bikkening esconyor; {6}
Av, av along with me!"

The old Gypsy showed Ryley about the country for a week or two, and
Ryley formed a kind of connection, and did a little business.  He,
however, displayed little or no energy, was gloomy and dissatisfied,
and frequently said that his heart was broken since he had left

Shuri did her best to cheer him, but without effect.  Once, when she
bade him get up and exert himself, he said that if he did it would be
of little use, and asked her whether she did not remember the parting
prophecy of his other wife that he would never thrive.  At the end of
about two years he ceased going his rounds, and did nothing but smoke
under the arches of the railroad, and loiter about beershops.  At
length he became very weak, and took to his bed; doctors were called
in by his faithful Shuri, but there is no remedy for a bruised
spirit.  A Methodist came and asked him, "What was his hope?"  "My
hope," said he, "is that when I am dead I shall be put into the
ground, and my wife and children will weep over me."  And such, it
may be observed, is the last hope of every genuine Gypsy.  His hope
was gratified.  Shuri and his children, of whom he had three--two
stout young fellows and a girl--gave him a magnificent funeral, and
screamed, shouted, and wept over his grave.  They then returned to
the "Arches," not to divide his property amongst them, and to quarrel
about the division, according to Christian practice, but to destroy
it.  They killed his swift pony--still swift, though twenty-seven
years of age--and buried it deep in the ground, without depriving it
of its skin.  They then broke the caravan and cart to pieces, making
of the fragments a fire, on which they threw his bedding, carpets,
curtains, blankets, and everything which would burn.  Finally, they
dashed his mirrors, china, and crockery to pieces, hacked his metal
pots, dishes and what-not to bits, and flung the whole on the blazing
pile.  Such was the life, such the death, and such were the funeral
obsequies of Ryley Bosvil, a Gypsy who will be long remembered
amongst the English Romany for his buttons, his two wives, his grand
airs, and last, and not least, for having been the composer of
various stanzas in the Gypsy tongue, which have plenty of force, if
nothing else, to recommend them.  One of these, addressed to Yocky
Shuri, runs as follows:

Tuley the Can I kokkeney cam
Like my rinkeny Yocky Shuri:
Oprey the chongor in ratti I'd cour
For my rinkeny Yocky Shuri!

Which may be thus rendered:

Beneath the bright sun, there is none, there is none,
I love like my Yocky Shuri:
With the greatest delight, in blood I would fight
To the knees for my Yocky Shuri!


There are two Yetholms--Town Yetholm and Kirk Yetholm.  They stand at
the distance of about a quarter of a mile from each other, and
between them is a valley, down which runs a small stream, called the
Beaumont River, crossed by a little stone bridge.  Of the town there
is not much to be said.  It is a long, straggling place, on the road
between Morbuttle and Kelso, from which latter place it is distant
about seven miles.  It is comparatively modern, and sprang up when
the Kirk town began to fall into decay.  Kirk Yetholm derives the
first part of its name from the church, which serves for a place of
worship not only for the inhabitants of the place, but for those of
the town also.  The present church is modern, having been built on
the site of the old kirk, which was pulled down in the early part of
the present century, and which had been witness of many a strange
event connected with the wars between England and Scotland.  It
stands at the entrance of the place, on the left hand as you turn to
the village after ascending the steep road which leads from the
bridge.  The place occupies the lower portion of a hill, a spur of
the Cheviot range, behind which is another hill, much higher, rising
to an altitude of at least 900 feet.  At one time it was surrounded
by a stone wall, and at the farther end is a gateway overlooking a
road leading to the English border, from which Kirk Yetholm is
distant only a mile and a quarter; the boundary of the two kingdoms
being here a small brook called Shorton Burn, on the English side of
which is a village of harmless, simple Northumbrians, differing
strangely in appearance, manner, and language from the people who
live within a stone's throw of them on the other side.

Kirk Yetholm is a small place, but with a remarkable look.  It
consists of a street, terminating in what is called a green, with
houses on three sides, but open on the fourth, or right side to the
mountain, towards which quarter it is grassy and steep.  Most of the
houses are ancient, and are built of rude stone.  By far the most
remarkable-looking house is a large and dilapidated building, which
has much the appearance of a ruinous Spanish posada or venta.  There
is not much life in the place, and you may stand ten minutes where
the street opens upon the square without seeing any other human
beings than two or three women seated at the house doors, or a
ragged, bare-headed boy or two lying on the grass on the upper side
of the Green.  It came to pass that late one Saturday afternoon, at
the commencement of August, in the year 1866, I was standing where
the street opens on this Green, or imperfect square.  My eyes were
fixed on the dilapidated house, the appearance of which awakened in
my mind all kinds of odd ideas.  "A strange-looking place," said I to
myself at last, "and I shouldn't wonder if strange things have been
done in it."

"Come to see the Gypsy toon, sir?" said a voice not far from me.

I turned, and saw standing within two yards of me a woman about forty
years of age, of decent appearance, though without either cap or

"A Gypsy town, is it?" said I; "why, I thought it had been Kirk

Woman.--"Weel, sir, if it is Kirk Yetholm, must it not be a Gypsy
toon?  Has not Kirk Yetholm ever been a Gypsy toon?"

Myself.--"My good woman, 'ever' is a long term, and Kirk Yetholm must
have been Kirk Yetholm long before there were Gypsies in Scotland, or
England either."

Woman.--"Weel, sir, your honour may be right, and I dare say is; for
your honour seems to be a learned gentleman.  Certain, however, it is
that Kirk Yetholm has been a Gypsy toon beyond the memory of man."

Myself.--"You do not seem to be a Gypsy."

Woman.--"Seem to be a Gypsy!  Na, na, sir!  I am the bairn of decent
parents, and belong not to Kirk Yetholm, but to Haddington."

Myself.--"And what brought you to Kirk Yetholm?"

Woman.--"Oh, my ain little bit of business brought me to Kirk
Yetholm, sir."

Myself.--"Which is no business of mine.  That's a queer-looking house

Woman.--"The house that your honour was looking at so attentively
when I first spoke to ye?  A queer-looking house it is, and a queer
kind of man once lived in it.  Does your honour know who once lived
in that house?"

Myself.--"No.  How should I?  I am here for the first time, and after
taking a bite and sup at the inn at the town over yonder I strolled

Woman.--"Does your honour come from far?"

Myself.--"A good way.  I came from Strandraar, the farthest part of
Galloway, where I landed from a ship which brought me from Ireland."

Woman.--"And what may have brought your honour into these parts?"

Myself.--"Oh, my ain wee bit of business brought me into these

"Which wee bit of business is nae business of mine," said the woman,
smiling.  "Weel, your honour is quite right to keep your ain counsel;
for, as your honour weel kens, if a person canna keep his ain counsel
it is nae likely that any other body will keep it for him.  But to
gae back to the queer house, and the queer man that once 'habited it.
That man, your honour, was old Will Faa."

Myself.--"Old Will Faa!"

Woman.--"Yes.  Old Will Faa, the Gypsy king, smuggler, and innkeeper;
he lived in that inn."

Myself.--"Oh, then that house has been an inn?"

Woman.--"It still is an inn, and has always been an inn; and though
it has such an eerie look it is sometimes lively enough, more
especially after the Gypsies have returned from their summer
excursions in the country.  It's a roaring place then.  They spend
most of their sleight-o'-hand gains in that house."

Myself.--"Is the house still kept by a Faa?"

Woman.--"No, sir; there are no Faas to keep it.  The name is clean
dead in the land, though there is still some of the blood remaining."

Myself.--"I really should like to see some of the blood."

Woman.--"Weel, sir, you can do that without much difficulty; there
are not many Gypsies just now in Kirk Yetholm; but the one who they
say has more of his blood than any one else happens to be here.  I
mean his grandbairn--his daughter's daughter; she whom they ca' the
'Gypsy Queen o' Yetholm,' and whom they lead about the toon once a
year, mounted on a cuddy, with a tin crown on her head, with much
shouting, and with mony a barbaric ceremony."

Myself.--"I really should like to see her."

Woman.--"Weel, sir, there's a woman behind you, seated at the
doorway, who can get your honour not only the sight of her, but the
speech of her, for she is one of the race, and a relation of hers;
and, to tell ye the truth, she has had her eye upon your honour for
some time past, expecting to be asked about the qeeen, for scarcely
anybody comes to Yetholm but goes to see the queen; and some gae so
far as to say that they merely crowned her queen in hopes of bringing
grist to the Gypsy mill."

I thanked the woman, and was about to turn away, in order to address
myself to the other woman seated on the step, when my obliging friend
said, "I beg your pardon, sir, but before ye go I wish to caution
you, when you get to the speech of the queen, not to put any
speerings to her about a certain tongue or dialect which they say the
Gypsies have.  All the Gypsies become glum and dour as soon as they
are spoken to about their language, and particularly the queen.  The
queen might say something uncivil to your honour, should you ask her
questions about her language."

Myself.--"Oh, then the Gypsies of Yetholm have a language of their

Woman.--"I canna say, sir; I dinna ken whether they have or not; I
have been at Yetholm several years, about my ain wee bit o' business,
and never heard them utter a word that was not either English or
broad Scotch.  Some people say that they have a language of their
ain, and others say that they have nane, and moreover that, though
they call themselves Gypsies, they are far less Gypsy than Irish, a
great deal of Irish being mixed in their veins with a very little of
the much more respectable Gypsy blood.  It may be sae, or it may be
not; perhaps your honour will find out.  That's the woman, sir, just
behind ye at the door.  Gud e'en.  I maun noo gang and boil my cup

To the woman at the door I now betook myself.  She was seated on the
threshold, and employed in knitting.  She was dressed in white, and
had a cap on her head, from which depended a couple of ribbons, one
on each side.  As I drew near she looked up.  She had a full, round,
smooth face, and her complexion was brown, or rather olive, a hue
which contrasted with that of her eyes, which were blue.

"There is something Gypsy in that face," said I to myself, as I
looked at her; "but I don't like those eyes."

"A fine evening," said I to her at last.

"Yes, sir," said the woman, with very little of the Scotch accent;
"it is a fine evening.  Come to see the town?"

"Yes," said I; "I am come to see the town.  A nice little town it

"And I suppose come to see the Gypsies, too," said the woman, with a
half smile.

"Well," said I, "to be frank with you, I came to see the Gypsies.
You are not one, I suppose?"

"Indeed I am," said the woman, rather sharply, "and who shall say
that I am not, seeing that I am a relation of old Will Faa, the man
whom the woman from Haddington was speaking to you about; for I heard
her mention his name?"

"Then," said I, "you must be related to her whom they call the Gypsy

"I am, indeed, sir.  Would you wish to see her?"

"By all means," said I.  "I should wish very much to see the Gypsy

"Then I will show you to her, sir; many gentlefolks from England come
to see the Gypsy queen of Yetholm.  Follow me, sir!"

She got up, and, without laying down her knitting-work, went round
the corner, and began to ascend the hill.  She was strongly made, and
was rather above the middle height.  She conducted me to a small
house, some little way up the hill.  As we were going, I said to her,
"As you are a Gypsy, I suppose you have no objection to a coro of
koshto levinor?" {7}

She stopped her knitting for a moment, and appeared to consider, and
then resuming it, she said hesitatingly, "No, sir, no!  None at all!
That is, not exactly!"

"She is no true Gypsy, after all," said I to myself.

We went through a little garden to the door of the house, which stood
ajar.  She pushed it open, and looked in; then, turning round, she
said:  "She is not here, sir; but she is close at hand.  Wait here
till I go and fetch her."  She went to a house a little farther up
the hill, and I presently saw her returning with another female, of
slighter build, lower in stature, and apparently much older.  She
came towards me with much smiling, smirking, and nodding, which I
returned with as much smiling and nodding as if I had known her for
threescore years.  She motioned me with her hand to enter the house.
I did so.  The other woman returned down the hill, and the queen of
the Gypsies entering, and shutting the door, confronted me on the
floor, and said, in a rather musical, but slightly faltering voice:

"Now, sir, in what can I oblige you?"

Thereupon, letting the umbrella fall, which I invariably carry about
with me in my journeyings, I flung my arms three times up into the
air, and in an exceedingly disagreeable voice, owing to a cold which
I had had for some time, and which I had caught amongst the lakes of
Loughmaben, whilst hunting after Gypsies whom I could not find, I

"Sossi your nav?  Pukker mande tute's nav!  Shan tu a mumpli-mushi,
or a tatchi Romany?"

Which, interpreted into Gorgio, runs thus:

"What is your name?  Tell me your name!  Are you a mumping woman, or
a true Gypsy?"

The woman appeared frightened, and for some time said nothing, but
only stared at me.  At length, recovering herself, she exclaimed, in
an angry tone, "Why do you talk to me in that manner, and in that
gibberish?  I don't understand a word of it."

"Gibberish!" said I; "it is no gibberish; it is Zingarrijib, Romany
rokrapen, real Gypsy of the old order."

"Whatever it is," said the woman, "it's of no use speaking it to me.
If you want to speak to me, you must speak English or Scotch."

"Why, they told me as how you were a Gypsy," said I.

"And they told you the truth," said the woman; "I am a Gypsy, and a
real one; I am not ashamed of my blood."

"If yer were a Gyptian," said I, "yer would be able to speak Gyptian;
but yer can't, not a word."

"At any rate," said the woman, "I can speak English, which is more
than you can.  Why, your way of speaking is that of the lowest
vagrants of the roads."

"Oh, I have two or three ways of speaking English," said I; "and when
I speaks to low wagram folks, I speaks in a low wagram manner."

"Not very civil," said the woman.

"A pretty Gypsy!" said I; "why, I'll be bound you don't know what a
churi is!"

The woman gave me a sharp look; but made no reply.

"A pretty queen of the Gypsies!" said I; "why, she doesn't know the
meaning of churi!"

"Doesn't she?" said the woman, evidently nettled; "doesn't she?"

"Why, do you mean to say that you know the meaning of churi?"

"Why, of course I do," said the woman.

"Hardly, my good lady," said I; "hardly; a churi to you is merely a

"A churi is a knife," said the woman, in a tone of defiance; "a churi
is a knife."

"Oh, it is," said I; "and yet you tried to persuade me that you had
no peculiar language of your own, and only knew English and Scotch:
churi is a word of the language in which I spoke to you at first,
Zingarrijib, or Gypsy language; and since you know that word, I make
no doubt that you know others, and in fact can speak Gypsy.  Come;
let us have a little confidential discourse together."

The woman stood for some time, as if in reflection, and at length
said:  "Sir, before having any particular discourse with you, I wish
to put a few questions to you, in order to gather from your answers
whether it is safe to talk to you on Gypsy matters.  You pretend to
understand the Gypsy language:  if I find you do not, I will hold no
further discourse with you; and the sooner you take yourself off the
better.  If I find you do, I will talk with you as long as you like.
What do you call that?"--and she pointed to the fire.

"Speaking Gyptianly?" said I.

The woman nodded.

"Whoy, I calls that yog."

"Hm," said the woman:  "and the dog out there?"

"Gyptian-loike?" said I.


"Whoy, I calls that a juggal."

"And the hat on your head?"

"Well, I have two words for that:  a staury and a stadge."

"Stadge," said the woman, "we call it here.  Now what's a gun?"

"There is no Gypsy in England," said I, "can tell you the word for a
gun; at least the proper word, which is lost.  They have a word--yag-
engro--but that is a made-up word signifying a fire-thing."

"Then you don't know the word for a gun," said the Gypsy.

"Oh dear me!  Yes," said I; "the genuine Gypsy word for a gun is
puschca.  But I did not pick up that word in England, but in Hungary,
where the Gypsies retain their language better than in England:
puschca is the proper word for a gun, and not yag-engro, which may
mean a fire-shovel, tongs, poker, or anything connected with fire,
quite as well as a gun."

"Puschca is the word, sure enough," said the Gypsy.  "I thought I
should have caught you there; and now I have but one more question to
ask you, and when I have done so, you may as well go; for I am quite
sure you cannot answer it.  What is Nokkum?"

"Nokkum," said I; "nokkum?"

"Aye," said the Gypsy; "what is Nokkum?  Our people here, besides
their common name of Romany, have a private name for themselves,
which is Nokkum or Nokkums.  Why do the children of the Caungri Foros
call themselves Nokkums?"

"Nokkum," said I; "nokkum?  The root of nokkum must be nok, which
signifieth a nose."

"A-h!" said the Gypsy, slowly drawing out the monosyllable, as if in

"Yes," said I; "the root of nokkum is assuredly nok, and I have no
doubt that your people call themselves Nokkum because they are in the
habit of nosing the Gorgios.  Nokkums means Nosems."

"Sit down, sir," said the Gypsy, handing me a chair.  "I am now ready
to talk to you as much as you please about Nokkum words and matters,
for I see there is no danger.  But I tell you frankly that had I not
found that you knew as much as, or a great deal more than, myself,
not a hundred pounds, nor indeed all the money in Berwick, should
have induced me to hold discourse with you about the words and
matters of the Brown children of Kirk Yetholm."

I sat down in the chair which she handed me; she sat down in another,
and we were presently in deep discourse about matters Nokkum.  We
first began to talk about words, and I soon found that her knowledge
of Romany was anything but extensive; far less so, indeed, than that
of the commonest English Gypsy woman, for whenever I addressed her in
regular Gypsy sentences, and not in poggado jib, or broken language,
she would giggle and say I was too deep for her.  I should say that
the sum total of her vocabulary barely amounted to three hundred
words.  Even of these there were several which were not pure Gypsy
words--that is, belonging to the speech which the ancient Zingary
brought with them to Britain.  Some of her bastard Gypsy words
belonged to the cant or allegorical jargon of thieves, who, in order
to disguise their real meaning, call one thing by the name of
another.  For example, she called a shilling a 'hog,' a word
belonging to the old English cant dialect, instead of calling it by
the genuine Gypsy term tringurushi, the literal meaning of which is
three groats.  Then she called a donkey 'asal,' and a stone 'cloch,'
which words are neither cant nor Gypsy, but Irish or Gaelic.  I
incurred her vehement indignation by saying they were Gaelic.  She
contradicted me flatly, and said that whatever else I might know I
was quite wrong there; for that neither she nor any one of her people
would condescend to speak anything so low as Gaelic, or indeed, if
they possibly could avoid it, to have anything to do with the
poverty-stricken creatures who used it.  It is a singular fact that,
though principally owing to the magic writings of Walter Scott, the
Highland Gael and Gaelic have obtained the highest reputation in
every other part of the world, they are held in the Lowlands in very
considerable contempt.  There the Highlander, elsewhere "the bold
Gael with sword and buckler," is the type of poverty and
wretchedness; and his language, elsewhere "the fine old Gaelic, the
speech of Adam and Eve in Paradise," is the designation of every
unintelligible jargon.  But not to digress.  On my expressing to the
Gypsy queen my regret that she was unable to hold with me a regular
conversation in Romany, she said that no one regretted it more than
herself, but that there was no help for it; and that slight as I
might consider her knowledge of Romany to be, it was far greater than
that of any other Gypsy on the Border, or indeed in the whole of
Scotland; and that as for the Nokkums, there was not one on the Green
who was acquainted with half a dozen words of Romany, though the few
words they had they prized high enough, and would rather part with
their heart's blood than communicate them to a stranger.

"Unless," said I, "they found the stranger knew more than

"That would make no difference with them," said the queen, "though it
has made a great deal of difference with me.  They would merely turn
up their noses, and say they had no Gaelic.  You would not find them
so communicative as me; the Nokkums, in general, are a dour set,

Before quitting the subject of language it is but right to say that
though she did not know much Gypsy, and used cant and Gaelic terms,
she possessed several words unknown to the English Romany, but which
are of the true Gypsy order.  Amongst them was the word tirrehi, or
tirrehai, signifying shoes or boots, which I had heard in Spain and
in the east of Europe.  Another was calches, a Wallachian word
signifying trousers.  Moreover, she gave the right pronunciation to
the word which denotes a man not of Gypsy blood, saying gajo, and not
gorgio, as the English Gypsies do.  After all, her knowledge of
Gentle Romany was not altogether to be sneezed at.

Ceasing to talk to her about words, I began to question her about the
Faas.  She said that a great number of the Faas had come in the old
time to Yetholm, and settled down there, and that her own forefathers
had always been the principal people among them.  I asked her if she
remembered her grandfather, old Will Faa, and received for answer
that she remembered him very well, and that I put her very much in
mind of him, being a tall, lusty man, like himself, and having a
skellying look with the left eye, just like him.  I asked her if she
had not seen queer folks at Yetholm in her grandfather's time.
"Dosta dosta," said she; "plenty, plenty of queer folk I saw at
Yetholm in my grandfather's time, and plenty I have seen since, and
not the least queer is he who is now asking me questions."  "Did you
ever see Piper Allen?" said I; "he was a great friend of your
grandfather's."  "I never saw him," she replied; "but I have often
heard of him.  He married one of our people."  "He did so," said I,
"and the marriage-feast was held on the Green just behind us.  He got
a good, clever wife, and she got a bad, rascally husband.  One night,
after taking an affectionate farewell of her, he left her on an
expedition, with plenty of money in his pocket, which he had obtained
from her, and which she had procured by her dexterity.  After going
about four miles he bethought himself that she had still some money,
and returning crept up to the room in which she lay asleep, and stole
her pocket, in which were eight guineas; then slunk away, and never
returned, leaving her in poverty, from which she never recovered."  I
then mentioned Madge Gordon, at one time the Gypsy queen of the
Border, who used, magnificently dressed, to ride about on a pony shod
with silver, inquiring if she had ever seen her.  She said she had
frequently seen Madge Faa, for that was her name, and not Gordon; but
that when she knew her, all her magnificence, beauty, and royalty had
left her; for she was then a poor, poverty-stricken old woman, just
able with a pipkin in her hand to totter to the well on the Green for
water.  Then with much nodding, winking, and skellying, I began to
talk about Drabbing bawlor, dooking gryes, cauring, and hokking, and
asked if them 'ere things were ever done by the Nokkums:  and
received for answer that she believed such things were occasionally
done, not by the Nokkums, but by other Gypsies, with whom her people
had no connection.

Observing her eyeing me rather suspiciously, I changed the subject;
asking her if she had travelled much about.  She told me she had, and
that she had visited most parts of Scotland, and seen a good bit of
the northern part of England.

"Did you travel alone?" said I.

"No," said she; "when I travelled in Scotland I was with some of my
own people, and in England with the Lees and Bosvils."

"Old acquaintances of mine," said I; "why only the other day I was
with them at Fairlop Fair, in the Wesh."

"I frequently heard them talk of Epping Forest," said the Gypsy; "a
nice place, is it not?"

"The loveliest forest in the world!" said I.  "Not equal to what it
was, but still the loveliest forest in the world, and the
pleasantest, especially in summer; for then it is thronged with grand
company, and the nightingales, and cuckoos, and Romany chals and
chies.  As for Romany-chals there is not such a place for them in the
whole world as the Forest.  Them that wants to see Romany-chals
should go to the Forest, especially to the Bald-faced Hind on the
hill above Fairlop, on the day of Fairlop Fair.  It is their
trysting-place, as you would say, and there they musters from all
parts of England, and there they whoops, dances, and plays; keeping
some order nevertheless, because the Rye of all the Romans is in the
house, seated behind the door:-

Romany Chalor
Anglo the wuddur
Mistos are boshing;
Mande beshello
Innar the wuddur
Shooning the boshipen."

Roman lads
Before the door
Bravely fiddle;
Here I sit
Within the door
And hear them fiddle.

"I wish I knew as much Romany as you, sir," said the Gypsy.  "Why, I
never heard so much Romany before in all my life."

She was rather a small woman, apparently between sixty and seventy,
with intelligent and rather delicate features.  Her complexion was
darker than that of the other female; but she had the same kind of
blue eyes.  The room in which we were seated was rather long, and
tolerably high.  In the wall, on the side which fronted the windows
which looked out upon the Green, were oblong holes for beds, like
those seen in the sides of a cabin.  There was nothing of squalor or
poverty about the place.

Wishing to know her age, I inquired of her what it was.  She looked
angry, and said she did not know.

"Are you forty-nine?" said I, with a terrible voice, and a yet more
terrible look.

"More," said she, with a smile; "I am sixty-eight."

There was something of the gentlewoman in her:  on my offering her
money she refused to take it, saying that she did not want it, and it
was with the utmost difficulty that I persuaded her to accept a
trifle, with which, she said, she would buy herself some tea.

But withal there was hukni in her, and by that she proved her Gypsy
blood.  I asked her if she would be at home on the following day, for
in that case I would call and have some more talk with her, and
received for answer that she would be at home and delighted to see
me.  On going, however, on the following day, which was Sunday, I
found the garden-gate locked and the window-shutters up, plainly
denoting that there was nobody at home.

Seeing some men lying on the hill, a little way above, who appeared
to be observing me, I went up to them for the purpose of making
inquiries.  They were all young men, and decently though coarsely
dressed.  None wore the Scottish cap or bonnet, but all the hat of
England.  Their countenances were rather dark, but had nothing of the
vivacious expression observable in the Gypsy face, but much of the
dogged, sullen look which makes the countenances of the generality of
the Irish who inhabit London and some other of the large English
towns so disagreeable.  They were lying on their bellies,
occasionally kicking their heels into the air.  I greeted them
civilly, but received no salutation in return.

"Is So-and-so at home?" said I.

"No," said one, who, though seemingly the eldest of the party, could
not have been more than three-and-twenty years of age; "she is gone

"Is she gone far?" said I.

"No," said the speaker, kicking up his heels.

"Where is she gone to?"

"She's gone to Cauldstrame."

"How far is that?"

"Just thirteen miles."

"Will she be at home to-day?"

"She may, or she may not."

"Are you of her people?" said I.

"No-h," said the fellow, slowly drawing out the word.

"Can you speak Irish?"

"No-h; I can't speak Irish," said the fellow, tossing up his nose,
and then flinging up his heels.

"You know what arragod is?" said I.


"But you know what ruppy is?" said I; and thereupon I winked and nodded.

"No-h;" and then up went the nose, and subsequently the heels.

"Good day," said I; and turned away; I received no counter-
salutation; but, as I went down the hill, there was none of the
shouting and laughter which generally follow a discomfited party.
They were a hard, sullen, cautious set, in whom a few drops of Gypsy
blood were mixed with some Scottish and a much larger quantity of low
Irish.  Between them and their queen a striking difference was
observable.  In her there was both fun and cordiality; in them not
the slightest appearance of either.  What was the cause of this
disparity?  The reason was they were neither the children nor the
grandchildren of real Gypsies, but only the remote descendants,
whereas she was the granddaughter of two genuine Gypsies, old Will
Faa and his wife, whose daughter was her mother; so that she might be
considered all but a thorough Gypsy; for being by her mother's side a
Gypsy, she was of course much more so than she would have been had
she sprung from a Gypsy father and a Gentile mother; the qualities of
a child, both mental and bodily, depending much less on the father
than on the mother.  Had her father been a Faa, instead of her
mother, I should probably never have heard from her lips a single
word of Romany, but found her as sullen and inductile as the Nokkums
on the Green, whom it was of little more use questioning than so many

Nevertheless, she had played me the hukni, and that was not very
agreeable; so I determined to be even with her, and by some means or
other to see her again.  Hearing that on the next day, which was
Monday, a great fair was to be held in the neighbourhood of Kelso, I
determined to go thither, knowing that the likeliest place in all the
world to find a Gypsy at is a fair; so I went to the grand cattle-
fair of St. George, held near the ruined castle of Roxburgh, in a
lovely meadow not far from the junction of the Teviot and Tweed; and
there sure enough, on my third saunter up and down, I met my Gypsy.
We met in the most cordial manner--smirks and giggling on her side,
smiles and nodding on mine.  She was dressed respectably in black,
and was holding the arm of a stout wench, dressed in garments of the
same colour, who she said was her niece, and a rinkeni rakli.  The
girl whom she called rinkeni or handsome, but whom I did not consider
handsome, had much of the appearance of one of those Irish girls,
born in London, whom one so frequently sees carrying milk-pails about
the streets of the metropolis.  By the bye, how is it that the
children born in England of Irish parents account themselves Irish
and not English, whilst the children born in Ireland of English
parents call themselves not English but Irish?  Is it because there
is ten times more nationality in Irish blood than in English?  After
the smirks, smiles, and salutations were over, I inquired whether
there were many Gypsies in the fair.  "Plenty," said she, "plenty
Tates, Andersons, Reeds, and many others.  That woman is an Anderson-
-yonder is a Tate," said she, pointing to two common-looking females.
"Have they much Romany?" said I.  "No," said she, "scarcely a word."
"I think I shall go and speak to them," said I.  "Don't," said she;
"they would only be uncivil to you.  Moreover, they have nothing of
that kind--on the word of a rawnie they have not."

I looked in her eyes; there was nothing of hukni in them, so I shook
her by the hand; and through rain and mist, for the day was a
wretched one, trudged away to Dryburgh to pay my respects at the tomb
of Walter Scott, a man with whose principles I have no sympathy, but
for whose genius I have always entertained the most intense admiration.


{1}  A Christian.

{2}  A fox.

{3}  "Merripen" means life, and likewise death; even as "collico"
means to-morrow as well as yesterday, and perhaps "sorlo," evening as
well as morning.

{4}  A Black Lovel.

{5}  Going a-tinkering.

{6}  I'll show you about, brother!  I'm selling skewers.

{7}  A cup of good ale.

*** End of this Doctrine Publishing Corporation Digital Book "Romano Lavo-Lil: word book of the Romany; or, English Gypsy language" ***

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