Definitions

from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

  • n. A native of the East End of London.
  • n. The dialect or accent of the natives of the East End of London.
  • adj. Of or relating to cockneys or their dialect.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • n. a native or inhabitant of parts of the East End of London
  • n. the accent and speech mannerisms of these people
  • adj. of, or relating to these people or their accent

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • n. An effeminate person; a spoilt child.
  • n. A native or resident of the city of London, especially one living in the East End district; -- sometimes used contemptuously.
  • n. the distinctive dialect of a cockney{2}.
  • adj. Of or relating to, or like, cockneys.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • n. A spoiled child; hence, a foolish or effeminate person; a simpleton: often used as a term of reproach without a very clear signification.
  • n. In the following passages the meaning of the word is uncertain. It is conjectured to mean, in the first three, “a cock” or “a cook,” etc.; in the last, “a cook.”
  • n. A native or a permanent resident of London: used slightingly or by way of contempt, and generally with allusion to peculiarities of pronunciation or insularity or narrowness of views.
  • n. [capitalized] Same as Cockaigne, 2 (where see extract).
  • Pertaining to or like cockneys or Londoners: as, cockney conceit; cockney speech.
  • To pamper; fondle; cocker.

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • n. the nonstandard dialect of natives of the east end of London
  • n. a native of the east end of London
  • adj. characteristic of Cockneys or their dialect
  • adj. relating to or resembling a cockney

Etymologies

Middle English cokenei, cock's egg, pampered child, city dweller : coken, cock (possibly blend of cok; see cock1, and chiken, chicken; see chicken) + ei, egg (from Old English ǣg).
(American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)

Examples

Comments

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  • in cockney rhyming slang, usually only the first word of the rhyme-pair is used, leading to mystification of non-cockney listeners.

    June 18, 2008