Thieves’ cant for dummies

Version 0.2 of UDJW is well under way following lots of constructive comments by Pamela. Apart from all the rewriting and new scenes, I am also having to adjust some of the dialog to thieves’ cant appropriate to the period.

This is not as simple as it sounds. In fact, it doesn’t even sound simple.

For example, it’s one thing to claim that you get your balsam on the rattling lay but if you can’t tell a rabbit sucker from a running snobbler then the rum coves will be up to your rigs and, if you don’t pike on the been, you’re in danger of a slug in the quarrum.

I have a canting dictionary I am working through. Its coverage is excellent but unfortunately too large as it goes right up to the early 20th century. Also it has no reverse index.

What I need is Early Georgian Thieves’ Cant for Dummies. Amazingly, no one seems to have written one. I might have to write it myself. There has to be a market out there somewhere.

Anyway, at least I can now tell the rabbit sucker from the running snobbler.  If you ask me nicely, I might even let you in on the secret.

This entry was posted on Wednesday, July 19th, 2006 at 7:13 pm and is filed under Writing. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. Both comments and pings are currently closed.

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