Adam and Eve it [Cockney rhyming slang for "Believe it"?]

Discussion in 'English Only' started by goldencypress, Apr 21, 2016.

  1. goldencypress

    goldencypress Senior Member

    India
    India - Malayalam
    A friend writes me something incredible and introduces it with the Cockney rhyming slang “would you Adam and Eve it” meaning “would you believe it”.


    I don’t see the connection between “Adam and Eve it”, and “believe it” except that Eve rhymes with BeliEVE.


    Would you please explain the connection.


    Thank you.
     
  2. dojibear

    dojibear Senior Member

    Fresno CA
    English - Northeast US
    You have found the answer. It is rhmying slang, so it replaces a word with a phrase that rhymes with it:

    believe
    Adam and Eve

    There is never a meaning connection. Only a rhyme. In fact, Cockney rhmying slang avoids using a rhyme that has a meaning connection.
     
  3. goldencypress

    goldencypress Senior Member

    India
    India - Malayalam
    Thank you, dojibear. But if what you say is right, then can I say "would you Christmas Eve it" to mean "would you believe it?" This satisfies your condition that the phrase should rhyme with the word it replaces. I'm sorry, I still can't see the logic.
     
  4. JulianStuart

    JulianStuart Senior Member

    Sonoma County CA
    English (UK then US)
    Yes - you have got the idea:) There is no logic - just rhyme.
     
  5. dojibear

    dojibear Senior Member

    Fresno CA
    English - Northeast US
    I don't think we're allowed to make up Cockney Rhyming Slang. I think we have to use the ones the Cockney's have made up. Even they do not just make up new ones every sentence. Each of the slang phrases they use is decades old.

    So your "Christmas Eve it" is Malayalam Rhyming Slang.
     
  6. goldencypress

    goldencypress Senior Member

    India
    India - Malayalam
     
  7. goldencypress

    goldencypress Senior Member

    India
    India - Malayalam
    Thank you, dojibear. That explanation is convincing:thumbsup: No, I won't make up Cockney rhyming slangs from now on. You have my assurance. :)
     
  8. heypresto

    heypresto Senior Member

    South East England
    English - England
    You will be pleased to see that 'Christmas Eve = believe' already exists in Cockney Rhyming Slang.

    You can see it listed here, as well as hundreds of other terms, and a whole lot more about the slang.
     
  9. goldencypress

    goldencypress Senior Member

    India
    India - Malayalam
    Thank you, heypresto. I was thrilled to learn that a Cockney Rhyming Slang I made up is in existence. Anyway, CRS has no logic and one has to learn the whole lot of them to know what they mean. I don't think I'd ever want to use them.
     
  10. cando Senior Member

    English - British
    Rhyming slang was originally intended to be a private language to exclude outsiders and create a sense of belonging through a shared speech used between working class Londoners. The code effect is often made even more arcane by leaving out the actual rhyme and using just the first word of the couplet (e.g. Barnet = Barnet Fair = Hair). Of course, it has become widely known and some expressions are used colloquially by BrE speakers from all regions. New rhyming patterns are sometimes made up and gain acceptance in various London sub-dialects, but it is more playful and creative in intent than for the original covert motivations.
     
  11. goldencypress

    goldencypress Senior Member

    India
    India - Malayalam
    Thank you cando for your input.
    For the uninitiated like myself, CRS will always remain arcane. Then why do some native speakers use this in their conversations with non-native speakers of English, I wonder. Also, I have never understood why some Englishmen don't even make an attempt to avoid their native slang and use "standard" English when speaking to people for whom English is not their mother tongue.
     
  12. Keith Bradford

    Keith Bradford Senior Member

    Brittany, NW France
    English (Midlands UK)
    I understand your frustration, Goldencypress. But consider this:
    • Many non-Londoners don't understand rhyming slang either.
    • Many Cockneys (and some others) invent new rhyming slang to cope with new situations and/or to refer to people in the news. This is done just for fun.
    • Many people from all over Britain use rhyming slang without even knowing it. For example, I imagine that many a polite lady saying "That boy blew a raspberry at me!" (meaning that he made a rude noise by blowing through his lips) doesn't realise that raspberry = raspberry tart = fart. And if she calls her neighbour a "silly berk", she certainly doesn't think that this is Berkshire hunt = cunt. Raspberry and berk have entered into the mainstream of spoken language.
     
  13. goldencypress

    goldencypress Senior Member

    India
    India - Malayalam
    Thank you, Keith. That was quite assuaging
     
  14. Parla Member Emeritus

    New York City
    English - US
    Here is yet another dictionary of those things.
     
  15. Keith Bradford

    Keith Bradford Senior Member

    Brittany, NW France
    English (Midlands UK)
    ... from which I learn that Bra has been rendered as Tung Chee Hwa. The entry goes on to say that "Admittedly this isn't in common usage - the person who submitted it is an ex-pat living in Hong Kong - I just think it's neat that we Brits will try to bugger up the language of every country we visit! Tung Chee Hwa is the Chief Executive of Hong Kong."

    This seems to accord with Goldencypress's comment in #11!
     
  16. goldencypress

    goldencypress Senior Member

    India
    India - Malayalam
    Thank you, parla
     
  17. goldencypress

    goldencypress Senior Member

    India
    India - Malayalam
    Thank you, Keith for your "Support"
     

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