Cops and Robbers (game)

Discussion in 'All Languages' started by Nizo, Jul 12, 2008.

  1. Nizo Senior Member

    I grew up, like some, playing “cops and robbers” with other kids in the neighborhood. We never called it good guys and bad guys or policemen and thieves or anything else, just “cops and robbers,” and we never reversed the order of the two words. I'm wondering if there is an equivalent fixed phrase in other languages for this childhood pastime. (By the way, American kids played "cowboys and Indians" too...pretty similar, and pretty politically incorrect, I might add! :D)

    In Esperanto, to play cops and robbers is ludi «rabistoj kaj ĝendarmoj». Notice that the robbers come first in this fixed phrase and the cops come second, the opposite of the English version.
  2. Outsider Senior Member

    Portuguese (Portugal)
    Yep. :D

    Polícias e ladrões, in Portuguese.
  3. Mahaodeh Senior Member

    London, UK
    Arabic, PA and IA.
    In Arabic it's شرطة وحراميّة - shurTa w Haramiyya - cops/police and robbers/theives.
  4. cherine

    cherine Moderator

    Alexandria, Egypt
    Arabic (Egypt).
    In Egyptian Arabic it's 'askar we Harameyya عسكر وحرامية (cops and theifs).
  5. blue_jewel

    blue_jewel Senior Member

    In Tagalog:

    Cops - Pulis
    Robbers - Magnanakaw

  6. federicoft Senior Member

    Yes, we have too in Italian.

    Guardie e ladri. (Cops and thieves).
  7. madshov Member

    Denmark, Danish
    In Danish we take it a bit further. We call it "røvere og soldater" i.e. robbers and soldiers.
  8. Ally_22 New Member

    My siblings and I call such childhood pastime as 'pulis-pulisan'. Im really not sure though if its called the same in other parts of our country.
  9. Clavelito Senior Member

    Colombia - Español
    In my childhood I played "ladrones y policías".
    I guess it could also be called "policías y ladrones", but I've never heard it said like that.
  10. Kangy Senior Member

    Buenos Aires, Argentina
    Argentina [Spanish]
    I did play "policías y ladrones" :)
    And sometimes even "poliladron" :D
  11. Erebos12345

    Erebos12345 Senior Member

    Toronto more or less
    Canadian English
    Though I would've played this before I had long term memory, I believe it's still called...
    Mandarin 警察和小偷
    jing3 cha2=police, cop
    xiao3 tou1=thief, robber
  12. Nanon

    Nanon Senior Member

    Entre Paris et Lisbonne
    français (France)
    French: les gendarmes et les voleurs ; jouer aux gendarmes et aux voleurs.
    And some kids jouent aux cow-boys et aux Indiens, too! (French spelling uses dash and caps, just in case ;)).
  13. Encolpius

    Encolpius Senior Member

    in Hungarian

    indiánosdit játszik = to play Indians

    rabló-pandúrt játszik = to play cops and robbers
  14. apmoy70

    apmoy70 Senior Member


    «Κλέφτες κι αστυνόμοι» [ˈkle.ftes ca.stiˈnɔ.mi] (masc. nom. pl.) --> thieves and policemen, or
    «Καουμπόιδες κι ινδιάνοι» [ka.uˈmbɔ.i.ðes cin.ðiˈ] (masc. nom. pl.) --> cowboys and indians
  15. Dymn

    Dymn Senior Member

    We called it polis y cacos in Spain (we spoke Catalan but the name is in Spanish). Poli is just a colloquial abbrevation of policía, caco is "thief" colloquially but I've rarely seen it apart from the name of the game.
  16. bibax Senior Member

    Czech (Prague)

    hra na četníky a zloděje;

    četník = gendarme; (now obsolete, used only in French movies, dubbed into Czech, e.g. Le Gendarme de Saint-Tropez > Četník ze Saint-Tropez)
    zloděj = thief;

    In the past there were policie (police, in the cities) and četnictvo (gendarmerie, in the country).
    Last edited: Jan 26, 2019

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