Pissed vs. pissed off

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On the subject of being pissed off about being pssted, is it only the English who understand pissed to mean drunk, and pissed off to mean annoyed?

<Moderator note: this thread has been split off from the Psst thread. For still more on the word pissed, see this previous thread.>
 
  • Kelly B

    Senior Member
    USA English
    Americans use both pissed and pissed off to mean angry.
    Psst! the boss is pissed! means avoid his anger, not his boozy breath....
     

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    England
    I should have phrased that differently I think. In BE pissed ONLY means drunk, in BE pissed off ONLY means annoyed.

    I should have asked does anyone other than an american understand pissed (without the 'off') to mean annoyed?

    It's a source of hilarity sometimes but awful confusion at others if people don't know.
     

    equivoque

    Senior Member
    Australia - English
    Yes!!!! When you say someone is pissed in Australia it can mean annoyed or drunk, depending on the context but it usually means drunk. I don't mean that we are more 'pissed than pissed' but I think that being pissed/annoyed was adopted later than pissed/drunk.

    Context and tone is everything. If someone walks into the office and says, "the boss is really pissed" you can pretty much assume that he is really angry and not down the pub!

    Pissed-off is still very common, but people often drop the "off".
     

    konungursvia

    Banned
    Canada (English)
    Pissed means "drunk" in the UK; Pissed off means "angry" in the US. However, in the US, 'pissed' can also be an abbreviation for "pissed off" when the context makes it clear. This abbreviation is much more unlikely in the UK, although these days, any American locution can be understood in Britain.
     

    Jim 89

    Member
    Sydney, Australia. English
    Pissed means "drunk" in the UK; Pissed off means "angry" in the US. However, in the US, 'pissed' can also be an abbreviation for "pissed off" when the context makes it clear.

    I don't understand this. "Pissed off" means "angry", hence how can "pissed" both mean "angry" and also be used to mean "pissed off" when the context is clear in the United States.
     

    . 1

    Banned
    Australian Australia
    Pissed means "drunk" in the UK; Pissed off means "angry" in the US. However, in the US, 'pissed' can also be an abbreviation for "pissed off" when the context makes it clear. This abbreviation is much more unlikely in the UK, although these days, any American locution can be understood in Britain.
    Eloquently put.
    I love your use of locution it forced me to read a dictionary and :) you gave me a word that I did not know.

    .,,
     

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    England
    Yes!!!! When you say someone is pissed in Australia it can mean annoyed or drunk, depending on the context but it usually means drunk. I don't mean that we are more 'pissed than pissed' but I think that being pissed/annoyed was adopted later than pissed/drunk.

    Context and tone is everything. If someone walks into the office and says, "the boss is really pissed" you can pretty much assume that he is really angry and not down the pub!

    Pissed-off is still very common, but people often drop the "off".

    Curiously enough I spent 6 years in Australia as a child, and at that time Australians would have been clear about the distinction between pissed and pissed off. But we came back in 1977, so it's interesting how Americanised it's become since then.
     

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    England
    Pissed means "drunk" in the UK; Pissed off means "angry" in the US. However, in the US, 'pissed' can also be an abbreviation for "pissed off" when the context makes it clear. This abbreviation is much more unlikely in the UK, although these days, any American locution can be understood in Britain.

    It may be clear (ish) but it does raise a titter!
     

    Jim 89

    Member
    Sydney, Australia. English
    "pissed off" means angry. You can also drop the "off" and say just "pissed". However, there is a certain instance where the "off" can not be dropped:

    These things piss me off.

    *These things piss me.

    The second sentence is not possible. The "off" must be included there.
     

    paulie-nka

    Senior Member
    Polish
    Hello everyone!
    I've been thinking... Would British native-speaker say "I'm pissed off" or rather would he/she use another phrase to express the same thing? I saw in a dictionary that "pissed off" is AmE.
     

    morzh

    Banned
    USA
    Russian
    As far as I know, while probably having the situations where they are used the same way, in BE "piss off" may be used as imperative to mean "go away" (same as "f..k off" in AE). In AE we do not use it this way.
    In AE it is used in passive, as "I am pissed / I am pissed off" meaning "I've really had it", "I am angry". This is probably the same in BE.
     

    sound shift

    Senior Member
    English - England
    In AE it is used in passive, as "I am pissed / I am pissed off" meaning "I've really had it", "I am angry". This is probably the same in BE.
    In BE it is used in the passive too, but the meaning is more restricted:
    "I am pissed" = "I am drunk" (only).
    "I am pissed off" = "I am annoyed" (only).
    Thus, we BE speakers don't say "I am pissed at him."
     
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