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British Language Online

Although we in the USA say we speak English, a better description might be that we speak American. Here are differences in words between British English and American English:

When I first came to America, twenty two years ago, even though I spoke English, the words coming out of my mouth often resulted in puzzled looks and blank stares, the reason being, I didn't speak AMERICAN English. I now speak it (and write it) rather fluently, and often interchange words because I'm an inconsistent git (idiot). In attempts to help more people butcher their vocabulary, I have compiled this incomplete dictionary of American and British words (and spellings), in my free time, and Bob's your uncle.


Note: Words marked with a * show different spelling.

A

AMERICAN

BRITISH

Airplane

Aeroplane

Aluminum

Aluminium

Apartment

Flat

Appetizer

Entree, Starter

*Archeology

Archaeology


B

AMERICAN

BRITISH

Babysitter

Minder

Baked Potato

Jacket Potato

Bathroom

Loo, The Toilet

Band-Aid

Elastoplast

Bank Teller

Cashier

Bedspread

Similar to a Eiderdown and Duvet

Billion

Trillion

Bleachers

Terrace

Braces (for teeth)

Brace


C

AMERICAN

BRITISH

Call (on the phone)

Ring

Cafeteria

Refectory

Can

Tin

Candy

Sweets

*Catalog

Catalogue

Cents

Pence

Chapstick

Lip Balm

*Check

Cheque

Checkers

Draughts

Chips

Crisps

Cigarette

Fag

Closet (bedroom)

Wardrobe

Clumsy

Cackhanded

Collect Call

Reverse Charge Call

*Color

Colour

Cookie

Biscuit

Cotton Candy

Candy Floss

Commercial

Advertisment

Cracker

Savoury biscuit

Crib

Cot

Cross Walk

Zebra Crossing, Pedestrian Crossing

Crossing Gaurd

Lollipop Man

Cupcake

Fairy Cake

*Curb

Kerb


D

AMERICAN

BRITISH

Dessert

Afters, Pudding

Detour

Diversion

Diaper

Napkin, Nappy

Dollar Bill

Note

Drugstore

Chemist

Duplex

Semi-Detached House


E

AMERICAN

BRITISH

Eggplant

Aubergine

Elevator

Lift

Emergency Room

Casualty

Eraser

Rubber

Expensive

Dear


F

AMERICAN

BRITISH

Faucet

Tap

*Favorite

Favourite

Fire Department

Fire Brigade

Flashlight

Torch

A Flirt

Tart

Freeway (Expressway)

Motorway, Carriageway


G

AMERICAN

BRITISH

Garbage Man

Dustman

Garter Belt

Suspenders

Glue

Gum

Gasoline

Petrol

Gizzards

Offal

Golashes

Wellingtons, Wellies

*Gray

Grey

Gutter

Gully


H

AMERICAN

BRITISH

Hamburger Bun

Bap

*Honor

Honour

Hood (car)

Bonnet

Horny

Randy

House (one story)

Bungalow

*Humor

Humour

Hungry

Peckish


J

AMERICAN

BRITISH

*Jail

Gaol

Jello

Jelly

Jelly

Jam

*Jewelry

Jewellery


K-L

AMERICAN

BRITISH

Kiss (passionate)

Snog

Ladybug

Ladybird

Line

Queue

Living Room

Lounge

Lawyer

Barrister, Solicitor

Leash (Dog)

Lead

Licens Plate

Number Plate

Liquor store

Off Licens, Offy


M

AMERICAN

BRITISH

Mail

Post

Mailbox

Postbox

Mail Carrier

Postman, Posty

*Maneuver

Manoeuvre

Math

Maths

Menopause

The Maenopause

*Mold

Mould

Movie

Film

Movie Theater

Cinema


N-O

AMERICAN

BRITISH

Napkin

Serviette

Nudist

Naturist

On/Off Ramp

Slip Road

Oven

Cooker

Overalls

Dungarees

Overpass

Flyover


P

AMERICAN

BRITISH

Pacifier

Dummy

Pants

Trousers

Paper Towel

Kitchen towel, Kitchen Paper

Parade

Carnival

Parking Lot

Car Park

Pharmacist

Chemist

Picnic Basket

Picnic Hamper

Pie Crust

Pastry Base

Plastic Wrap

Clingfilm

Private school

Public school

Public School

State school

*Pajamas

Pyjamas


R-S

AMERICAN

BRITISH

Raincoat

Mackintosh

Realtor

Estate Agent

Rent (to)

Hire

Robe

Dressing Gown

Sand Box

Sand Pit

Sandwich

Butty, Sarny

Santa Clause

Father Christmas

Sell

Flog

Shopping Cart/Basket

Trolley

Sidewalk

Pavement

Sir

Squire, Guv'nor

Sneakers

Trainers, Plimsolls,Pumps

Soccer

Football

Spelled

Spelt

Stroller

Pram, Pushchair

Styrofoam

Polystyrene

Suspenders

Braces

Sweater

Pullover, Jumper


T

AMERICAN

BRITISH

Take-Out

Take-Away

Talk Show

Chat Show

Traffic Jam

Tailback

Thumb Tack

Drawing Pin

Tic Tac Toe

Naughts and Crosses

*Tire

Tyre

Toothpick

Cocktail Stick

Track Housing

Housing Estate

Trailor

Caravan

Trash

Rubbish

Trash Can

Bin, Dustbin (the one outside)

Truck

Lorry

Trunk (car)

Boot

Tuxedo

Dinner Jacket


U-Z

AMERICAN

BRITISH

Umbrella

Brolly

Undershirt

Vest

Underwear

Pants, knickers

Vacation

Holiday

Vest

Waistcoat

Wallet (Woman's)

Purse

Washcloth

Flannel

Windshield

Windscreen

Yard

Garden

Zee (letter)

Zed

Zip Code

Post Code

Zucchin

Courgette


Great English Slang Site HERE.

Slang Expressions are quite colorful. HERE is a list of slang expressions and their meaning. Idioms often do not translate without study and help from the speakers, themselves.

Click HERE to go to a Google list of British slang which is current to the minute.

 

Online Dictionaries

 

This page gives access to online dictionaries and thesauri, maps and general reference material.

 

Dictionaries and Thesauri

 

Academic Press Dictionary of Science and Technology - covering 130 fields of science

A collection of dictionaries covering over 15 languages

AltaVista Translation Service. On-line translations of text or complete WWW pages.

ArtLex, a dictionary of visual art.

Brewer's Dictionary of Phrase and Fable (from 1894 edition)

Cambridge Dictionaries online. Online English dictionaries.

Dictionary.com. Offers various on-line dictionary and language services.

Encarta Dictionary from Microsoft.

English-French dictionary from the ARTFL Project

English-Spanish Library and Information Studies Dictionary This is a compilation of the terminology, both general and specific, that students and professionals generally encounter when reading library and information literature. 89,215 entries.

Glossary Agent (tm), access to glossaries in insurance, finance, law and healthcare

Grove Dictionary of Art Online, a subscription service (available to UK education via a CHEST agreement)

lexicool.com, directory of bilingual and multilingual dictionaries.

Merriam-Webster Online, access to Webster's American English dictionary and thesaurus

OneLook Dictionaries, search or browse general and subject-specific glossaries and dictionaries

The Online Plain Text English Dictionary, a public domain English word list dictionary

The On-line Medical Dictionary provided by CancerWEB

Oxford English Dictionary Online, the online version of the OED . Access is via http://athens.oed.com/ for education sites that have taken up the CHEST OED agreement.

Roget's Thesaurus (version 1.02) from the ARTFL Project at the University of Chicago

Swedish-English dictionary from Lexin (Swedish National Agency for Education)

Thesaurus of Geographic Names from the Getty Information Institute

travlang's Translating Dictionaries, a service from the US company travlang

Wordsmyth Educational Dictionary-Thesaurus, an American English resource

xrce Language Identifier Key in text to identify which language it is written in (47 languages are included)

yourDictionary.com (formerly Web of On-line Dictionaries) links to many dictionaries, thesauri and other language resources.

Reference Works

 

Acronym Database - a source of general acronyms and abbreviations, based in Ireland.

Acronym Finder - for computer, technology, telecommunications and military acronyms.

Acronym Search - a source of general acronyms and abbreviations.

AllRefer.com Educational resource provides a comprehensive collection of reference, encyclopedia, health, gazetteer, country studies, and educational databases. Includes more than 150,000 articles on topics covered under health, history, science, people, places, arts, sports, plants, animals, technology, philosophy, religion, literature, and more.

AllRefer Reference Browse articles in all areas of topics within Earth & Environment, History, Literature & Arts, Health & Medicine, People, Philosophy & Religion, Places, Plants & Animals, Science & Technology, Social Science, Law, Sports, Everyday Life, and more. Includes Country Studies and North America Gazetteer.

Bartleby.com (Reference section) - online versions of reference works (including 1918 edition of Gray's Anatomy of the Human Body)

Bartlett's Familiar Quotations - search this database of quotations based on the original collection by John Bartlett

Britannica.com - includes Encyclopędia Britannica

Calculation of the Ecclesiastical Calendar - dates for Orthodox and Western Easter

The Catholic Encyclopedia - an online version (not yet complete) of the 1913 printed edition

Classic 164 Currency Converter - a service from OANDA Inc.

Date and Time Gateway - discover the local time in countries and cities world-wide

De Imperatoribus Romanis - an online encyclopedia of the rulers of ancient Rome

Diccionarios en internet - a directory of reference works in English or Spanish

1911 Encyclopedia Britannica - access to the articles from the 1911 edition

Encyclopedia.com - a first-stop Internet encyclopedia

Encyclopedia of Astronomy and Astrophysics - a subscription service from the Nature Publishing Group (available to UK education via a CHEST agreement)

Encyclopedia of Life Sciences - a subscription service from the Nature Publishing Group (available to UK education via a CHEST agreement)

Encyclopedia Mythica - an encyclopedia on world-wide mythology, folklore and magic

International Dialing Codes - a table listing of telephone country codes and international prefixes

Internet FAQ Archives - a compilation of Usenet Frequently Asked Questions postings

The Internet Grammar of English - an online course in English grammar from University College London

Measuring Units Conversion Tables - for conversion from/to metric and imperial and US measurement systems.

The Merck Manual of Diagnosis and Therapy - a widely used general medical text (April 1999 edition)

Oxford Reference Online: the Core Collection - cross-searchable resource including dictionaries, thesauri, language reference works, subject dictionaries and general reference works, from Oxford University Press. (Available to UK education at subsidised rates.)

The PC Technology Guide - a guide to the technology underlying the personal computer's major components and peripherals

Perpetual Calendar - a perpetual (Gregorian) calendar for the Western World

Place Name Servers on the Internet - links to resources world-wide

Portals to the World - links to information about the countries of the world, from the Library of Congress

Postcode Finder - lets you find postcodes in the UK, from Consignia (Royal Mail)

The Quotations Page - a US service with a search facility

Refdesk.com - a US service offering a single source for facts via the Internet

Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy - an ongoing dynamic online resource from Stanford University

UN Atlas of the Oceans - an Internet portal providing information relevant to the sustainable development of the oceans

Universal Currency Converter™ - convert currencies from one to another using a simple form

V.E.R.A. - the Virtual Entity of Relevant Acronyms lets you search for computer-related acronyms and other terms.

xrefer - an online reference engine incorporating encyclopedias, dictionaries, thesauri and more.

Webopedia - a dictionary and reference site for computer and Internet technology information.

whatis.com - a reference site for a range of information about computing and the Internet

World Clock - tabular format displays local time in key locations world-wide

World Factbook - 2002 edition (published by the CIA) The information for each country includes: total area, boundaries, climate, disputes, population, political system and economy.

WORLDTIME - rotate an image of the globe to see which parts are in daylight and also discover local time

Maps

 

The American Revolution and its Era - Maps and Charts of North America and the West Indies, 1750-1789

Fascinating World of Maps and Mapping - a collection of links to do with maps and related online resources

Greenwood's Map of London 1827

Landmap - satellite image and elevation maps of the UK (available to the academic community in the British Isles)

MapBlast! - street maps of the USA (you enter a street address)

MapQuest - street plans and driving directions in the US and Europe

Map collection - including a map of the UK (317K). This collection, the Perry-Castańeda Collection, holds more than 230,000 maps covering every area of the world and also includes the maps for European countries and a map of the World

Multimap.com - for detailed maps of Great Britain (can be searched via postcode), and maps of Europe and the world

old-maps.co.uk - UK maps dating back to 1846 from Landmark Information Group

Streetmap - Post Code searching and street maps online for the whole of mainland Britain


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Other websites by David Ullian Larson which may be of interest:
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http://www.oldpostcardsforsale.com
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http://www.greenfieldvillageonline.com
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