Archive for September 2013

American to English Dictionary

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*Updated 03/6/2014

You would think that moving to England, I would not have hit any language barriers. After all, Americans and English people speak the same language, correct? Wrong. Americans speak American; English people speak English. Don't let the similarities fool you. Robert Mitchum's character, Charles Delacro, in "The Grass is Greener" said it best: "The greatest barrier between our two countries is the bond of a common language."

I have compiled a list of American words that don't translate so well. Some might be common, and some might take you by surprise. For your convenience, I have also included their English definitions. You're welcome.

American to English:
Overalls - Dungarees
Fava Beans - Broad Beans
Chex - Malt Wheats
Shredded Coconut - Desiccated Coconut
Pie Crust - Pastry Case
Graham Crackers - Digestives (plain flavor)
Molasses - Treacle
Shortening - Lard
Peanut Oil - Groundnut Oil
Flax Seeds - Linseeds
Baking Soda - Bicarbonate of Soda
Cornstarch - Cornflour
Powdered Sugar - Icing Sugar
Tomato Paste - Tomato PureƩ
Tomato Sauce - Passata
Ketchup - Tomato Sauce
Cream Cheese - Soft Cheese
Green Onions - Spings Onions or Scallions
Self-Rising Flour - Self-Raising Flour
Pay Raise - Pay Rise
Ground Meat - Mince Meat
Heavy Cream - Double Cream
Light Cream - Single Cream
Candy - Sweety
Jewelry - Jewellery
Tires - Tyres
Trunk - Boot
Freeway - Motorway
Parking Lot - Car Park
Theater - Cinema
Line - Queue
Mailbox - Postbox
Braids - Plaits (Pronouced: platts)
Sunscreen - Sun Creme
Shopping Cart - Trolley
Elevator - Lift
Faucet - Tap
Wax Paper (Parchment Paper) - Baking Paper
ATM - Cash point
Gas - Petrol
Pants - Trousers
Dressy Pants - Smart Trousers
Sweat Pants - Jogging Bottoms
Rainboots - Wellington Boots (Wellies)
Underwear - Pants
Cilantro - Coriander
Eggplant - Aubergine
Zucchini - Courgette
Candy - Sweets
Jello - Jelly
Jelly - Jam
Biscuit - Scone
Cookie - Biscuit
Dessert - Pudding
Oatmeal - Porridge
Salad Dressing - Salad Cream
Napkin - Serviette
Sofa - Settee
Nightstand - Bedside Cabinet
Flashlight - Torch
Oven - Cooker
Percolator - Kettle
Doing the dishes - Washing up
Laundry - Washing
Cellphone - Mobile Phone
Wallet - Purse (for a female)
Purse - Bag
Stroller - Pram
Pacifier - Dummy
Diaper - Nappy
Pre-school - Nursery
Kindergarten - Reception
Elementary School - Primary School
High School - Secondary School
Comforter - Duvet
Duvet - Quilt
Thank You - Cheers

I know that there are a bunch more that I can't remember at the moment, but don't you worry, I will post them as soon as they come to mind! :P