Strictly British

Senile, with overtones of being crazy and/or foolish.

U.S.: rainboots.

  • The man with the watch wore a tweed suit with thigh-length galoshes; his colleague, a kilt and a poncho.
    - why it's unfortunate that Muggle Studies isn't a required subject (GF7)

U.S.: jail.

  • the terrifying wizard gaol (GF2)

To gallop or prance. The word was created by Lewis Carroll in the book WEB LINKThrough the Looking Glass.

A large rich layer cake, where some of the layers are made of cream or fruit.

"Gâteau" is a loan word from the French gâteau, "cake", so strictly speaking the first 'a' should be written as â, but in common English use that detail is often omitted.

Colloquial form of "Get off", which in turn means "leave me alone" or "let go."

Any of several plants related to the carnation that have fragrant flowers. This term crops up occasionally in descriptions of Elizabethan gardens. (AHD)

Compare with gillyweed.

Idiot. A variant of the slang noun "get," which also means an idiot (usually in Ireland or the north of England) and which was derived from a rather archaic term for the offspring of any animal (that, in turn, was derived from the verb to beget, meaning "to give birth to".

  • "that old git"
    - referring to Filch (PS8)

  • "an ignorant old git who lived like a pig" (DH22)

  • "Little git," whispered Ron. "He's enjoying keeping us hanging (DH24)."

A Scottish term for "valley".


  • "We haven't got him, and they've gorn and killed her!" (DH30)

  • "She's gorn and sent for him" (DH30)

Primary editor: Michele L. Worley.
Original page date 28-October-2005; Last page update 4-August-2007 MLW