Londoners, Cockneys and Pearlies
Cock'ney, n. & a. A bloke from a certain part of London, more or less within the sound of Bow Bells, a way of life, an accent, salt of the earth, backbone of the British army. Sometimes a term of derision when used by non-Londoners, a term of pride to the Cockneys themselves.
Me, I'm only just a Cockney if the wind was in the right direction and everything else dead quiet. My mother-in-law was born right inside the bell itself. "Tea's poured aht." I'll have a biscuit. "Gertcha!"
Pearly gear is worn by Cockneys in festive mood, costumes with
distinctive patterns of mother-of-pearl buttons. Pearly Kings and
Queens, Princes and Princesses can be seen on parade at the annual
Harvest Festival in St Martins-in-the-Fields. Not all Pearlies are
costers or vice-versa but they are all involved in charitable work and public service. The tradition has interesting origins and
dates back about 120 years but this will have to be the subject of
another page altogether. Picture: the missus and I in front of the
legislature in Victoria, B.C., little England beyond Canada.
AT LAST!! (Jan 99)
There is a great London Pearly Web Site link on the Exit page.
Some Cockneys of note:
*Albert Chevalier, archetype Cockney comedian was actually
from the rather toney Notting Hill area. Top of the bill in 1900.
*Mick Jagger is America's image of a Cockney but is actually
from Dartford, Kent.
*Bob Hope was born in Eltham.
In my humble opinion, Dick van Dyke is a great comic actor and song & dance man
but the part of
the Cockney chimney sweep in Mary Poppins would have been
better played by Tommy Steele.
Other notable Englishmen:
Sir Tim Berners-Lee, Web Founder Combined HTML with URLS and came up with the World Wide Web.
Some links about Cockneys and Cockney rhyming slang on the Exit page
If you write to them, please mention this page and London Bobby.
By the way, this is what the Cockney alphabet looks like:
A for 'Orses ('ay for 'orses)
B for Mutton (Beef or Mutton)
C for Miles (see for miles)
D for Ential (Differential)
E for Brick ('Eave a Brick)
F for Vessence (Effervescence)
G for Get It (Gee, forget it!)
H for Bless You (Aitsshfa! A sneeze)
I for The Engine (Ivor the Engine)
J for Oranges (Jaffa Oranges)
K for Restaurant (Cafe or Restaurant)
L for Leather ('Ell for Leather)
M for Sis (Emphasis)
N for Lope (Envelope)
O for The Garden Wall (Over the Garden Wall)
P for Relief (??)
Q for a Bus (Queue for a Bus)
R for Mo ('alf a Mo)
S for Rantzen (Esther Rantzen)
T for Two (Tea for Two)
U for Me (You for Me)
V for La France (Vive la France)
W for the Winnings (Double you for the Winnings)
X for Breakfast (Eggs for Breakfast)
Y for Husband (Wife or Husband)
Z for Wind (Zephyr Wind)
Alphabet submitted by Tony Reus. Thanks Tony
Comments, errors, additions and omissions?
London Bobby Entertainment
Updated August 3, 2012