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  • WW2 Slang

    Going off of the post in the Napoleonic Forum on slang in the British army during that war I decided to start a similar one on allied slang during WW2. Only difference is I won't list things because I have a whole chapter in a book. I was wondering how many of them other people out there knew. so list away guys

    Matt
    "We Will Stay Here, If We Must All Go to Hell Together"
    -Col. John R. Cooke, 27th NC

    Avatar: My Grandfather on the right. His twin on the left. Their older brother in the middle. In their Navy Blues

  • #2
    Tigers and 88's

    It seems every tank was a Tiger and any anti-tank gun or artillery was an 88. Read anything by Ambrose concerning WW2.
    If you can't set a good example, be a glaring warning.

    Comment


    • #3
      If you read Bill Maulin's book Up Front, you'll find a great wealth of how the GI thought.
      Life is change. Built models for decades.
      Not sure anyone here actually knows the real me.
      I didn't for a long time either.

      Comment


      • #4
        Originally posted by freightshaker View Post
        Tigers and 88's

        It seems every tank was a Tiger and any anti-tank gun or artillery was an 88. Read anything by Ambrose concerning WW2.
        Sherman tanks were refered to by the Germans as "Tommy-Cookers" and "Ronsons", after the well-known cigarette lighter by the Allies because of their nasty ability of lighting up and burning after every first strike.

        The "Honey Tank" was the US M-3 Stuart light tank that first saw combat in North Africa with the British Forces there.

        Mae West inflatable life vests were named for the naughty and buxom Hollywood actress of the same name.

        "Screaming Meemie" was the Allied term for the German nebelwerfer portable rocket launcher.

        "Tommygun" was named for the submachinegun that General John Thompson designed and built.

        The "Greasegun" was the completely stamped steel submachinegun that replaced it.

        A "Pineapple" was the standard US Hand Grenade because of its resembalance for the tropical fruit.

        The "Potato Masher" was the German counterpart that looked like an old fashioned variety masher.

        The "Jeep" was the "General Purpose" multi-use, quarter ton vehicle that served with distinction in all theatres of war and is also thought to be named after "Popeye the sailor's" pal, Jeep.

        A "Deuce and a Half" was the standard two and a half ton truck built by GM that continues to soldier on to this very day.

        The Bazooka was the first US designed anti-tank, recoiless rifle that was named after a musical instrument in an American musical band.

        "C, K and D Rations" were the standard US military rations consumed by the average dogface US soldier and Marine Corpsman. C and D rations came largely in cans, but the D ration was a solid block of hard chocolate that was designed to be eaten in an emergency and known to kill any soldier's hunger for 12 hours at the least.

        The"Ma Deuce" is the standard M-2, .50 caliber heavy machinegun found on battlefields, aircraft and ships in every theatre of that war.

        The "Johnnygun" was the Johnson light machinegun found in elite US units like the Marine raiders and the Army's Devil's Brigade.

        The "Devil's Brigade" was an elite, combined, Canadian-American shock brigade that spearheaded many campaigns throughout Italy and France. Their unorthodox tactics won them the title of "Der Teuffel's Brigada" (Devil's Brigade) by the frightened Germans who faced them and the name stuck.

        "The Battling Bastards of Bataan" were the US infantry units who fought a six month delaying action in the opening days of the war in the Pacific in the Philippine Islands and eventually surrendered after being nearly starved to death by the besieging Japanese forces. "We're the battling bastards of Bataan. No Momma, no Papa, no Uncle Sam, no Aunts, no Nieces, no artillery pieces, and nobody gives a damn.

        "GI" meant "Government Issue." The GI's could also be used to describe a case of diaherea from bad rations.

        A "Pro Station" was a prophylactic clinic where a GI could go after going on leave to cleanse his other weapon after doing battle with the native women.

        "Cinderella Leave" was a navy term meaning that a sailor's leave time away from duty or from the ship expired at midnight.

        "Pig Ironed Bastard" was the Army term for the 81mm mortars that they used. "Oh we have a weapon that everyone hates, they say our gun's a disgrace. You crank it up a hundred and a hundred more and it lands in the very same place. There is many an observer who is blowing his top, officers are all going mad, but our love has lasted for the pig iron bastard, the best gun this army ever had.

        Those are just off the top of my head.
        "Profanity is but a linguistic crutch for illiterate motherbleepers"

        Comment


        • #5
          "Those are just off the top of my head"

          Wot you doin' wiv all that baloney on the top of your melon old chap?

          Back on topic...

          TALLY HO!!!

          That's wot you shout just before shooting down your wingman.... by accident.
          Last edited by Von Richter; 04 Sep 07, 00:50. Reason: Had to shake A-Aegir of my tail... the pervy bastard!!!
          The long toll of the brave
          Is not lost in darkness
          Over the fruitful earth
          And athwart the seas
          Hath passed the light of noble deeds
          Unquenchable forever.

          Comment


          • #6
            The Matilda tank was supposed to have been named due to it's resemblance to some cartoon character. A duck of some sort i thought but the only results I got from google was Matlida the duck and that character was created in 1950. My guess would be the resemblance to Mk. I. The Mark I's and II's look like totally different tanks in my opinion, although both are infantry support.

            I hope nobody minds me asking off topic question here, but something I always wondered about Mk. II's. Large external fuel tanks were available for Mk.IIs, the ones (total 3?) stationed on Malta had them I believe. Yet I have never seen pictures of external fuel tanks on Mk.IIs in NAfrica. I would have thought desert camaign would be most likely scenario for their use. Why weren't they equipped with them?

            Comment


            • #7
              Originally posted by Canuckster View Post
              The Matilda tank was supposed to have been named due to it's resemblance to some cartoon character. A duck of some sort i thought but the only results I got from google was Matlida the duck and that character was created in 1950. My guess would be the resemblance to Mk. I. The Mark I's and II's look like totally different tanks in my opinion, although both are infantry support.

              I hope nobody minds me asking off topic question here, but something I always wondered about Mk. II's. Large external fuel tanks were available for Mk.IIs, the ones (total 3?) stationed on Malta had them I believe. Yet I have never seen pictures of external fuel tanks on Mk.IIs in NAfrica. I would have thought desert camaign would be most likely scenario for their use. Why weren't they equipped with them?
              Methinks they were only used for travel and taken off before combat. Large containers of flammable material strapped on your tank can be a bit of a liability..

              Comment


              • #8
                Originally posted by Aries View Post
                If you read Bill Maulin's book Up Front, you'll find a great wealth of how the GI thought.
                The book I have has a lot of quotes from Bill Maulin's book and a couple of his cartoons.

                Sherman tanks were refered to by the Germans as "Tommy-Cookers" and "Ronsons", after the well-known cigarette lighter by the Allies because of their nasty ability of lighting up and burning after every first strike.

                The "Honey Tank" was the US M-3 Stuart light tank that first saw combat in North Africa with the British Forces there.

                Mae West inflatable life vests were named for the naughty and buxom Hollywood actress of the same name.

                "Screaming Meemie" was the Allied term for the German nebelwerfer portable rocket launcher.

                "Tommygun" was named for the submachinegun that General John Thompson designed and built.

                The "Greasegun" was the completely stamped steel submachinegun that replaced it.

                A "Pineapple" was the standard US Hand Grenade because of its resembalance for the tropical fruit.

                The "Potato Masher" was the German counterpart that looked like an old fashioned variety masher.

                The "Jeep" was the "General Purpose" multi-use, quarter ton vehicle that served with distinction in all theatres of war and is also thought to be named after "Popeye the sailor's" pal, Jeep.

                A "Deuce and a Half" was the standard two and a half ton truck built by GM that continues to soldier on to this very day.

                The Bazooka was the first US designed anti-tank, recoiless rifle that was named after a musical instrument in an American musical band.

                "C, K and D Rations" were the standard US military rations consumed by the average dogface US soldier and Marine Corpsman. C and D rations came largely in cans, but the D ration was a solid block of hard chocolate that was designed to be eaten in an emergency and known to kill any soldier's hunger for 12 hours at the least.

                The"Ma Deuce" is the standard M-2, .50 caliber heavy machinegun found on battlefields, aircraft and ships in every theatre of that war.

                The "Johnnygun" was the Johnson light machinegun found in elite US units like the Marine raiders and the Army's Devil's Brigade.

                The "Devil's Brigade" was an elite, combined, Canadian-American shock brigade that spearheaded many campaigns throughout Italy and France. Their unorthodox tactics won them the title of "Der Teuffel's Brigada" (Devil's Brigade) by the frightened Germans who faced them and the name stuck.

                "The Battling Bastards of Bataan" were the US infantry units who fought a six month delaying action in the opening days of the war in the Pacific in the Philippine Islands and eventually surrendered after being nearly starved to death by the besieging Japanese forces. "We're the battling bastards of Bataan. No Momma, no Papa, no Uncle Sam, no Aunts, no Nieces, no artillery pieces, and nobody gives a damn.

                "GI" meant "Government Issue." The GI's could also be used to describe a case of diaherea from bad rations.

                A "Pro Station" was a prophylactic clinic where a GI could go after going on leave to cleanse his other weapon after doing battle with the native women.

                "Cinderella Leave" was a navy term meaning that a sailor's leave time away from duty or from the ship expired at midnight.

                "Pig Ironed Bastard" was the Army term for the 81mm mortars that they used. "Oh we have a weapon that everyone hates, they say our gun's a disgrace. You crank it up a hundred and a hundred more and it lands in the very same place. There is many an observer who is blowing his top, officers are all going mad, but our love has lasted for the pig iron bastard, the best gun this army ever had.

                Those are just off the top of my head.
                Wow I didn't even think of half of these when looking through the section. Some of these I had come to accept as the standard name for them because they were used so much. for some reason I don't think the book included any of these. I know it had Mae West and it only said that it was a life vest (which I knew) but it didn't say the reason behind the name. It was filled with a lot more random ones. I would check but the book is at my house and I am in my dorm room so.........

                I should have been more specific they are American slang.

                A couple I know it didn't include were:

                Chicken-S**t
                Kraut
                Nip
                Limey/Tommy
                any unit nicknames
                "We Will Stay Here, If We Must All Go to Hell Together"
                -Col. John R. Cooke, 27th NC

                Avatar: My Grandfather on the right. His twin on the left. Their older brother in the middle. In their Navy Blues

                Comment


                • #9
                  Originally posted by johnbryan View Post
                  Sherman tanks were refered to by the Germans as "Tommy-Cookers" and "Ronsons", after the well-known cigarette lighter by the Allies because of their nasty ability of lighting up and burning after every first strike.

                  The "Honey Tank" was the US M-3 Stuart light tank that first saw combat in North Africa with the British Forces there.

                  Mae West inflatable life vests were named for the naughty and buxom Hollywood actress of the same name.

                  "Screaming Meemie" was the Allied term for the German nebelwerfer portable rocket launcher.

                  "Tommygun" was named for the submachinegun that General John Thompson designed and built.

                  The "Greasegun" was the completely stamped steel submachinegun that replaced it.
                  The Tommy Gun was not replaced by the Grease Gun!!! The Grease was usefull when it came to tank crews but it couldn't beat the Tompson when it came to urban combat.

                  A "Pineapple" was the standard US Hand Grenade because of its resembalance for the tropical fruit.

                  The "Potato Masher" was the German counterpart that looked like an old fashioned variety masher.

                  The "Jeep" was the "General Purpose" multi-use, quarter ton vehicle that served with distinction in all theatres of war and is also thought to be named after "Popeye the sailor's" pal, Jeep.

                  A "Deuce and a Half" was the standard two and a half ton truck built by GM that continues to soldier on to this very day.

                  The Bazooka was the first US designed anti-tank, recoiless rifle that was named after a musical instrument in an American musical band.

                  "C, K and D Rations" were the standard US military rations consumed by the average dogface US soldier and Marine Corpsman. C and D rations came largely in cans, but the D ration was a solid block of hard chocolate that was designed to be eaten in an emergency and known to kill any soldier's hunger for 12 hours at the least.

                  The"Ma Deuce" is the standard M-2, .50 caliber heavy machinegun found on battlefields, aircraft and ships in every theatre of that war.

                  The "Johnnygun" was the Johnson light machinegun found in elite US units like the Marine raiders and the Army's Devil's Brigade.

                  The "Devil's Brigade" was an elite, combined, Canadian-American shock brigade that spearheaded many campaigns throughout Italy and France. Their unorthodox tactics won them the title of "Der Teuffel's Brigada" (Devil's Brigade) by the frightened Germans who faced them and the name stuck.

                  "The Battling Bastards of Bataan" were the US infantry units who fought a six month delaying action in the opening days of the war in the Pacific in the Philippine Islands and eventually surrendered after being nearly starved to death by the besieging Japanese forces. "We're the battling bastards of Bataan. No Momma, no Papa, no Uncle Sam, no Aunts, no Nieces, no artillery pieces, and nobody gives a damn.

                  "GI" meant "Government Issue." The GI's could also be used to describe a case of diaherea from bad rations.

                  A "Pro Station" was a prophylactic clinic where a GI could go after going on leave to cleanse his other weapon after doing battle with the native women.

                  "Cinderella Leave" was a navy term meaning that a sailor's leave time away from duty or from the ship expired at midnight.

                  "Pig Ironed Bastard" was the Army term for the 81mm mortars that they used. "Oh we have a weapon that everyone hates, they say our gun's a disgrace. You crank it up a hundred and a hundred more and it lands in the very same place. There is many an observer who is blowing his top, officers are all going mad, but our love has lasted for the pig iron bastard, the best gun this army ever had.

                  Those are just off the top of my head.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    FUBAR - ****ed Up Beyond All\Any Recognition, Redemption, Rescue, Reality, Recovery, Relief, Reason

                    SNAFU - Situation Normal: All ****ed Up

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Buck-Fifty: a 150mm howitzer/gun

                      Kraut, Fritz, Jerry, Boche: Various allied names for the Germans

                      Ivan: German name for the Soviets

                      Tommys: German name for the British

                      Dragon's Teeth: Cement anti-tank obsticles

                      Rommel's Asparagus: Anti-glider poles

                      Burp Gun: Mp-40

                      Hitler's Buzzsaw: MG-42

                      Pah Pah Sh: Ppsh-41

                      Whistling Death: Il-2
                      "Artillery lends dignity to what might otherwise be a vulgar brawl." - Frederick the Great

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        The Tommy Gun was not replaced by the Grease Gun!!! The Grease was usefull when it came to tank crews but it couldn't beat the Tompson when it came to urban combat.
                        some infantry preferred to have it on patrols cause it was lighter and apparently had some other better qualities that don;t come to mind at the moment. To me it looks like our knockoff on the Sten.
                        "We Will Stay Here, If We Must All Go to Hell Together"
                        -Col. John R. Cooke, 27th NC

                        Avatar: My Grandfather on the right. His twin on the left. Their older brother in the middle. In their Navy Blues

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Originally posted by AIrchallenged View Post
                          some infantry preferred to have it on patrols cause it was lighter and apparently had some other better qualities that don;t come to mind at the moment. To me it looks like our knockoff on the Sten.
                          When the British got their hands on the MP-32 they got the idea of making an SMG like the MP-32 - stamped metal sheets, so the Sten was born.

                          When the Americans saw the Sten and the MP-32 they decided to make something like those, so they came up with the Grease Gun.

                          Right??

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Tommys was short for Tommy Atkins, the name of the universal British Soldier. I believe Rudyard Kipling wrote a famous poem about him. Limeys refers to British Sailors who were given a limeade to combat scurvy. It may well have been added to the Grog ration, but I am unsure. Scots were universally referred to as "Jocks" and Irish were referred to as "Paddy or Mick".

                            Many British Officers were given nicknames in Public or military school. Some came to really fit. General Percival of Malaya and Singapore fame was referred to as "Rabbit" (severe protuding front teeth, probably). Unfortunately "Rabbit" went up against "Tiger" Yamashita!

                            Stages of confusion:
                            Snafu- Situation normal, all fouled up!
                            Tarfu- Things are really fouled up!
                            Fubar- Fouled up beyond all recognition!
                            Bohica- Bend over, here it comes again!

                            Pruitt
                            Pruitt, you are truly an expert! Kelt06

                            Have you been struck by the jawbone of an ASS lately?

                            by Khepesh "This is the logic of Pruitt"

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              British terms for the services. Pongo is army, Crab for the raf and fish heads for the navy.

                              Comment

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