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Chat Bout (Let's Speak) Patois

Putting the emphasis on "All Right" when we speak

Let us teach you the Jamaican Patois, so that you can soon learn to speak it yourself.


Patois can be simple to understand if you take the time to listen. The words often come fast when the speaker is excited, but once you have a general conversation going, the words come much slower and are simpler to grasp.

The trick is to get a few key words and phrases correct. Many words and phrases are unique to Jamaica. When in Jamaica you “nyam” (eat) your “bickle” (food) and “labrish” (gossip) with friends. “Jam” (hang out) on the beach with your “likkle boonoonoonous” (someone you love) or “bush-out” (dress up), “touch di road” (leave your house) and “go sport” (socialize). In the market you’re sure to get “brawta” (a little extra) with any purchase.

The structure of the language also has some unique elements where we tend to drop the “r” at the end of words, so that “dollar” becomes “dolla” and “water” becomes “wata."

Double “t’s" within words become double “k’s," changing “little” to “likkle” and “bottle” to “bokkle." We often add or subtract “h” at will so that when you “harrive” at your “otel," “heverybody” will tell you “ello.” For simplicity, men and women both become “im” or “dem."

Enjoy “Ital stew” (salt-free, Rastafarian vegetarian dish) and a good “reasoning” (discussion) with your Jamaican “Idren” (friends). “Skank” (rock to Reggae music) at a local “dance” (street party) and drink a “stripe…well cold” (very cold Red Stripe beer).

And at the end of it all? “It sweet fi talk.”