This section describes the concept behind reading (and writing) in Strine.
Most people will understand the idea fairly quickly, and may want to skip this section too.
Strine is not so much a language as a dialectic phenomenon.
The name itself, is in fact a perfect example of the concept.
The term Strine simply means 'Australian' - but written the way she are spoke!
To be more precise, it is the phonetic representation of the English language, written in such a way as to
mimic the sounds you would hear if the words were spoken with a heavy Australian accent.
The same principles can, of course, be applied to any dialect of spoken English (Irish, Cockney, Scots, etc.).
In fact, Strine's undisputed pioneer Alistair Morrison
(or Afferbeck Lauder to use the pen-name he preferred),
who brought the concept to the rest of the world, was himself a Scot.
There is more information to be found about Alistair elsewhere on this site.
Alistair's pen-name is itself a Strine translation of the words
Alphabetial Order, created for his first book
Let Stalk Strine - A small dictionary-cum phrase book
(the title being yet another Strine translation of Let's Talk Australian!).
I'm sure you must be getting to get the idea by now!
There are more examples below, and on the History Page,
but if you've understood it so far, you may as well go straight to the Dictionary.
It is Strine which seems to provide the inspiration behind many works of this kind;
similar treatment of other dielects being mere derivatives of the same principle. For example, check out the Cockney Internet on the Links page.
Anyone still there?
Not far to go now - honest!
For example: The most commonly recognised expression used by Australians is 'Good Day Sport'
Translated into Strine, this becomes 'G'day Spawt'.
This over simplifies the idea and may seem hardly worth the effort of devoting an entire Web site to,
no matter how small or simple it may be. But the concept goes much further.
If you take a small group of words, string them together as a phrase, and then say them quickly with a heavy Australian accent, suddenly you are speaking in Strine.
This in itself is not comical, but seeing phrases like this written down, phonetically, the results can appear hilariously funny.
For example: The simple expression 'Haven't you seen it? in Strine, would be 'Aven choo see nit?' and 'How much is it?' translating to 'Emma Chissit', etc..
Normally, of course, the translation is provided the other way around, as it would be with any Dictionary or Phrase Book.
For instance, the term 'Emmeny Jiwant' translates into 'How many do you want?'. The art form comes into its own, however, when the true Dictionary translation approach is employed.
A perfect example of this is:-
Gunga Din - Unable to gain access to (eg. a place or room), as in:-
'I Gunga Din, the door slokt! Cummer nope nit formee!'
To take the whole thing a step further, entire sections of prose can be translated or written in Strine,
and if done with care, the audience cannot help but find themselves reading with a pronounced Australian accent.
This was the concept behind two more of Morrison's masterpieces, - Fraffly Suite, and Nose Tone Unturned -
the latter being later included with his original work Let Stalk Strine
in hardback form (see the History page).
As with any language, with a little practice one can become quite fluent, learning to read and write in Strine with very little effort.
If you would like a demonstration of this, please send me an
I can't promise to answer every message personally,
'But shoras spudz is btydas awl hevva go Spawt!'