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 Quiz: South African English – Test your Knowledge of it!

Although English is just one of 11 official languages in South Africa, it is understood in most urban areas and is the dominant language in government and the media. Due to its long exposure to other languages, South African English has incorporated many borrowed terms. Some of these have been fully naturalised, while some slang terms hover on the edge of respectability. See how many of these terms you can understand. Please share with us how you get on 🙂

Note: Don’t ignore the pictures!

  • Berg

    • Mountain
    • Field
    • Ice-cream
  • Veldt

    • Valley
    • Flat grassland
    • Felt
  • Chommie

    • Chewing gum
    • Broad-rimmed hat
    • Friend
  • Yebo!

    • No!
    • Yes!
    • Not on your life!
  • Braai

    • Underwear
    • Deep suntan
    • Barbecue
  • Lekker

    • Nice
    • Sticky
    • Enormous
  • Shebeen

    • Shabbily dressed girl
    • Unlicensed bar
    • Local style of dance music
  • Eina!

    • Ouch!
    • At last!
    • Wrong!
  • Babelaas

    • Nightclub
    • Extra-long glass for beer
    • Hangover
  • Boney

    • Baby
    • Motorcycle
    • Shared taxi
  • Kiff

    • Disgusting
    • Pleasurable
    • Unbelievable
  • Gatsby

    • Beggar
    • Strong cocktail
    • Sandwich filled with chips (fries) and other ingredients

What do you think?

16 points


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    • I am atoning for my repeated sin of making my quizzes too hard!
      Adding photos is easy. Once you click ‘Add’ to register the question text, a grey rectangle appears directly below, with an image of a camera at centre. Click anywhere in that rectangle, and a dialogue will open whereby you select a photo from your computer for upload. That’s it. Let me know if I haven’t been clear.

    • Perhaps, just maybe, that’s a result of your pop-up suppressor. If you know how, go into your browser settings and edit them so that you allow pop-ups for this site. And/or try a different browser or different computer. One way or another, it sounds like the issue is at your end 🙁

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