Jamaican Patois, is expressive, colourful and, come a non-Jamaican, regularly confusing. The Jamaican language is mainly a derivative the Spanish, English and African impacts on the nation through its colonial history. Back the official language that Jamaica is English, numerous Jamaicans speak Patois in casual day-to-day conversation. Right here are 15 Jamaican Patois phrases come know and also use ~ above your following visit come Jamaica.

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A useful expression to know when utilizing crowded buses or taxis; tiny up yuhself rather literally means to make some room.


This Jamaican expression means literally: i’ll be appropriate there. Yet if you’re called mi soon come, don’t be fooled. Island time is lot slower than the rest of the world and also this expression must be understood as meaning anything indigenous a few hours to a couple of days.

Literally translated as ‘what are you saying’, but actually meaning ‘how room you doing’. Because that example: Weh yuh a seh? Mi deh try call yuh means, ‘How room you doing? I’ve to be trying to speak to you.’


Used once saying goodbye. The literal translation would be ‘In the tomorrows’, an interpretation ‘see you later’.

Bob Marley sang around them in Duppy Conqueror and also Ian Fleming mentions lock in Live and also Let Die. In a land whereby superstition reigns through day and duppies (spirits) haunt through night, religious beliefs is an ext than simply saying her prayers before you go to bed in Jamaica. This expression implies a fearless person overcoming obstacles and also difficulties. The literal meaning translation is ‘ghost conqueror’.


This phrase way damage or destroy. Because that example, Mi mash up mi fone means ‘I’ve broken my phone’. This is a renowned expression and also even road-signs will advise vehicle drivers to mash up yuh brakes. An interpretation slow down.

Religion peppers all facets of Jamaican life and wishing people a good day is frequently done by using the expression bless up. Blessing can also be used.

This is more than likely the most famous Jamaican greeting and also was even used by us President Barack Obama throughout his inaugural visit to Jamaica. Wah Gwaan is a casual greeting to enquire how somebody is or what’s up.

Impress locals with this handy expression which is regularly used in solution to Wah Gwaan. The mystery is in the pronunciation and also the cheat is to say it quick – almost as one word. When the literal meaning translation is ‘I am here’, the implied an interpretation is ‘everything is ok’, or ‘I’m law well’.

Guzumba means Obeah, i m sorry is similar to Haiti’s Voodoo and is the practise of black magic. Obeah-men deserve to still be found practising this outlawed handmade in Jamaica. An Obeah-man can cast or rest a spell, enter a shamanic trance or, that is said, even bring someone earlier from the dead.


Meaning view ‘you later’ or ‘goodbye’. For example, mi view yuh likkle much more den – I’ll watch you later on then.

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John-crow is a Jamaican bird, known commonly across North America together the turkey buzzard. The expression yuh waan flap a wing, no doubt acquainted to dancehall aficionados, is a term provided to ask a girl come dance.