Sunday, October 26, 2008

Word of the week 27 October -2 November 2008: CHAV

CHAV noun (BrE, slang) a young person, often without a high level of education, who follows a particular fashion. Chavs usually wear designer labels, and if they’re girls, very short skirts and stilettos. Chavs still see branded baseball caps as a status symbol and wear them at every opportunity. The term is similar to America's 'white trash' stereotype.


noun: There are always loads of chavs hanging round the shopping centre.

adj. [only before noun]: The bus was full of chav kids and chav girls with their big gold jewellery.

In Britain there are many words to describe people from this social group, and they are often limited to a particular town or region. Other words with a similar meaning to chav are townie, scally, ned and charver. The word chav has become common in southern England, and is generally thought to come from Chatham girls (Chatham is a town in Kent.) Some people think, however, that the word comes originally from the Romany word chavo (boy), which is also the origin of the Spanish word chaval.

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