Language – Snapping Handbag
Aussie Word of the Week
If you’re travelling in the waters of Northern Australia make sure you avoid the snapping handbags, that is, the crocodiles. Crocodiles come in many shapes and sizes, and we have invented as many slang names to match. On the theme of snapping, there is also the snapping log, perhaps named because crocodiles are difficult to spot in water and often mistaken for other things. To that end, a logodile is a humorous name for a floating log that resembles a crocodile.
Crocodiles live in different environments. A freshie is a freshwater crocodile while a saltie is a saltwater crocodile.
One long flat dog is scary enough but how about a whole bunch of them? Back in 2017 when Macquarie invited readers to invent collective nouns for their favourite animals, one user suggested a bag of crocodiles for a group the reptiles. The idea of a bag of crocodiles is equally terrifying and hilarious, and links us right back to the idea of the snapping handbag. Clever.
Each week, we have a look at a slang word from Australian English. You can see other Aussie Word of the Week posts from the Macquarie Dictionary here.