EFL teacher David Appleyard
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American > British Glossary | C

Smoothing transatlantic communication
Index of Americanisms
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AmericanAmerican term or expression BritishBritish equivalent, or explanation
cab taxi
cabana beach hut
cabinet cupboard
caboose (railroad) guard's van; on goods train a carriage for workmen  
calico patterned, usually cheap cotton cloth
call collect reverse the charge(s), have recipient pay for a call  
campaign bus battle bus (for politician in national election)
campground campsite, camping site
calendar (for business appointments) diary
can (food type) tin
candy sweet, sweets
candy apple toffee apple
candy store sweetshop
canned food tinned food
captain (U.S. Air Force) flight lieutenant (Royal Air Force)
car driver motorist, car driver
caravan covered lorry or wagon; convoy of such vehicles  travelling together for security
card file card index
caregiver carer
carnival (traveling outdoor amusement show) funfair; sometimes a fête   
carryall (long cloth or leather travel bag
              with two tough handles)
carryout (food to go) takeaway
cart trolley (for shopping or luggage)
casket [euphemism] coffin
cast ('He had his arm in a cast [of plaster of Paris] ') plaster [U]  ('He had his arm in plaster.')
cell phone mobile, mobile phone
cement truck cement lorry, cement mixer
certified mail recorded delivery, registered post
charity bazaar fête (outdoor), jumble sale
check (n.)   cheque (form of payment); bill (in restaurant, etc.)
check (v.); check mark (n.) tick √  (given for correct answers)
check pattern checked pattern
checker (at a supermarket) cashier
checkers (board game) draughts
checking account current account, cheque account
checkroom  (in hotel, restaurant, theater, etc.) cloakroom
cheesecloth butter muslin
chesterfield a sofa with arms and back of the same height and which is curved outward at the top
chicory, chicory crown endive, curly endive
chick [slang] (girl) bird [slang]
chief executive officer (or CEO) managing director, chief executive
chief financial officer (or CFO) chief financial director, finance director
chief master sergeant (U.S. Air Force) warrant officer (Royal Air Force)
chief operating officer (or COO) within job sphere of managing director in the UK
chief warrant officer (U.S. Air Force) pilot officer (Royal Air Force)
chief warrant officer (U.S. Army/U.S. Marine Corps) 2nd lieutenant (British Army & Royal Marines)
chief warrant officer (U.S. Navy) acting sub-lieutenant (Royal Navy)
chipper cheerful
chips, potato chips crisps, potato crisps
chowder a rich, usually sea-food based soup
chum chopped fish used as bait
chutes and ladders (children's board game) snakes and ladders
cinder block breeze block
circuit (breaker) box mains, the
citation (legal term) official notice issued by a law court
claims adjuster (investigates insurance claims) loss adjuster
clambake seafood picnic, esp. beach party
clapboard (to protect a house from bad weather) weatherboard
claw (e.g. on a crab) pincer  
cleat metal or hard plastic stud on sole of shoe  
clerk (in office or store) assistant
climate control system air-conditioning
clinker [colloq.]  (U.S. meaning is negative) clanger [slang] (as in 'to drop a clanger'), blunder
closet cupboard; wardrobe
clothes pin clothes peg
coach class economy class
coaster (small mat under a glass to protect table) drip-mat
coat check girl cloakroom attendant
coffee light (coffee with milk or cream added) white coffee
coin laundry launderette
coin locker left luggage locker
collar stay collar stiffener
collect call reverse charge call
collect on delivery (COD) cash on delivery (COD)
college university
college graduate postgraduate
colonel (U.S. Air Force) group captain (Royal Air Force)
combine (n.) combine harvester
comforter  (thick, soft quilt with detachable cover) continental quilt, duvet
commencement graduation ceremony
commode lavatory (the receptacle itself)
common stock (investment) ordinary share
commuter pass season ticket
concert master leader, leading violinist
condominium flat (individually owned)
conductor  (on train) guard
confectioners' sugar icing sugar
container (of yoghurt, cream, etc.) pot
cookbook cookery book
cookie bickie [colloq.], biscuit
cookie sheet baking tray
cooler fridge, refrigerator; cool box
cop [colloq.] (police officer) copper, cop; peeler [archaic];
the fuzz (police force) [all colloq.]
copy editor sub-editor, subeditor
cord (electrical) flex, wire, lead
corn in the U.S., maize plants and their grain;
sweet corn, corn on the cob
cornstarch cornflour
corporal > specialist 4 (U.S. Army) corporal (British Army)
correction fluid (to hide typing errors, etc.) Tipp-Ex™
costumes party fancy dress party
cotton balls, cotton batting cotton wool
cotton candy candyfloss
cotton swab cotton bud
couch sofa, settee
cougar (panther) puma
counter worktop, work surface (e.g. in a kitchen)
counter-clockwise anti-clockwise
county fair agricultural show (with funfair and entertainments)
court tennis (the ancient game from which
                     modern-day tennis is derived)
real tennis
coverage (insurance) cover
cover letter covering letter
coveralls boiler suit
cracker (unsweetened biscuit) cheese biscuit, cracker
cram (study hard before an exam) swot, mug up [slang]
crane fly daddy longlegs [colloq.]
crap [slang]   shit [slang], poo [colloq.], faeces
crawfish crayfish
crazy bone funny bone
cream of wheat semolina (pudding)
creek tributary (of a river)
crescent moon new moon
crib death (sudden infant death syndrome, or SIDS) cot death
critter [colloq.] creature
crossing guard lollipop man, lollipop lady [both colloq.],
school crossing patrol officer
crosswalk zebra crossing, pedestrian crossing
cup noodles (Japanese English?) pot noodles
curb kerb
cuspidor (receptacle for spit) spittoon
cut in line jump the queue