About City Dictionary

Have you ever gone to a new city and been confused by the way the locals speak? Whether it's an idiomatic expression, a nickname for a local street, or the name of a local food, cities can have confusing language. For example, should you be offended if someone in Pittsburgh calls you "nebby?" In Philadelphia, will you know what to say if someone offers you a "whiz wit?" Will you be alarmed in Madison when someone says they drank a "boot" last night?

If you understand all three of these references, then you’re in the minority. For the rest of us, there's City Dictionary.

What is City Dictionary?

City Dictionary is a city guide organized in an easy-to-use dictionary format. The web site allows users to define a city in their own words. The dictionary entries range from local slang and nicknames to events, restaurants, neighborhoods, food, people and more. City Dictionary is the place to find insider information that you won’t necessarily find in a tour book, on a map or in the yellow pages. The site allows the locals to define what it is that makes their city unique.

Whether you've just moved to a city, you are visiting, or you have lived there your whole life, everyone has something to learn and something to share on City Dictionary. It's a growing source for both well-known and lesser-known information about a city.

Who are we?

We are a team of upstanding Citizens of Madison, Wisconsin who have a passion for understanding the local vocabulary of the places we visit and live. We embrace the diversity of the local language as it differs from one culture to the next, and more importantly, from one city to another.

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Past Words of the Day

Nickname for the annual march up State Street, held since 1970, that advocates for the legalization of marijuana.

Refers to the extensive Internet resources offered by the Library of Congress.

Carry a heavy load or a bulky package for a distance: "The MTA is on strike every Christmas, so we schlep our packages from Macy's to Grand Central"

1. dinner

2. The word supper (pronounced suppah) is most often used in Boston for the last meal of the day. Most parts of the country say dinner. The dinner vs. supper phenomenon is actually a pretty complicated ones with regional, class, and culinary implication. Boston is nonetheless supper-dominant.

A (laughable) nickname for Seattle. Seattle is perhaps more aptly described as the Gateway to the Pacific.