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tsotsi

noun;
a scheming, untrustworthy character; could mean a small-time gangster Borrowed directly from local African language. South African languages are known for their being derived directly from multiple languages, e.g. Afrikaans, and the mixing of cultures in South Africa leads to words often crossing between English, Afrikaans, and various African languages. The word has a very specific meaning when used in context, and is somewhat cooler than the closest English word ‘schemer,’ which is fading from common use.
 
I wouldn’t trust Jimbo with that deal, man. He can be a real tsotsi.
Etymology : tsotsi. Borrowed from colloquial South African.
Source : A friend
Last modified: 10 June 2008


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