An ancient secret language used by Irish and Welsh Travellers and Gypsies, and based largely on altered Irish or Gaelic words.
- Words from Romany (originally an Indian dialect), Shelta (the cant of the Irish tinkers), Yiddish, back slang, rhyming slang and other non-standard English are interspersed with words of Italian origin.
- Their 7,000-10,000 descendants still speak the secret Traveler language, a dialect alternately known as Shelta, Gammon, or Cant, which includes elements of Irish Gaelic, English, Greek, and Hebrew.
- American Travellers' Cant was originally also Shelta but is now largely Anglicized.
Late 19th century: of unknown origin.
Words that rhyme with Sheltabelter, delta, helter-skelter, melter, pelta, shelter, swelter, welter
For editors and proofreaders
Line breaks: Shelta
Definition of Shelta in:
What do you find interesting about this word or phrase?
Comments that don't adhere to our Community Guidelines may be moderated or removed.