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    • Join Date: Feb 2005
    • Posts: 296
    #1

    the old bill etc.

    the old bill, Bobbies, cops, boys in blue, the fuzz.
    Do all these words refer to police officers?
    Which one is most informal? And which is most formal? Thank you.

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    #2

    Re: the old bill etc.

    They're all informal terms for the police. I suppose 'fuzz' is the most informal as it's used in a pejorative way, though I don't hear it much nowadays in BrE. 'Bobbies' is also fairly rare. 'The old bill' is used quite a bit. The 'boys in blue' is something I think you might see more in informal writing- journalism where they didn't want to use a formal term, but didn't want to be rude. It also refers more to the force as a whole than the officers.


    • Join Date: Feb 2005
    • Posts: 296
    #3

    Re: the old bill etc.

    tdol, thank you. I will use the "boys in blue" because it is not very rude.

    • Member Info
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      • UK
      • Current Location:
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    • Join Date: Nov 2002
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    #4

    Re: the old bill etc.

    I would say 'the old Bill' isn't rude- there are rude forms, like the filth/pigs, or plod. We seem to have many, many ways of describing the thin blue line.

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