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Yours Aye - Most used Royal Marines slang.

A little history on Yours Aye and the most used slang and phases that only makes sense to Royal Marines.

While the origins of this phase is traditionally used by the Scots (Scottish) it has also been used by many different sectors of the UK’s Armed Forces. But more widely and broadly used by the Royal Marines and their Officers.

What does Yours Aye mean?

First, a little history.

"Yours aye" in Scotland literally meaning "yours ever" or "yours always", and it is quite a common closing to a note or letter, particularly amongst the Military, instead of using "yours ever" or "yours sincerely".

"Aye" is commonly used in Scots song and poetry instead of the English "ever" or "always", e.g. "I'll aye be wi' ye...", (I will always be with you...).

So, if you want the Scots origin of "yours aye", this is it.

"Yours aye" should only be used by Scots when signing off letters or personal correspondence. For a non-Scot to use it is unforgivably presumptive unless the writer is American, in which case no further harm can possibly be done.

“Yours aye” is of course only suitable for those with an affiliation north of the border or should we say only be used by the Scots when signing off letters or personal correspondence. It is pretentious for a chap from the south of the border to use it and it is even more pretentious when some officers sign off as “Aye” alone.


Also used by William Shakespeare, writing "Aye" regularly to mean “ever” or "always" and also using "Yours aye" in private letters.

Why do the Royal Marines use Yours Aye?

In the Corps, "Yours aye", was the accepted sign off on any written correspondence between two people who were familiar to each other, eg: oppos, people who you had served with and had a close relationship. The sign off replaces “Yours sincerely”, etc: which would be used when the correspondents did not have a close relationship.

It would not be uncommon for a senior officer on writing to another rank, with whom they had served with over many years, to sign off with, "Yours aye". I don't know when "Yours aye", originated in correspondence, but it signifies a less formal relationship, while still showing respect to the recipient. “Yours aye” used on this website signifies a friendly respect for the other Royal Marines.

And in typical Bootneck style:

Yours Aye - yours as always, yours as ever.
Aye Aye - a Madagascan squirrel like lemur.
Aye aye sir - acknowledgement that the golden rivet has been correctly inserted.

Want to speak the lingo? A Bootneck guide to help you with some Royal Marine words on this website.

When visiting our website, you may think some have gone a little crazy with spellings of such words as in ‘Comms’ instead of Communication and ‘Phot’ (YES Phot not THOT) instead of Photos. This is no mistake; our community was once made up of predominantly Bootnecks.

Want to learn more? Please read on, but if you’re interested by the end of this article, you might just benefit from this book...

Jackspeak: A guide to British Naval slang & usage.
By buying this book, not only do you help support us but also you can learn the hundreds of unique words that the Royal Marines use for everyday words while learning and having a giggle of course, who knows what word will be widely used tomorrow. So yes, the Royal Marines really do have their own language!

Use your common dog and give it some rice!

Royal Marines are one of the toughest and most skilled fighters on the planet, bound together by a heart-warming sense of camaraderie.

Throughout the corps’ 350-year history, commandos or Bootnecks as they’re affectionately known as have established their own customs and traditions, along with an intriguing vocabulary to match.

Many of their phrases have slipped into the everyday English language, while others would leave most of us civvies rather baffled.

Here’s a few slang terms and phases used by the Royal Marines, that are simply waz! Okay we're going too far now but you get our drift.

•1. Banjo - A sandwich; broken or broken down.
•2. Bone Dome - A protective helmet, particularly applied to those worn by pilots.
•3. Brammer - Outstandingly good.
•4. Church Key - A device equipped with both bottle and can opener.

Royal Marines Slang - Common Dog
•5. Common Dog - Common sense.

•6. Crappers - To be very drunk.
•7. Dog Robbers - Jacket and tie.

Royal Marines Slang - The Cavalry
•8. Donkey Wallopers - The cavalry.

•9. Glophead - A habitual drunkard.
•10. Gonk - Sleep.
•11. Heads - Toilets.

Royal Marines Slang - Icers
•12. Icers and Redders - Something very cold is icers. Something very hot is redders.

•13. Laughing Kitbags - To find something very amusing.
•14. Muscle Bosom - One who prides himself on the strength of his body.

Royal Marines Slang - Nutty
•15. Nutty - Confectionary.

•16. Oppo - A close friend. The opposite number of a two-man team; a system used to ensure maximum effectiveness in military activities.
•17. Plums Rating - One who is continually unsuccessful with women.
•18. Rabbits - Gifts or souvenirs obtained by going on a rabbit run.
•19. Rice - Effort to ‘give it rice’.
•20. Rug Rat - A baby.
•21. Sneaky Beaky - Intelligence staff or their operations.

Royal Marines Slang - Stickies
•22. Stickies - Cake.

•23. Sweating Neaters - To be worried (neaters is a slang term for undiluted spirits).
•24. Trap - To successfully attract a member of the opposite sex.
•25. Waz or Wazzer - Fantastic.
•26. Zap or Zapped - To shoot or be shot at.

Royal Marines Slang - Zeds
•27. Zeds - Sleep.

Don't need a book? How about a sweet looking lighter?

Royal Marines Commando Green Sykes version Classic Black badged windproof lighter.
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