"... It's one of the few countries in the world where the workers don't go on strike."

Boos, cheers, laughter.

The King said: "Anyway, I want to see the boys in blue and khaki jumping to it and shouting Sah and getting on with the job ..."

- 1985 by Anthony Burgess

I can not understand what does "Sah" (emphasis mine) mean in this sentence. That word is written in italic in the real book.

1 Answer 1


Hard to know from the small amount of context but normally it's "sir" said with an accent.

So if they were "jumping to it and shouting 'Sah'", they'd most likely be saluting (the King?) before they took their leave and then "getting on with the job".

  • 2
    It's a cliché phonetic representation of how working-class British soldiers respond when given an order, or addressed, by an officer. Aug 19, 2021 at 14:58
  • @MichaelHarvey I think it also gets used for some Caribbean dialects too (e.g. here's a reference re: Jamaican patois) so didn't want to assume :) Aug 20, 2021 at 8:18

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