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Shelta

[shel-tuh] /ˈʃɛl tə/
noun
1.
a private language, based in part on Irish, used among Travelers in the British Isles.
Origin
1875-1880
1875-80; origin uncertain
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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British Dictionary definitions for Shelta

Shelta

/ˈʃɛltə/
noun
1.
a secret language used by some itinerant tinkers in Ireland and parts of Britain, based on systematically altered Gaelic
Word Origin
C19: from earlier sheldrū, perhaps an arbitrary alteration of Old Irish bēlre speech
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Word Origin and History for Shelta

shelta

n.

secret language of Irish tinkers, 1876, of unknown origin. According to OED it mostly consists of Irish or Gaelic words with inversion or arbitrary substitution of initial consonants.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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