Heading to the pub? You might want to know these 20 hilarious Irish slang words and phrases that describe being drunk.
Ireland is an incredibly creative country with a rich history in literature, tradition and a wonderfully unique language. We only have to look at renowned poets such as Seamus Heaney and William B. Yeats, or established authors such as C.S. Lewis and James Joyce, to see that we are a nation of talented word artists.
It’s no surprise, then, that we have hundreds of different ways to describe how intoxicated we get. After all, we’re also the nation of craic.
It seems like every hamlet, town and city of Ireland has its own unique description of having one too many and each one is more Irish than the last.
They say the Inuit have more than 100 different words for ‘snow‘, but we’re certain that the Irish have even more for the art of inebriation.
Here’s a list of 20 different Irish slang words and phrases to describe being drunk. (Note: We’ve censored a few of the especially rude ones with asterisks; we’re pretty sure you’ll know the missing letters, though!)
This is one of the most common and universally used words in the dictionary of drunk synonyms. Like a block under a gavel, the Irish are known to get hammered.
In the same way that a wall or structure is laced in materials, someone that’s plastered gets completely inebriated with all kinds of alcohol.
18. Wrote off / a write-off
You’d describe someone as a complete write-off if they were really drunk. They might also describe themselves or their night as a write-off if it was particularly messy.
This one’s pretty self-explanatory. See also: fecked.
This is another great word to describe someone who is totally intoxicated. For example: “I was quite drunk, but he was completely stocious”.
This is how you’d describe someone who got blackout drunk – possibly not even remembering their night. They were just gone.
This one has nothing to do with rats or their arses, thankfully! It’s just another great Irish slang word to describe being drunk.
Like the previous word, this one isn’t as literal as it sounds either. A sh*tfaced person is extremely sozzled.
This one is not directly related to peeing, although someone who is extremely pissed may wee themselves. Hopefully they’ll be too pissed to care!
This word can be used to describe someone that’s beyond help – not even a chippy will bring them back from their stupor.
Ah, to be wrecked. Like a train that’s crashed and blown to smithereens, this person is wrecked!
9. Off his/her face
Someone off their face can barely hold it together. The drink has sent them all over the place!
This is how you’d normally describe someone that is pretty drunk but still functional.
We’re sure you’ve seen the sight of a paralytic person – they’re usually being carried into a taxi, half-conscious and with vomit all down their clothes. This is someone that definitely needs their bed.
6. In a bad way
Someone that’s in a bad way isn’t far behind a paralytic person. The booze has hit them hard, and they’re feeling the effects.
This one’s pretty simple. “She’s been drinking since 1pm. She’s bollocksed!”
Like some torn-apart animal, someone hideously drunk can be described as being mangled. Oh dear!
Here’s another one you’ll hear often when out late in a pub or a nightclub in Ireland. “Nuala’s done one too many shots, and now she’s battered.”
2. Off his / her tits
This one is a personal favourite of ours that is completely unrelated to breasts. You’d describe somebody very drunk as being off their tits.
1. Off his / her trolley
Similarly, you can describe someone as being off his or her trolley if they’re totally smashed. Hopefully by the next morning they’ll be back on their trolley!
There you have them—our top 20—but there are innumerable Irish slang words and phrases to describe being drunk in Ireland, and they can get pretty creative.
Not all regions of Ireland describe the state of drunkenness in the same way. For instance, Northern Ireland often has slightly different ways of describing their drunken states than the South does due to its unique accents, and even these can vary between counties.
For more wonderfully weird and hilarious words exclusive to the Emerald Isle, we’d recommend checking out our guide to Irish slang.
What are your favourite ways of describing someone that’s had too much to drink?