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FTA - Mobspeak Glossary
Category: Language and Literature > Mobspeak
Date & country: 13/09/2007, Finland
Words: 75

the upper-level power structure of an organized crime Family, composed of the boss, underboss, and consigliere.

an almost-there; someone who works with and for wiseguys, but who hasn't been sworn in as a member of the Family.

Heroin, as in dealing. Lucrative but risky for mob insiders because if they're busted, long prison terms might compel them to cut a deal and squeal.

A dope, idiot, useless underling.

a complaint or disagreement within the organization, usually discussed during a sit-down with higher-ups in the Family.

big earner
someone who makes a lot of money for the Family. A LOT of money.

the euphemism for membership in the Family, since nothing is ever written down. When there is an availability (when someone dies), the books are 'opened.' When no one is being 'made,' the books are 'closed.

a crime Family; brugad.

the head of the crime Family; he is the only one who gives permission to 'whack' or 'make' someone, and he makes money from all Family operations; synonyms don, chairman.

Boss of Bosses
Capo di tutti capi While no one proclaims himself the Boss of Bosses anymore, the press awards this title to whomever they feel is the boss of the strongest of the five Families of New York, who is also said to preside over Commission meetings.

demoted in rank; 'knocked down.'

a crime family; borgata.

to murder; synonyms break an egg, clip, do a piece of work, hit, ice, pop, put out a contract on, whack.

a 'made' member of the Mafia; soldier, wiseguy, goodfella, Man of Honor.

a phony or embarrassment to himself and others; 'gavone' (slang pronunciation)

ranking member of a Family who heads a crew (or group) of soldiers; a skipper, short for capodecina.

Capo di tutti capi
see Boss of Bosses

to be banished from the Mafia and barred from associating or doing business with any made members. The punishment is merciful in that the offender is spared death.

taking the necessary steps (driving around, stopping in various locations) to avoid being followed.

to murder; see burn

to keep track of someone's movements and activities.

a Mafia mistress; 'goumada' (slang pronunciation).

come in
To go see the boss when summoned.

Commission, The
the Mafia 'ruling body', typically a panel made up of the bosses of the five New York Families, Gambino, Genovese, Lucchese, Colombo, and Bonanno sometimes with representatives from other U.S. Families, such as Chicago.

cronyclose pal, buddy. Literally, 'godfather' in Italian.

the counselor in a crime Family; advises boss and handles disputes within the ranks.

a murder assignment.

Cosa Nostra
Italian for 'this thing of ours,' a mob family, the Mafia.

a group of soldiers that takes orders from a capo.

a young toughguy looking to be made.

do a piece of work
to murder; see burn.

someone whose expertise is making money for the Family.

empty suit
someone with nothing to offer who tries to hang around with mobsters.

a person who threatens, maims, or kills someone who doesn't cooperate with Family rules or deals.

someone with worldwide outlets to liquidate swag.

friend of mine
introduction of a third person who is not a member of the Family but who can be vouched for by a Family member.

friend of ours
introduction of one made member to another.

see cafone.

get a place ready
To find a burial site.

A bribe, sometimes for a juror.

give a pass
To grant a reprieve from being whacked.

About to be whacked.

going south
stealing, passing money under the table, going on the lam.

goombah, goomba, gumba
Sicilian slang for the Italian compare; plural goombata

see comare.

hard-on with a suitcase
mob lawyer; feminine half a hard-on with a suitcase.

hot place
a location suspected of being the target of law enforcement or surveillance.

to murder; see burn.

joint, the
prison; synonyms the can, the pen, go away to college.

someone who lends mob money at an exorbitant interest rate; a shylock.

to be sworn into La Cosa Nostra; synonyms to be 'straightened out,' to get your button.

make a marriage
to bring two parties together for legitimate or illegitimate Family issues.

meat eater
a corrupt cop (not exclusively mobspeak).

Mustache Petes
Old fashioned or older generation Mafiosi.

nut, the
mobspeak for 'the bottom line'; also the gross profit figure.

off the record
an action taken without the knowledge or approval of the Family.

the code of silence and one of the premier vows taken when being sworn into the Family. Violation is punishable by death.

on the record
an action sanctioned by the Family.

a gun.


to murder; see burn

A liability, someone likely to be whacked.

a member who violates Omertá; synonyms squealer, canary, snitch, stool pigeon, yellow dog.

see loanshark

a meeting with the Family administration to settle disputes.

Tax-free gambling profits, as in the money taken that is not reported to the IRS.

a capo.

stand-up guy
someone who refuses to rat out the Family no matter what the pressure, offer, or threat.

stolen goods, also an acronym for 'stolen without a gun.'

the interest payment on a loan from a loanshark (short for 'vigorish'). Synonym juice.

vouch for
to personally guarantee--with one's life--the reputation of someone dealing with the Family.

walk talk, take a walk
to conduct a sensitive discussion while striding up and down the block to avoid being overheard on those pesky eavesdropping devices.

to murder; see burn.

Young Turks
Younger, less traditional generation of Mafiosi. Less likely to live by the old rules.

American Mafiosi's derogatory term for Sicilian Mafiosi.