Green’s Dictionary of Slang

chat v.1

also chat up
[fig. uses of SE; Williams gives 17C examples of chat used euph. for sexual intercourse, e.g. Pepys, Diary 11 Aug. 1663: ‘[the king] hath a chat now and then of Mrs. Stewart.’]

1. to attempt the first verbal stages of seduction.

[UK] in J. Wright EDD (1905) I 567/2: Chat, to flirt with. Londonderry.
[Aus]Sun. Times (Perth) 31 July 2nd sect. 12/7: A nine-year-old nipper had been listening to a mob of gutter-sports in the train. ‘What does “chat ’em” mean, dad?’.
[Aus]C.J. Dennis ‘The Intro’ in Songs of a Sentimental Bloke 19: Oh, ’oly wars! / The sorter look she gimme! Jest becors / I tried to chat ’er.
[Aus]Healesville & Yarra Glen Guardian (Vic.) 4/4: I chats the skirt for erbout ten minutes.
[UK]J. Curtis They Drive by Night 20: It would be nice to chat this tart.
[UK]T. Keyes All Night Stand 12: He could chat up a chick and he didn’t mind having it away with some man either.
[UK]Sun. Times Mag. 12 Oct. 30: Two CID men enjoying a drink and chatting up the girls.
[UK] in G. Tremlett Little Legs 71: I tried to chat her up but couldn’t get on the firm.
[UK]Observer Mag. 5 Sept. 33: Gabbing with every passer-by and chatting up giggling young women.
[Ire]P. Howard Curious Incident of the Dog in the Nightdress 220: I hope you don’t mind me chatting-up your friend.
[US](con. 1973) C. Stella Johnny Porno 112: Thinking about how any women the seventy-year-old had at least chatted up.
[Aus]T. Spicer Good Girl Stripped Bare 22: Where’s Eric? Ah in the corner, chatting up a dancer.

2. (also chat off) to inform on, to tell on, to reveal.

[Aus]Sydney Sportsman (Surry Hills, NSW) 24 Oct. 1/1: This is a kosher paper; everything the other papers smother The Sportsman chats.
[Aus]Sun. Times (Perth) 11 Oct. 1/1: A divorce that wasn’t is the latest in Leaderville [...] neither party was aware of anything till the private detective chatted the co-re.
[Aus]Bulletin (Sydney) 5 Aug. 47/1: Out at quod their idea is to keep the numbers apart, so as they won’t contaminate each other. But there’s heaps of chanst for one bloke to chat another.
[Aus]Smith’s Wkly (Sydney) 11 Aug. 15/4: As the bottle passed round she chats us. ‘In his top inside kick most of it, and a couple of funt in his hlpper’.
[Aus](con. WWI) A.G. Pretty Gloss. of Sl. [...] in the A.I.F. 1921–1924 (rev. t/s) n.p.: chat. To tell a person something.
[UK]C. MacInnes Absolute Beginners 142: Though I wanted to chat Ma [...] I just couldn’t face opening the whole theme up.
[UK]F. Norman Guntz 142: I reckoned it couldn’t do all that much harm to chat the geezer.
[SA]C. Hope Ducktails in Gray Theatre Two (1981) 40: Listen Howellsie. Don’t chat us sleg now.
[NZ] (ref. to WWI) McGill Dict. of Kiwi Sl. 69/1: let me chat you allow me to tell you something, WWI.
[US]Eble Campus Sl. Apr. 2: chat it – a greeting often used to answer the phone or to speak to someone in person: ‘Girl, you better come here and chat it in my ear’.
[NZ]McGill Reed Dict. of N.Z. Sl. [as cit. 1988].
[UK]J.J. Connolly Viva La Madness 178: I’d be upset if I thought you were chatting my business. You gonna keep quiet?
[UK]K. Koke ‘Bring Me Down (Intro)’ [lyrics] Before you chat off your mouth you better rethink / I made you look small I can make you re-shrink.

3. thus fig., in non-sexual contexts, to seduce with words.

[Aus]Sydney Sportsman (Surry Hills, NSW) 5 Dec. 1/4: This commission, tale-teller, tear-down, or whatever he may be, chats Fishy the brass is on Kitty Wager at a good price.
[Aus]C.J. Dennis ‘A Holy War’ in Rose of Spadgers 54: An’ then ’e chats me, with the punkest tale / That ever got a bad man into jail.
[UK]F. Norman in Encounter Nov. in Norman’s London (1969) 51: If there’s one thing I don’t look when some bogey chats me up, that’s innocent!
[UK](con. 1920s) J. Sparks Burglar to the Nobility 22: So we chatted him as to what a clever villain he was.
[UK]P. Fordham Inside the Und. 88: Possibly chatting him up in his ‘local’.
[Aus]B. Humphries Traveller’s Tool 113: I’ve been chatted up by the best of them too, from Michael Parkinson to Clive James.
[US]J. Stahl Permanent Midnight 320: My plan was to chat the boy up, tell him [...] what a terrific producer he always was.
[US]G.V. Higgins At End of Day (2001) 40: He [...] thought this place was a promising place to chat up young gunsels.

4. (US) to advise, to recommend.

[US]A. Baer Two & Three 26 Apr. [synd. col.] His best dope is never to endorse a note [...] Chaunce also chats us not to carry a bundle by the string if we want to live a hundrd innings .

5. (Aus.) to scold.

[Aus]C.J. Dennis ‘Sore Throat’ in Backblock Ballads n.p.: The pale young man he comes to me, / An’ chats me good an’ fair; / ‘That langwidge that you use,’ sez he, / ‘Pollutes the good clean air.’.
[UK]R. McGregor-Hastie Compleat Migrant 106: Chat, to: to tell somebody off.

6. (Aus.) to speak a language.

[Aus]Sun. Times (Perth) 29 Jan. 45/9: It’s nice to know Latin, it’s nice to know Greek, / Though the Greek in the fishshop can’t chat it.

7. to trick verbally, to ‘con’, to persuade.

[UK]F. Norman Bang to Rights 147: They would chat her into selling the daughter to them for the night.
[UK]F. Norman Stand on Me 52: I went home and chatted Betty into going down with me.

8. (S.Afr.) to kick.

[SA]L.F. Freed Crime in S. Afr. 105: When he ‘chats a guy with a boot in the pan’, it means that he has kicked him in the face.

9. to sing rap lyrics.

[UK]Guardian G2 6 Aug. 10: The MC or deejay who chats or raps lyrically.
[UK]JME ‘Don’t Chat’ [lyrics] Don’t chat crack beats.

10. (UK black) to speak, to state.

[UK]‘Q’ Deadmeat 75: Yu ah chat hall dis sense now but ah rememba yu wen yu ah chat nonsense.
[UK]G. Malkani Londonstani (2007) 6: Why’d the fuck’d anyone wanna chat like that anyway?
[UK]Skepta ‘2+2x2 [lyrics] Man chatting shit on my timeline, that I don’t like.

In phrases

chat down (v.)

(W.I.) to make one’s first advances to a young woman or man in the hope of eventual sexual conquest .

[WI]F. Collymore Notes for Gloss. of Barbadian Dial. 28: Chat down. To engage a girl in flirtatious talk usually with the idea of ‘making a date’.
L.E. Fisher Colonial Madness 57: One of the boys leaves the group to ‘chat down’ a girl dressed in her best clothes, obviously on her way to church.
‘Patois Dict.’ at [Internet] CHAT DOWN : to engage a girl in flirtatious talk.
in L. Winer Dict. English/Creole of Trinidad & Tobago (2009) 195/2: I was real chatting down she friend, go she plenty basket.
chat shit (v.)

(UK black) to talk nonsense; to gossip negatively.

[UK]Dizzee Rascal in Vice Mag. at [Internet] There’s lot of people who front, who chat shit. ‘Roadman Slang 10 Jan. [Internet] To chat shit - to talk rubbish or to gossip rudely. e.g. ‘Don't chat shit, that is not their house!’ or ‘she's always chatting shit about people’.