Green’s Dictionary of Slang

you know phr.

[abbr. earlier don’t you know]

a verbal punctuation, with no real meaning.

[UK]F.W. Farrar Eric II 217: All serene; give us two bottles of beer — on tick, you know.
[UK]D. Cook Paul Foster’s Daughter I 185: Well, I go and read with him all day — read hard — ever so, you know.
[NZ]Hawera & Normanby Star (N.Z.) 27 Apr. 3/1: The Government never thanks you when it takes your money, and to be consistent it must discourage ‘that sort of thing, you know’.
[US]G. Devol Forty Years a Gambler 245: They liked to talk about Old h’England and their fine guns, you know.
[UK] ‘Fanny Flukem’s Ball’ in Bird o’ Freedom (Sydney) in J. Murray Larrikins (1973) 39: Then Micky from the Rocks jumped up / And said ‘Bli’me, ’er, you know, / If any bloke in the bleeding crowd / Would like to have a go.’.
[Ire]Joyce ‘An Encounter’ Dubliners (1956) 48: I spotted a fine tart under Waterhouse’s clock, and said good night, you know.
[Aus]Sun. Times (Perth, Aus.) 25 Feb. 14/1: What do you say if you saw a pretty girl going down the street, you know?
[US]M. Levin Reporter 240: What was queer about it? Oh, it was just, you-know!
[US] in M. Daly Profile of Youth 235: ‘You know, year [sic]’ is used for emphasis.
[US](con. 1948) G. Mandel Flee the Angry Strangers 104: She’s skinnier maybe a little, weaker-lookin like; you know?
[SA]R. Dederick ‘Woodstock’ in Malan (1972) 38: I’m sitting here in you-know my place / Making with like this trouser-crease / And collar man and brief you-know case / On a train like silver you-know peace, [...] And I’m making like I’m looking to see / Like love you-know and peace on their faces; [...] I’m / Grooved for you-know (and wondering / If freedom love’ll be there this time) / When this ticket-fuzz comes doing his thing; / But not no groovy fuzz man this / ’Cos Oligarchies he say to me. / Far out man talking like he is / A Ph man you-know like D.
[US](con. 1950s) H. Junker ‘The Fifties’ in Eisen Age of Rock 2 (1970) 100: Beat/Jazz contributed [...] all that, like, well, you know, man, incoherence.
[US]C. White Life and Times of Little Richard 56: He was talking wild, thinking up stuff just to be different, you know?
[UK]K. Sampson Powder 296: Just when I’m dead, dead, dead excited an’ that, you know.
[UK]Indep. on Sun. Culture 26 Mar. 7: But I mean, it’s like – do we really, y’know, care.