chauvies, shavies the plural always refers only to children 19-. etymology: from Anglo Romany chavvy ‘child’, ultimately from Sanskrit śāva ‘young of any animal’; originally Cant; form chavvie collected by EMcC/PS and sense 1 attested by BS in TDITA; forms chavo, chauvie, chavey attested as ‘a boy’ by Galloway and Perthshire and Argyleshire Tinkler-Gypsies; sense 1 chauvie and sense 2 form chavi also collected by Simson (1865) and attested by three of his informants; sense 1 attested by JS and SR; sense 3 attested by JS note:

Grellmann (1787) collected the forms

Tʃchabo Tʃchawo meaning a child and a

boy or son respectively from Continental

gipsies. Smart & Crofton (1875) collected

the forms Chábi ‘a child’ plural chávi

‘children’; Chabo ‘a baby’ from English


This is the origin of the modern derogatory

term for a ‘a loutish person who

wears designer clothes and is of low social


Sense 1 with the form chavy attested by Canadian Paul Pope 2013.