Common Lexeme


Keywords: food, cuisine, crime, law

Pronunciation (IPA): 'ol.zo 
Part of Speech: term noun verb 
Class: skurun 
Forms: olso, olsos 
Glosses: fat, grease, butter, lard, shortening, margarine, fatten, bribe, corrupt 


The term olso comes from Old Common and had the original sense of 'fat' as a substance. In modern High Common, it is a general word for any kind of edible saturated fat, and has some colloquial extension to inedble machine greases in some professional argots. In colloquial High Common, 'olso' also has the sense of 'bribe'.


As a noun, 'olso' refers to any spreadable, edible saturated fat. This can be anything from butter and margarine to fats like vegetable shortening, coconut oil or cocoa butter. Unlike the English word 'fat', 'olso' has no implication of animal origin, and can refer equally to fats of plant origin.

The names of specific fats can sometimes be formed phrasally from the word 'olso', colloquially usually by adding a modifier. Examples:

  • na lecces olso: butter
  • na cokkos olso: cocoa butter

Another sense of 'olso' is a bribe. This can be either singular, 'ny olso',  'a fat', or paucal 'nyr olso', 'a little fat', both being interchangeably acceptable.


The original sense of 'olso' in a verbal context, which was rarely used, was as an intransitive pali verb meaning to be fatty or greasy. However, the colloquial, slang sense where the verb is an intransitive skurun verb meaning to bribe, taking an ergative briber, and absolutive party bribed, and optionally the bribe itself introduced with 'ro' and the desired action bribed introduced with 'u' has come to eclipse the original meaning. In a more formal sense, an additional skurun sense of 'to fatten' has fully eclipsed the 


The modifier form 'olsos' means fatty or greasy. Colloquially, it can also be a slang expression for corrupt, in the sense of being on the take or taking bribes.

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