Pronounced "tss-ot-see". A slang word common to most Southern African languages, a tsotsi is a person who is a rogue, a mischief-maker, a criminal, a bad element.

A synonym is "skelm", pronounced "skel-em", which has its roots in Afrikaans (and thus Dutch).
Parking in this part of town I'm always scared some bloody tsotsi's going to break into my car!
by TheRealNimnod March 5, 2009
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In urban slang of South Africa, "tsotsi" loosely translated means "thug". It is usually given to gangsters, thieves and liers that is either still young or still a minor.

Also the name of the Oscar winning South African movie (aka. Thug) about a young gangster that steals a car with a baby inside.
That tsotsi stole my cell phone to buy some meth...
by Ebola Monster August 12, 2006
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(n.)South African word describing a dodgy character. Someone who steals, lies and generally is not to be trusted. A township gangster. Can also be used as a light insult to friends. Pronounce it as you read it, say the 'ts' part quickly, as an interrupted 's' sound.
Help! That tsotsi just stole my cell phone!
Don't mix with those tsotsi's, they're hijackers.
Slang - You are such a tsotsi for stealing my drink.
by Thomas McLachlan September 9, 2005
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Translated from Afrikaans, this means "Thief/Thug language" in other words it is simply "slang" as it implies a colloquial manner of speaking.

Often used in townships and communities of colour, tsotsi taal is a unique way in which South Africans have incorporated many languages into their everyday slang. There are variants as per region/language groups but this way of speaking is often very swag and shows off the diverse influence South Africa has.
'Ola, hoe zit?' *pronounced: Who Zet*

(Some would rather say 'Ola, howzit). The meaning is: Hello, how's it going? Although South Africa doesn't have Spanish roots- this is an example of how South Africans can adopt literally any word into their slang.

"Ek se!" This is another way of saying hello or what's up. Sometimes it can be used as a reaction to something shocking/surprising. The direct Afrikaans translation is "I say"

Examples of tsotsi taal include:
-klipa/klipper: refers to money in hundreds (5 klipa= R500)
-dingus: refers to a thing/thingy

-acus/atshus: a friend/ homie
-bhudda: equivalent of dude

-lightie/lighty: refers to a young person

-oke(s): equivalent of dude
by Xhosa.Queen November 22, 2021
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