administration: the upper echelons of the Family, composed of the boss, underboss, and consigliere.
associate: someone who is closely involved with the wiseguys, but is not a member of the family.
B&E: breaking and entering.
babania: Heroin. The dealing of drugs has long been frowned upon by the Mafia, as long prison sentences often meant there would be a chance the ones who were apprehended for the crime could cut a deal with the prosecution, and betray the Family.
babbo: an idiot, a weaker minded individual.
bag man: the one who carries the money.
banana race: a fixed horse race.
beef: a disagreement within the organization, resulting in a sit-down meeting between high-ranking family members for resolution of the issue.
big earner: someone who generates an impressive amount of money for the Family.
biscuit: a gun.
books, the: euphemism for keeping tabs on membership in the Family. Nothing is actually written down, but "admissions", "promotions", and "retirements" are duly noted, in "the books".
borgata: an organized crime Family
boss: The head of the Family;
break an egg: to murder
broken: demoted in rank.
brugad: a crime Family
burn: to murder
bust out: to make someone go bankrupt.
button: a "made" member of the Mafia, a.k.a. goodfella, wiseguy, soldier etc.
booster: small time thief.
cafone: a blundering individual who embarrasses himself and others by putting his
foot in his mouth, or behaving in a tactless manner.
can, the: prison
canary: someone who violates the Omertà, an informant.
capo: high ranking Family member who heads a crew of soldiers.
Capo di tutti capi: the boss of all bosses
case, to: to check out a location prior to committing a crime.
chased: the rare occasion when someone is banished from the Mafia without being whacked.
clean (adj.): no carrying a weapon.
cleaning: taking the necessary precautions to avoid being followed while moving around.
clip: to murder, or to take money from.
clock: to keep tabs on someone's activities, comings and goings, etc.
comare: the mistress of a Mafioso.
come in: To go see the boss when summoned. Usage:
Commission, The: the "official" name of the Mafia. A National Crime Syndicate, comprised of the bosses of all the Families. It was set up by Charles, Lucky Luciano in 1931 to end the reign of the Mustache Petes.
compare: Italian for "Godfather", used here to designate a close friend.
connected: an associate of the Family.
consigliere: the counselor, or advisor of the crime Family. Often the diplomat who settles the arguments.
contract: a murder contract.
cop: to steal.
Cosa Nostra: Italian for "this thing of ours," or "our thing," often used as a synonym for the Mafia.
crew: a group of mafia soldiers that takes orders from the capo.
cugine: a young thug who is trying to impress the Family so he can become a made man.
do a piece of work: to murder someone.
Don: The head of the family. he is the only one who grants permission to whack or make someone, and he profits from all Family operations.
earner: someone who makes money for the Family.
empty suit: someone who likes to hang around mobsters, but does not have any special talents to offer the Family.
enforcer: the person who enforces mob law, threatens to bust kneecaps, etc.
envelope: a cash payment.
fence: someone with worldwide outlets to liquidate illicit goods.
finger, to: to rat out someone, or mark for murder.
friend of mine: expression used when vouching for someone.
Gaff: a phoney
gavone: a blundering individual who embarrasses himself and others by putting his foot in his mouth, or behaving in a tactless manner.
get a place ready: To find a spot to dispose of a dead body.
gift: a bribe, sometimes offered to a juror, as rumored to have been the case during two Gambino Family trials. Once the rumor was out, the trials ended in hung juries.
give a pass: to spare someone from being whacked.
going: about to be whacked.
going away to college: going to jail.
going south: stealing, passing money under the table, acting irrationally.
Goodfella: a "made" member of the Mafia, a.k.a. button, wiseguy, soldier etc.
goombah, goomba, gumba: Sicilian slang for the Italian compare.
goumada: see comare.
hack: a prison guard.
half a hard-on with a suitcase: female mob lawyer
hard-on with a suitcase: male mob lawyer.
headcrusher: an enforcer.
headhunter: hit man
heat: unwanted attention from law enforcement.
hit man: paid assassin
hit the mattress, to: to go into hiding."
The Honored Society: The Sicilian Mafia
hot items: stolen goods.
hot place: a location suspected of being under close surveillance by law enforcement personnel.
ice: to murder
joint, the: jail, prison.
juice: loan shark interest.
leg breaker: an enforcer.
loan shark: someone who loans mob money at high interest rates.
made: to be sworn into La Cosa Nostra; synonyms: to be "straightened out," to get your button.
Man of Respect: Title given to a made guy.
make a marriage: the union of two separate parties over the resolution of Family issues.
mattresses, hitting the, taking to the: going to war with a rival Family
meat eater: a corrupt cop.
mechanic: a fixer, the one who rigs gambling tables and dice.
Meets, the: an organized crime meeting, or conference.
Mustache Petes: Old school Mafiosi.
nut, the: "the bottom line", also meaning the gross profit figure.
Omertà: the code of silence and one of the most important vows taken when being
sworn into the Family.
on the arm: on credit.
off the record: an action taken without the consent of the Family.
on the record: an action taken with the consent of the Family.
piece: a gun.
pen, the: penitentiary, prison.
pop: to murder
problem: a liability, someone who most likely will be whacked.
put to sleep: to murder.
rat: someone who violates the Omertà, an informant.
Right Arm: Underboss
score: the take from a robbery.
shiv: a knife.
shylock: someone who loans mob money at high interest rates. Name taken from Shakespeare's Merchant of Venice.
sit-down: a meeting with the Family administration to settle disputes.
skim: Tax-free gambling profits, as in profits hidden from the IRS.
snitch: someone who violates the Omertà, an informant.
stand-up guy: someone who will not violate the Omertà, no matter what the deal offered, pressure, or threat.
stool pigeon: someone who violates the Omertà, an informant.
squealer: someone who violates the Omertà, an informant.
swag: illicit, or stolen goods.
take, the: the score.
Uncle Sugar: the FBI
vig: the interest on a loan from a loan shark.
vouch for: to guarantee with your own life the reputation of an individual you are about to introduce to the Family.
walk talk, take a walk: to hold a conversation while walking around the block in order to avoid the possibility of being recorded through planted listening devices.
whack: to murder
yellow dog: someone who violates the Omertà, an informant.
Young Turks: New school generation of Mafiosi.
Zips: American Mafiosi's derogatory slang term for Sicilian Mafiosi.