My coworkers and I are at a loss. Where does the slang term for theft “kipe” (sp?) come from. As in, “Hey, who kiped my favorite pen?” The only explanation we could come up with was that it was derived from the offensive slang term for a jew, kike (sp?). Does anyone out there have any clue as to where this word came from? And if it did come from the jewish slang, how did the spelling and pronunciation change?
Well, I did a quick dictionary search, and couldn’t find “kipe” meaning to steal, but a kipe is a basket for catching fish, and comes from an old english word meaning to catch.
Maybe the usage could come from that.
Sounds like your “kipe” is really “cop,” or maybe some regional variation thereof. From The Merriam-Webster Online Dictionary
Looks like a plausible source, yes?
I thought it was “kite”. My dictionary defines it as a worthless negotiable instrument (forged check for example).
I always heard “kife”.
“Hey, someone kifed my pen!”
Perhaps it’s a regional thing.
Here’s an earlier discussion of cop/kipe/kife/kite/…
Here in Australia, “swipe” is commonly used. I don’t know if it is related to “kipe” or not.