Definition of Ossi in US English:



informal, derogatory
  • (in Germany) a citizen of the former German Democratic Republic.

    Compare with Wessi
    • ‘Using the provincial city of Karlsruhe as a backdrop, The Student Conductor is set in 1989, when the Berlin Wall was first crumbling and tensions between Ossis and Wessis were emerging.’
    • ‘Meanwhile, an astounding 24 percent of those in the west and 12 percent of so-called Ossis said they want the Wall back.’
    • ‘After the initial tidal wave of western capitalist media (try watching German MTV), it seems that ‘Ossies ‘have become at least a little disillusioned with it all.’
    • ‘Its the expansion of the West German hostility to Ossies now finding echoes in complaints from London tradesmen about Polish plumbers.’
    • ‘It has helped reduce health inequalities between the former East and West and contributed to a remarkable rise in life expectancy of the ‘Ossies.’’
    • ‘It was a necessary concession, as the Ossies felt dominated by their western counterpart.’
    • ‘‘The wall in their heads ‘- the psychological division between so-called Ossis and Wessis - did not rise overnight.’’
    • ‘Inhabitants of the Federal Republic of Germany, known as the ‘Wessies,’ had joked that the land inhabited by their eastern cousins, the ‘Ossies’, was perhaps German, but clearly was neither democratic nor a republic.’
    • ‘Employed by a construction company for almost half the wage paid to his West German counterpart, he and the other Ossies were given accommodation in a removals container.’
    • ‘The protest was just one sign of how deeply disenchanted many east Germans, ‘Ossies ‘, are with their west German, ‘Wessie ‘, neighbours and vice versa.’


German, probably an abbreviation of Ostdeutsche ‘East German’.