Durham & Tyneside Dialect Group
/ Word Lists /
PALGRAVE'S WORD LIST
After F.M.T.Palgrave: A List of words and phrases in everyday use by the natives of Hetton-le-Hole in the County of Durham (English Dialect Society vol.74, 1896). It is one of the most extensive, accurate and informative works on North-East dialect, past or present.
An attempt has been made here to reproduce his markings on pronunciation - the colon seems to be a syllable divider (not a mark of vowel length). Palgrave gives no explanation of his phonetic system...
Abbut (aab:út). An introductory word. 'Ay, but,' or 'ah! but.' e. g. "abbut a will."
Abed. In bed. Various dialects.
About (u:boot). Around. "A'll twist yer neck about."—May 27, 1892.
Abune (u:byoon). Above.
Aliblaster. A large marble made of alabaster.
All (aa:l). Quite. Various dialects. Used of time or distance. "How far is't? One mile?" "Ay, it'll be all that." Note the future tense, where in the south the present would rather be used.
Alley. A glass marble used by boys in playing marbles. Probably from 'alabaster'. The game of German Tactics, played with these, always goes by the name of 'Glass alleys.'
And all. A common pleonasm, often signifying nothing, though it may stand for 'also.' "He was there and all."
Any (on:i) (always). At all. "Can ye sing ony?" I have also heard the double form 'any at all' from one speaking fine.'
Arnicks. The bulbs of the buttercup-tribe.
Ask. A small lizaid, or newt.
Aud-farand. Cunning; sagacious beyond one's years. (Spelling copied from Halliwell.)
Ay (aa:y). Yes (always). 'Yis' is fine, for gentlefolks' ears. Children are often corrected for answering 'ay' instead of 'yes' to their betters. Yet the native word sounds far more expressive. It is also very common as a mark of approval or attention, in listening to a narration.
Backcast. "We canno' backcast it," said by a widow of her son's illness, meaning, 'We cannot now order it differently.'— Feb. 25, 1892. This is not the general meaning. The word usually means a relapse. "Thoo's getten a backcast" (i. e. you've got a relapse).
Bad (baa:d). Poorly. Various dialects.
Badly liked (of persons). Disliked (always). So, to be 'badly taken with' (unpopular), to be 'badly used' (ill-used).
Baff (baaf). Technical The alternate, or 'off' day or week ('Baff Saturday,' 'Baff week') when the fortnightly wages are not paid to the miners. Opposed to 'Pay Saturday.'
Bag. To give a rabbit the 'bag' is to overfeed it and thus cause its death.
Bairn or Barn, a sound between /baan/ and /baan/. Child (always). So 'grand-bairns.' This latter probably imported from Northumberland.
Bait-poke. Linen bag in which workmen carry their food.
Bally (baa:li). A lever for turning points on a railway; so called from a big iron ball on the stem.
Bank (baangk). Hill. The word 'hill' is practically unknown in the dialect. Also technical for the 'pit'-surface, top of 'shaft.' To 'work at bank' is to do the colliery work above ground.
Barley (baa:li). To claim, to speak for first; as, "Barley me the big 'un."
Bat. Stroke, blow (always).
Bath (baath). vb. trans. To wash any one in a bath. Children are always 'bath'd.' For bathe, lads often say 'bave,' and 'bavin' hole' (piece of water dammed up).
Beck. Used indifferently with 'burn.' A stream.
Bedfast. Bed-ridden (always).
Bedstraw. Heard once in Hetton from a South Shields person:— "He was a thin man,—looked as if he lived on his own bedstraw."
Belong (bu:lang). Belong to, hail from. A man, on being asked where he 'belongs,' says, "I belong Hetton," meaning his home, or place of birth, according to circumstances. "War dis thoo belang?" "Aa belang canny Shields."
Berries. Generic name for all fruit of the berry kind.
Betimes. Sometimes; at times.
Bid. Invite to a funeral. "Was thou bid ?" When a miner dies, a 'bidder' goes round to all his fellow-workmen to bid them attend his funeral.
Bide. Stop, remain. Various dialects. 'Stop' is more generally used, but is finer. "Mind thou bides away." "Don't let them bide out night."—Extract from boy's essay.
Bill-knife. A knife used by butchers for cracking bones.
Bird's-eye. Germander Speedwell. "Bird's-eyes in summer."— Boy's essay.
Bit. Used adjectivally, as, 'a bit garden' (a little garden), 'a bit lad,' or 'a bit laddie,' 'a bit lass' or 'lassie '(a little boy or girl), etc. (always). We never say 'a bit of a —.' "Have a bit sport such as football," etc.—Boy's essay.
Bitch. A female. "Gan on, you bitch "(said in my hearing by a tiny child). Common term of abuse. A saying sometimes heard is, "Every dog has its day, and a bitch two afternoons."
Bite. A bit, morsel. "Not hadden a bite the day" (= to-day, /dhu dee:u/), is a beggar's usual plea. Two common sayings are "Bite the bridle and bear it," of 'lumping' anything disagreeable ; and, "I could bite a double tack nail in two" (a sign of hearty hunger).
Blackclock. Cockroach (always).
Blare. To cry. "A'll gi' th' something to blare for, if aa start wi' th'." "Thoo's always blarin'." So, 'blary,' noisy, of an infant.
Blather (blaadh:u). Gabble. "She blathers away when there's no one here," said of a baby's attempts to talk.— May 7, 1891. "Hard (hold) thy blatherin' tongue."
Blazer. A piece of sheet iron, put between the grate and the mouth of the chimney, in order to make the fire draw.
Bleck. Dirty grease, found on coal waggon-ways where rollers are used.
Bleeberry (blae:beri). Bilberry. The /e/ in 'berry' is quite distinct in compounds in the dialect, never as in literary English ('blea-berry,' not 'bleab'ry').
Blindy (blin:di). Blindman's Buff. The usual form is 'Billy-blindy.' See Willy blindy.
Blob. To bubble. "It blobs up."
Blood-alley. A bone-marble with red streaks in it.
Bloody (bluod:i). A favourite epithet amongst many pitmen, to be heard several times in every sentence from certain individuals.
Blush. Blister (subst. and vb.). "His hand's all blushed" (hizs haandzs aa:l bluosht).
Bogey (/g/ hard). Agric. A low, two-wheeled sleigh-cart for carrying hay to the stack without the trouble of pitching. The 'pikes' are drawn on to this cart by a rope, the ends of which are wound round a windlass-roller at the front end of the cart. Also, a square wooden truck on four wheels, for the purpose of removing heavy goods a short distance, called also a 'tram.' Down the pit, a bogey with an iron pin about two feet long, at each of the four corners, to prevent the timber and rails from falling off, would be called a 'horney tram.'
Bonny. Fine, pretty, handsome. "Thou's a bonny bairn." 'The Bonny Pit Lad' is an inn so-called in Easington Lane, near Hetton; "That's a bonny loss when ye're nae scholar"—May 8, 1891.
"Lee laa, let,
Ma bonny pet."
("Lie low, 'light," etc.,— said to a butterfly, in chasing it. /Lae:t/ = alight, settle.) 'Bonny bord' (bird), /baun:i bau:d/.
Bottles. Medicine (always).
Bottom. "We must all stand on our own bottoms," a common saying, equivalent to Gal. vi. 5. (Wae muos aa:l staan iv oo:r aa:n baut:mz.) Sometimes varied as follows:— "Every tub must stand on its own bottom."
Bowdie (boo:di). A sherd, or piece of broken earthenware.
Bowl (boo:l). Stone ball. The game is common in the North among pitmen. The one who throws the longest distance in three throws is declared the winner. Weight of 'bool' 5 ounces, 15 oz., 20 oz., and upwards. For the pronunciation of this somewhat difficult vowel, found also in bowl (cricket), see under /Ow/, p. viii.
Bowrie (boo:ri). The ring in which boys place their marbles, whilst playing.
Braff'en (braaf:n). Horse-collar.
Brambles (braam:búlz) (always). Blackberry bushes and their fruit. 'Blackberry,' if used, would be 'black-berry' (the two words distinct,—see under Bleeberry). Blackberry jam is always 'bramble jam.' "Apple and bramble tart," "Bramble pudding" (from a menu at the North of England Cafe, Durham).
Bran-spanking-new. Quite new.
Brattice. In the house, a wooden boarding fastened at right angles to the door-frame, on the side where the door opens, so as to screen the room from draughts. Also, wood or canvas used in mines to help the air to travel.
Bray. Beat, thrash. "A'll bray tha weel."
Breed (brae:d). Bread. Compounds of bread are transposed; e.g. 'cheese and bread,' 'butter and bread,' 'jam and bread.'
Breed. To spread (of manure). Not heard about Hetton, but used in the county.
Brent. Steep (of stairs, ladders, and such-like erections).
Brimming. Boarward (of a sow), maris appetens.
Brinkside. River bank. "It's i' the brinkside" (said of a bird's nest).
Brock. Badger. "Aa's sweatin' like a brock." (Anglo-Saxon)
Broth. A plural word, as in other dialects. 'A little broth ' is always 'a few broth.'
Brownie (broo:ni) (always). Brown linnet. Singing competitions of these birds for a wager are held in public-houses, where they are always advertised as Brownie Matches.
Brung. past part. of 'bring.' 'Browt' and 'brung' are both used, the former being the commoner form. The word generally used in the dialect, however, is 'fetch.'
Buck-stick. The game of 'Trap, Bat, and Ball.' Called 'Spell and Nurr' by old men. The game is now obsolete, but the implements were as follows. Bat or Mallet: the 'buck-head' was about the size and shape of a small Yorkshire Relish bottle, with one side flat, though some players preferred to have it round. The stick inserted in the 'buck,' and fastened to it with cobbler's wax-ends, was generally a cane about a yard long. Trap: the 'trippets' were of two kinds. The wooden trippet,—a strip of wood with hollowed cup at the heavier end, and a heel underneath towards the other end to obtain leverage, like the trapstick in Trap, Bat, and Ball. The spring troppet:— a rod of steel, was fixed at one end in a frame, and the other end was then bent down and inserted between the teeth of an upright notched stick fixed in the other end of the frame. This saw, or toothed 'catch,' being struck outwards, released the steel rod or trippet, and this threw into the air a ball, called a 'pot quoit,' which had been placed in a cup soldered on to the trippet. The scores were counted by the number of 'rigs' over which the quoit was hit. The little lads who collected the 'chucks' or quoits were called 'chuckiers,' and their reward was a certain number of shots.
Buffet (buofet) (emphasis on the final syllable). Corner cupboard, the top half of glass, like a bookcase.
Bullet. A sweet(meat). The usual term. A large sweetshop in a certain North-country town is inscribed in large capitals —The Bullet King.
Burn (bau:n). A stream.
Butcher. The stickleback, without a red belly. See 'Doctor'.
Butcher's Plums. Meat(?). On saying to someone I was visiting, "Who lives next door?" I was answered, "The butcher. That's where we get our butcher's plums." Only heard once.
Buzzer. (Technical). The steam whistle or 'fog-horn' that warns miners of the times for returning to and from work.
Buzzum (buoz:um). Besom, a kind of broom made of heather or ling. 'Bosom' is always pronounced /boo:zúm/.
Byreman. A man who works among cows. From 'byre,' a cowhouse. "Keep the cows bier clean."—-Extract from boy's essay.
Cage. Technical The lift which goes up and down in the shaft of a mine.
Call (kaa:l). E. g. 'What do they call you?' The invariable equivalent to 'What's your name?' this latter form of inquiry being gellerally unintelligible to children, as I have found by experience. Also, to abuse. "Please, sir, he called me," a schoolboy's common complaint of another boy to his master.
Callant. Boy, or girl. Imported from Northumberland.
Caller (kaal:u). Fresh. The cry of fishwives is still, 'Caller hair'n (herring)! Fresh, caller hair'n.' Also, /kaa:lu/, a man paid to go round at various hours of the night and early morning, 'calling' miners to get up to go to work, by rapping on their doors. Hence, 'Calling Course,' the time a caller goes his rounds.
Calven (kaa:ven). Of cows, that have lately calved.
Cam (kaa:m). Rising-ground. " Tak' some o' that cam off."
Camp-bed. Four-poster, with a curved top on, formed of wooden laths with cross-bars let into them. The framework opens in the middle, for taking down.
Can and Could, besides their literary use, are also used in a peculiar sense for the vb. to be able. "They'll not can get any food " =not be able to. "I haven't could get across the doors," i.e. I've not been able to get out (v. common).— April 7, 1891. "I doubt I'll not can get" (I expect I shan't be able to come). This last is one of the commonest phrases, to be heard every day.
Canes. The schoolmaster's cane. Always in plural thus, "She's getten her canes" (kae:unz). Compare 'teas' (pl. noun) /tae:z/, though used somewhat differently, e. g. 'We'll have our teas,' 'I'll have my tea.' Compare also Crickets, Taws, Gases. This last means gas-jets, as in a gaselier. "Having the gases literary "—Boy's essay.
Canny. A North-country catchword. 'A canny few' = a fair number, a 'canny man' is one with some sense in his head, a 'canny little body' would be a dapper little person, with some notion of briskness and neatness. "It'll tak' a canny bit," i.e. take some time. Also, careful, gentle. A child is told to be 'canny' with a jug, a baby, or other perishable article entrusted to him. A juvenile letter to some one at Shields was inscribed on the envelope, "Please, Mr. Postman, be canny with this letter." 'Ma canny hinny,' a term of endcarment.
Cant. To set on edge, and so turn over. "It canted owre."
Cap. A piece of leather put on a shoe.
Carling Sunday. Fifth Sunday in Lent, on which day the traditional dish is one of 'carlin's' cooked in melted butter. A carling (kaa:lin) is a kind of pea, of a dark grey or brown colour. They are used by lads on 'Carlin' Sunday' for throwing at one another, and are boiled by publicans for their customers on that night.
Cat (kaat, kaa:t). "Let the cat dee" (die), i. e. let the swing (see Shuggy) run down of itself (constantly). —School treat, July 27, 1892. Also, the game of Tipcat, often called 'kit cat.'
Cat-haws. Hawthorn-berries, often shot by boys through a hollow hemlock-stalk.
Cat-knockles. The peculiar way some boys hold their marbles when shooting.
Cavil (kyav:l). The station of each miner engaged in hewing coals is called his 'cavil.' These are changed every quarter by the drawing of lots.
Chaffs. Jawbones (plural only).
Chancetimes. Occasionally (very common).
Checkers. The game of Draughts (only word in use).
Checkweighman (miners' technical term). Name for both the owner's and the people's representative, each appointed to check the other's dishonesty, in weighing coal-laden tubs, as they come from the pit.
Cheese and Bread. The young leaves of the hawthorn are pulled and eaten by children under this name. (See under Breed)
Chemmerly. Urine kept in a large stone bottle and used for washing clothes. This must undoubtedly be what Halliwell mentions as "Chamber-lie. Urine. —Shakespeare."
Chimla. Chimney. Hence 'chimla-piece.'
Chinnerly. To separate the larger pieces of coal from th dust.
Chisel. A kind of bran with which boys feed rbbits.
Chuck. Food, provisions.
Chucky. A young fowl.
Clag. To clog, stick; so 'clagged'=stuck.
Clap. To stroke, pat. "If you clappcd them, they will be knd with you."—Boy's essay on Kindness to Animals. bserve the 'with,' which is very idiomatic.
Clarts(Claarts). Mud. 'Clarty,' dirty. For the vowel-pronunciation, see under Ar, p. vii. It may be very adequately represented by 'air,' so 'clairts.' As villages are often denoted by some epithet, so we have on Tyneside 'Canny Shields,' 'Bonny Newcastle,' 'Clarty Walker.'
Clash. Disturb. 'Clash'd and slap'd,' of milk which has been agitated by hasty carriage. "He's been clash'd about, poor fellow" (i. e. often shifted). Met. "I'll clash thy brains out." Also, to 'clash' the door, is to bang it. "Dinno' clash the door so (dur sae:)"
Claze or Cleze (klae:z) (= clo's). Clothes. Hence the compounds, Claze-prop, a long pole to prop up the Claze-line; Claze-stick, a short stick to thrust clothes down when boiling in the pan; Claze-swill, a basket made of peeled willows, used for holding clothes on washing-days.
Cletching. Brood of chickens. (Final 'g' inferred.)
Clever (kliv:au). In good health; well, properly. "If the window had been open, we could have seen clever." "He's not over-clever to-day," i. e. not very well. Very common phrase, naut uw:u kliv'au dhu dee:u.
Click. To catch one in the side, of a sudden twinge of pain, etc. "She was click'd away very sharp," was said to me of a woman dying suddenly. 'Click up,' catch up. To 'click' hold of any one (clutch).
Clip. To shear. "Clip the sheep in the summer."—Boy's essay.
Clish-clash. Idle talk. "There's been a lot o' clish-clash about it."
Clock. To sit, of hens. "She's not gan to clock yet." "Yon hen's clockin'." A 'clocker' is a sitting or broody hen.
Clog. A log. 'Yule-clog.'
Close. vb. /-z/ and adj. /-s/. Shut. Shut is considered vulgar, close somewhat fine; but both are heard.
Clout (kloo:t). A cloth, or old rag (always).
"Never cast a clout
Till May is out."
a local proverb, illustrating the inclemency of a North-country Spring. The vowel is not pure. Also, a blow on the head. (oo); see under Ow, p. viii.
Coggly. Crooked, from side to side, as of an uneven swing's motion. Walking on high heels, or sitting in a hay-cart, would be so described.
Cotterill. A split pin for fastening handles on to cranks.
Coup Cart (koop). The common dung- or coal-cart.
Cow (koo:). A long iron rod fastened to the last 'tub' of a 'set,' so that in case the rope breaks, the rod sticks in the ground and holds the tub fast. Dray-carts and others have such rods dangling at the axle-tree, to take the strain off horses on a 'bank.'
Cowp (kuwp). To exchange; also, to overturn.
Crack. Talk. "Sit doon an' let's heh (hear) tha crack a bit." To have a 'bit crack' is the invariable way of expressing a bit of a gossip. 'Not much to crack on' is the usual expression for indifferent health. Compare the literary 'crack jokes.' Also a talker (for this, compare double use of the word 'gossip '). "Thou's a good crack."
Cracket. A low stool, found in most cottages. When coal is low, miners sit on a cracket to their work, one end of which is higher than the other. A cracket stands on legs which in shape are not unlike a pair of bootjacks. A 'steul' (styool) has three separate legs, and a 'cobbler's stool' has four.
Cradle (kred:l). A pig's ladder. Also, scaffolding in a 'shaft.' Also, a baby's wooden bed, on rockers, to be seen in use in every cottage. It is stiff and Noah's-ark-like in appearance.
Crake (krae:uk). The crier's rattle, used when a meeting of miners is cried through the street, is called his 'crake.' The likeness between this sound and the cry of the corn-crake is obvious.
Cray (krae:). A hutch, as 'pig's cray,' 'pigeon-cray,' etc. The only word in use.
Crible. To curry favour.
Crickets. The game of cricket is always spoken of in this plural form. See under Games, p. 8.
Crowdy (kraaw:di). A kind of porridge. (Teaspoonful of oatmeal, in plate of hot water, and half a glassful of milk added, when cold.)
Cuddy. Donkey (always,— ' donkey' unknown). 'Cuddy-handed' is left-handed.
Cush (kuosh hau:, kuosh haa:, kuosh huop) and other variations. A call to cows at milking-time.
Da and Ma. Papa and Mamma. "Where's tha (thy) ma?" "Tha da's coming!" (kuom:ún).
Daft. Foolish, of persons. Of things: "They're the daftest things a child can have, to play with" (Mrs. R—, of some keys, Oct. 30, 1891). Var. diaL
Dawd. Slice. "Cut him a dawd o' breed."
Dear knows (dae:u naa:z). The superlative of ignorance, corresponding to 'goodness only knows.' On asking a woman when her husband will be in, she frequently gives this answer.
Deave (dae:v). To trouble, bother (=deafen ?). "Next to George's integrity and generosity of character, was his love of country and patriotism. He was always 'deaving' us about his native Cumberland."—George Moore's Life, by Smiles, p. 29. "It's eneugh to deave one" (the noise children make).
Debiliated. Mispron. of 'debilitated.'
Delve. To dig.
Dene (dae:n). The picturesque wooded hollows, each traversed by a stream, which line the sea-coast of Durham, are called 'denes.' "Cowslips in spring in the deen. "—Boy's essay.
Dickises. "A'll dee (do) the dickises," i. e. something that another cannot do, e. g. walk on a wall, jump a stream, etc.
Dickyhedgie. The 'hedge-sparrow' (accentor modularis).
Doctor. The stickleback, with a black head and reddish belly.
Doors. "I haven't been across the doors," i. e. across the threshold, out of 'doors.' Notice the pl. in both cases.
Doorstaingels ('g' soft, as in 'angel '). Door-frames.
Doorstead (dur-stae:d). Threshold.
Dothering. Same as 'dothery.' 'Dotherin' ducks,' the quaking grass.
Dothery (daudh:uri). Shaky, failing; of old age.
Doubt (aa: doo:t) (I doubt). The equivalent to 'I think.'
Dough (doo:). Cake. 'Yule-doo' is a kind of currant cake made in shape of a baby and given to children at Christmas. Not so many years ago the 'putter lad' expected his 'hewer' to bring him the 'yule-doo.' If the hewer failed to bring one, the putter would take the hewer's clothes, put them into a 'tub,' fill it up with rubbish, and send it 'to bank'; or if the 'doo' was not well made, the putter nailed it to a tub and wrote the hewer's name underneath.
Doving (doa:vún). Dozing.
Dowly (daaw:li), which seems to point to 'Doly' = doleful, as the true spelling. Dull (of persons or things). "Chorch is se dowly."—June 16, 1891.
Drawk. Soak. "A've gotten drawked throu'" (wet).
Duckstone. A boys' game, played by any number of boys. Each player chooses a nice round stone about the size of a cricket-ball, and calls it his 'duck.' A mark is made on the ground, and at a distance of about six feet from the line or 'bye' a large stone is placed, on which one of the players sets his duck. The game begins by choosing who has to set his duck on the stone. This is done by all the players pitching or rolling their ducks as near the stone as possible; the one farthest off 'lies on.' Then the rest of the players 'toe the bye,' and try to knock his duck off. If the 'man' can touch a player carrying his duck back, before he reaches the bye, this player then becomes the 'man.' The duck must always be on the stone when a player is touched,— ' else it is no go.'
Duds. Clothes. Various dialects.
Duff (doof). Fine coal, or coal dust (the only name in use). Hence, duffy, trashy, cheap and nasty (of sugar); small, like flour (of coal); ticklish, hard, awkward. The vowel in 'duff,' 'stuff,' etc., is longer than the ordinary vowel, being /oo/, a sound halfway between /uo/ and /ow/.
Dunch. To nudge or jog any one.
Dwarmy (dwaa:mi). Faint, languid.
Dyke. A hedge. This word is never used to mean a ditch. The word hedge is only used in fine talk. "Toss't owre the dyke."
Een (ae:n). Eyes. "Aa'll put thee eon oot!" Only used in this single expression, and that by old people. This is the sole relic of the old Saxon plural that I know of in the dialect.
Eh! aa din-aa ("dinna ken"—Bp. Auckland). "Indeed, I don't know." The commonest of expressions. 'Eh!' (ae) is a true North-country exclamation, capable of various meanings, according to intonation and context.
Eneugh (u:nyoo:f). Enough.
Enjoy. Bad health is 'enjoyed,' equally with good health. This is a common use of the word in Eng. dial.
Enter-common. A place open to everybody. For instance, Hetton Hall grounds, being presumably private, during the strike were 'enter-common,' roamed over at will, used by anybody.
Ettle. To intend, try. "A ettled to gan to Hetton."
Evenly or even-y. adv Even; probably, likely. (Probably a Tyneside word, as it is apparently unknown in or about Hetton. Frequently heard from a Tynesider.)
Eyesight. Never abbreviated into 'sight.' We always ken folk by 'eyesight.'
Face. The innermost part of the pit, where the hewers or stonemen are engaged at working into the solid coal or stone.
Fad (faad, faa:d). Farmyard, littered with straw, for keeping stock in.
Fair. vb. intr. To improve, become fair (of weather).
Fash (faash). To bother (vb. trans.). To be 'fashed' with anything, is to be troubled by it. "Lad, dinna fash yersel." "He disn't fash the hoose mooch" (said of one seldom in); or, as we should say, 'trouble the house.'
Fat. This word is used by boys playing marbles. If a player shoots his marble into the ring, he is said to have 'spun fat,' and ceases playing.
Feck. Portion. "He did the main feck of the work."
Feckless. helpless and feeble. The regular epithet of contempt for any one unable to shift for himself.
Femmer. Frail; of persons and things. (Always.)
Fend. To shift for oneself, to do well. (Hardly dialect.)
"A man may spend: He'll always fend,—
That is, if the wife be owt (anything)
But a man may care
He'll always be bare,—
That is, if the wife be nowt."
Fetch up. Bring up, rear (always). To 'bring' is generally to 'fetch.' So, my mother (Yorks.).
Fettle. vb. and noun. North-country catchword. To 'fettle' or 'fettle up' (fetl uop), the regular expression for to 'right up,' 'get in order,' 'repair.' 'In good fettle '(good condition). "When mountain sheep sniff the breeze, as you come upon them, it is a sign of their being in good fettlin'. "—Sep. 1 1890. A woman has enough work to do with her children, "makin', mendin', and fettlin' for their bellies." Also as a salutation: "Well, — what fettle?" "Oh, canny." "I'll fettle ye up" (=punish).
Fiddy faddy. Trivial, elaborate, e. g. of fancy work. Not common.
Fine tasted. Fine flavoured. Dialect?
Finger calves (fing:u kaafs). More commonly called 'sucking calves' (suok:n kaafs).
First (fau:st). Instead of 'next —day' we always say '— day first.' This phrase is always used in local advertisements of entertainments, sales, etc. "— will be glad to see him to tea Monday first at 5 p. m."—From letter, Aug. 27, 1892.
Fladges. Snowflakes. Often called 'flatches.'
Flat. Mm. technical. The station to which the 'putter' pushes the full 'tubs.' Here they are hitched together, and taken by the driver, —ten or twelve tubs at a time—to the 'landing,' which is a larger flat. From this flat they are drawn by the engine to the 'shaft.'
Fley. To scare. "Lad, dinna fley the galloway."
Flinches. A boys' game. This is played by a number of boys placing their caps in a row against the wall. Then the players in turn take a ball, and standing at a distance try to roll the ball into a cap. The owner of the cap which contains the ball picks it out and throws it at one of the players. If he fails to hit a boy, a small stone is put into his cap, and he is said to be 'one egg.' As soon as he is 'three eggs,' he takes up his cap, and this goes on until there is just one player left. The rest of the players must now place their hands against the wall in turn, and the winner is rewarded by having three shots with the ball at each player's hand. If a boy flinches
or takes his hand away, he suffers three shots more for each flinch. I ought to have said that when a player takes the ball out of his cap, to throw at a boy, he may call on him not to 'stir flesh;' but if the other boy is quicker, and calls out 'flinches,' he is allowed to dodge.
The game is sometimes played in another way, as follows: —The players take the names of the days of the week. 'Sunday ' will then throw the ball against the wall, and call out another name, e. g. 'Friday.' If 'Friday' succeeds in catching the ball or 'keeping' it before it touches the ground, he throws it against the wall and calls out (say) 'Wednesday!' If 'Wednesday' fails to 'kep'it, he picks up the ball and throws it at a player, shouting out 'nee (no) flinches,' whereupon the player stands fast. If 'Wednesday ' hits the player, the player tries to hit some one else, and so on until there is a miss. The one who misses throws the ball out and ceases playing, and thus the game goes on till only one player remains : then follow the rewards and punishments.
Fliterary T0 'shift' or remove from a llouse by night, unknown to anybody.
'A Friday's flit
Will never sit."
Foalfoot. Coltsfoot, tussilego
Folk. People, e. g. 'menfolk,' 'womenfolk.'
Folly tar. A game played with marbles, while walking along. One boy shoots his marble, and the other tries to hit it. If it comes within the span (hand's-breadth), it is called 'Spangy Oneses' (' wonnzes') ; but if it hits, it is called ' Knocky Twoses' ('towsers '). Formerly so, but now played differently. They just hit, and count that one, and so follow on.
Fon. prep. For. In certain cases and by certain people. We should always say, '' I'll work for thee" (aa:l wau:k fur dhu), and 'fur me,' 'fur ye ;' but some would say, ' fon it,' ' fon us.' ' fon 'im.' ' fon 'er,' ' fon 'em,' whereas most people would probably say ' fo' them ' (faudh:m).
Fond. Foolish ; hence 'fondie.' "Thou's a fondie."
Footing, first. Properly, the first person who enters one's doors on Nexv Year's Day. This refers to the custom of going round to various houses on the morning of the New Year, soon after the old year has passed, and being regaled by those who humour the custom by keeping open house (bread and cheese, meat and drink, especially the latter) for the first callers. Men go around in bands, it being held unlucky for a female to usher in the new year. The cat is generally locked up beforehand, as it is also considered unlucky for animals to appear on these occasions.
Forby. Besides (accent as in 'besides '). Prep. and adv. There was other six forby me."
Forebears (fau:bae:uz). Ancestors. Sometimes called 'fore-elders.' "Our fore-elders have all lived here."
Fore-head. Always pronounced as two distinct words. This pronunciation is by no means confined to dialect speakers.
Forenénst (fu:nenst) (accent on last syllable). Facing opposite (always). Of houses in a street: "He lives right f'nenst us." Also metaph. "They're not doing right forenenst me," "He gov us sixpence forenenst it" (i. e. towards it).
Forthless. Worthless, useless.
Fortnighth (fau:t-núth). Fortnight (always).
Fozy. Unsound, of vegetables. A 'fozy' turnip is a woolly one.
Fratchy. Cross tempered. I have also heard 'fratch,' but these words are imported from Tyneside.
Fray (frae). From. So, 'tee' /tae:/ = to, too (two = /tuw/) compare hae (have), hennot (have not). A 'finer' pronunciation from pitmen for 'hennot' is 'hev'n't.'
Fremd. Strange. "He was mair like a frem'd body na a friend." "A fremd body wad dae that" (reproof given to a churlish man who refused to confer a benefit even on a relation in distress).
Fresh. A thaw. "There's a heavy (or, thick) fresh on." Common word among countrymen.
Fret. A mist, or sea-fog. To /frae:t/ is also, to fret, whence adj. freetin' (fretful).
Gaffer. A 'masterman' or foreman. Various dialects.
Gait (gyet) (=way, road). A mining term signifying a short journey, e. g. from flat to shaft and back again; hence, last journey. A workman, removing a heap of soil or stones, if asked how much still remains, will sometimes answer, "Another gyet 'll takd up," meaning one more journey. "Aa just hey another gyet to gan." "He niver knew what gyet it went" (what became of it).
Galloway (gaal:u:wu). Pony. The only term in use. Pit-ponies are always spoken of as 'galloways.'
Gan. Go. A. S. gan. "Gan on!" — 'now then!' 'start!' to be heard from children in the street all day long. The vowel in this word is very short, and nearly approaches the literary short a: the same sound is heard in 'yam' (home). 'Going' (pres. part.) is 'gannin,' when used absolutely; but when used as an auxiliary verb, it becomes 'gan;' e. g. "Is thoo gannin'? " (Are you going ?), "A's gannin' doon to the /sae:/" (sea) ; but "A's gan to' /sae:/" (see), "A's gan to dae't" (I'm going to do it). This is sometimes heard:- "Ye're like the weel-off that hevn't a hoose to gan te" (You are like the well-off that haven't a house to go to), of those who have no need to trouble about finding a lodging for themselves, because they have a residence of their own.
Garth (gaath). A potato-ground, also called 'Taty-garth.' More generally, a small grass-field, enclosed, near a dwelling. A common element in place-names, as Hallgarth(Pittington), Briggarth in Easington Lane, etc.
Gather. v. i. Make a collection ('gathering') in money.
Gee. Pronounced Jee. A call to horses to go to the right, or off-side. Sometimes 'Gee-ba !' (jae:baa:) is heard. So Gee-back! Gee-up! (Forward).
Gee-y. Crooked, twisted. "It's all a-gee-y" (u:jae:waay).
Geordie (jau:di). A miner; compare Jack Tar, Tommy Atkins, or 'Johnny,' 'Tommy,' as generic names.
Get. One of the commonest uses in the dialect is that in which 'get' is used absolutely, for 'manage,' 'reach' (a place) ; hence, 'be present.' "I couldn't get" = I could not (manage to) get (there).
Get away. To die. Past part. getten, e. g. (get:n u:wee:u) i. e. dead. Also imperat., meaning, 'You don't say so!' Exclamation of surprise, doubt, or disbelief. An equally common expression is ' Gart ' (slang rather than dialect).
Got off. 'Get up,' learn by heart (always). "Get some songs off." — Several boys' essays.
Ghyll (gil). A bit of wild ground hollowed out by nature; a ravine. A common place-name in the Lake country.
Gill (jil). A halfpint. Used of liquids.
Gimmers (jim:&uacture;z). Rascal. "Ye gimmers, a'll smash tha!"
Gis gis (gis:gis). Call to a pig.
Give over (giv uw:u) = 'Don't!' 'Stop that!' (very common). Imperat. of vb. meaning 'to cease.'
Gliff. Startle. "She gliffed me there."
Glower (gluw:u). To stare with anger or amazement.
Gock, by (baa:y gauk). An everyday expression of surprise, etc. Quasi-oath. "By gock, thoo's a quare 'un."
Gome. To heed. "He niver gomed me there."
Gorecap (gau:u kaa:p). A quasi-oath. (Should be written Go-cap?)
Gowk (guuwk) or 'gowkie.' A soft person. An April fool is often called 'April gowk.' 'Gowk' is also the core of an apple.
Grand. Common epithet of weather. (Graan dee:u) is the usual salutation on a bright, sunny day.
Grape. To grope, search. Also, a kind of shovel (sometimes called 'gripe '), or huge fork-like implement used in filling coke, and by farmers for removing manure.
Greybird (gree:u bau:d). Commonest name for the song-thrush.
Greyhen (haen). A jar in basket-covering, containing spirit.
Ground. "He hadn't been to ground for—days."—Mar. 2~ 1892. To 'gan to groond,' a common expression for going to the closet.
Grozer (grau:zu). Gooseberry.
Grunge. To grunt. 'Grunt' unknown. "They will show their teeth at you and grunge at you. "—Boy's essay.
Guisen (gaa:yzn). To become dried and contracted, of rain-tubs or wooden cisterns, so that the water 'sipes' out. "Yen tub 'll guisen."
Guising (gaa:yzn). Play-acting by ' guisers,'—men and boys in disguise (with blackened faces and paper caps), who go about performing a rough Christmas play. "Have guisers," most of the boys guise near Christmas."—Boys' essays.
The play is much as follows
CHARACTERS :—The Leader, King George, Doctor Brown, Johnny Funny.
The moon 's gone down, and I've lost my way,
And in this house I mean to stay.
If you don't believe the word I say,
Step in, King George, and clear the way.
(Here comes in King George.)
King George is my name,
A sword and pistol by my side
I hope I win the game,
The game of the sword,
The game of the sword.
Let's know your power,
I'll slash you into mincemeat
In less than half-an-hour.
Yes, me, sir!
Take the sword, and try, sir
(They fight end Leader falls.)
Ho, ho! What have I done?
I've killed his father's only son.
Send for the ten-pound doctor.
There 's no ten-pound doctor.
Send for the twenty-pound doctor.
Here comes in old Doctor Brown,
The best old doctor in the town.
Who made you the best doctor?
By my travels.
Where did you travel?
Italy, France, and Spain;
Three times there, and back again.
What can you cure?
A dead man.
I've got a little bottle in my pocket, goes tick-tack. Rise up, Jack!
All sing :—
My brother 's come alive again,
We'll never fight no more,
We'll be as kind as ever,
As ever we were before,
A pocket full of money,
A cellar full of beer,
I wish you a merry Christmas
And a happy New Year!
The weather's very clarty,
My boots is very thin,
I've got a little money-box,
To put my money in.
(Each then sings a solo.)
Gulley. Carving-knife, bread-knife. Also, a crevice (gully).
Gusset. A tongue of stuff inserted as a patch; a gore.
Gyoose. Goose. "Like a gyoose cut i' the head," i. e. bewildered, 'all abroad' as we say.
Ha woy. A call to horses to come to the left or 'near' side.
Hack. Mining technical. A heavy pick, weighing about 7 lbs., with head about 18 in. in length. There are various kinds, e. g. Tommy hack (round head and chisel point), Jack hack (round head and sharp point), Pick hack (sharp head and chisel point). Also, filth, dirt. "Aa canna get the hack off tha."
Hain. To shield, exculpate.
Halleluias. Salvation Army folk. The usual term.
Ham (haam). Repeat. "He ham'd it o'er and o'er."
Handball (haand-baa:l). The game of Rounders. More commonly called 'roondies.' Played by girls with shells ('williks') and a ball, whilst these words are recited
"Set a cup upon a rock,
Chalk me one a pot.
One, two, three, four,
One at a time," etc.
"One up," etc.
Handhollow (haan:daul:u). Used by girls when playing the game of 'hitchy-dabber' (hopscotch). Often the 'dabber' gets so near the line that a girl cannot insert the breadth of her hand between, in which case she must give up the 'dabber' to her opponent to play.
Hand's-turn. A stroke of work (common) ; often, of a 'good turn.'
Hant. Habit. "He has a nasty hant of doing that."
Happen. This verb is used transitively, e. g. "he happened it" (i. e. it happened to him), "she happened a bad accident."
Har away (haa:wee:u, haa:ru:wae:u, haru ('harra') wee:u). The shibboleth of this county, heard every day and almost every five minutes. Be off! Come along! Here!
Heck. Call to a horse to come to the left or 'near' side.
Hemmels. Originally, a thatched shed, stable, or byre; now the same, though seldom thatched. The word, although still understood, is going out of use. A field opposite Hetton Rectory, which once contained stables, is always called 'the hemmels field.'
Hempy. Up to tricks and pranks, mischievous. Very common. Also, 'hemp,' a scamp. (The word has nothing to do with 'impudent'.)
Hench or 'hinch.' Haunch.
Hew (hyóo:, hyóa) (vowel strongly emphasized). vb. t. & i. To hack away at the coal down a mine. Hence, 'hewer,' one who hews coal, a miner. (The vowel is peculiar, and should be heard to be appreciated.)
Hey (hae). A common exclamation of surprise or indifference; "hey! aa din-aa" (really, I don't know).
Hilly howley (hil:u huwl:(u)). Hill and hole. In tossing the bat for innings, 'hill' is the oval side uppermost, 'howl' the flat side. "Hill or howl for innings, lad." Also used in Quoits.
Him. "Him wi' the" 'hat!' 'cap!' 'stick!' as the case may be. Children's salutation of chaff to a stranger in any way attired out of the common.
Hind (the 'i' long). A farm-labourer. (The only term in use.)
Hipsy dixy (of evidence). Trumped up. (Is this ipse dixit?) A rare word about Hetton, heard from a Tynesider. - Oct. 31, 1891.
Hitchy-bay. The game of Hopscotch. Properly speaking, 'hitchy-bays' are the courts marked out. The square bit of wood is called 'hitchy-dabber.'
Hogger. Hose-pipe. Also, the following stocking-arrangement. The coal-hewer formerly wore his stockings with the 'feet' cut off, so that when small coals got into the stocking-foot, he had only to pull off this, and not the whole stocking; consequently his ankles were bare, while the stocking-leg covered his calf. He still swears by his 'hoggers,' as, "Dash mi hoggers!"
Hoit. Slut. "Ye mucky hoit!"
Hold. "Hold thy hand" (haa:d dhi haand, emphat. haa:nd) means 'Hold hard!' 'Stop!' 'Don't!' An expression to be heard every day in playing games.
Honey (hin:i), or (huon:i) (fine talk). The standing epithet of endearment to children, and used in the N. in much the same unrestrained way that 'my dear' is used in the S. W. 'Hooney hinney' is sometimes heard. "Behave, hinny," the stock admonition to a child at table.
Horney tram. See under Bogey.
Horntop. Only heard in the simile, "as slaa (slow) as a horntop."
Hotes. "Hoats, lad!" 'Hush!' or, as a North-countryman would say,' Whisht!'
Howdie (haaw:di). Midwife. "Thoo's niver been weshed since the howdie weshed th',"—sometimes said to a very dirty person.
Howk. To dig or hew out, as, for instance, with a 'hack.' "He's howked all the flowers up."
Hoy. To throw. "Let's see wee'll (who will) hey the far-est."
Hunkers. Haunches. 'Sitting on the hunkers' means squatting, as miners do in the streets (sitting on the toes, with the thighs resting on the calves).
Hup (huop). Whip (always).
Hupstitch = Every now and again, only in the phrase 'every hupstitch,' e. g. "she bakes every hupstitch." "He does it every hupstitch," or, "he does it with the good constant," i. e. constantly, or oftener than seems to be required.
Insense. Make to understand, 'render sensible,' inform. "You didn't insense me what your name is, did you?" "We insensed him intid" (into it).
Italian iron. A 'tallion iron' is an iron tube about 6 in. long and pointed at one end. Into the tube is inserted a heater. It is used to make the waves in the frills of old women's caps. The word is not dialectal, but probably few ordinary readers would be able to name the article, which is still to be seen in many cottages.
Jackjaw. The common mispron. of jackdaw.
Jolly Miller. A round game.
"There was a jolly miller, and he lived hy himself,
As the mill went round he made his wealth;
One hand in the hopper (also, 'copper'), and the other in the bag,
As the mill went round he made his grab (or, 'brag')."
These are the words they sing when playing. They go, two and two together, round and round, and there is always an odd one in the middle. When they come to the last word 'grab,' he makes a grab, forces another to come out, and takes his place; they then start again, singing as before.
Jowl (juuwl). The flesh on a pig's jaws. Also (vb.), to knock on the coal, while working down the mine, so that workmen on the other side may know by the sound how near they are to one another.
Jumly. Muddy. 'Jumly water.'
Kail-pot. A crock to boil cabbage (kail), etc., in. "The kail-pot's callin' the yetlin' smutty" (common proverb).
Keeker. The overlooker on a pit-heap.
Keep. "How are you keeping?" i. e. How are you (in health)? Very common, and—I fancy—more or less characteristic of Northern speech.
Kellick. Unfledged bird.
Ken. 'Kend,' 'kent' = know, knew, known. Of recognizing, or being acquainted with, people: "aa kenned 'im"(universal). /Aa: din:u ken/, common about Auckland, is not so common around Hetton as /aa:din:aa/ or more strictly /aad:i:naa/ ('I don't know '). Yet I have heard the former pretty frequently from children and pure speakers. The form 'kenna' is also found, e. g. 'Diz thoo kenna?' (dost thou know ?).
Kenner. Time to cease work. The common expression is 'lowse' (vb.).
Kenspreckled. Well known, marked.
Ket. Not good for food. (Often applied to sweatmneats.)
Kibble. Min. technical. A big iron tub, for filling with rubbish, in sinking a shaft.
King's evil. Erysipelas, a gathering in the face.
Kist. Chest. A chest of drawers is a 'kist.'
Kit. A small tub for washing in, used by pitmen.
Kite. Belly. "Deil be the kite!" (often said of a greedy child).
Kittle. Ticklish, awkward to manage. A 'kittle' cough is one that tickles. Boys try to set a trap 'kittly.'
Kitty. Policeman's lock-up. (General.) Also, a short straw, about 6 in. long, filled with powder, and used by miners in firing.
Kitty cat. Game of Tipcat.
Knees, 'sitting on the,' the regular expression for kneeling. "He canna sit on's knees noo" (of an invalid). "He tell'd her to sit upon her knees, so down they sat."
Lad (laad). Boy, youth. 'Boy' is never used. Also, a common way of addressing horses.
Laggans. The pieces of wood which go to form a 'tub.'
Laid off. Discontinued. The invariable description of a pit which is not working is 'laid off' or 'laid in.'
Lang. Long. 'Lang-settle,' 'Lang-legs' (nickname). "Short reckonings make lang friends." 'Nice and lang' (sarcastic expression of length).
Lap. To wrap. "has thou lapped it up?"
Lass (laas). 'Girl,' in the most comprehensive meaning of the word. (Universal.) "Mr. Shaw is keeping well, and me and my little lass are both well."— From letter, Oct. 28, 1890.
Lat. A lath.
Lay in. To 'lay in' a pit, or lay it idle; to leave off working it, as when it becomes exhausted of coals. See Laid off.
Lead (lae:d). To lead a horse and cart; practically 'leading' is equivalent to 'hauling.'
Learn. Teach (as in other dialects).
Liberty. Leave, permission. Various dialects.
Library (laay:bu:ri). A book got from a library (always). "Hes thoo getten a lib'ry?" The word is also used as in polite English.
Lignies. Quoits made of lignum vitae wood, used in the game 'Spell and Nur.' Also, a word used by boys when playing out their last marbles. "Them's mi ligganies" means his last, all he has.
Like. Likely. 'Like to fall '—nearly falling.
Limbers (lim:uz). Shafts of a carriage. The only name for shafts of a 'tub' down the mine, which are made in one piece and detachable.
Linings. Pitmen's drawers, fastened at the knee by strings.
Lippen. To depend on, or trust to a person to perform a certain work. "I lippen on him doing it."
List. Desire, energy. "I haven't list to gan across." "He hesn't list to did" (do it). Preserved in the lit, listless.
Loggerhead. A coloured butterfly. Large moths are also sometimes called 'loggerheads.'
Longcart (lang:kaat). A two-wheeled hay-cart, somewhat between an ordinary cart and a rolley.
Longsettle (lang:set:l). A long seat like a form, with back and arms.
Lonning. 'Laning,' i. e. lane. The only form known. (lon:ún.) "Gan oop the bâck-lon'." "We find swiney up Mousely (Moorsley) lonen. "—Extract from boy's essay on Wild Flowers.
Looks-tha = look'st thou? (looks dhu). An expression to gain attention, or mere pleonasm, used by boys to one another, the familiar form of 'Look you!' which latter is addressed to strangers or superiors.
Loop (luwp). To leap, jump. "See we can lowp the far'est." "When I was young and lusty, I could lowp a dyke."
Loose (laawz). To finish work. "What time diz thoo louz?" or, to a stranger, "What time do ye (yae) louz?" (When do you leave off working?)
Loppit. Sour milk, curd milk.
Lops and lice. hips and haws. So called by children.
Love-begot. Born out of wedlock. (An unjustifiable euphemism.)
Low (luw). A flame. hence 'low-rope,' hempen rope steeped in tar, to burn as a torch.
Lowpy-lang-lonnen (= leapy long lane ?). Leap-frog.
Lug. Ear (always). "I'll skelp thy lug." The 'u' is generally long, (loog) ratller than (luog).
Lum. Chimney. "Thou's as black as the lum."
Ma. See under Da.
Make. To 'mak' gam'' (make game) of anybody, to make fun of, ridicule. Generally, in the form makkin' gam'. To 'mak' sha'p,' or 'be sharp;' equivalent to the common 'look sharp.' I have heard 'sharp' used adverbially, meaning quickly. /Aa:l shaap dae:d) (I'll do it quickly).
Man. As throughout North, used in exclamations. 'Noo, mon! '= Now, sir. "Eh, mon, aa din-aa "= Indeed, sir (or, mate), I don't know. Also used irrespective of sex, e. g. I overheard a big girl say to a little one, "Look oop that rˆa, mon" (look up that row, child). In other uses man is always long /maa:n/.
Manishment. Mispron. of 'management.'
Mark. 'Dressed up to the mark,' i. e. in the extreme fashion. So, 'up to the nines,' 'up to the knocker,' 'up to Dick and down to Richard.' All more properly slang than dialect.
Marra (marrow). Mate. So, of things, the 'fellow.'
Matterless (maat:u:l&uactue;s). "It's matterless," our everyday expression for 'No matter,' 'It's immaterial.'
Maybe (meb:i). Perhaps.
May-cat. Tlle superstition is, tllat a cat littered in May will suck infants' breaths, if allowed to climb up into the 'creddle.' Nobody will keep a May-cat.
Meat. Food. Various dialects. Bib. Only used in this wide sense, when speaking of animals' food, e. g. "Give the hens their meat." "Give them good meat."—(From a boy's essay on Kindness to Animals.)
Mense. Politeness, kindness. When you invite your friends to dinner as a duty, and they cannot come, you are said to 'save your meat and your mense.' "It'll be more menseful" (courteous, hospitable-booking)—said of serving up a joint entire, to some guests, rather than the same joint cut up into chops. "Mense is a great thing in this country" (re funeral extravagance as a token of respect').A. R., July 4, 1892. Decency. "I did it for mense's sake." Vb., to decorate, e. g. 'mense the window.'
Mettle. "He's ower sharp mettle" (too hasty tempered).— Mr. B., of his brother, July 21, 1892.
Mickle. 'Little or mickle' (much). Not common. "I'd rather have the scrapin's o' the muckle (or 'mickle') pot
than the wee pot full."
Midgy. Also called a 'Mistress.' These names were given to a kind of lamp used by putter lads. The height of the lamp was about 8 in., width 3 in., with open front. When first invented, they were simply little wooden boxes, with a hole at the bottom, through which the candle was thrust, and another hole at the top to let out the heat. Afterwards tin took the place of wood. The flame was sheltered by a piece of wood or tin about 2 in. high from the bottom of the lamp, and a similar piece from the top. The 'midgy' has now gone out of use.
Mind. Remember. Various dialects.
Mistress. Used interchangeably with 'Missus,' the former being used rather of strangers.
Moley rat. The only name known for the common mole.
Muffler (muof:lu). A neekerchief or 'comforter' (always).
Must. Often used where we should say 'shall' in literary Eng. "Would you like your milk to drink, Mr. P. ?" "Yes, please." "Must I bring you''t, then?"
My word (maa:wau:d). Our commonest exclamation of surprise. Answers to 'indeed,' 'well, I'm sure,' of other parts. "My ward, thoo'll get wrang."
Native. Native place (always so).
Nay (nae:). No. The adjective is pronounced with more leaning towards /ee:/ sound, else the two are identical in the following: /nae:, aa:zh shuw:u dhaz nae: paath hae:u) (no, I'm sure there's no path here).
Neif (nae:f). hand. "Dooble yer naif (or, 'naiv') lad." "A'll gi' tha my neif directly!" 'Double-neif,' the clenched fist.
Nevvy. Nephew (always). Various dialects.
Nicely. "How are you?" "Nicely," a 'polite' expression for 'varry canny,' or, 'aa canna com-plee-an' (complain).
Night. Used, as in country parts in S., of any time after noon. I heard a woman parting from another at 3.30 p. m., say, "Good night."—-July 7, 1890.
"Nimmy, nimmy, ask,
Which hand will tha tak'?
The reet or the left,
Or the bonny bord's (bird's) heft?"
Counting-in rhymes recited in starting a round game.
Nine. "He's like a 9 with the tail cut off" (of a man good for nothing).—April 27, 1892. Favourite simile.
Noll. To strike (naul).
Nor. Than (always). Compare the Welsh na; or is it only a transposition of than; or can it be really nor (= and not, instead of than (= then, next in merit)? For transposition, compare 'int I' for 'nit I,' in S.-W. Eng.
Noration. A confused crowd. A noise.
North-countryman. One from Northumberland or over the Border. "He cooms fro' the West," would mean Weardale, Teesdale, or Cumberland. 'Sooth' (south) means anywhere south of the speaker; 'West-countryman' would be unintelligible, of a Cornishman,—he would be a Southern (sooth:rún). 'Countryman ' means an agricultural labourer.
Nought (nuwt). Nothing. So, 'thowt '= thought. "What's thoo daein'?" "Nowt." "Aa thowt sae" (always).
Now (noo:). Often used for emphasis, a mere pleonasm. "He's a nice man, he is, noo." "He came here, he did, now," etc. Used for 'well' in other parts; e. g. 'noo then' (emphasis on word 'noo') /noo:dhn/ 'well, then' (in
Nows and thens. Common for 'now and then.'
Null (nuol). Annul. Mr. R., an invalid, rubs his legs to 'null the pain' (nuol dhu pee-un).
Of. (1) /u/= 'Like,' in the phrase, "or onything o' that."
(2) /iv/ ='in,' in the phrase, "He's getten such a pain iv his legs." "He canna lie iv it" (i.e. in the bed). This may not be a form of 'of,' but a transposition of 'in.'
(3) /of/ ='for.' To 'wait of' any one is to wait for him. (Invariable.) So, "he's shootin' of us" (he's shouting for us).
Oftens (of:ns). Often.
On. Of. E. g. "a bit on't," "tak' hard (hold) on't." But we say 'a cup o'tea.' When 'of' is used, it is never pronounced /ov/, any more than 'is' becomes /iz/.
One (won). Used witll indef. art. "I saw a one yesterday" (ep. the phrase, 'a dozen,' etc.). This would only be used, but always, where 'one' was not used numerically, as opposed to any other number, but merely as a unit.
Open out. To open, the 'out' being superfluous. Of parcels, new buildings, etc. Not by any means confined to dialect speakers.
Other. Used as in St. Matt. xxv. i6, 17, 20. "We had a sale of work and made £20, also a social and dance, and
made other twenty."—From a letter, Feb. 13, 1894. (In literary Eng. we prefix an before other, whereas in the dialect a is prefixed to one.)
Our. Used in calling members of a family. Mothers may be heard shouting at the top of their voice, "Har away, oor Jeane Marry Lizzie" (all Christian names are generally given, as here, referring to one child). "Coom hayer, oor .Jumzie!" (Come here, our James). Used indiscriminately by boys to one another; "dinna do that, our Fred."
Out of the way (oot dhu wee:u). Of people, ungodly, attending no place of worship, disrespectable, or vicious (varied according to context). "He's been an out of the way man iv his time."
Outbye. Out of the way, remote. Also, technical, of a miner coming towards the 'shaft' in order to get 'to bank.' The corresponding term is 'inbye,' i. e. further along underground, towards one's 'cavil.'
Over (uw:u). Too; 'owre big,' 'owre smarl' (small). (Always.)
Oxter. Armpit. 'Oxter-bound,' stiff in arm and shoulder.
Panker-bowdie (paeng:ku buw:di). A game played with marbles. The 'panker' or 'penker' is a large marble, made of stone or iron. Each boy puts four marbles in a ring, and proceeds to knock them out of the ring with a panker. What he knocks out he gets; but if he fails to knock one out, the next boy aims at his panker, and so puts him out. The line from which they start, five yards from the ring, is called the 'bye.'
Past. "He's gone past hissel," i. e. lunatic. "A's sixteen past," i. e. sixteen, past my sixteenth birthday. Contrast S.-W. equivalent, "I be into my seventeen."
Paste-eggs (i. e. Pasch-eggs). Eggs, dyed in a decoction of logwood chips and onion peel, and sold in shops or prepared at home during Easter, are so called (always).
Pawky (paa:ki). Dainty.
Pay (pee:u). "I'll pay your bottom," a common threat to children.
Peedee. Something small, as a tiny marble.
Peesweep (paez:waep). Lapwing, or peewit.
Peggin'-top. A peg-top.
Pen-point. Nib of a pen.
Perishment. A violent chill is always described as a 'perishment of cold' (pa:rish:ment u kaa:d).
Pick at. Find fault with, abuse (very common).
Piffolo. Piccolo (always).
Pike. A large haycock, often six feet high. The small haycocks only are called 'cocks.'
Pipe-stopple. Stem of tobacco-pipe. Sometimes called 'pipe-shank.
Pit. The only word in common talk for a mine. So, a miner is always 'pitman' or 'pittie,' and pit dress is 'pit-claes.'
Pittoring (pit:rún). Low-spirited, complaining. "Ay, he's pitterin' on" (said of one who was continually fancying he was just about to die).
Planting. Plantation. "Gan up past yon plantin" (plaan'tn).
Playlaking. A simpleton. To 'mak' a playlakin' of' any one, to make a fool of him.
Please. 'Please yes,' 'please no,' a schoolchild's answer to his teacher. "Tommy, do you know your lesson?" "Please yes."
Plodge. To wade through any liquid substance. What is called 'paddling' in polite English, we always call 'plodging.'
Pluff. Plough (very seldom). 'Plough Inn' is called 'Pluff Inn.'
Poke. A sack, or bag (common). 'Flour-poke.'
Poked. Offended. "He's getten hissel' poked."
Pollis. Police. 'The pollis '= the policeman. "I'll fetch the pollis,"—frequent threat to a naughty child.
Pompey. A small boy; a dwarf.
Poss. To wash clothes by putting them in a 'poss-tub' of soap and water, and thumping them with a 'poss-stick,' or short-legged staff,— in some places called 'dolly.'
Pot-pie. A boys' game. All caps being placed on a lad's back, the rest vault over him, 'leap-frog' fashion, and the one who displaces a cap becomes vaulting-horse in his turn.
Potted head. Stewed meat, as sold in butchers' shops.
Priest (praest). A clergyman is always so called. "I have being to church and heard the priest."—Boy's essay.
Proggle. A thorn.
Puddings. Intestines. "A'll pull thy puddin's oot!" (Hence, Pigs'-puddings, Black-pudding.)
Put. Min. technical term. The 'putter' is a lad who 'puts,' or shoves the full tubs from the hewer's 'cavil' to the 'flat' (q. v.), and takes the empty ones in to him. The empty or 'tume' tub is often called the 'led 'un' (= led one, i. e. the tub led in).
Putting through. A scolding.
Quey stirk (waay stau:k). Two-year-old heifer.
Quoit. Besides the usual meaning (a common game amongst miners), this word also means a large white marble made of earthenware, and called a 'pot quoit.'
Rageous. Outrageous (violent and delirious).
Raise. To 'raise the place' (ree:uz dhu plyes), to make an uproar. "He's raised the place to gan there " (of a boy who had pestered his parents to send him to school, and gone wild over it with excitement).
Rame. To ply one with questions, as children love to do. Mrs. R.—April 1, 1892. "What's tha ramin' o' me for?" "He just raimed my life out for sixpence." Here it means to 'bother.'
Range (rae:unj). To rinse. "Range the pot out."
Rank. The distance a 'putter' puts the coal from face to flat. The first 'renk' might be 8o yards from the hewer, and as the distance increased, the putter received an additional penny for every 20 yards. This was the case formerly, but putters are paid differently now.
Ranters. Primitive Methodists.
Rasp. Raspberry. Strawberry is pronounced straa-bérry (not 'straubry '). See Bleeberry.
Rattle-scawp. A frolicsome, mischievous fellow.
Rax. Stretch. Dry flesh, stretched tight, would be 'rax'd.' Hence 'raxy,' stiff. "He raxed his-sel' oot" (stretched
Readimadeasy. Reading made easy (raed:umúd:ae:zi). The term is only used by old people, and refers, I imagine, to a once popular spelling-book of that name. "How far did ye get through the readimadeasy?" "Oh, I got as far as the 'Cra and the Jug,' and the 'Man with the Scythe in his Hand.'"
Rear. Underdone (of meat).
Recking-crook (krook) not (kruok). A crook hanging over the fire for pans to hang from.
Reckling. The weak pig in a litter.
Reek (rae:k). Smoke. 'Baccy-reek,' 'Powder-reek.'
Reest. To be lazy. When a horse refuses to draw a load, we say it has 'tune (taken) the reest.'
Reesty. Rusty (of bacon).
Rend. Tear. "I rended the lard out of a pig," i. e. took the fat to boil down. [?]
Ribbing-plough. A plough without wheels.
Ricket. A badly-castrated animal.
Riddle. A sieve. Various dialects.
Ride. To 'ride the water with' anybody is, to trust him. "He's not safe to ride the water with."
Riggy. Ridgy, as of a grass-field in furrows. Furrows are called 'rigs.'
Rind. Rime, hoar-frost. "There's a heavy (or, thick) rind on."
Rip. Rascal. Often said of children.
Rive. To tear. "Rive that handkerchief in two." "Please sir, he's ruvven a leaf out." "He's ruvven his breeches." (raayv, ruov, ruovn.)
Road. Way (metaph.); as, 'out of the road' ('out of the way' means something quite different), 'in the road,' 'no road' (by no means), 'any road' (anyhow). This use of road is found in the Midlands, and extends a considerable way South.
Rolley. What is called a 'trolly' in some parts, i. e. an open waggon for carrying heavy goods, such as beer-barrels or packing-cases.
Rolypoly (raaw:li paaw:li). Rolling over and over, as children do on a slope.
Rook (roo:k). Thick fog, damp. "It's a thick rook the neet (to-night)." Adj. 'rooky.' Compare 'reek.'
Roopy. Husky (of the voice). (Always.)
Rown (ruuwn). Roe of a fish. The milt is called 'melt.'
Rozzle. Resin. Also, to warm oneself. "He rozzled his hide."
Rummle cundy. A ditch filled up with loose stones, for water to drain through.
Sackless. Foolish, ,senseless.
Safety. Pronounced as a trisyllable, 'safe-ity.'
Sag. To bend down in the middle, yield (as a plank does by its superabundant weight). Shakespeare.
Salamander. A poker with a flat, thickened end, heated red-hot in the fire, for thrusting into an unlighted fire. (Mentioned in David Elginbrod.)
Sally Walker. A round game. The players form a ring, joining hands, and go round a girl in the middle of the ring, singing—
"Rise, Sally Walker, rise if you can,
Rise, Sally Walker, to fellow your good man.
Choose to the east, choose to the west,
Choose to the bonny lad that you like best."
The girl in the middle then takes the young man of her choice, and the rest- sing—
"Now ye're married I wish you joy,
First a girl and then a boy.
Seven years over, seven years to come,
Now is your time to kiss and be done."
They then kiss and go out, to give place to another couple, the game going on as before.
Sark (saa:k). Shirt.
Satisfised. The invariable mispronunciation of 'satisfied.' (saat:is:faa:yzd.)
Scallion. A young onion, before the bulb has formed. A favourite dish is scallion and lettuce.
Scobbie. Chaflinch. Not so common as 'sheelie.'
Score. Line. 'On the scores, out!' This word is used by boys in their game of marbles, when the marble is not knocked clean out of the ring, but lies just on the line: then the cry is raised, 'It's on the score.'
Scoreprice. Pitmen's wages, the price current for filling a 'score,' i. e. 21 (or, in some places, 25) 'tubs.'
Screed. A man, speaking of various-sized scraps of glass, cut into squares and long strips, called it "only screed-glass." (Only heard once.) Same as shred?
Scribe. A scribble or scratch, in the phrase, "He hadn't the scribe of a pen for it," meaning he had not even a receipt or written guarantee.
Scrike. vb. and subst. Shriek.
Scringe. When a boy sharpens his slate-pencil with a knife, he says it makes his teeth 'scringe.'
Scrubber (skruob:u). A wooden barrow, made of boards fixed on a frame Venetian blindwise, for breaking 'clots' (clods).
Scuffler (skuof:lu). The same as a 'scrubber.' Also, a turnip-plough.
Scunner. To flinch, or give signs of pain. "He never scunnered that blow on the heed (head)."
Second-handed (always thus). (At) second-hand.
Seek, Look for. (Invariably.) (saek.)
Seggar (seg:u). Soft stone lying on coal-seams, used for making into bricks and coping-stones.
Set. subst. Work, to-do. "A've had-en a bonny set win 'm."Also, a train of coal-waggons or tubs. To 'set' means, to escort, convoy.
Set on. Sew on, of buttons, etc. Also, to put 'tubs' into the 'cage' down a coal-mine, the man, whose business this is, being called 'set-on,' or ' on-setter.' ' Set'' is the ordinary expression for 'put;' e. g. "set on the dishes," "set out the fowls" (drive them out of doors), etc. —see Put.
Shades (shae:udz). Window-curtains (always). "Shades cleaned at 1s. 9d. the pair," painted on a laundry-cart in Sunderland. 'Window-curtain,' when used, only refers to that kind which is strung across the lower half of a window.
Shaft. Min. The perpendicular entrance to a mine, in which the 'cage' works. There is a double shaft to every mine. /shaaft/
Sheelie (shae:li). Chaffinch.
Shift. To remove, change one's residence. To move, e. g. " Shift them gates" (of opening or shutting railway-crossing gates). A 'shift,' technical., is a turn at work, mining work being divided into 'day-shifts' and 'night-shifts,' each of eight hours' duration.
Shinny. The game of hockey. 'Hockey' is unknown.
Shire. To pour off water or any liquid in such a way as to leave the sediment.
Shithering bout (shith:rún boot). Shivering fit, feeling of cold all over the body.
Shive. Slice. "It is easy from a cut loaf to steal a shive." See West Somerset Word
book. This proverb may be found in Shakespeare (Tit. Andron. Act ii. Scene i).
Short-tongued. A person who cuts his words short, slurring them over, is sometimes said to be 'short-tongued.'
Shot. Rid, as to be 'shot' of any person or thing (always so). "A's well shot on't" (I'm well rid of it).
Shotstick. A round stick on which a paper cartridge is rolled (mining term).
Shuggy. subst. and vb. int. Swing. "Give me a shuggy; he's shuggied all the afternoon (aaf:tu:nyoon)." (Sunday School Treat, Aug. 13, 1891.) The word 'swing' seems to be quite unknown in this connexion. 'Swings' are swing-boats, to be seen at every fair. A 'shuggy'is also a see-saw.
Siddle. To pick out or choose the best of anything.
Sin. Since, ago. 'Zyne' is sometimes heard among the old, and 'langzyne' (accent on the penult.).
Singing hinny. A kind of girdle-cake, common among old folk. (Name imported from the North.) Now generally called Spice Cake. (Not to be confused with Spice, q- v.)
Sipe. Leak. "The watter's si
Skeel. A peculiarly-shaped bucket (broader at bottom than top, with upright stave projecting from rim, to serve as a handle), formerly used in colliery villages to carry water for household use. They were carried on women's heads on a 'wase' (q. v.), and a piece of wood was made to float on the top, to prevent the water from splashing over.
Skelp. Smacking blow. "A got a good skeip at him." Infants are threatened with having their 'botts (or 'bottomies') skelped.'
Skelper. Anything very large, —a 'whacker.' Compare 'banging,' 'slapping,' as epithets of size.
Skemmy. The common blue or farmer's pigeon, often kept by boys as a pet.
Skimmering. 'Skimmerin' clean,' the acme of cleanness. Of a doorstep, linen, etc. (Communicated by A. T. D.)
Skinch. "Let be! I'm not playing." When a boy wishes to stop playing at any running game, he shouts "Skinch!" meaning he is not liable to be caught and made prisoner.
Skitling. Same as 'hempy.' " The skitlin' rascal !"
Slack. A hollow or dip in the land.
Slip. Child's pinafore.
Slippy. Slippery (always).
Slogger. To walk with the stockings hanging loosely.
Sloken (slauk-n). Slake, quench.
Slowed (sluwd). Drunk.
Slum. Slumber. "He's slumming" (sluom-un).
Small, in the phrase, 'Small family,' means a family of small children.
Smally (smaa:li). Small. "That's a smally bit bairn."
Smit (= 'smite'?). An infectious disease is said to 'smit,' or to 'be smittle' (always). "He'll get the smit" (i. e. catch the disease). "Is't smittle?" (Is it 'catching'?)
Smout (smoot). A hare's 'run' through a hedge.
Smush. To smoulder away, as touch-paper used by miners. The 'touch' is made by soaking in saltpetre.
Snap-apple. The game of Bob-apple.
Sneakly. Quietly (generally with a notion of slyness).
Sneck. A door-latch (always). Also, vb., to latch.
Soft. Wet (of the weather). The common salutation on a rainy day is, "Soft!"
Sonsy. Nice, jolly-looking, stout (of persons). Imported from the North, and not commonly heard.
Soss. A heavy fall. "He went down with such a soss."
Sour dockon. A small plant children pull and chew, —the Common Sorrel.
Spang. Span, i. e. the distance stretched between thumb and little finger.
Spanish. Licorice, or Spanish juice. (Pron. 'Spennish.')
Speer. Inquire. This word is rare, being an importation from the North.
Spelk. A thorn or splinter in the flesh. The usual term. Also of anything insignificant. "A spelk of a thing." "He's just a spelk of a lad."
Spell and Nurr. See Buck-stick.
Spew. To vomit.
Spice. The only name known for currant-cake. 'Cake' always means tea-cake.
Sprag. Min. A bar of wood inserted between the spokes of a coal-waggon, to act as a drag.
Spuggy. Sparrow. Boys' nickname for the house-sparrow. "Looks tha, thar's a spuggy, man!"
Squander (skwaa:ndu). Scatter (always).
Staithes (stae:uths). Technical. The shipping stage belonging to a colliery.
Standard. A stager, well-known inhabitant of any place. "Another old standard.., passed to his rest the week before."—From a letter, Aug. 29, 1895. (Very common.)
Steer. Strong (of the voice).
Stent. One's fill. "lie's had his stent" (i. e. satisfied).
Stick and Clout. Cant name for an umbrella.
Stime. "A canno' see a stime," often said by one whose eye-sight is bad.
Stirk (stau:k). Yearling calf.
Stirken. To cool and stiffen, as gravy does. /stau:kn/
Stite. Equally, as soon- "Stite him as me" (the sense is often 'much rather').
Stithe. pron. 'Steith', /staayth/, not /-dh/, compare Staithes. Stench, or a very close atmosphere.
Stobbie. Unfledged bird.
Stonie. Stallion. (styan:i.) A stone is always a 'styan.'
Stook (stoo:k). Bundle of sheaves set up in the corn-field.
Stour (stuuw:u). Dust in motion.
Strait. Narrow. (Common.) "Yon's a strait place." Compare St. Matt. vii. 13, 14.
Striddly-pigeon. A boys' game. A boy is blindfolded, generally by pulling his cap over his eyes, and stands with his legs stretched out. The other boys shy their caps between his legs. When all the caps have been thrown, the boys shout, "Strite (straight) on, striddly-pigeon !" The boy then walks straight on, until he touches a cap with his foot. The owner of the cap snatches it up and runs to a certain place and back again, the rest of the boys 'bleach'ing' him, that is, thrashing him about the head with their caps. As soon as the boy returns to the starting-place, he becomes 'pigeon.'
Stubbie. Same as 'stobbie.'
Sump. 'Sump wet,' wet to the skin.
Sup (suop). Drop. 'A sup rain' (a drop of rain); "he likes a sup" (fond of a drop too much); "ha'e a sup milk, will tha?" vb., to sip or drink. "Give them (cats) clean milk to sup."—Boy's essay.
Swalley (swaul:i). A hollow place. "The village lies right in a swalley." Said also of the throat, e. g. "My throat is sore just in the swalley."
Sweel. To gutter, flare, of a candle.
Swiney. Common Sow-thistle or Milk-thistle. See under Lonning.
Taistrel. An ill-mannered boy; one given to playing pranks.
Take with. Take to, appreciate. "—'s well tune with," i. e. is very popular. /tycon/ is p. p. of /tak/.
Tanner. Root of a boil, corn, or tooth.
Tappy-lappy. Pell-mell, helter-skelter. Halliwell has, "In haste with the coat-laps flying behind through speed," with the following example :—" Nanny Bell's crying out: I just gat a gliff o' Gweorge runnin', tappy-lappy, for the howdey."
Tarry towt. A single strand of rope steeped in tar.
Tarsy (taa:zi). A round game. The players form a double ring by standing in a circle with a space between each, while each player has anothes' standing immediately behind him. There is one odd player who stands, as third, behind any of the other two. A player standing in the centre then tries to 'tig' or touch tlse inside player who has two behind him, while the latter, to avoid being caught, must either runs behind the two standing behind him, or behind any other two in the ring. Thus another is brought to the front rank, and if caught before he can place himself behind another couple, becomes in his turn the pursuer, while the late pursuer takes his place in the ring.
Taw (taa:). A boy in playing marbles always has his fancy marble to shoot with : this he calls his ' taw.' Various dialects.
Taws (taa:z, taaz). A leathern strap for punishing naughty children, to be seen hanging up in many cottages. It is like a carriage-window strap, cut into a fringe at one end.
Teas. Used in the plulal thus:—" She haves her teas (=frequent teas) sometimes at the Sewing Meeting" (A. R.). "No, thamik you, we've hadden our teas" (but, 'my tea').
Teejy. Tedious, peevish.
Teem. vb. i. and tr. Pour. The only word known. Rain 'teems in' through a leaking roof. To 'teem out' is to pour out liquids. A teapot with a well-turned spout is called a 'good teemer.' Shakes[oeare]. has 'beteem.'
Teethache. Toothache. "He's getten the teethsachie."—Oct. 19, 1892. Also called 'tyoothwark.' "My tooths's working, I've get-en the toothwork."
Tew (tyoa:). To tire, pull about, tease. "She fairly tewed his life out." So 'tewing,' of work, means tedious, and 'tew,' generally, means, to toil, labour. For pronun., see under Hew.
The night (dhu nae:t). To-night; so, 'the day.' (The usual expression.)
Throng. Busy; inconveniently crowded (always).
Thropple. Throat, windpipe.
Throstle. The song-thrush is sometimes called 'thros'le,' but more often 'greybird.'
Tice. Entice, encourage.
Tidy betty. A short fender across the grate, without a bottom.
Tied. Used metaph., like the literary Eng. 'bound.' So found in Jeremy Taylor. "A's tied to gan" (forced to go).
Tig. To touch. (Used by children at play.)
Tiggy. The child's game of 'Touch.'
To. By. 'What are you to trade?' "She's getten a son till 'im " (literary 'got a son to him,' i. e. by him). Also, = For. "What'll ye take to your breakfast?"
Token. Min. technical A ticket, of tin or leather, affixed to each tub of coals, stating details.
Toom (tyoo:m). The day or time for the dismissal of hinds, when they are hired afresh. Met., "A've had-en a sair tume (spell) abune six moonths." "He canna bide a tume now" (a change, of raiment or position,—of an invalid). This word does not seem to be generally known. Also, empty (only used of coal-waggons).
Toothwork (tyuoth-waa:k). Toothache'.
Tough Cake (tyoof kyak). A water-cake, or white-cake, baked on the girdle. No currants used.
Tram. Mining technical term. Very much the same as Bogey, q. v. Strictly speaking, a bogey has the flange on the wheel, while in the case of the tram, the flange is on the rail. Also, the tram had fast and loose wheels, having more play on the axle, to allow them the better to take a curve.
Trippet and quolt. The game of Trap, Bat, and Ball, more commonly called 'Buck-stick.'
Troon (truuwn). A mason's trowel.
Trow (truw). Trough.
Truth. "The truth goes farthest," the common overture to a confession, to be heard any day.
Tub. (too:b, toob, tuob). Min. A coal-waggon used down the pit, holding from 6 to 8 cwt.
Tug. To rob (a nest).
Tune or Teun. Taken (always).
Tup (tyoop). A 'tupe' or 'teup' is a ram. Various dialects.
Twist. Quarrel, disagreement. "They're all atwist." "Hes thoo hadden a twist?" So, 'twisting,' discontented.
Twitch-bell. Ear-wig (= twitch-belly? Compare S. W. 'angle-twitch 'a worm. Ear-wig = arse-wriggle).
Upcast. Throw in one's teeth, taunt with.
Upgrown. Grown up, adult (always).
Uproar. No idea of noise implied, but only of confusion, as of a house 'upside down.' To 'be in an uproar,' is to have an untidy room, as on washing-day, etc.
Upstanding. Regular, fixed, constant (of wages).
Used with (yoa:zd with) or (yuw:zd with). Used to, accuctomed to. Compare 'taken with.'
Vast. 'A vast (vaast) of'= number of; a 'vast 0' years,' the only expression for a long time. "There has a vast of People died here latelv."—From a letter, March 27, 1895.
Viewer. The manager of a coal-mine. So, 'under-viewer' (under-manager).
Vine. A lead-pencil (always). ' Pencil' always means slate-pencil. "A piece of vine."—Boy's essay.
Wad (waad). Would.
Wag. 'Play the wag,' to play truant.
Waggon-way (waag:n wee:u). Technical. A colliery line of taiL
dn). Church warden. This abbreviation universal, and used by all classes.
Warsh (waa:sh). Faint, from loss of food. (adj.) [?]
Wase (wae:z). A folded cloth, or bundle of straw, placed upon the head, on which to rest the ' skeel,' q. v. I have altered the spelling of this word from ' weeze ' to ' wase,' in accordance with Halliwell.
Waysgoose. Day trip of the workpeople belonging to a firm or company, especially a newspaper staff. Same as 'bean-feast.' Various dialects.
Week-end. In the North always signifies Saturday till Monday, when working-folk sometimes go away for a visit. The common expression of educated and uneducated alike, and by no means confined to the North. 'Week-end trips' are now advertised on most of the [railway] lines.
Weeny. Tiny. Only heard once, from a native of S. Shields.
Wey ay (wai:aa:y) (why, ay !). lnterj. To be sure ! (v. common.)
Whaing (hwaeng). Boot-lace.
What cheer (chai:u, chae:u). Commonest greeting of man to man, answered back in the same words. A nautical phrase imported into tlse dialect (?), equivalent to 'h00 is tha?' For the pron. of cheer, compare 'here,' 'hear,' which are both pronounced /hai:u/ or /hae:u/. (Kaan dhoo: hae:u mu - Can you hear me?)
What for. For the commoner 'what.. ..for?' Standing at the beginning of a sentence, like the literary 'why' (waut fur hez dhoo baen u:wee:u sae lang 'What for,' i. e. ' why,' 'hast thou been away so long?') N. B. The glossic /fur/ exactly represents its equivalent in literary Eng., in speaking of the 'fur ' of any animal (=Fr. feu). 'What' is used for 'that' or 'which,' as in time following :—'' Give them your things what you cant eat."—Boy's essay.
Whaten. 'What'n' or 'what'na '= what kind of? (always). Compare 'whichen a one ' (which), ' suchen a ' (such a).
Whiles. Once [always]; sometimes.
Whirligig (hau:li:gig). A boy's iron hoop. The wooden hoop only is called a 'hoop.'
Whisht (hwisht). hush ! 'Hush ' is quite unknown.
Wick. Quick. (subst.) "He's cut his finger into the wick."
Wife. Woman. "An aad wife." So, 'fish-wife,' 'hen-wife.' Compare 1 Tim. iv. 7.
Wig. A tea-cake. Same as 'Doo.'
Wiggery waggery. Loose motion in walking.
Will. Used for 'shall,' e. g. "Will I like it, think you?" So, 'would' for 'should.' "Aa wad like 't, aa wad noo" (I should like it, I should indeed). This is not confined to dialect speakers, as the following extracts from letters will testify :—" I will be glad to hear from you soon;" "I will be pleased to do my best to meet your wishes;" "We will be very glad if you will give us the pleasure of your company," &e. ; "We will be very glad to see you." For this use, Compare the following from two boys' essays :— "You might run to the man and say, take some bricks off (an overloaded cart), or else the horse shall fall down;" "letting us see the Magic Lantern, and telling us where we will see the place."
Willy blindy (bhin:di). A game played by boys. One boy is blindfolded, and the rest tie knots in their handkerchiefs, and strike him on the head or shoulders, until he catches hold of one of them. This one then becomes the 'willy.'
Wingeing. Whinimig. "He's winjin' on now," "She's so winjy."
Winter. The bracket hooked on to the bars of a grate, upon which anything may be heated in front of the fire.
Wite. Weight; blame. "He got time wyte on't." Compare 'neighbour,' pronounced 'nighbour.'
Wobbit. An introductory word. "Wobbit thou'll not."
Wor (wau). Our. 'Oo-ur',' spoken fast, produces 'wor' or 'wur'.' Compare probable origin of the literary pronunciation of One.
Work (waa:k) To ache. "Mi airm warks." This is a common Wykehamist 'notion,' except that it is pronounced 'wurk.'
Wowl (wuwl). To howl, cry.
Yam. The invariable pronunciation of 'home.' An example of purely short a; compare 'gan.' "Aa's gannin yam, aa is.'
Yard (yaad). Common abbreviation for 'churchyard.' Compare Warden.
Yetling. A small crock. See under Kail-pot.
Yewfir (yuof'u). A young fir-tree about the girth of a mans's arm.
Yoke. To 'put in' a horse (to a vehicle). This is distinct from 'harnessing' or putting the harness on his back. etc.
Yon (adj.), Yonder (adv.). That, there; generally, of objects pointed out. Sometimes, of distant things. I was much amused once, when going over the castle at Durham to hear a man who had lately seen the sights of London comparing the antiquities of the castle with what h had seen ' yonder,' or 'in yon place.' - all his remarks began 'When I was yonder'. etc.
Yowley or ' yellow yowley' (yuw-li) . The yellow-hammer.
Yule. Christmas. Hence 'Yule-dough' (see Dough). 'Yule-clog ' (see Clog). ' Yuletide ' is becoming commoner than it was a short time ago, but most people say Christmas.