Let's Talk Hillbilly
Now, before somebody gits thar overalls in a bunch (meaning offended to you flatlanders), I too, am a true blue hillbilly. But, despite the Hollywood stereotype of mountain people in Appalachia, we possessed one of the truest forms of language of English origin. While America combined nationalities and little by little changed their language styles, the very isolation of the mountains, kept the language from one generation to the other.
The English who first came to Appalachia were the neighbors of William Shakespeare and Paul Bunyan. Instead of mountain English being bad English it is in reality older in its forms and vocabulary and, in that sense, a purer English. The old way of speaking is almost gone now ,and it is sad to see another way of life go the way of so many things.
Note: I learned this bit of wisdom from "The Tennessee Hillbilly "
http://www.public.usit.net/oldman/mounteer.html (NOTE: This Web Page no longer works. I have searched and cannot find it in a newer location… if anyone else can find the Tennessee Hillbilly that wrote this, I’d like to have a new URL…. Thanks, Jimbo)
So, Hillbillies, listen up. Hollywood can't take away the proud heritage of your language. Now, just who's "ignert"?
Now, let's have some fun (My comments or additions are in RED... Jimbo) (I'd 'preciate it if any of you other Hillbillies can list more of 'em)
Afar--something is on fire
Ah heard that----I agree or "Ah heared that"
Ahr-- possessive noun (our)
Aim to--intends to
Ain't---are not, am not
Amerikin--American or "merikin"
Ary--not any---"Not ary a one" or "nary"
Badmouth--to talk bad about
Byganny goes--To stress a point
Clone---perfume, good smelling stuff
Contrary---stubborn or opposite- - -"Contrary to your story"
Counter warps-- canned biscuits (Cathie Cardwell writes that "you gotta warp'em on the counter top to open 'em.Thanks,Cathie.
Cuz--Cousin or because
Dawgs--dogs (from Reford and Debbie )
Doodley-squat--doesn't amount to much
Ersoften--Every so often
Fer--far or for
Fetchin'---attractive,, very becoming
Fixin'--Getting ready to
Foolin' 'round---nothing to do with sex --just goofin' off
Got a good notion---statement of intent
Grain of sense---degree of intelligence
Haint--Haunt or ghost
His cornbread ain't done-- meaning he is a little 'touched', or "teched" you know, in the head. (thanks for the new addition to :Reford and Debbie--
Hissy--temper tantrum as in "throwin' a hissy fit"
Hitch--cramp or lameness (hitch in your gitalong)
Hush your mouth---pleased embarrassment
Ill--disagreeable, (He has an ill temper)
I'll swanee--I swear or, just "I swan"
Kain't--Cannot more modernly adopted as "can't"
Klect---to receive money owed to you
Layin' up---restin' your tired bones or sometimes, to save or reserve for use later
Let alone--much less (He can't afford his rent, let alone a car)
Let out---dismissed--"School is let out for the day"
Lick and a promise---do a job hurriedly
Matoes--Tomatoes or "maters"
Mess--a person who jokes around or a portion of food, such as a "mess of greens". or "that boy's just a mess"
Mind to---intends to do something; "I've got a mind to tell on you".
Moaning--start of the day; morning
Nemmine--nevermind, don't bother
Oer yonner--Over there or, if giving directions, you might point and say it is "yen way"
Of a moanin'--morning
Ownliest---the only one
Persnickety--prissy acting,being petulant
Pert----perky or near--"Pert near dinner time"
Pichur--Pitcher or picture
Pick at---to tease someone
Piece goods--material ,sewing material for garment
Playin' Possum---faking, pretending (a possum will fall over like it's dead when cornered)
Poke--Poke salad (a type of very tasty wild greens, usually cooked up with a chunk of hog jowl) or paper bag
Pop--Sodas of any kind
Pon--Upon as in this expression to show mild surprise: "well pon my word and honor!"
Purt nigh---nearly, "it's purt nigh time to go"
Quair--(queer)strange, odd--"That guy sure acts quair".
Ranch---a tool, wrench
Retard---no longer employed
Satchel bag--purse,or suitcase
Shainteer--absence of female--"She ain't here".
Shindig---a dance or celebration
Shine--Moonshine (liquor) also known as "mountain dew" or "white whiskey"
Shucky dern--exclamation (from Reford and Debbie)
Snipe huntin'--an unsuspecting stranger is taken along on a night hunting trip for a bird that doesn't exist.He's left holding this burlap bag and told to wait until the other men flush the birds out.The stranger finds himself looking like a fool after about the first hour 'cause he's out there all alone.Eventually, the mountain men would retrieve him,slap him on the back and offer him a taste of 'shine in friendship.
Southern Samsonite--paper bag or cardboard box to carry clothes
Spell--period of time as in, "wait here a spell and I'll be rite back"
Stain---opposite of leaving (Are you stain' for supper?)
Sumpin'--something,"Sumpins goin' on"
Take on--act in an emotional manner as in, "I don't see why you're takin' on so!"
Tal---what you dry off with after bathing
Tawt--to teach, instruct
Teched--touched--(rhymes with "fetched") Someone that's teched in the head ain't got all their marbles.
That old dawg don't hunt no more--that will not work
Toe-sayin' goes--The old saying goes
Tonic -- Another term for moonshine To be a tonic, the shine usually has something added to it to make it more "medicinal". For example, I used to make some very good cough syrup by fortifying a bottle of shine with honey and lemon juice. <cough, cough> I think I need to take a dose now!
Tore up---upset, emotional
Trade--To go shopping
Unbeknownst--lacking knowledge of, unaware of
Vaymuch--very much---"I don't like this vaymuch"
Wars--wire that carries power , like telephone "wars"
Wear Out---to spank a little kid who is pushing their luck
Wender---a pane of glass to look out of---"Wender panes"
Ya'll--You, all of you, everyone
Yontto--Do you want to
Yungins---also spelled younguns, meaning young ones, children
Colonel Jimbo From the Land of the Wurts in Northeast Kentucky