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The Yorkshire Dialect

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Miranda Moore

on 17 September 2013

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Transcript of The Yorkshire Dialect

The Yorkshire Dialect
By Miranda Moore
History!
The dialect began when the Anglo-Saxons invaded in the 5th century. They adopted Celt words only for place/rive names; this added only about two dozen words to the Old English vocabulary. By 600 AD there were about 12 clear kingdoms, two of which pertain to Yorkshire. These were Deira (East Yorkshire and North Riding) and Elmet (West Riding). In 616 Elmet was invaded by the king of Northumbria; he then lost the kingdom to the king of Mercia. This added Northumbrian and Mercian words into the West Riding dialect. Later the Danes and Normans invaded, added even more words into the local dialects
In short, the Yorkshire dialect is not really one consistent dialect. Rather each area in the region has different pronunciations and slang, all of which are included in the overall label of "Yorkshire dialect".
Language Family
Indo-European
Germanic
West Germanic
Anglo Frisian
Anglic
English
Yorkshire
Geographic Distribution
Yorkshire
North Riding
East Riding
West Riding
General Pronunciation: Vowels
A
- as in
crash
; some older speakers use this sound after
w
in words like
wasp
and
swan
AH
- as in
cart
E
- as in
bed
EE
- as in
feel
I
- as in
bit
O
- as in
pot
AW
- as in
saw
U
- as in
foot
OO
- as in
gloom


General Pronunciation: Diphthongs
AA
- thus
naame
(nay-em) from
name
OOH
- (roughly oo-er) words like
floor
and
door
become
flooar
and
booar
OW
-
brought, anything,
and
nothing
become
browt, owt,
and
nowt
. Not pronounced like now, more like aw-oo
OI
- used in West Riding words
coat, throat,
and
hole
. They become
coit, throit,
and
'oil
EEA
- in words like
again, death,
and
street
; pronounced
ageean, deeath,
and
streeat
Grammar: Future/Past Tense and Negatives
Future Tense

Indicated by
bahn
(West Riding) or
off ti
(North/East Riding)
Example: Ah'm
banh
ter side them pots
AKA: I'm going to put those dishes away.

Example: 'e's
off ti
shut t' yat
AKA: He's going to shut the gate.

Past Tense
Got =
gat/getten
Found =
fahned, fan, or fun
Ate =
ett
Frozen =
frozzen
Put =
putten
Shut =
shutten
Negatives
Nut
is the same as not in North, East, and West Riding;
nooan
is also used in West Riding
Example: Thoo'll nut finnd owt
AKA: You'll not find anything.

Example: Ah'm nooan bahn yonder
AKA: I'm not going there.
Grammar: Possessives and Prepositions
Possessives
My = mi/ma
Your = thi/thy
His = 'is
Her = 'er
Our = wer/ahr (West Riding)
Our = oor (North/East Riding)
Your = yer
Their = the'r
Mine = mine/mahne
Yours = thine
His = 'is
Hers = 'ers
Ours = ahrs (West Riding)
Ours = oors (North/East Riding)
Yours = yours
Theirs = theirs


Possessive adjectives/pronouns don't
differ much from standard English .
Prepositions
Some prepositions are different than standard English.
Above = aboon
Before = afooar
Without = baht
Behind = behunt/behint (West Riding)
From = fra (West Riding)/ frev (North/East Riding)
To = ter, tul (West Riging)/ tiv (North/East Riding)
North vs East vs West
Standard English
about
down
house
boot
fool
door
floow
speak
coal
home
father
West Riding
abaht
dahn
'ahse
booit
fooil
dooar
flooar
speyk
coil
'ooam
fatther
East Riding
aboot
doon
'oose
beeat
feeal
deear
fleear
speeak
cooal
'eeam/'ooam'yam
feyther/faather
North Riding
aboot
doon
'oose
beeat
feeal
dooar
flooar
speeak
cooal
'eeam/'ooam/yam
feyther/faather
Sheep Scoring Terms!
One = yahn
Two = tayhn
Three = tether
Four = mether
Five = mimph
Six = hithher
Seven = lithher
Eight = anver
Nine = danver
Ten = dic
Eleven = yahndic
Twelve = tayhndic
Thirteen = tetherdic
Fourteen = metherdic
Fifteen = mimphit/mump
Sixteen = yahn-a-mimphit
Seventeen = tayhn-a-mimphit
Eighteen = tether-a-mimphit
Nineteen = mether-a-mimphit
Twenty = jigit
Some Common Terms
Baggin = pack lunch
Bairn = child
Bazzerking = relaxing
Beefin(g) = crying
Bog = toilet
Chuddy = gum
Daft as a brush = stupid
Faffing = messing about
Flippin eck' = shock/suprise
Jiggered = very tired
Kegs = underwear
Not back'ard at comin' for'ard = pushy person
Pack it in = stop it
Rum'n = checky/sassy character
Scotch yows = ewes
Spanish = licorice
Sproggs = sweets
Tarra = bye
'appy as a pig in muck = very happy
Arese over tit = head over tail
More brass na brains = more money then sense
Not enough room to swing a cat = cramped
That ladgin buewer chored me pack up = that unattractive girl I don't like has stolen my packed lunch!

Sources

Yorkshire Dialect - http://www.yorkshiredialect.com/lexis.htm
BBC - http://www.bbc.co.uk/northyorkshire/voices2005/glossary/glossary.shtml
Yorkshire Dialect - http://www.yorkshiredialect.com/phonology.htm
Reader's Guide to Wuthering Heights - http://www.wuthering-heights.co.uk/josephs-speech.php
Bronte Studies - http://campuses.fortbendisd.com/campuses/documents/teacher/2009/teacher_20090122_1239_3.pdf

Joseph And What He's Saying
What He Says
'What are ye for?' he shouted. 'T' maister's down i' t' fowld. Go round by th' end o' t' laith, if ye went to spake to him.'
'Is there nobody inside to open the door?' I hallooed, responsively.
'There's nobbut t' missis; and shoo'll not oppen 't an ye mak' yer flaysome dins till neeght.'
'Why? Cannot you tell her whom I am, eh, Joseph?'
'Nor-ne me! I'll hae no hend wi't,' muttered the head, vanishing.

Chapter 2, page 7
What It Means
'What do you want?' he shouted. 'The master's down in the fold [sheep pen]. Go round the end of the barn if you want to speak to him.'
'Is there nobody inside to open the door?' I hallooed, responsively.
'There's nobody but the mistress, and she'll not open it for you if you make your frightening din [noise] till night.'
'Why? Cannot you tell her whom I am, eh, Joseph?'
'Not me. I'll not have anything to do with it,' muttered the head, vanishing.
Why Is He The Only One In Dialect
I is i' truth a coontry youth,
Nean used to Lunnon fashions;
Yet vartue guides, an' still presides
Ower all my steps an' passions.
Nea coortly leer, bud all sincere,
Nea bribe shall iver blinnd me ;
If thoo can like a Yorkshire tike,
A rogue thoo'll niver finnd me.

Thof envy's tongue, so slimly hung,
Would lee aboot oor coonty,
Nea men o' t' earth boast greater worth,
Or mair extend their boonty.
Oor northern breeze wi' us agrees,
An' does for wark weel fit us ;
I' public cares, an' love affairs,
Wi' honour We acquit us.

Sea great a maand is ne'er confaand
'Tiv onny shire or nation,
They gie un meast praise whea weel displays
A larned eddication;
Whaal rancour rolls i' laatle souls,
By shallow views dissarnin',
They're nobbut wise at awlus prize
Good manners, sense, an' larnin'.

An Honest Yorkshireman
Henry Carey (Died 1748)
One of the most recognizable things about the style of Wuthering Heights is its narrative style and use of regional dialect; these two things are interrelated. The story switches narrators as events unfold; often a narrator is the one who is experiencing the events. Each narrator speaks with a different style, and uses different types of words. These different styles are meant to signify social standing. This is why Joseph speaks with such a heavy dialect. It is to show that he is of the serving class, one who did not have proper schooling as had no interest in it. His dialect makes it clear that he has been a servant for much of his life and that his position in life is set in stone.
I was sitting home alone yesterday evening,
While my mother and father were off;
They had heard my Grandma Susanna,
Was laid up in bed with a cough.
And if you wonder why all the trouble,
Well, it's because old Grandma has dough;
Because if she hadn't a penny who'd bother,
For example, see old Uncle Joe.
I am in truth a country youth,
Not used to London fashions;
Yet virtue guides, and still presides
Over all my steps and passions.
Not courtly leer, but all sincere,
Not bribe shall ever blind me;
If you can like a Yorkshire tike;
A rouge you'll never fine me.

Though envy's tongue, so slimyly hung,
Would let about the country,
No men over the earth boast greater worth,
Or dare extend their bounty.
The northern breeze with us agrees,
And does for work will fit us;
In public cares, and love affairs,
With honor we acquit us.

See great a man is never confined
To only shire or nation,
They give to me praise when we display
A learned education;
With rancor rolls in little souls,
By shallow views discerning,
They're nothing but wise at all our prize
Good manners, sense, and learning
The Dialect Today
Today, the Yorkshire dialect is not as heave as it once was. Many young people merely have an accent, rather than speaking with a full dialect. In the past, the dialect has held the connotation of it's speakers being rough and a little rude. In a way this may be true. Because of the type of land in Yorkshire, many of its inhabitants were sheep herders. They worked all day, doing physically demanding tasks that would leave most people cranky by the end of the day. Furthermore, because so many of the boys were put right to work, many Yorkshire men were somewhat uneducated. This helped to keep the dialect alive over the years; the children didn't go to school and learn the proper pronunciation of the words, thereby speaking as they hear their parents speak (in dialect).
'Gooid Lord!' he muttered, sitting down, and stroking his ribbed stockings from the knee to the ankle. 'If there's to be fresh ortherings—just when I
getten
used to two maisters, if I mun hev' a mistress set o'er my heead, it's like time to be flitting. I niver did think to see t' day that I mud lave th' owld place—but I doubt it's nigh at hand!'

'Good Lord!' he muttered, sitting down, and stroking his ribbed stockings from the knee to the ankle, 'If there's to be fresh orders—just when I was getting used to two masters—if I'm to have a mistress set over my head, it's time to be going. I didn't think I would see the day when I would have to leave the old place—but I suspect it's not far off!'

Chapter 13, page 141
Wah!' answered Joseph, 'yon dainty chap says he cannut ate 'em. But I guess it's raight! His mother wer just soa—we wer a'most too mucky to sow t' corn for makking her breead.'

'What!' answered Joseph, 'that dainty chap says he cannot eat them. But I suppose it's to be expected! His mother was just the same—we were almost too dirty to sow the corn for making her bread.'



Chapter 20, page 209
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