Essex Dialect in the 18th century

In 1857 Thomas Wright compiled a dictionary of obsolete provincial words.

In 1880 Richard Stephen Charnock compiled his Glossary of the Essex Dialect.

The table below is based on words that  Wright  and Charnock specifically identified with usage in Essex.

Other words have been added as a contribution from local people with memories of their parents and grandparents favourite expressions.

The guide may help explain unknown words in old books on Essex people.

When Essex Men talked they lengthened their vowels eg make is pronounced maake.

A often becomes O so because becomes becos.

O is often inserted before an I eg fine becomes foine.

R is often dropped eg surpassed becomes suppasssed.

O often becomes U eg from can become Frum.

W and V and D and T are often interchanged.

Words that comply with the above rules have not been included in the listings below

Afeared

Afraid

Afore Before
Agin Again

Ails

Ears of corn

Artnoon

Afternoon

Bagging Hook Reaping Hook

Bange

Light rain

Banjy Dull day
Bast To beat severely

Beaver

Ploughman's lunch taken at about 11am

Behounced Finely Dressed
Bellar Shout loudly or bellow

Bigge

Cows teat

Bin Been
Billy Wicks Owl
Biznus Business
Boa Boy or man

Boine

Swelling

Bonie

Blow or wound

Bonkka

Very large

Bonx

Beat up mix for batter puddings

Brank Wheat
Bud A cow that is older than a calf but not yet fully grown

Bullimong

A mix of oats, vetch and peas

Bumby Place where houshold rubbish is dumped
Bunting Untidy Dress

Busk

Lie in sun

Buss Kiss or embrace
Bussock Donkey
Cad The smallest of a litter especially of pigs
Caint Can not

Cart rake

Cart track

Chate A treat or feast
Chevy Chase or run after

Chice

Small portion

Chop

Flog

Chops Lips
Clars Hands - Often clars and jaws = hands and face
Clunchy Clumsy
Cowd Cold

Crotch tail

Kite

Dag

Dew

Dare

To Grieve

Dean

Din or noise

Dew Bit

Ploughman's early morning breakfast

Dicky Donkey
Didal A sharp triangular spade
Dog Rapper Parish Beadle or Sexton

Dogs

Dew

Doke

A small brook or a bruise

Dooles

Rough hay made from roadside verges or ditches

Dolouring

Mournful noise

Dunnekin Outside Toilet
Easles Embers of the fire

Eel thing

St Elmo's Fire

Essex stile

Ditch

Fare

To appear

Favour

Resemble

Feff

To overreach in buying or selling

Fill Meadow

Fimble

To touch lightly

Finnicks

Tawdry dressed woman

Fleet Milk

Skimming milk

Foine Fine

Four Want Ways

Crossroads with 4 roads meeting

Fowers

Ploughman's dinner taken about 4pm

Furnitade

Furniture

Furriners People from outside the village
Gab Gossip
Gal Girl
Gannicking Gossiping or idling
Gaster To frighten

Ginnick

Neat or Perfect

Go after To court a lady

Goff

A mow of hay

Goffer

To eat fast

Goings On Proceedings or happenings

Gole

Prominent

Golls Hands
Gomes Gums in mouth
Goon Going
Grift Pencil
Gultch Fall heavily
Gullion Stomach Ache
Gumption Nonsence or foolish talk
Hainish Unpleasant

Harve

A haw

Haumly Ugly

Hazardable

Dangerous

Hazely brick earth

Loamy soil found in Essex

Hazle

Stiff as clay

Hodmedod Snail

Hoap

Helped

Hoss Horse

Ingons

Onions

Jice

Small quantity

Jink To check money is real by ringing it
Joggle Shake
Jounce a sudden shaking

Julk

Hard blow

Keeping Room

Living room

Kidder A confidence trickster

Largess

Tip after harvest

Latard

late

Leas-Ways At least

Levens

The name for lunch in harvest time - taken more quickly than a ' Beaver'

Lib Basked used to carry seed corn
Lugsome Heavy

Martlemas beef

Beef dried in the chimney like bacon

Mauther

Awkward girl

Mavis A Song Thrush
Meak A hook with a long handle used to cut peas

Meece

Mice

Mizzle To succumb

Muckinger

Handkerchief

Muggy

Half intoxicated

Newing

Yeast

Nig

Small piece

Nippet

Small quantity

Not

Well tiled

Noteless

Stupified

Nuzzle

Sound of bellows

Oaken

Oak

Oavis Eves of a house
Obstropolous Unruly
Okard Awkward

Ollust

Always

Onbeknown

Unknown

Onsensed

Stunned

Owd Old - Used figuratively not literally

Piggatory

Great trouble

Pin patches Periwinkle plant
Plum Pudding Red Campion Plant
Polliwig Tadpole
Proper very ie proper good
Puggle Move or stir
Pulk Puddle
Quackle To Suffocate
Rassle To stire the embers of a fire especially on oven fire
Releat A crossroads
Ruinated Ruined
Roile To annoy
Saacy Saucy
Sappy Smart

Sarce

Vegetables

Scally Shabby or mean
Shay Chaise

Scat

Scared

Scatch pawed

Left handed

Shant A pot of beer
Shirt Buttons Stitchwort plant
Shote Young Pig
Shuck Shook
Slammack Untidy female
Snarth The long handle on a scythe
Spud Small person

Teuk

Redshank

Thrap

To Crowd

Warsley

Not much

Waste

To abate

We's

Our

Whip Stalk

Whip handle

Winnick

Suppressed cry

Wusser

Worse

Wust

Worst


 

 

 

 

Google