Skip to comments.A-huntin' The Sources of Appalachian English
Posted on 03/26/2010 7:00:19 AM PDT by jay1949
An order of the Virginia Colonial Council dated May 4, 1725, concerned an allegation that "divers Indians plundered the Quarters of Mr. John Taliaferro near the great mountains [i.e., the Blue Ridge] . . .[and carried off] some of the Guns belonging to and marked with the name of Spottsylvania County . . . ." The Council concluded: "It is ordered that it be referred to Colo. Harrison to make inquiry which of the Nottoway Indians or other Tributaries have been out ahunting about that time . . . ."
Now, the Colonial Council was an august body and its proceedings were formal, so we can be sure that "ahunting" was not common slang. It was, on the contrary, an accepted usage which is now obsolete except in Appalachia and the Ozarks, where folks still go "out a-huntin'."
(Excerpt) Read more at backcountrynotes.com ...
Scots-Irish migrated down the Appalachians from Pennsylvania during the colonial period and became isolated there, avoiding later homogenizing of the language. There are similarities today between Appalachian speech and dialects of English still spoken in the UK. For example, some pronouncing the past tense of “eat” as “et.”
Interesting. thanks will bookmark
Interestin’ thread ping.
You’ve got it. We of Scots-Irish descent know where the language came from.
A mechanic I knew some years back liked to conclude his sentences with a verbal exclamation, “what I did.”
I would ask the status of one our mining machines and he would respond, “I just changed the oil in the D-9. What I did...”
I’ve always wondered where this came from.
We go a fishing too.
Other words are very old English...fetch, reckon, kivvers (covers)
Also, along with a-huntin’ we’ve said a-courtin’, a-fishin’...most words ending with “ing”
I’m a-fixing to mark this thread to keep up with it because I reckon it will be a good ‘un, if you’uns will keep it going
Yes, the “a” prefix can be seen many times in the King James Version.
Psalm 73:27, for example: “For, lo, they that are far from thee shall perish: thou hast destroyed all them that go a whoring from thee.”
I’ve heard people accuse southern Appalachians as saying “crik” for creek...I’ve lived in the Tennessee mountains (not even 3 miles from the Smokey Mtns Nat’l Park)
for 63 years...I’ve NEVER heard a person born and raised here say “crik or crick”...It’s always creek...
We say a crik is what you get in your neck...a creek is where you go ‘a-fishin’....
Chattanooga and environs are some of my favorite places to visit.
“Crik” is a typical Northeastern U.S. pronunciation of “creek.” I suspect that large numbers of New England settlers came from parts of England where that was the usual pronunciation.
One southernism that strikes my ear odd is instead of saying
I think da da da.
they will say
I feel like that da da da.
We haven't had a good dialect thread in a while...post your southernisms
Scotch-Irish speech found in the Appalachians and the Ozarks is also called southern highland or southern midland speech.They say whar for where, thar for there, hard for hired,critter for creature,sartin for certain,a-goin for going, hit for it, far for fire,deef for deaf,pizen for poison,nekkid for naked, eetch for itch,boosh for bush.
“I’m a-fixin’ to do something...”
“I’m gettin’ ready to do something...”
You got ‘em, thar!!!!*G*
Also, per J Foxworthy....”If you’re naked, it means you got no clothes on...If you’re nekkid, itmeans you got no clothes on and you’re up to somethin’...”
He’s/she’s a mess! (mess — funny, nutty, etc.)
Goin’ to carry my folks to church. (carry — drive)
Greens and pot likker
I’ll try to thing of something while I warsh my truck.
You betcha! Tomato gravy and grits, too
He has descendants in Surry County, NC. That surname is on a memorial at Guilford Battleground National Military Park.
That's pert'near common language from 'round this neck of the woods. ;-)
I’m gonna cook up a mess o’ greens....
"Uppahr" for up there, "ovvahr" for over there.
A few years back, I was at the warehouse selling my tobacco and a TV crew was there...They interviewed an old mountain farmer who said, “We call it backer (tobacco), but thu city folk call it terbacker...”
I got a kick out of that....*G*
Pert’near but not plumb, depends on which hollar. Up one hollar, they talk this a way, up anothern they talk that a way.
I’m a fixin’ to bookmark this here thread.
I've noticed that too. Heck, some of those English folks speak the language almost as good as we do in East Tennessee. ☺
I also hear a lot of similarities with the Scots and the Irish in the way that they round off their g's the way that we do, e.g. fishin', huntin' and cookin' etc.
“That Suzie....She’s shore a rite purdy gurl....
There are Taliafferos (aka Tolliver) all over Virginia and NC, including s few up here in the mountains where I live. Pleased to know that a Taliaffero was at Guilford CH; four of my ancestors were there as well (one cavalry officer, two gunners, and one militiaman). Good company!
Yep...I've noticed that.
The structure and conjugation are suggestive of Cajun/French English. I bet if you dug into his background you'd find either some Louisiana or Quebec connections and influence.
English folks speak the language almost as good as we do in East Tennessee.
Ain’t tat da gospul, Marc???
My husband is from Michigan and his whole family says "crick" for creek. In fact, there's a crick that runs along the western boundary line of their property.
Yeah, but you gotta watch those uppity ones. They’re just a bunch of knot-headed peckerwoods.
He also pronounces his home state with a hard "a".....Ioway.
PS to Jay.....love your blog.
Would that be “Acadian”, Joe????
If you haven’t visited Blind Pig & The Acorn, I recommend you to go there for Tipper Pressley’s educational and entertaining series on speaking the language of Southern Appalachia. Start with Speak Like An Appalachian, http://www.blindpigandtheacorn.com/blind_pig_the_acorn/2008/04/speak-like-an-a.html then go to Speak Like An Appalachian II, http://www.blindpigandtheacorn.com/blind_pig_the_acorn/2008/08/speak-like-an-a.html and then work your way through the tests, starting with Appalachian Vocabulary Test http://www.blindpigandtheacorn.com/blind_pig_the_acorn/2008/11/appalachian-vocabulary-test.html and running to the most recent post, Appalachian Vocabulary Test 17 http://www.blindpigandtheacorn.com/blind_pig_the_acorn/2010/03/appalachian-vocabulary-test-17.html Music to my Backcountry-loving ears.
Also, I have two previous FR posts on this topic — http://www.freerepublic.com/focus/f-bloggers/2469507/posts and http://www.freerepublic.com/focus/f-bloggers/2470833/posts
Everyone seems to say I feel when they mean I think (and it bugs me) but I’ve only heard the extraneous “that” put in by people with southern accents.
I up and read this whole thing!
If he said that, he robbed it from Lewis Grizzard
Disclaimer: Opinions posted on Free Republic are those of the individual posters and do not necessarily represent the opinion of Free Republic or its management. All materials posted herein are protected by copyright law and the exemption for fair use of copyrighted works.