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English dialect

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tractionengine4214/09/2017 07:45:44
330 forum posts
79 photos

As a Northumbrian a part that is within a Midgy's nif naf is good enough most of the time.

Martin Kyte14/09/2017 08:48:49
1264 forum posts
9 photos

The inspection department wish to know which species of gnat ?


Fowlers Fury14/09/2017 10:41:45
185 forum posts
41 photos

"The inspection department wish to know which species of gnat ?"

How typical of 'em sad

Perhaps you could refer the department to that incontrovertible source of all wisdom - Wikipedia - which states "Gnat is a loose descriptive category rather than a phylogenetic or other technical term, so there is no scientific consensus on what constitutes a gnat."

The corollary of which, one must presume, is that there is no scientific consensus of what constitutes a gnat's cock.

Ah well, back to the calipers and slide rule.....................

Michael Gilligan14/09/2017 10:53:40
10958 forum posts
474 photos


Brian G14/09/2017 12:59:03
228 forum posts
5 photos

As long as the quality manager can produce certification showing that the gnat's cock can be traced back to the International Standard Gnat at the BIPM I don't have a problem - I am no longer a quality manager wink

Incidentally, is the expression "made a right cod's of that" local to Kent or nationwide?


Mick B114/09/2017 15:10:50
478 forum posts
26 photos
Posted by Fowlers Fury on 14/09/2017 10:41:45:

The corollary of which, one must presume, is that there is no scientific consensus of what constitutes a gnat's cock.

Which is why its conversion factor to some verifiable UoM makes it useful in assessment of a workshop's or section's approximate standard of precision.

Long may it remain so, and attempts to fix it should be energetically resisted...

Cornish Jack14/09/2017 15:59:56
735 forum posts
90 photos
Posted by Brian G on 14/09/2017 12:59:03:

Incidentally, is the expression "made a right cod's of that" local to Kent or nationwide?


Is 'cod's' not a diminutive of 'codswallop' ? ... known as far afield as Kernow -as we 'Janners' call it. winkwink

Personally, my measure of accuracy derives from 35+ years of Auntie Betty's Flying Club - "Close enough for Government work"wink 2



HasBean14/09/2017 18:37:37
125 forum posts
28 photos

Having just returned from taking my daughter to university the people in the Premier Inn we were staying in and the Beefeater next door (excellent steaks by the way) were really confused by my Jersey accent and the fact that I also throw in Jerrriais and French while I speak, just the way it is. As it happened a lot of the staff were were uni students just about to to go back to their respective studies and found it quite interesting to chat about it.


Edited By HasBean on 14/09/2017 18:39:28

Edited By HasBean on 14/09/2017 18:40:13

Andrew Tinsley14/09/2017 18:43:29
679 forum posts

Strange I never heard the expression scunt. However I lived about 3 miles from Cradley Heath and I could not understand the locals there!


Meunier14/09/2017 19:47:43
106 forum posts
Posted by Brian G on 13/09/2017 21:03:41:

...... As a result he and his comrades just brushed 'gnats' aside whilst on the lookout for mosquitoes the size of dragonflies.


Images for how to identify female anopheles mosquito

perhaps this would have helped his recognition but not much use to anyone here using the most precise units of measurement !

Breva15/09/2017 00:47:49
69 forum posts
11 photos

My late father who was raised in Motherwell had quite a few descriptive phrases in his vocabulary that originated from the work that he and his father did in the Lanarkshire Mills in the 1920s. Eg. if the materials at hand for a particular job were of a poor quality he would refer to the inferior materials as being a poor scantling of....

His name for an awl was a mennie.

Some of the more colourful descriptions he bought back with him were of people he met. Among those were descriptions of people who had : a nose like a gimlet, shoulders like a lemonade bottle, or a face that would turn a funeral.

Then the PC cops arrived and we all got to speak real proper.

Nick Hulme16/09/2017 20:19:26
497 forum posts
26 photos

I always liked the term for a loose fit - "Worm in a Bucket"

Chris Evans 616/09/2017 20:47:41
1161 forum posts

"Loose fit" working with a succession of Black Country lads that would be a "Cock in a Sock"

Andy Holdaway16/09/2017 21:12:43
167 forum posts
15 photos

The only time I heard the word scunt was by a Worcester boat builder to denote something not properly aligned, or "on the pi$$".

Andrew Tinsley - I worked in Cradley Heath for a number of years, and found the only way to understand shopkeepers was to carefully monitor the facial expression. It didn't always work!


Neil Wyatt17/09/2017 09:58:12
13193 forum posts
571 photos
68 articles

I got pretty good at unnerstannin' Black Country talk, but there's a huge variation in accents across the area.

Eugene17/09/2017 11:52:09
112 forum posts
5 photos

"On the scunt" was common enough usage in the factories around Smethwick when I was a young man.

In similar vein we had "rough as a bear's a**e", and "sticking out like a bulldog's b******s". An easy sliding fit was "Like the skin orf a donkey's d**k".

I did say we were common! wink 2







Edited By Eugene on 17/09/2017 11:53:02

Stuart Bridger17/09/2017 12:21:03
223 forum posts
14 photos

Another term for a loose fit. "rattling around like a wotsit in a shirtsleeve"

Andrew Tinsley17/09/2017 12:52:01
679 forum posts

Thank goodness I was not the only one who could not understand the Cradley Heath dialect. I believe that a lot of it was in fact old English, according to a Birmingham University philologist who published at least one paper on the dialect.

A common phrase for someone from Cradley Heath was "Strong in the arm and weak in the head". I think this was because the community was rather enclosed and probably interbred. Quite why this was so, is a bit of a mystery, but it would explain the incomprehensible dialect!

I too lived in Smethwick, so I am amazed that I never heard the term "scunt". Maybe something to do with me going to grammar school and "lernin' to talk and spel proper!".

Apologies to anyone hailing from Cradley Heath. No disrespect to you, just quoyting some widely held views from the Black Country!

Strange, but I can no longer do a proper Black Country accent. However I can do a Birmingham accent, which is very different. I am rather sad that my native dialect and accent elude me. I do like the regional differences in speech and am somewhat ashamed that I now speak BBC English.


Edited By Andrew Tinsley on 17/09/2017 12:53:26

OuBallie17/09/2017 13:15:01
1086 forum posts
613 photos
Posted by Robert Dodds on 13/09/2017 21:46:27:

As a North Midlander I recognise the "skunt" as a term for skewness but I also have come across those from Rose country who might refer to "Not wreck t' th ay"
In terms of scale, which is the greater, a gnats cock or a smidgin?
Can anyone elaborate on the difference between a Timper and a Spelcher?
I know that if it only a smidgeon out you can put it right with a Timper but big ones need a Spelcher to shift them
In the more refined Enginnering Shops the faulty part might be known as a cobble or clanger and finish up being "chucked on the shawd ruck" along with any other dingers.
Up and down the country there are many different dialects and workshops within each. They pick up words that associate with the particular industry or craft of the area and are meaningful there.
Its what makes the English language so colourful. Long may it last!

Bob D

Together with the regional accents!

Geoff - Foot 99% healed by the feel of it!

Brian Wood17/09/2017 13:52:44
1521 forum posts
35 photos

Two Derbyshire expressions I learned to live with were:-

'' Strong in't arm and wake in't 'ead" which is a corruption of the expression used at Cradley Heath

The other was " Nowt a pound and bump in weight " to describe a real dummy, the reference to scales being obvious


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