Sayings collected at the Friends of Cradley Library meeting on Saturday 25th January 2019
Having a gossip – Chewing the fat, Canking, Kanking. Canking Row-
Muriel had various sayings about the weather-
Rain before seven, fine by eleven.
If you can see enough blue sky to make a sailors shirt the sun will come out.
Black over Bill’s mothers, rain on the way.
If she saw a large truck or a lorry, that’s a big thing and a thank you.
I don’t know if I’m on this earth or Fullers (Fuller’s Earth) Confused
I’ll go to the foot of our stairs.
Going to bed; Off to Bedfordshire, or up the wooden hills to sleep.
Yo’ con get where Vasaline or Castor Oil can’t.
Much wants more and the devil wants it all. Greedy
Your eyes am bigger than your belly.
Not getting married again. One box of ointment was enough, or One lick of the pan was enough.
Eat your crusts for curly hair
Carrots make you see in the dark.
I’m not as green as I’m cabbage, more intelligent than I look
Put wood in th’ ole. Shut the door
The Glory hole-
Or the Glory hole that cupboard or drawer where all the oddments were kept.
If yo cor find somet goen have a brevit in the Glory Hole.
Snug as a bug in a rug – tucked up warm and cosy
He ay very gain – a bit clumsy
Over several sessions, early meetings at Cradley Library in the 1990’s, the Then & Now members all contributed to our list of words and there meanings. Here for posterity are the results.
Ahviers Equal Share, ‘Go ahviers’ go halves (local)
Aive Heave, lift. Easter Monday was ‘aiving day’ when women lifted men.
After dinner the custom was reversed. (local)
Axen To ask. “He axed her” (Anglo Saxon)
Backrapper An explosive firework-
Bay Am not.”Ah bay a gooin”
Belloil A thrashing, good hiding, could derive from belabour.
Beltin A good thrashing, or something very good, as in a beltin pint.
Bibble Pebble, stone.
Bile Boil, both noun and verb, ‘to put the beans to Bile’ means to put up the banns
of marriage (local)
Bin Are or been “We bin a gooin” “We bin theer already”
Bist Are you? “How bist?”
Blenchen To flinch-
Blether Pig’s blabber used as a ball, ballon or to talk rubbish.
Bonk Hill or Bank. Pit Bonk
Bogey Head lice or nits, or bogey up the nose.
Bostin Really good, Bostin Fittle.
Bosted Broken, “Yo bosted that”
Bowgen Good meal “We ad a right good bowgen.
Brevit To look for something.
Bull yed Tadpole, (local)
Cank or Cantin Gossip, as in Cankin’ Row
Chunter Grumble or complain
Clam To be hungry. Clammed t’jeth. Expresses independence.”I’d clam till I bost”
Cod/kid To joke, to play a practical joke.
Codge Roughly make or repair. “Yom a mekin a right codge modge o’that.”
Cognogger Big slice of bread.
Cogwinder Hit hard. “ her gid ‘im a right cogwinder”
Con Can “Con I borry”
Cor Cannot. “Yo cor dew that”
Cort Ca you not?
Cost Can you? “Cost elp me?”
Cowty Used only in expression”Cowty blow”-
Cuff Cough, Chinn cuff, Wooping cough.
Dishele Cup as in ‘a dishele o’ tay.’ Tea originally drunl from a dish, tea sometimes
tipped into saucer to cool then drunk from saucer.
Dolly Martin A Swift (bird)
Drap Drop. “Do drap the babby.”
Dummucked up Tired out
Eicky down Squat
Ess miskin Ash-
Ess ole Ash-
Fettle Condition, fine fettle
Fode Back Yard, swill the fode when the washing was finished.
Forby Near (Anglo Saxon)
Franzy Irritable, especially children.
Gale hook Hook to hang kettle over the fire.
Ganzy Thick undervest worn by chainmakers/ workmen
Gillivor (soft G) Wallflower Gillies (Anglo Saxon)
Glede Gleed A glowing ember, burnt piece of coke.
Gob A piece “a gob o’caike” or mouth gob-
Gos’under Chamber pot see also Po
Grorty Pudding Traditional stew for Bonfire night made with groats, meat and vegitables.
Ike To beckon forward.
Jack Bannock A minnow (fish)
Jeth/ Jed Death/Dead
Kench To sprain or pull the back ‘Kench y’back’
Lampen A good thrashing
Lezzer A meadow, Leasowe
Licken/Licker Gravy from bacon or meat, ‘licker ye bread’ Dip bread in gravy
Mawkin A guy or badly dressed person. Children’s game “Owd mon mawkin”
Mek To make
Modge Mess or mixture, to modge, to make a mess.
Mucker Confusion “allof a mucker” “all of a muck-
Munch To hurt, illtreat, (sly munchin’ surrepyitious pinching)
Naer un Neither one
Nineter A really awful boy.
Night soilers Men who came to empty the ashpits and collect the night soil.
Nisgul Small, puny, smallest
Nit nuss Nurse at school who checked your head for head lice or nits.
Noggen Stupid, noggen-
Obstrocolus Deliberatley being awkward.
Ommuck Large piece of cake ofr bread
Ood Wood. “Put ood in ‘ole.” Please be so kind as to close the door.
O’thisnin In this way.
Owarn My husband.
Pettle dick Thrush, bird.
Po Chamber pot see Gos’under.
Podge To make rug with hook and rags, or to jump the queue,“Her podged the
Powk/stye Eye infection.
Razzel Night out on the Razzel. Steps at bottom of Drews Holloway known as the Razzel.
Rodney An idle fellow, “having a rodney” having a rest when there was work to be done.
Riffey Dirty, grimy.
Sawny A simpleton.
Scratchings Small pieces of crisp hard fat left after rendering pork.
Slake To slash with a whip, or to quench thirst.
Sleck Small pieces of coal and coal dust used to bank up fire at night.
Some varieties of potato go sleck (soft) in the water when boiled too long.
Socced Sprained ankle or wrist.
Sord Rind of bacon.
Suff Drain (noun/ verb)”down the suff’ole”down the drain.Also chimney “up the suff.”
Swill Quick wash, or to swill the fode after washing or brewing
Swopson A heavily built woman.
Tannsellin See Tannin
Tannin A good hiding, “I’ll tan your backside.”
Tetnul A type of small pear.
Tizzickey Having an irritating dry cough.
To dout To put out light or flame.
Tranklements General term for useless lumber, sometimes children’s playthings,
(Middle English Trunclements-
Tummy Miners name for mid morning snack.
Wek Tay Weak Tea, cured everything, also drunk cold by chainmakers.
Yaa Exclamation of doubt or surprise. A sentence in itself, the meaning depending
on the inflection. “ You don’t say.”
Yowk Yelp, as in a dog.