Flint and thatch... sparkling rivers and broads, rolling fields and meadows, Norfolk is far from flat... popular seaside resorts and harbours - and rich in local colour and dialect.
 
NORFOLK DIALECT WORDS AND THEIR MEANINGS

Here’s the first selection of Norfolk words – taking us from A to D – and arter you’ve mastered that we’ll cut along t’ the next selection.

So, come yew on, tergether, an’ make a start, an’ yew shoulda finished by dockeytime!

A

Dialect word(s) Meaning
Accordin-lie Accordingly: “Uhcordin-lie ter him”. With emphasis on ‘lie’.
Acrorst Across: “I wet acrorst the rud to the busstop.”
Afore Before: “Afore yew go, ole paartner, less hevva drink.”
Afreard Afraid: “My dawg wuz hoolly afreard o’' the dark, he wuz.”
Agin Again, once more, or against: “Thass cold agin, ent ut?”
Alonga me With me: “Dew yew come alonga me!”
Allus Always: “I allus cycle to wark.”
An’orl And all, hence: “An’ yisterday wuz wet, an’orl.”
Arly Early: “Heh’yuh got yar arly tearters in yit?”
Ar(t)er After: the ‘t’ is barely pronounced, at the back of the throat, more like: “ar-uh”
Arternune Afternoon: similar pronunciation to ‘arter’.
Atwin Between: “Atwin me, yew an’ the geartepust...!”
Ax

To ask: “If yew watta cuppa, yew hatta ax proper fur it.’’

Axed Asked: “Hev yew gotta loight, bor?” he axed.

B

Dialect word(s) Meaning
Backus Scullery or out-house.
Badly Poorly, or in ill health: “I fare badly terday, I dew, an’orl!”
Barney A quarrel, or falling out: “I hed a roight ole barney wi’ him nex' dor, I did.”
Beck A small stream: Beeston beck.
Bein’as Because of: “Bein’as th’ trearn dint come, I wuz learte hoome.”
Bishy-barney-bee A ladybird.
Blar Cry, or weep: “Stop yar blarin’, dew yew’ll mearke me blar an’orl”.
Blunder To fall over: “I hoolly blundered over in the rud, I did!”
Bolt Eat food too quickly, to ‘wolf’ it down without chewing.
Bop To duck down, lower one’s head to avoid being seen.
Bor Norfolk way to address males: “Hello, Bor, how’re yer gorn on, tergether?”.
Botty Fussy, particular: “She wuz a botty little mawther.”
Brawk To belch loudly after meals!
Burr Haze around the Moon.

C

Dialect word(s) Meaning
Caution Amazing or surprising news: “Well, ent that a caution – City won agin!”
Chimley Chimney: “Mollie Windley she smook loike a chimley...”
Claggy Moist or sticky.
Clam up Go quiet, shut up: “When I arrived, she hoolly clammed up!”
Clever Handsome or dexterous: “Thass a clever little gearte yew’re med, bor!”
Clip A quick cuff of the hand: “My Maw dint harf clip my lug.”
Clout A heavier blow: “I gev my thumb a clout with the hammer and it dint harf smart!”
Cobbles Round beach pebbles used for paving and building.
Cop To get caught out: “You’ll hoolly cop it when yew git home.”
Coshies, cushies Sweets: “Here’s thruppence fur some coshies, Albie.”
Crowd To push in: “Give me room – dunt yew crowd me so.”
Cuckoo Cocoa: “I like corfee, but my wife likes cuckoo afore bed.”

D

Dialect word(s) Meaning
Dast, dust Dare: “I dast yew to climb that there tree.”
Dassent, dussent Dare not: “No, I dussent do that, do I do, I might blunder down!”
Dawg Dog: “Clear yew orf, dew I’ll set my dawg onya!”
Dew A social occasion.
Dickey Donkey: “Heh yar fa’r got a dickey, bor?”
Ding A sharp blow, a cuff: “Mother dint harf ding my lug!”
Dint Didn’t, did not: “I dint dew that...”
Dockey A labourer’s dinner, kept in a dockey bag.
Dudder Shiver, to ‘dudder’ with cold: “I’m all on a-dudder!”
Dutty, datty Dirty, grubby: “Wipe yar dutty feet afore yew come inta my clean scull’ry!”
Duzzy Silly, stupid: “Yew duzzy waarmin, yew.”


How did you get on? Are you ready for some more, if so click the link to
E–H and do you get started!

NORFOLK DIALECT WORDS AND THEIR MEANINGS
A–D
E–H Q–T
 
Lost in Translation; read about the Norfolk Schools Dialect Project.
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