Some more Cornish dialect for you

Posted on: 13th December 2012 8 Comments

Descriptive words

Cabby:                        Dirty or Messy
Braave:                       Good
Licker:                         Something  really big
Abroad:                      Open as a window, door etc
Skerrick:                     Something small, a wisp
Smeech:                     A small pan, something burning

Scat:                           1. A tear or rip
2. To strike or hit
3. An area of land being worked for tilling etc
4. To go bankrupt
5. A period of time
Lowster:                      Hard manual work
Minchy:                       Play truant
Arrish:                         Stubble
Skiff or Skiffy:              Light rain
Fuzz:                           Furze, Gorse
Dummits:                    Twilight
Cunderd:                    Underground
Grouts:                       Used tea leaves
Settle:                         Bench with high back and side
Auvis Ring:                  Last row of sheaves on the stem of the rick
Vore:                           Furrow
Mores, Moors:            Roots of a plant or tree
Opeway:                     A narrow passage
Nymshy:                     A small boy
Planching:                   A wood floor
Flasket:                       Clothes basket
Frail:                            Loose bag for shopping
Browse:                      Hedge trimmings
Faggotwood:              Wood suitable for fire lighting
Billet:                           Bigger wood for burning
Steed:                         To base for a hayrick
Launders:                    Gutters to catch rain from a roof
Bal:                             Tin mine/Child crying or moaning/To hit
Goffin:                          A deep ditch
Droag:                          A not so deep ditch
Hikey:                           Someone with a superior air, or posh
Skintral:                        A very thin cow, probably with disease
Bottoms:                      Lower ground or in the valley
Dowst:                         Waste, dust etc
Stewer:                        A mess/mix-up


Prong:                         Dung fork
‘Acker:                        2 pronged tool for digging potatoes
Biddix:                        Tool similar to ‘acker
Visky:                          With 2 faces for digging and cutting roots etc
Maun (Maund):            Large wicker basket used to carry turnips/mangels etc
Pike:                            2 pronged fork for pitching sheaves of corn.
Stug:                           Large earthenware, without lid
Patchhook:                  A bill hook
Seedlip:                       Used to carry seed when sowing by hand
Greeter:                       Mould board of plough
Drug:                           Metal show places under wagon wheel to act as the brake.
Higget:                         A chiseller (farm implement)
Spewk:                        Stick used in thatching to hold reed (straw) in place.
Thirt Rope:                   Used to go across and strengthen

These were again kindly provided by John Benallick from St.Wenn. Please feel free to message me with more words and phrases.

8 Responses

  1. Ann Stewart says:

    My uncle (lived in Ruddlemoor),always used the word ‘suent’ if something was good. I think it means something is running smoothly. By the way, to me the word ‘licker’ means something bad has happened. As in ‘that’s a licker’, when I’ve lost my car keys!

  2. Dale Henwood says:

    These words from St Wenn are words they used in that part of the county.
    Some of the words are different here in the west of the county.
    Like ie, dung fork here is an hevel
    (Not quite sure of the spelling)

  3. Ben Moyle says:

    Spence (cupboard under the stairs)

  4. Jenny James says:

    I used dig potatoes by hand with a ‘teddy acker’

  5. Diane salmon says:

    I come from at columb originally and I knew John. I remember my gran describing something she was washing as “basely” meaning very dirty. Also my dad would “lamper” (spread very thickly)the cream or butter on his bread. Could also lamper it on when dishing up a meal…to stack a plate high with food. I also remember the puzzled look I got when I asked someone in Cambridge..”where are you to?”..reading this list has brought back many memories. Thank you for taking the time t record them..

  6. diane salmon says:

    Forgot t mention…I was gardening today and used my dad’s biddix. I was looking up biddix online t explain to a friend what it was and I came across yr marvellous site 🙂

  7. diane says:

    Talking to myself today…I remembered “vitty”. As in to do a vitty job, or to water the plants vitty….meaning well enough or good enough! I haven’t seen the video. Thanks ! I will take a look.

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