08 February 2016

Lord Ashley Cooper's dictionary of Charlestonese

Charleston, SC  
Ashley Cooper's Charlestonese Dictionary: Ashley Cooper was a popular columnist for the News and Courier. He started publishing certain Charlestonese words in his column and readers contributed to the collection. The dictionary sold for .25 cents a copy and funded the Good Cheer Fund. The complete dictionary can be found at the link.
As everyone knows, Charlestonians speak perfect English, as residents of many other sections of the United States unfortunately do not. Ironically, these sloppy talkers from elsewhere complain sometimes, while visiting the Holy City, that they cannot understand the pure and clear accents of Charlestonians. 
A BOOT: Approximately.
AIN'T: Sister of one of your parents.
BONE: Blessed event, i.e., "I was bone a Charlestonian." (A VERY blessed event, in the minds of all Charlestonians.)
BOTTLE:  A military engagement.
BOW-AT: Something you sail in, off the Bottry.
BRAID: What you make toe-est from, to go along with beckon and a-igs for brake-fuss.
CALLER: Part of a shirt that goes around the neck.
COARSE: Certainly.
COAT: Where they got that jedge an' all, i.e., "Stannup for hizzoner, coat's in session."
COINED: Humane, i.e., "He was always coined to animals."
CONDUIT: Impossible of accomphshment.
DEARTH: The world we live in.
DES MOINES: They belong to me.
DRUG: Hauled.
FAINTS: A barricade of wood or brick.
FAN ELLA: The flavor of white ice cream.
FARE: To be a-scairt, i.e., "I fare it may rene, snow and heeL"
FLOW: What you stand on in a house.
GRANITE: Conceded, or given, i.e., "He was granite a pardon by the gouv-ner."
HAIR: At this place.
HARMONY: Cooked grits.
HAWSERS: Hay-eating quadrupeds.
HELL: An elevation lower than a mountain.
HEM: Meat from a pig. Not to be confused, though, with poke or beckon.
HERRING: The auditory function, i.e., "Pappa's hard of her- ring."
HOMINY: What number?
HONE: Something on an auto that you blow.
ICE COOL: The institution of learning which stands midway between grammar school and college.
JELL: Place of confinement for criminals. Durance viol.
KIN: Something usually made of tin that food is packed in.
LACK: Enjoy, i.e., "I lack fried chicken."
LANE: Lying down.
LAYMAN: A fruit from which layman-ade is made, i.e., "Is that your layman-ade?" "No, that's pappa's-zone." "Well, poet back in the pitcher, 'cause Pappa's now drinking bare."
LUCK: To direct one's gaze, i.e., "Luck year, Pappa, what Bubber did to your match balks."
MARE: Hizzoner, the city's chief executive.
MEAN: A gathering of people, as a committee mean.
MINE EYES: Salad dressing.
MINUET: You and I have dined.
MUTTERED: A yellow condiment that goes well with hot dogs.
NEW SAND KOREA: Ashley Cooper's newspaper. (See Pay- upper.)
NOISE: ^Pleasant, i.e., "Noise weather we've having."
PACKING: Maneuvering an auto to the curb.
PAIN: A writing instrument mightier than the sword.
PASSE: Father has spoken.
PASTOR: Field where cows graze.
PAT: Portion, but not all.
PAUNCH: Blow struck with the fist.
PLAY IT: Something you eat grits off of.
POACH: A verandah.
POET: To transfer a liquid, i.e., "Poet from the pitcher to the glass."
POKE: Hog meat.
POLICE: Term of polite request. A person desiring to maneuver a car to the curb might ask a pool-lease-man, "Cain I police pack hair?" To which the pool-lease-man would doubtless respond, "No, you cain not."
PRE-SHADE: Grateful for, i.e., "I pre-shade the compliment."
SANE: Speaking, i.e., "I cane hardly hair what he's sane."
SEND WISHES: Items of food made with bread, handy for a picnic.
SEX: One less than seven, two less than eh-et, three less than noine, foe less than tin.
SHOT: Not long.
SNOW: To breathe loudly and heavily while sleeping.
TARRED: Weary.
TOYED: Something that ebbs and flows off the Bottry.
TRUE: Hurled, i.e., "He true the ball."
U.G.: A family name, also spelled Huger.


Mark R. Jones said...

Ashley Cooper was the non de plume of Frank Bunker Gilbreth, Jr.who wrote for the "Post and Courier"from 1947 onward. He was born in New Jersey and is mostly famous for writing (with his sister) several popular books based on his childhood, notably "Cheaper By The Dozen" and "Belles On Their Toes" both turned into very popular movies in the 1950s (their modern re-makes don't count.)

Anonymous said...

You are correct. Re-makes DO NOT count...

William Kendall said...

Now that is fun!

Catalyst said...


Soling Martin said...

Some remakes DO count. I found the original Out of Towners whiny and irritating, while the remake with Steve Martin was MUCH more entertaining and actually funny.

Marcheline said...

Remakes of movies that were perfect to begin with should be boycotted. For example: "The Shining", "Pride and Prejudice", "Breakfast at Tiffany's"...

Pixel Peeper said...

What a great list! It should also have "Swite Tay" - the favorite beverage of the city!