Appalachia Appalachian Dialect

Appalachian Vocabulary Test 151

Shelf of silver smith supplies

It’s time for this month’s Appalachian Vocabulary Test.

I’m sharing a few videos to let you hear the words and phrases. To start the videos click on them.

1. Tail end of misery: To experience great discomfort or physical suffering. “After working round the clock for several days to clean up the storm damage they looked like the tail end of misery.”

2. Take and: to take; start to. “Take and pour that dishpan out and run and get some fresh water from the spring.”

3. Talky: given to talking; talkative. “The girls got the monikers Chatter and Chitter because they are rather talky. Neither one of them has ever met a stranger. I was way too backward to be talky when I was a young girl.”

4. Tore up: exhausted, worn out emotionally, distracted, broken. “She’s tore up about him leaving her, but I’m hoping time will help her see it was for the best.”

5. Thick: dense with, numerous, plentiful. “The yellow jackets have been so thick this summer that I can’t walk two steps without seeing a half a dozen or more.”

How did you do on the test? I hear thick, tore up, and take and on a daily basis. The tail end of misery is such a wonderful descriptive saying, but I rarely hear anyone say it. And even though I live with two girls who could win the talky award I rarely hear that one either 🙂

Most recent video: Making a Garden in Appalachia August 2021

You Might Also Like


  • Reply
    September 2, 2021 at 9:10 pm

    “Tail end of misery” is a new one for me. I like it. ❤ Tipper, I watched you cook the best meal showing us how to make fried corn! So I put on my apron & made my husband a nice country meal. I think he thought he died & went to heaven. It turned out great. You are a fantastic teacher. I may do that again some day. Lol

  • Reply
    Ron Bass
    August 27, 2021 at 7:08 pm

    Heard or use them except for “tail end of misery”, I love that though, very descriptive. We normally say talkaty instead of talky.
    Keep up the great work.
    God Bless

    • Reply
      Pastor Lon
      August 28, 2021 at 7:46 am

      I’ve heard and use all these except Tail End Of Misery, we use I caught the Tail End Of The Conversation, But as far as what we’ve used to mean the same as Tail End Of Misery is I Feel Like I’ve Been Rode Hard And Put Up Wet. But yes THICK, TORE UP, TALKY & TAKE AND we still use those very often today in the same context as y’all.

  • Reply
    Donald Wells
    August 27, 2021 at 3:41 pm

    Here in my neck of the woods the chicken hawks are getting THICK. They’ve killed two of my prettiest laying hens,you talk about being TORE UP, buddy I’m TORE UP.I been reading you can TAKE AND hang cd discs up and it’ll scare em away. Well,done that.
    TALKY,never been much TALKY or used that word either, I’m bashful too.
    TAIL END OF MISERY, describes it just right Matt,when working on a a.c. unit on a hot roof. Haven’t used that expression, but working 25 years in school maintenance, been there done that.

  • Reply
    Ann Applegarth
    August 27, 2021 at 12:14 pm

    Yes to take and, tore up, and thick. But “tail end of misery” is wonderful, and I
    intend to begin using it!

  • Reply
    August 27, 2021 at 10:19 am

    Appalachian language at its best. I have never heard the expression tail end of misery, but it sure sounds like something my neighbors would say. The only person I ever heard say “I took and” was a neighbor, and she was always taking and doing this and that. Mom always said that Dad and I was was “thick as thieves.” I was always talky, so my favorite uncle always jokingly referred to me as a blabbermouth.

  • Reply
    Kat Swanson
    August 27, 2021 at 9:39 am

    Don’t know that tail.end phrase in my part of Wise County, VA. Talky was my middle name….kept me off the honor roll sometimes.

  • Reply
    Frances Jackson
    August 27, 2021 at 9:38 am

    I have not heard “tail end of misery,’ but I used to hear people say “tail end of nowhere” to describe a place that was so far off the beaten track that you didn’t know where you were when you got there. I’ve also heard “thick as hops” to describe something really really thick. I’ve never seen hops grow, so I have no idea what this looks like. But its pretty thick, I imagine.

  • Reply
    August 27, 2021 at 9:38 am

    Heard most of them except talky. I think for that one I heard they had the gift of gab.

  • Reply
    August 27, 2021 at 9:23 am

    Most of the sayings are common around my house. It’s been awhile since I’ve heard tail end of misery, but I could have said it a lot lately. I’m not sure if I’ve ever heard talky used the way you described. Take and is my favorite from the list and I get tore up when the kids don’t understand the command. Yellow jackets have been thick here too and I’m glad to see them back.

  • Reply
    August 27, 2021 at 9:20 am

    I hear and use 4 of these but the tail end I use like the tail end of a storm.

  • Reply
    Gary Griffith
    August 27, 2021 at 9:16 am

    I had not heard “tail end of misery” but I know just what it means. My daughter was “talky.” A man who worked on the farm said he thought she had been vaccinated with a Victrola (record player) needle.

  • Reply
    Ron Stephens
    August 27, 2021 at 8:38 am

    Tail end of misery: had never heard that expression. Been there a few times though. Reminds me of the saying, “Feel like something the cats drug in and the dogs wouldn’t have.”

    Take and: This is one of those ‘echo phrases’. I feel like I used to hear it commonly but can’t say for sure. In my mind the most common use was “take and put” as in something like “take this hoe and put it in the shed out of the weather.” Anyway, have not heard any use I can recall recently.

    Talky: have no heard that as a single word but have heard various expressions with the same meaning. One is “talk the ears off a brass monkey’. Another is “talk a blue streak”.

    Tore up: have heard this one commonly but can’t decide whether it is a really old use or one that came into being in my life time. Somehow or other I lean toward the last idea.

    Thick: Yep, that one is very familiar. I recall the phrase “thick as hair on a dog’s back’.

  • Reply
    Sandra Henderson
    August 27, 2021 at 8:22 am

    Love hearing your videos and reading your blog.
    I’m tore up about my son, since he left for Far East two months ago. Now this mess… was up all night, the night before last worrying. Then yesterday’s mess. I tell ya, I’m at the tale end of misery worrying bout him and his men and women who were deployed. I could get tacky all day about it all, but I’m sure you understand. Pray for our troops. It’s hard not knowin how they are.

    • Reply
      Sandra Henderson
      August 27, 2021 at 8:25 am

      Meant get talky.
      Can’t even type for worry. Maybe it’s because m memories and worries are so thick.

    • Reply
      August 27, 2021 at 8:44 am

      Sandra-We’ll be praying for his safety!!

  • Reply
    August 27, 2021 at 8:07 am

    All are common and heard often with the exception of “the tail end “. Hear that every now and then

  • Reply
    Don Byers
    August 27, 2021 at 8:04 am

    “And it was raining cats and dogs outside”

  • Reply
    Miss Cindy
    August 27, 2021 at 7:49 am

    I have heard all of these but but am especially fond of ” tail end of misery” it’s just so expressive!

  • Reply
    Sheryl A Paul
    August 27, 2021 at 6:41 am

    All the phrases re well used in my family. We say tail end of ________ a lot, but I just love “Tail end of misery. So descriptive you can just see it. My mother always clsimed to look like the tail end of a wind storm after working in the garden

  • Leave a Reply