Appalachia Appalachian Dialect

Appalachian Vocabulary Test 30

Time for this month’s Appalachian Vocabulary Test-take it and see how you do.

  1. Name
  2. Near about
  3. Night crawler
  4. No count
  5. No how


  1. Name: to mention. “Pauline never named the work day to me. If she had of I’d a been there to help”.
  2. Near about: nearly. “Near about dusk he came trotting up the road thinking I’d saved supper for him. But I hadn’t.”
  3. Night crawler: large earthworm. “See those lights bobbing around out there on the golf course? Thats people hunting night crawlers to sell.”
  4. No count: of little value. “That girl is no count. Why she don’t even help her poor old momma take care of all them children.”
  5. No how: in any case. “It don’t matter that I was late no how. When I got down there they’d called off the whole shebang.”

I hear all this month’s words on a regular basis-and I say 2-4 myself. I included #3 after I noticed it was in the Dictionary of Smoky Mountain English. I assumed night crawler was the term everybody used-maybe not?

Leave me a comment and let me know how you did.



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  • Reply
    April 6, 2011 at 12:45 pm

    I thought the same thing about night crawler! These are all used pretty regularly around here. Along with near ’bout we have purt’near. Up here we say no account, but the meaning is exactly the same, we also use sorry in the same way. No how isn’t so common, but I have heard some of the older folks use it. I love this whole blog, but I think these tests are my favorite part of it! Thanks Tipper!

  • Reply
    April 6, 2011 at 7:08 am

    Congratulations, Suzi!
    I have or do use all of those. And I’ve spent my time with a bobbing flash light hunting night crawlers. LOL

  • Reply
    April 5, 2011 at 11:30 pm

    all these are used in the mtns of mcdowell county too

  • Reply
    April 5, 2011 at 11:21 pm

    All those are common here in these mountains. I’ve used all of them at one time or another. I have to admit–I thought nightcrawler was the ‘official’ name, LOL! I see signs for them on bait shops all the time.(I live on a fishing lake).

  • Reply
    Suzi Phillips
    April 5, 2011 at 10:15 pm

    No how,no way did I think they were named anything but nightcrawlers!

  • Reply
    April 5, 2011 at 9:54 pm

    I use all of these, but my favorite is, “no count”. My Mama would say, “It ain’t no count”.

  • Reply
    Joey @ Big Teeth & Clouds
    April 5, 2011 at 9:32 pm

    I got all of those although most we don’t use. I did think everyone knew about night crawlers!

  • Reply
    Mary Jane Plemons
    April 5, 2011 at 9:30 pm

    A term I’ve always heard that might fit in this category is “might near”, meaning almost…as in, “I might near run right over that car!” It is about the same as near about. Name isn’t used around here like that, and while nightcrawler is a known name for a kind of worm, we don’t have them here naturally. They can’t survive outdoors in our climate, I think.

  • Reply
    B. Ruth
    April 5, 2011 at 8:09 pm

    Congratulations to Suzi for winning the cookbook….I almost forgot, when posting my other comment….
    Rite now I could eat me some of that soakey!
    Thanks Tipper,

  • Reply
    April 5, 2011 at 7:22 pm

    I know all of these and use them. My husband ‘planted’ night crawlers in our yard. He says they are good for the yard, plus if you ever need any to go fishing, just come by after a rain.

  • Reply
    April 5, 2011 at 5:32 pm

    What a colorful group of terms!
    I’ve often heard them all, and got them all right except ‘night crawler’, which I didn’t know was a type of earthworm – never hunted ’em, myself. And I can’t even blame it on being blond. LOL!

  • Reply
    Lonnie L. Dockery
    April 5, 2011 at 4:44 pm

    Using “name” for “mention” was pretty standard with us growing up-usually in the negative though; as in, “don’t name it” or “didn’t name it”. We didn’t fish with nightcrawlers. We just called them redworms–as opposed to white ones and black ones I suppose!

  • Reply
    B. Ruth
    April 5, 2011 at 4:37 pm

    It was near about time for the severe thunderstorm to hit last night, when the wind started blowin’ a straight line! Our electric went out, then part of the lights dimmed! The wind took down a large tree, sent it crashin’ into the power line, pulling the lines from our house to the ground. We called the power company and they couldn’t name a time when they could get here. Lines were down all over the county! They got the power back on at 3:45 PM today!..Our no count dog pen was crushed, the fencing was OK..It don’t matter no how since we don’t own a outside dog no more! I just wish I was able to go like me an my husband used to after a hard rain..Put on the spot lights, carry a pail and hunt night crawlers into the wee hours of the morning!…We call earthworms..redworms, the biggins’ we call night crawlers, and buy some called “wigglers”!..That was a fun time with our boys huntin’, crawlers..for fishin’ the next day…
    Thanks Tipper

  • Reply
    Vicki Lane
    April 5, 2011 at 2:30 pm

    Beautiful pictures, Tipper. I hear all of these but I think that the only one I use is ‘near bout.’
    Love your post about people from your childhood — I waste a bit of time looking for some of mine on the Internet. Sometimes there are fairly startling results…

  • Reply
    Alica @ Happily Married to the Cows
    April 5, 2011 at 2:22 pm

    I’ve heard some of these words used before, but not on a regular basis…in our area you would hear words or phrases such as:
    1. redd up – to clean up or tidy up a messy room
    2. schusslich – sloppy
    3. a while – “why don’t you go get started a while…”

  • Reply
    Miss Cindy
    April 5, 2011 at 2:10 pm

    Tipper, I know all these words. I usually put an a in number 4 as he is noacount.
    I didn’t know night crawler was an Appalachian term. I thought that’s what every one called them. Wonder what the official term is for them.

  • Reply
    April 5, 2011 at 1:29 pm

    I have heard all the words used. All but the first one are used in our area. Tipper, I just discovered you sold a 2011 Signs Calendar. Is it sold through Amazon? My husband would be very interested in getting a copy if there are any left.

  • Reply
    Sue Crane
    April 5, 2011 at 12:29 pm

    good ones — well remembered,too. I have some for you – not rare but the way they were used got me laughing for a long time. There was a turtle in the path at a local fish camp. The camp owner said “that turtle’s dead.” A lady poked (nother good word) with a stick and it moved. She called out; “Look, Ken, it ain’t plumb, it’s just purt near!”

  • Reply
    John Dilbeck
    April 5, 2011 at 12:13 pm

    Hi Tipper.
    I know and use all of these regularly.
    I haven’t thought of, nor used, “shebang” for a long time. It’s going to be my word for the day!

  • Reply
    April 5, 2011 at 11:39 am

    That made me think of the other day when I was talking to my cousin. She was telling me something that happened and she said, “It was just at the edge of dark.” You don’t hear that one too much anymore!

  • Reply
    April 5, 2011 at 11:36 am

    I knew all of them. I don’t use #’s 1 & 2 very much, but it was common to hear them when we were growing up!

  • Reply
    Carol Wong
    April 5, 2011 at 11:24 am

    I know all except night crawler. I remember my father using that but I never asked about it.
    Carol Wong

  • Reply
    April 5, 2011 at 11:17 am

    I really look forward to these vocabulary tests. Thanks!

  • Reply
    April 5, 2011 at 11:16 am

    we use night crawler here in Nebraska but I don’t remember saying it when we were growing up in Missouri- they also say Millers instead of Moths here- it is a type of moth but they use it to talk about all moths- again, something I had never heard til I moved to Nebraska-

  • Reply
    Pat in east TN
    April 5, 2011 at 11:07 am

    I’m familiar with all of them but number 1. What fun your ‘tests’ are!

  • Reply
    Barb Johnson
    April 5, 2011 at 10:57 am

    Use them all and like many of the other posters…I though a night crawler was a night crawler..and an earth worm was an earth worm. Maybe that has more to do with being blond than souhtern! lol

  • Reply
    April 5, 2011 at 10:35 am

    I know these words; I use them all the time (except name it). There’s times I say “Name It” but only when I’m trying to cloud the mind of some person that I know that’s trying to psycho-analyze me.
    Night crawlers are great fish catchers!
    I really enjoyed those photos; they have so many artistic elements in them (especially the first one). You captured so much depth and number of planes in such a simple photo. In fact, that photo would make a good painting.

  • Reply
    April 5, 2011 at 10:27 am

    I find these vocabulary tests fascinating. Tipper, you stir knowledge in me that I thought was forgotten. Night Crawlers is a term I thought everybody used, but most children these days are more wrapped up in Wii. One term that surprised me was “no how”, as I thought it was going to be, “She doesn’t have the know how to put out a washin’. I truly think these deeply rooted Appalachian raisings keep us grounded. Some of my relatives have mentioned how easily my sister and I can entertain ourselves. Of course it is easy when one spent their childhood hoeing tomatoes and washing canning jars in a tub all day. I loved every minute of that, and still do today.

  • Reply
    April 5, 2011 at 10:13 am

    I didn’t miss nary one of them there word in today’s test! I have to ‘adjust’ my vocabulary at work. Those city slickers laughed when I told them that sleeping on my new pillars are causing my headaches.

  • Reply
    April 5, 2011 at 10:02 am

    I know and use these mountain words all the time, but I think I
    say any how instead of no how. And
    Jim’s comment reminded me of times
    I spent on the Bryson Golf Course
    catching those slippery and light
    sensitive devils too. We got a
    penny each for them and one night
    I caught $4.20 worth. Boy, I thought I was gettin’ rich, but
    after staying bent over that long,
    I wondered if I’d ever be able to
    straighten back up. Bet I’d have
    to make a plan to catch one today.

  • Reply
    Donna W
    April 5, 2011 at 10:00 am

    All but the first are familiar to me.

  • Reply
    Joe Mode
    April 5, 2011 at 9:56 am

    Except for the first one I say all of these as do many of my kith and kin. The triple negative, “It don’t matter to me no how no ways” is a classic. My neighbor would often be seen out thumping for night crawlers in his yard.
    Funny, I use the term “shabang” as above, but use it more as it was used during the Civil War, i.e. “We throwed up a shabang to git out of the rain.”

  • Reply
    Sheryl Paul
    April 5, 2011 at 9:48 am

    Yep know and use them all but night crawler, that one I’ve heard but never used!

  • Reply
    Mike McLain
    April 5, 2011 at 9:48 am

    I don’t think I ever heard “name” used that way. I have heard and used the others.

  • Reply
    Jim Casada
    April 5, 2011 at 9:26 am

    Tipper–As always, I enjoy these quizzes. In truth, they aren’t really quizzes for me, since I invariably know and/or use the words and terms with regularity. Rather, they are a delightful reminder of the magic of “mountain talk.”
    As for night crawlers, they were a source of welcome “cash money” when I was a boy, and oddly enough, the local golf course (it no longer exists) was a prime spot for catching crawlers. The lawn at the Presbyterian church was another one.
    Night crawlering requires quick reflexes. You want to grab the worm as soon as the light hits it, and letting one get a portion of its anatomy back in the hole from whence it came is a big mistake. They can “hold on” with such tenacity that you’ll pull them into. The going rate for crawlers in the late 1950s, at least in Bryson City, was a dime a dozen. Simond’s Bait Shop (still in business) would buy all you could provide, and a good night of crawlering could put as much as $4 or $5 in a boy’s pocket. That was serious money.
    Jim Casada

  • Reply
    April 5, 2011 at 9:17 am

    I use all of those! I never knew there even another name for night crawler…that’s pretty funny!
    And dang, it is a bunch of fun hunting them at night!

  • Reply
    April 5, 2011 at 9:13 am

    Night-crawler is used all the time, especially by fishermen, in my area. The rest of the words, I kinda knew what they meant, but I can’t say I’ve ever spoken them myself. 🙂

  • Reply
    April 5, 2011 at 8:47 am

    I say no count, near bout every day so it don’t matter no how. those are the 3 i use, have heard the others in the distant past. we call night crawlers fishin worms

  • Reply
    Vera Guthrie
    April 5, 2011 at 8:28 am

    Man I wish these vocabulary test would have been the ones I took in school I would have an A+ LOL. I’ve said em all and still catch myself using them.

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