Appalachia Appalachian Dialect

Appalachian Vocabulary Test 98

appalachian vocabulary test 98

It’s time for this month’s Appalachian Vocabulary Test. I’m sharing a few videos to let you hear some of the words. To start the videos, click on them and then to stop them click on them again.

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1. Ideal: idea “I have a great ideal, let’s all go down at Granny’s and eat. I know she’ll have something good for dinner she always does and I’m starving!”

2. Idee: idea “I’ve got an idee he’ll be back before dark. He always thinks plowing their gardens will take longer than it does.”

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3. Iffen: if. “Iffen you’ll drink more water ever day I know you’ll feel better.”

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4. Ill: angry. “I don’t know what’s got her all fired up but she’s as ill as a hornet.”

5. Importanest: most important. “I’d like to tell him I know he growed up just like me and he ain’t the importanest person in Brasstown even if he thinks he is.”

All of this month’s words are beyond common in my area of Appalachia. Hope you’ll leave me a comment and tell me how you did on the test!

Tipper

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23 Comments

  • Reply
    Diane Curtis
    April 9, 2019 at 11:41 pm

    I reckon I’ve heard everyone of them & used them too.

  • Reply
    Mike McLain
    April 2, 2017 at 7:44 am

    Heard all of these at some point in my life.
    Reminds me of a joke I heard:
    A highway patrolman pulled over an old boy in western NC. He walked up to the car and said, “You got any ID?”
    The old boy said, “‘Bout Whut?”

  • Reply
    TimMc
    April 1, 2017 at 7:46 am

    I hear most of the words daily, but the one that sticks out the most is ” idee ” my Mamaw used it a lot, she’d say, I had an idee yall come today.

  • Reply
    Tracy
    April 1, 2017 at 12:17 am

    My grandmother used to say to “Don’t be ugly”, meaning don’t be sassy or mean. I miss her dearly.

  • Reply
    Ann Applegarth
    March 31, 2017 at 11:00 pm

    Never heard “ill” or “importantest,” but I have heard all the others many times, but somehow never used them myself. I’ve heard “idee-er” too.

  • Reply
    Howland
    March 31, 2017 at 5:33 pm

    5 for 5 today. Mebbe in a few more years I’ll fit right in…

  • Reply
    Ken
    March 31, 2017 at 1:13 pm

    Tipper,
    I just love these Appalachian words, sound OK to me. One time I went into “the unknown tongue” telling something and I caught my grandkids sniggering at their Pawpaw. …Ken

  • Reply
    Sallie Covolo
    March 31, 2017 at 8:41 am

    I love your Appalachian vocabulary test Tipper. I did not realize that I still have some of my Appalachian vocabulary..Thanks for posting this.I especially liked idee and iffen..

  • Reply
    Eldonna Ashley
    March 31, 2017 at 10:35 am

    I loved seeing “idee,” my G’ma W used it all the time. Ideal was used less often.
    Iffen is familiar, so is importantest. The use of ill as used in the example is something I have heard, but not very often.
    That reminds me — how about the word “often”? I grew up pronouncing it “oft-ten.” My cooperating teacher when I did my student teaching corrected me. She wanted me to sat “off-en.” This was in the Bluegrass area of Kentucky.

  • Reply
    Ed Ammons
    March 31, 2017 at 10:34 am

    Thems all words I know and use reglur. It used to make me ill when people pointed them out to me. They have no idy they have colloquialisms too but I don’t laff at them no. Iffen I did, they’d not take it as easy as I do. The importantest thing is that we understand one another. Doesn’t always happen thataway but it’s an ideal ideal.
    I grew up using many words “wrong”. Over the eons I have learned the preferred pronunciation for them but continue using them in protest of the encroachment of modern society.

  • Reply
    Ron Banks
    March 31, 2017 at 9:45 am

    Shoot, iffen I didn’t know better I’d say we were raised up around each other because about everyone I knew growing up talked like that. I still hear some of the words from time to time but not as much since I moved off from home. Although I’m only about 30 miles from where I was raised the dialog has changed around here due to an influx of people who,”ain’t from around here!”
    I still say, “ill as hornet” and throw out an occasional, “idee” just to keep the word alive.

  • Reply
    Julie Hughes Moreno
    March 31, 2017 at 9:38 am

    Once again I know them all and use several of them. My Granny always said idee for idea. No one in my family said ideal but I have heard it a lot!

  • Reply
    Larry Griffith
    March 31, 2017 at 9:11 am

    I believe I’ve heard importanest but never say it. I had no ideal that I used that for idea.

  • Reply
    Larry Griffith
    March 31, 2017 at 9:11 am

    I believe I’ve heard importanest but never say it. I had no ideal that I used that for idea.

  • Reply
    Larry Griffith
    March 31, 2017 at 9:11 am

    I believe I’ve heard importanest but never say it. I had no ideal that I used that for idea.

  • Reply
    Larry Griffith
    March 31, 2017 at 9:11 am

    I believe I’ve heard importanest but never say it. I had no ideal that I used that for idea.

  • Reply
    Shirl
    March 31, 2017 at 9:05 am

    Iffin you can find my house…That’s funny! No, not the word but the statement. Sounds like something I would say. I hope we never need to call 911!
    I’ve never heard anyone say importanest.

  • Reply
    Ron Stephens
    March 31, 2017 at 8:56 am

    Not so good for me. Maybe two of five. ‘ill as a hornet’ I know and probably ‘idee’ but do not recall hearing the others. I have heard various versions of ‘importantest’ for folks who thought too much of themselves.

  • Reply
    b. Ruth
    March 31, 2017 at 8:48 am

    Tipper,
    I hear “idear” more than “ideal” and of course “idee” is my very own favorite!
    I have used “iffen” but I wondered if I was just trying to get my husbands attention by combining two words…”If and when” you decide to take out the garbage, it ort to be today, for it stinks! I do that just to get his attention. Especially since he likes to pick on my vocabulary!
    “Ill as a hornet” is common around here. Seems to be a fact, when the Red Waspers begin hunting nestin’ places under, in and around outdoor grills, unoccupied bird houses, etc. I could say I reckon, “ill as a wasper”, but it just don’t sound rite!
    Sure hope our March 31st goes out like a lamb…Since the sayin’ “In like a lion, out like a lamb”, was one of my most importanest Spring observations this year and hoping it would hold true!
    Love this post,
    Have a great day and weekend!
    Thanks Tipper…
    PS…Those are some awful purty Lenten Roses….I love them, great picture as well!

  • Reply
    Keith Jones
    March 31, 2017 at 8:33 am

    I’ve also commonly heard “idear” for idea.

  • Reply
    Gayle Larson
    March 31, 2017 at 8:22 am

    Iffen is one I know I use. The others I don’t think I say. However it is amazing how you say things and don’t realize it until someone calls you out.

  • Reply
    Miss Cindy
    March 31, 2017 at 8:17 am

    I’ve heard/hear all of these, but one of them, ideal, I only heard after being around the Brasstown folks.

  • Reply
    Sheryl Paul
    March 31, 2017 at 7:16 am

    Yes, all very common but don’t hear them so much anymore

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