How to speak Southern… “Bud:”  Small feathered crature that flies. “A robin sure is a pretty bud.”


By Bill Derby

Easy-to-understand Southern words are listed below. Be careful or you might find yourself using these colorful terms.


Addled:  Confused, disoriented, as in the case of Northern sociologists who try to make sense out of    the South, “What’s wrong with that Yankee? He acts right addled.”

Ahr:  What we breathe, also a unit of time made up of 60 minutes. “They should’ve been here about an ahr ago.”

Ar:  Possessive pronoun. “That’s AR dawg, not yours.” Afar:  In a state of combustion. “Call the far department. That house is afar.”

Bad-mouth:  To disparage or derogate. “All these candidates have bad-mouthed each other so much I’ve about decided not to vote for any of ’em.”

Baws:  Your employer. “The baws may not always be right, but he’s always the baws.”

Braht:  Dazzing. “Venus is a braht planet.”

Clone:  A type of scent women put on themselves. “What’s that clone you got on, honey?”

Daints:  A more or less formal event in which members of the opposite sex hold each other and move rhythmically to the sound of music. “You wanna go to the daints with me Saturday night, Bobbie Sue?”

Deah:  A term of endearment, except in the sense Rhett Butler used it when he said to Scarlett O’Hara, “Frankly, my deah, ah don’t give a damn.”

Dollin:  Another term of endearment. (darling) “Dollin, will you marry me?”

Effuts:  Exertions. “Lee made great effuts to defeat Grant.”

Fahn:  Excellent. “That sure is a fahn-lookin’ woman.”

Farn:  Anything that is not domestic. “Ah don’t drink no farn liquor, specially Rooshin vodka.”

Fummeer:  A place other than one’s present location. “Where do we go fummeer?”

Gummut:  A large institution operating out of Washington that consumes taxes at a fearful rate. “Bill’s got it made. He’s got a gummut job.”

Hot:  A muscle that pumps blood through the body, but also regarded as the center of emotion. “That gull (girl) has just broke his hot.”

Ignert:  Ignorant. “Ah’ve figgered out what’s wrong with Congress. Most of ’em are just plain ignert.”

Ka-yun:  A sealed cylinder containing food. “If that woman didn’t have a kay-un opener, her family would starve to death.”

Nawth:  Any part of the country outside the South _Midwest, California or whatever. If it’s not South, it’s Nawth. “People from up Nawth sure do talk funny.”

Of a moanin:  Of a morning, meaning in the morning. “My daddy always liked his coffee of a moanin.”

Parts:  Buccaneers who sailed under the dreaded skull and crossbones. “See that third baseman?  He just signed a big contrack with the Pittsburg Parts.”

PEEcans:  Northerners call them peCONNS for some obscure reason. “Honey, go out in the yard and pick up a passel of PEEcans. Ah’m gonna make us a pie.”

Quar:  An organized choral group, usually connected with a church or school. “Did you hear the news? The professor left his wife and run off  with the quar director.”

Ranch:  A tool used to lossen or tighten nuts and bolts. “Hand me that ranch, Homer.”

Retard:  No longer employed. “He’s retard now.”

Shainteer:  Indicates the absence of a female. “Is the lady of the house in?” “Nope. Shainteer.”

Tal:  What you dry off with after you take a share. “Would you bring me a tal, sweetheart?”

Tawt:  To instruct. “Don’t pull that cat’s tail. Ah tawt you better’n  that.”

Uhmewzin:  Funny, comical. “Few things are more uhmewzin than a Yankee tryin’ to affect a Southern accent, since they invariably address.”

Wahn:  What Jesus turned the water into, unless you’re Babdist who is persuaded it was only grape juice. “Could Ah have another glass of that wahn?”

Wawk:  A method of non-polluting travel by foot. “Why don’t we take an old-fashioned wawk?”

Wender:  A glass-covered opening in a wawl. “Open that wender, It’s too hot in here.”

Yontny:  Do you want any. “Yontny more cornbread?”

Zit:  Is it. “Zit already midnight, sugar? Tahm sure flies when you’re having fun.”


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