Tuesday, February 01, 2011

A Bit Of A Lout

The Kerry Sister was telling me that the other day the Neesh and herself were amusing themselves with an Ulster-Scots Dictionary. Now the Neesh comes from Antrim and it's a well-known fact that Antrim people are practically McCooeys and know no Ulster-Scots at all so she was amazed at the richness of the 'hamely tongue'.

"Mind you," says the Kerry Sister, "We couldn't help but notice that most of the best words had the same meaning."

"Is that so?" says I. "And what would that have been then?"

"Oh," says she. "Most of them had a definition of 'A foolish, awkward fellow. A bit of a lout."

Well, it's said that the Inuit people have many, many words for 'snow', and Ulster-Scots appear to have many, many words for 'fool'. I wonder if this has any significance?

I thought I'd do a little research during the ad breaks of 'Big Fat Gypsy Weddings' and, advised by Bert, started with 'G'. It proved a rich seam.

My reference was 'A Concise Ulster Dictionary' a Christmas gift from Ganching 14 years ago.

Gaum - a fool, a simpleton
Gomach - a dupe, a gullible person
Gowk - stupid person, idiotic
Gornical - odd looking, dim-witted person
Gype - a clumsy awkward person
Galumpus - a stupid person
Gazeby - queer looking, a tall awkward person
Gaberloon - a stupid awkward fellow
Gah - a silly person
Gumph - a stupid person
Gulpin - thick-witted stubborn person
Glipe - an uncouth fellow
Gloit - a blockhead, an awkward fellow, a boor
Gludgeon - a clumsy awkward person
Glunter - a big awkward person
Gorgie - a foolish person, a clumsy silly person
Gowtril - good for nothing, a lout
Gunshion - thick-witted person
Gorkin - a big stupid person

My father would have regularly used 'gornical', 'gype' and 'gulpin'. 'Gornical' and 'gulpin' were terms of derision but I'm sure I remember him using 'gype' as an expression of endearment. Maybe I misunderstood him. I've heard Bert use 'gaum', 'gowk' and 'glunter'. He would usually be speaking of Clint.


ganching said...

You missed out "a ganch".

Nelly said...

A 'ganch', as you well know, is a talkative, not a foolish person. I also missed out 'gobshite'.

Anonymous said...

I recall my grandfather, in particular, using "galumpus" quite frequently. With eight children, his patience must have been tried from time to time. :-)


Nelly said...

I cannot wait to move on to another letter but what could better the G?