Talk:Newfoundland English

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Untitled[edit]

"Another interesting verb form is almost certain to have been taken from Hiberno-English, which, influenced by the Irish language avoids using the verb "to have" (Irish doesn't have a verb "to have" per se). Many Newfoundlanders from all areas will form past participles using "after" instead of "have" so for example "I'm after telling him to stop," instead of "I told him to stop," or "I have told him to stop." Another interesting feature is the pronounciaton of the letter "o" before "i" in words or names, the name "Mike" for example, sounds like "moike"."

This is clumsy and was evidently written by someone uneducated in linguistics. I'd suggest replacement with something based on the far more accurate version in the article on Hiberno-English --
Another peculiar aspect that I've noticed is the tendancy to add "month" after the name of a month. If you went somewhere in May you were "Gone somewhere in May month". If your birthday is in February, it's in "Feberay Month". I've also noticed a shift in the use of the word "evening". If you were going somewhere this afternoon, you may be going somewhere "this evening". I'll have to get in contact with my parents for more examples, as I wasn't raised in Newfoundland. Another (rather vivid) word I've heard used is "puss gut" for one who overeats. These may be particular to the Notre Dame Bay area, or more general, as I'm not entirely familiar with other regions. --Craig Hawco

  • Vocabulary, pronunciation and accent vary wildly from town to cove to bay to city. Some rural areas show a distinct Irish influence, while in others the English heritage stands out. I've never heard the phrase "puss gut"; but when I was younger, if I was gorging myself at the table, or eating too many sweets, my mother would call me a "greediguts", actually an archaic term in the rest of the Anglo world but with currency at least in St. John's. Check out the dictionary of Newfoundland English. I believe the word entries usually mention which particular geographic area they come from.SigPig 6 July 2005 01:47 (UTC)

---
in Newfoundland "that play was right boring" and "that play was some boring" both mean "that play was very boring"

This isn't just limited to Newfoundland. In my hometown in Nova Scotia we used the same adverbal-intensifier, e.g. "That was some good." --Stephen Gilbert

I've also heard right some boring in Nova Scotia --User:Coasting

Yep, forgot about that one. I never used the two together, but "right good", "right boring" were quite common. --Stephen Gilbert

Also, I'm not a linguist, but the English spoken on Cape Breton Island seems very close to the Newfoundland dialect. Maybe if I ever become a linguist, I'll look into that... --Stephen Gilbert


The syntax of this dialect allows constructs unique to Newfoundland, such as "Throw grandpa down the stairs, his hat", in which the hat makes the trip, not the grandfather.

This isn't unique to Newfoundland, this is done in New Zealand English too. "that play was right boring" as well.

--- Not just in Canada - it's considered to be a hallmark of the English spoken in Woonsocket, mainly among first and second-generation Franco-Americans. The stereotypical phrase for it is "throw me down the stairs my shoes". --134.117.200.178 (talk) 13:25, 5 September 2008 (UTC)

It also was a common construction among Yiddish-speaking Jewish immigrants to America when attempting English. So I'd suggest removing the word "unique". Tvoz/talk 20:10, 18 July 2009 (UTC)

Well, I think the point here is that its the combination of these language constructs that forms the newfoundland dialect. Obviously a lot of the same people (that influenced the dialect) who visited Newfoundland also visited Nova Scotia. Now the New Zealand connection might be a little harder to show. Course there's always the joke, "People who live in Cape Breton are people who left Newfoundland to go to Ontario for work and got lost." --Rocky Burt


I've got to come in at this point, as an Englishman many of these dialectal forms are familiar to me as many of them are still in common usage here, the use of the word "Right" in this context is used in everyday northern English dialects i.e. "Those flowers were right pretty" to this day. Its interesting about the west country English dialect/accent to be found in Newfoundland I heard it on TV once to me it sounds 70% what I would call "generic north american" and 30% west country English with it's long vowel sounds. The use of the verb "be" instead of "is/am" is also West Country i.e. "I be going to the shops" pron: "I bee goin' t' the shaaps" but is considered very archaic and of the few people who still speak it, country bumpkins. Your "Stay where you're to 'til I comes where you're at." is classic West Country. (Ultimately it derives from the old West Saxon dialect and the language of Beowulf. Modern English derives from an Anglian dialect which is why it sounds so different.) N.B. The word "Greedyguts" is in common usage everywhere here. --Blackjack Davy


I'm quite curious, where does the expression "I'se da by" come from? I take that it means "I'm the guy" and that it is a stereo-typical thing. It seems to be mentioned very often in Newfoundland folkish music. Dylan 04:21, 26 Sep 2004 (UTC)

  • What other song have you heard it in, besides that particular one? I am a Newfoundlander, myself (meself?); "I'se da b'y" is only one particular folksong, and the only one where I ever heard that phrase. Unfortunately, it's become our "Frère Jacques", if you will. It's also written as it's heard pronounced; in this way it becomes analogous to using "gwine" in transcriptions of old African-American songs. As a matter of fact, this is the only traditional Newfoundland folksong that I know of that spells out the lyrics in this barbarous fashion; furthermore, it's generally confined to the first verse: all subsequent verses are in proper English. SigPig 6 July 2005 01:38 (UTC)

"tabanask" - a kind of sled

Is this related to toboggan? Ubermonkey 15:32, 22 Dec 2004 (UTC)


Another example of errant verb conjugation is "he/she/it don't". Ubern00b 04:08, 23 February 2006 (UTC)

"B'y" < "Byeboat"??[edit]

Put the disputed tag here. There's no citation or reference, and this theory seems more outlandish than any that have attached themselves to the etymology of one brass monkey's balls. All the Google hits are verbatim reflections of this article. The Dictionary of Newfoundland English only gives the derivations of b'y from "boy" and maid from "maid(en)". This smacks of either original research or an elaborate hoax. However, I am not averse to being proven wrong; barring that, if this cannot be supported, then delete it. SigPig 08:51, 18 March 2006 (UTC)


Response to SigPig:

The vulgarity of the preceding post is unfortunate.

It is clear from the text of the main article that the alternative interpretation of the term b'y is precisely that: alternative.

The traditional interpretation works as follows. There were people who used a term like b'y meaning boy before they came to Newfoundland. Though they were not the majority of the island's population, their use of the term became the norm.

This overlooks the fact that the majority of these people (The Irish, or Hibernio English speakers) arrived after the beginning of so-called" classical Newfoundland history... By this I mean the settled fishers period after 1815. English immigrants outnumbered the Irish until the early mid 19th century I believe.

It also overlooks the fact that the Irish people experienced considerable discrimination and political repression through the early part of their presence in Newfoundland. To put it mildly, they were arguably not the ascendent cultural presence. This was true even in many so called "bay" communities.

Now. We know for a historical fact that the immediate pre large scale permanent settlement period was known as the period of the "byeboat". Occasionally, byeboat was spelled by-boat. It means secondary craft fishery. This fishery strongly resembled the inshore fishery that would define the Newfoundland fishery for the bulk of the 19th and 20th century.

Byeboat fishers were known as "byboatmen". The owner's of the vessels were "byboatkeepers". It is a rather short walk from "byboatman" to "by". It is also important to consider the extreme prevalence of the inshore fishery as a life long occupational pursuit for Newfoundland men.

Notwithstanding the linguistic roots of "by" or a term like it in Hibernio English, I would at the very least suggest that the original term and the economically rooted term could have dovetailed thus producing a culture that continues to use the term as a form of common address today. One does not encounter b'y on the streets of New York or Boston today despite their significant Hibernio English speaker immigrant populations. It is also instructive to consider that the term by is simply not as gendered a term as "boy" or even "man" today. It is used freely to describe women as well as men in a friendly context. To be one of the b'ys is to be a member of a close peer group. The term means a common person. A regular joe. Or, one of "us".

Again, this is an alternative interpretation. Further, it is an interpretation that is difficult to substantiate give the passage of time and the absence of documentary evidence. But you must ask yourself the question why does it persist so? Why have so many other terms derived from settler populations vanished while it remains? Why does it continue as The form of common address on the island of Newfoundland today of people who have never fished and are capable of speaking perfectly clear North American TV English? What spirit of community drives it onwards into the 21st century?

I would suggest it is our shared maritime spirit that does so. Once upon a time, many of our ancestors struck off from the main fleets in small craft to live in a harsh and unforgiving land.

These craft were called byboats. Those who used them were called byboatmen. The Dictionary of Newfoundland English confirms this.

As you have said, this "smacks of original research". You're right. That's because it is. I am the source of this idea. As far as I know, it is completely original. It occured to me several years ago during undergraduate studies. I knew damn well that this sort of thing would ruffle certain people's feathers for being unorthodox. This is not a "hoax". This is the cultural interpretation of a Newfoundland word in the context of Newfoundland history by a Newfoundlander.

It is an alternative intrepretation based upon the name of the once dominant economic institution of the island of Newfoundland and it's traditional form of familiar address. It is also based upon the survival of that form of address in the face of tremendous conforming liguistic pressure.

My name is Mark Gruchy. You can reach me at "markgruchy@hotmail.com".


Although your etymology may be correct, Wikipedia has a fairly clear policy about original research, which I think is what the original complaint was about. See: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/WP:No_original_research

---

I see. I suppose that makes a degree of sense.

The problem for this article though is that if you adhere to that policy stringently you are going to have remove about 3/4's of this article... With the exception of the strict liguistics at the top of the page, you won't find this information independently recorded anywhere.

I'm thinking this isn't the first time this problem has appeared on Wikipedia.

Mark Gruchy


"B'y" or "Bye" - I have a potential origin for that. Here in England theres a archaic prefix "By-" that means secondary as in "Bywater" or "Byway" - a Bywater meaning a lesser, smaller, waterway (which would fit in with your "Byboats"} and a Byway is a lesser route i.e. not a Highway. Local, as opposed to national, laws are sometimes known as "Bylaws". It's usage usually occurs only in historical contexts and phrases and is considered archaic. Blackjack Davy


I dunno, I'm a newfoundlander and I speak in a fluent newfoundland accent. It all makes sense to me, the wikipedia newfoundland language thing they got going on here but I have to disagree with the context of B'y in todays standard. It may have been gender and social based in history and the past but today "b'y" is a common word used by and towards both male and female and is completely neutral in a social class sense. I only heard the use of the word "maid" once or twice in my memory by an older generation (ie: grandparents) I'm only writing here 'cause it bothered me that it kinda gave the impression that b'y is still more or less and gender and class specific word.

---

Hello.

We are apparently in agreement on the non-gendered use of the word by today. I completely agree that it simply does not mean "boy" anymore, if it ever literally did, and I'd agree that maid is disappearing from the vernacular.

I'm not sure if you were inspired to post your response by the preceding section. I just wanted to make clear that we are in total agreement as to the use of by today.

Regards.

Mark Gruchy

---

Hi there - me names Jamer - I'z got family in Wexford and Waterford but live in the Westcountry. Some real interesting stuff here - There are many links between the language of Newfoundland and Devon/Cornwall. Most interestingly both dialects are declining and often actively repressed and soon may die out if we dont raise our heads and realise what heretige we have. The status of Westcountry 'english' is very low with no media coverage on TV/radio in an area of 4million people - speakers are branded as country simpletons. A similar process to how Irish culture was repressed by the Aristocracy. Anyhow for your interest I thought I'd give you a link to an amazing website to give you an understanding of Devon talk - a place where B'ys bes B'ys and maids be maids - clink on the sound samples for C & B and ee'll get the gist. The language of Wexford has changed over the last few centuries, it were a Gaelic stronghold and many emigrants might not have spoke much english - There was a rare dialect of westsaxon called Yola around the coast around Kilmore Quay, this was similar to Devon talk and died out in the 1850s when the area turned from celtic speaking to english. Today the accents of SE Ireland are quite flat and generic standard irish.

Anyhow - check this out fer inspiration. It will amaze you! http://www.bbc.co.uk/devon/voices2005/features/devon_dialect.shtml


Hey I'm from Ireland ans just want to say that the similarity between newfoundland english and hiberno english is really interestin. 'b'y' is still used here quite alot for boy but just boy it wouldn't be non-gendered like in NFLD.

I agree.....coming from Newfoundland and Labrador myself, I often use "b'y" as a genderless word. I do agree that it may have once referred to "boy", but over time as the slurring of several words and phrases became common place, the term "b'y" became a word without specific gender. For example:

"Hey B'ys, what's on the go?" (Talking to a group of young men)

or....

"C'mon b'ys, I got no time for this!" (Arguing to a group of women)

While these examples are hardly an indicator of it's true meaning, and are not the best sample of the term's usage, it does show how "b'y" can be used by the two genders at (or two) one another for several circumstances. It is, in my experience in using the term, used a sign of emotion, to indicate how the person is feeling based on their stressing and usage of the term in the context of the sentence, as shown in the two examples above. It can also be used in a plural sense, much like "buddy", to identify a group of unknown people ("Oh yes, the b'ys over there are fishin'!) or to identify a group of known people, but whose names are momentarily forgotten mid-speech (as is commonplace for Newfoundland speech due to it's speed and grammar).

All in all, "b'y"'s several meanings all stemmed from what Newfoundlanders know how to do best: take a term, slur it, and then incorporate it into other term's definitions, either replacing the term in commmon speech altogether or having another way of saying that word or phrase.

As for it's origns, debate will only solve that question......like much to do with folklore and language, it's history, for the most part, is washed away with the tide. Perhaps it's origns can be traced back to Ireland, England, New Zealand, or perhaps the word did originate in NL, and merely spread to other parts as traders and settlers moved to and from the nation/province.

So c'mon b'ys, let's have at the discussion, and solve this condudrum wrapped in a puzzle!

134.153.181.27 13:11, 26 May 2006 (UTC)

As I have mentioned on other pages that deal with etymology, use Occam's razor here; to paraphrase, when in doubt, go with the simplest explanation: contraction/reduction/slurring of "boy".

It's become gender-neutral, but so has the term "guys" in regular English, in some context (I can't count the number of times I've heard girls and women address each other as "you guys"). On the other hand, it may be a recent phenomenon, as people of my parent's generation (teenagers in the 50's) would use the term "girl" in the same context as "b'y" when addressing a woman - albeit only in an informal and familiar instance. And folks of my generation from various parts in or out of St. John's still use "maid" on occasion: I have heard a woman as young as mid-twenties use it on the phone (I assume she was addressing another female!).

Also, I also hear the term "B'ys" used in the sense of "Tsk, tsk": "B'ys. b'ys, b'ys..." (said in descending tones, often with a shake of the head).

Funny how the ubiquity of American TV can affect grammar & vocab, not so much accent or other speech patterns: if you've never heard a lad from Carbonear in a do-rag trying to speak Ebonics...

Oh, and b'ys, if you'd be so kind, sign your texts with four tildes (~). Cheers. SigPig 17:39, 26 May 2006 (UTC)



My wife and I are from Newfoundland, with me being a townie, and da wife a bay whop from Bonavista Proper. Maid is commonly used to this very day in the Bonavista area, and upalong Bonavista Bay and the Bonavista Penninsula. There, Maid is for women, and by is usually for men but can have other connotations depending on usage. In town (St. John's), by is genderless, and maid almost unheard of unless you meet someone from the Bonavista Area, or other parts of the province where 'maid' is still used. As a geeting, My wife will say to her mom or sister on the phone: "what youse doin maid?" (what are you up to?) Then they'll respond, "nuttin much maid, howse your by at?" (nothing much, how is your man, and what is doing these days?) 'by' referring to me . At the same time, by can still be used in 'howse ya gettin on by!' and other sayings - all depending on it's context whether it's male, female, or genderless.

G Rose —Preceding unsigned comment added by 24.222.165.235 (talk) 23:40, 21 March 2009 (UTC)

Nice to see the reference to the work "maid". My mother's people were from the Pouch Cove area, and the term "maid" for a girl (and "little maid" for a pre-schooler) is still a familiar one for me. The use of "by" to refer to one's husband is new on me. We once had an "old feller" doing some work on our roof. He called one time and asked to speak to "the skipper". I thought for a moment and gave the phone to my husband. — Preceding unsigned comment added by Amazon510 (talkcontribs) 19:16, 17 December 2012 (UTC)


The problem with Mark Gruchy's bye-boat keepers > b'y theory (besides having no evidence) is that it isn't logical. "We know for a historical fact that the immediate pre large scale permanent settlement period was known as the period of the "byeboat". Occasionally, byeboat was spelled by-boat. It means a secondary craft fishery. This fishery strongly resembled the inshore fishery that would define the Newfoundland fishery for the bulk of the 19th and 20th century."

1) There is no period known as "the period of the 'byeboat'", i.e., we don't know for an historical fact. 2) The bye-boat 'fishery' wasn't "secondary craft fishery" (though what that means isn't clear), it was an economic strategy, fishing crews that came from England (mostly) and Ireland (though Irish often crews of English fishery) on an annual basis as passengers on vessels owned by others, they were not permanent residents and were always a minority part of the fisher. 3) The bye-boat fishery had essentially ended by the main period of 'immigration', i.e., 1793-1815 (when it had been replaced by the planter or resident fisher).

So why the word 'bye-boat' would become the word 'b'ye' is obscure. Rather than that it is now simply another pronunciation of the word 'boy' and in places in Newfoundland 'b'ye' is actually said pretty close to the standard 'boy'. Carpasian (talk) 22:40, 23 October 2013 (UTC)

Northeastern "You"[edit]

(And in some communities on the island's northeast coast, you (singular), you (plural), and they become dee, ye, and dey, respectively.)

What and where? I've never heard of dee for you when I lived there, nor among the Newfoundlanders I meet now. I experienced that ye was used for you (plural), dey was a replacement for 'they', and dee replaces 'the' with long e. The first is different, the last two fit under the part about voiceless fricatives.--WPaulB 16:37, 15 August 2007 (UTC)

  • It's pretty archaic, but "dee" for "you (singular)" does/did indeed occur -- "dee" is simply "thee" with the initial fricative changed to a stop. Second-person possessive "dine" (from "thine") is also documented in Newfoundland. But I doubt you'd find any younger speakers using these forms nowadays. WillNL (talk) 23:27, 19 March 2008 (UTC)

()[edit]

There are way too many special notes/exceptions enclosed in () in this document. There has to be a way to clean it up so it flows better with only one topic per paragraph.--WPaulB 16:37, 15 August 2007 (UTC)

Luh / Look[edit]

No mention is made on this page on the "luh" version of "look." It is used as a replacement of "Look!" or "Pay attention/Take note!". It is either used alone or at the end of a sentence, whereas look usually begins one. It doesn't replace look in verb form in the middle of a sentence. "Luh!" - "Look!" "I already said that, luh!" - "Pay attention; that's what I said before." "There's a bunch of birds, luh!" - "Look! A bunch of birds!" But it wouldn't be conjugated as a verb replacing look.--WPaulB 16:37, 15 August 2007 (UTC)

I'm from Wexford in south-eastern Ireland, and I definitely remember "luh" being used as an alternative to "look" in the cases you mentioned. An Muimhneach Machnamhach (talk) 18:36, 29 February 2008 (UTC)

Removing the B'y stuff[edit]

Even if it wasn't original research (and it is), it's far too detailed of an explanation of one word for an article on a dialect. It's out.  OZLAWYER  talk  14:35, 3 June 2006 (UTC)

--
From the article: "One example of these constructs unique to Newfoundland is "Throw grandpa down the stairs, his hat," in which the hat makes the trip, not the grandfather."

This type of construct is also found in the Pennsylvania Dutch / Amish areas, where the canonical example seems to be "throw the cow over the fence some hay." I always presumed in that case it was a leftover from German grammar where markers can indicate direct and indirect object regardless of position. Point beng, it is not "unique to Newfoundland." I don't have the required confidence to rewrite the section though.  :) Paulc206 02:24, 14 August 2006 (UTC)

As I stated above, it also was a common construction among Yiddish-speaking Jewish immigrants to America when attempting English, and others have commented about other dialects/locales using this construct, so I have removed the word "unique". Tvoz/talk 17:30, 19 July 2009 (UTC)

Where ya to?[edit]

The article defines this expression as "Where are you going?", but someone recently added "Where are you?". Is it just me, or is this second definition the right one? I've never heard the expression "Where ya to?" being used in place of "Where are you going?". Am I missing something? --Crabbyass 06:31, 5 September 2006 (UTC)

I agree, it seems like the usualy way to ask someone where they are going is "Where you off to?" at least for the part of newfoundalnd I come from.
You're both right, I'm from Newfoundland.

reverted random, unjustified changes[edit]

There were several changes made to this article which I have reverted. one was the mishmash somebody made of the first paragraph explaining the dialectic distinctiveness of Newfoundland English. Another was the random deletion of the section describing the verb to have, and the last were the entries seeming to attempt to describe Newfoundland English as a dialect of the Canadian dialect of English. This is not the case. Newfoundland English, while it may be a dialect of english spoken in what is now Canada, is not a dialect of Canadian English any more than it is a dialect of Irish English or British English, it is separate and equal as a dialect to Canadian English, British English, American English, and so on...

No, it isn't. Canadian English means "English as used in Canada," not "English as used in Canada except Newfoundland." British English, for example, refers to a whole bunch of dialects that can be *very* different from one another. Although Newfoundland English *is* conspicuously different than English as spoken in the rest of Canada, Newfoundland English vs. mainland Canadian English does make more sense than Newfoundland English vs. Canadian English.
The sentence It would be reasonable to say that for many speakers of American English, Newfoundland English dialects are among the most difficult English dialects to understand is unsourced and speculative. JackLumber. 14:27, 5 February 2007 (UTC)


===Canadian English means more than just "English as used in Canada". There are people who speak American English in Canada, and people who speak Hong Kong Engish and just about every other dialect of English on earth. Canadian English is a specific dialect or a collection of dialects which developed within 'Canada',and Newfoundland English has a different history and development from it. Canadian English refers to a specific dialect of English in common use, and Newfoundland English is a different dialect in common use. As for the sentance about the difficulty of Newfoundland English to understand, while I didn't originally write this sentence, I have heard it described as such, I believe even in the Dictionary of Newfoundland English's foreward there's a description of it as such? I'm not in a position to find a source for it at the moment so if no one else has then I understand why it shouldn't stay there until it's sourced.

Canadian English is often taken to mean English as spoken in Canada except Newfoundland, because Canadian speech is very uniform in Canada, if compared to the idiosyncratic dialect spoken in Newfoundland. But Newfoundland English vs. Canadian English is a little confusing, at least in a contemporary context. I personally have no trouble understanding a Newfoundlander. Some English dialects in East Africa, West Africa, India, and even England, are much, much more difficult to understand. JackLumber. 14:56, 5 February 2007 (UTC)


===I understand what you mean. But, as you stated, "Canadian English is often taken to mean English as spoken in Canada except in Newfoundland." This is exactly it, it is not confusing to call it Newfoundland English vs. Canadian English because this is how it is described and understood by not only people in Newfoundland but Canada as a whole.

I also had changed it back to "Canadian English" because of a less theotetical concern. The article begins by describing Newfoundland English as “dialects of English found in the province of Newfoundland and Labrador." Over half of this area as described IS “the mainland”. So, describing Canadian English as “mainland Canadian English” instead of plainly Canadian English is even more confusing. To do so makes the article sound as if it is suggesting that the varieties of Newfoundland English spoken in Labrador are so-called “mainland Canadian English”. This is messy, confusing and unclear, and I submit that simply "Canadian English" makes more sense because of these reasons.

I agree with you on the section about the difficulty of Newfoundland English for a standard American English speaker to understand, as long as it is unsourced it should remain off. It does depend on where in Newfoundland the people you speak to are from in terms of how difficult they are to understand, there are many Newfoundlanders who Americans have no trouble understanding, but there are Newfoundlanders who standard American speakers can literally not understand at all. Your experience depends on where you are from and where the Newfoundlanders you encounter are from, how long they have been away from Newfoundland and how they are trying to speak. For example, I am going to university on 'the mainliand' and when most people speak to me for the first time, they say I have 'no Newfoundland accent' at all. This is because I consciously switch back and forth between Canadian English and Newfoundland English, and speak almost perfect Canadian English with a few exceptions that only the most careful listener would pick up on as long as I am away from Newfoundland.

All of this aside, I agree with you that the section on the difficulty of comprehension should be taken out until if and when it can be sourced. But, for the reasons above, I strongly believe that Canadian English vs. Newfoundland English makes sense, and is the most clear option.

(sorry I keep forgetting to sign, I never remember!)

Mícheál 15:16, 5 February 2007 (UTC)

OK---Probably mainland Canadian vs. Newfoundland is not the best tradeoff, but was used by Boberg [1]. Anyway, do as you please... as long as you keep the article WP:NPOV-compliant. JackLumber. 15:27, 5 February 2007 (UTC)

unexplained link[edit]

Removing "Nissan X Trail Bonavista Edition Commercial" from external links. 87.114.4.149 (talk) 23:23, 15 January 2008 (UTC)

Diddies[edit]

The article mentions "diddies" as meaning "nightmare" and says it is of unknown origin. In Wexford in southeastern Ireland, "diddies" is slang for women's breasts, although largely confined to children and teenagers. There is little doubt that the word as used in Wexford is a corruption of the Irish language word dide /didə/(plural didí /didi:/) meaning "nipple". Now, the Newfoundland use of the word might have a completely different etymology but I'm adding this much here in case the Wexford word somehow changed in its meaning when it reached Newfoundland, although it is difficult how breasts could metamorphose into something denoting a nightmare! Also, I was completely taken aback to see the phrase "How she cuttin'?" which is common in Hiberno-English. "Boy", of course, is very common in Ireland, particularly so in the south and southeast. In Munster Irish, it is extremely common to address another man with "A bhuachaill"; "Conas tánn tú, a bhuachaill?", "How are you, boy?". "Boy" is only used with men, however, never in reference to women, although in Wexford, "the lads" can refer to either men or women. One would even ask of a group of women: "Well, how are the lads getting on?". In the singular, "lad" only ever refers to a man, a young man in particular: "He's a good lad, that fellow". Anyway, that's my two cent worth! An Muimhneach Machnamhach (talk) 18:54, 29 February 2008 (UTC)

I have always grown up (mostly in the Ottawa Valley) understanding that the word 'diddy' or 'diddies' referred to a song. Seems this word certainly has circulated! —Preceding unsigned comment added by 72.139.59.20 (talk) 01:20, 16 July 2008 (UTC)
And diddy is a variation on ditty, which is based on French "dire" (to speak) and goes all the way back to Latin. (http://www.thefreedictionary.com/ditty) —Preceding unsigned comment added by WPaulB (talkcontribs) 06:12, 4 October 2008 (UTC)

Newfinese and Ebonics?[edit]

I've noticed in recent years that there seems to be this bizzare blend of Newfoundland English and American Ebonics emerging among younger generations. Is there any research on this? —Preceding unsigned comment added by 198.103.221.52 (talk) 13:54, 25 August 2008 (UTC)

Not that I've heard recently, but I can always aks someone.--WPaulB (talk) 14:35, 25 September 2008 (UTC)
Given the IP's activity, I'd say this is a false claim. Unless the Afro-American population of the province has increased in a major way in urban centres, I doubt this has happened.--WPaulB (talk) 06:09, 4 October 2008 (UTC)
Our Afro-American population is really small. —Preceding unsigned comment added by 24.137.108.117 (talk) 22:50, 19 April 2009 (UTC)

Re "Phonological charateristics"[edit]

Hmm, would an IPA table, as well as a list of phonemes in Newfoundland English, help with the article? ---Daniel Blanchette 16:55, 12 September 2009 (UTC) —Preceding unsigned comment added by DanCBJMS (talkcontribs)

Origin and/or Meaning of phrase[edit]

I got a question here, where does old trout and silly goose come from? My mum is always saying both of those. Buffhistorian (talk) 12:03, 7 March 2011 (UTC)Buffhistorian


Differences between accents and words by region[edit]

There are great differences in accents as well as words and various terms even between communities that are no more then a half hour apart. I am from the Irish shore and the word b'y is certainly gender neutral and does not mean boy though it can have different meanings depending on the context. For example "hey me b'y" does not mean "hey my boy" but instead translates over into the equivalent of saying "how are you doing my friend?" or "how's it going lad?". Or that's what it tends to mean where i live. the word b'y (that's how i spell it) is often used in a sentence in the manner of "go on b'y. I'm after telling him not to go at dat". Where i live on the southern shore words such as that, there and any other words that begin with th end up sounding like they start with a d. Hence why there sounds like dare and that sounds like dat. Another thing is the term me ducky seems to be used almost exclusively in st.johns as Ive never heard anyone from the shore use it at all. A townie accent sounds more like a English accent then a Irish one that's for sure.

Gaeilge Thalamh an Éisc or Newfoundland Gaelic appears to have been spoken mostly on the south eastern part of the Avalon Peninsula. It was supposedly much like Muster Irish which makes sense as that's where most of the people in that area would have came from. So it's not hard to understand why the accent from this region sounds alot like people from the SE of Ireland.

This article definitely needs a clean up but it's very hard to track down reliable sources for this. There are so many variations of the Newfoundland dialect stemming from many different languages all across the province that it would take alot of effort to explain the various different words and phrases used in Newfoundland English. Perhaps someone with more patience and a better access to reliable sources would like to have a go at cleaning up this article. Listing various sayings and words by region and what language they are thought to come from as well would be a very good idea in my opinion atleast. (Nomadic newfoundlander (talk) 18:10, 21 May 2012 (UTC))

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