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Sound Bites

The British Library

01.10.13 22.10.13

The Survey of English Dialects (SED) was a groundbreaking nationwide survey of the vernacular speech of England, undertaken by researchers based at the University of Leeds under the direction of Harold Orton. From 1950 to 1961 a team of fieldworkers collected data in a network of 313 localities across England, initially in the form of transcribed responses to a questionnaire containing over 1300 items. The informants were mostly farm labourers, predominantly male and generally over 65 years old as the aim of the survey was to capture the most conservative forms of folk-speech. Almost all the sites visited by the researchers were rural locations, as it was felt that traditional dialect was best preserved in isolated areas. It was initially the intention to include urban areas at a later date, but this plan had to be abandoned on economic grounds. This catalogue presents detailed information of selected bites (recordings) from the Survey Of English Dialects. Further information can be found online at:



Bite C908/43 North East - Durham Duration 00:05:55 Recording date


Recording locations  Washington, Durham: OS Grid Reference(431500,557500) Producers  University of Leeds Recordist  Ellis, Stanley (male, SED fieldworker) Speakers  Towns, Jerry (b.1876, male retired miner), Todd, Joe (b.1880, male, retired miner) Description  Jerry and Joe describe the physically demanding nature of coal mining and explain the lottery of allocating employment at the coalface once per quarter. Lexis: aye = yes; cable = set area of coalface assigned to particular team of hewers per quarter year; fore = before; hew = to cut, hack out with cutting tool; hewer = miner, collier; naebody = nobody; putter = lad employed to push filled tram or barrow of coal from workings; gan = to go; divvent = don’t; and all = too, as well, also; chuck up = to pack in, give up, stop; sae = so; mebbies~mebbe = maybe; marrow = workmate; intiv = into (+ V) Phonology: /r/–[R] (“Northumbrian burr”); glottal reinforcement of /k/(second [sE?k=nd] and working [wO:?k@n]); also of /p/ (clippers [klI?p@z]) and of /t/ (putter [pU?t@]) MOUTH [u:]; GOAT [8@]; PRICE [EI]; FACE [e: ~ e@]; NURSE [O:] <-al> + C [a:]; <-ong> – [aN]; <-wa->–[wa]; < - ow>– [@] note also have [hEv], cable [kjEb=l > ke@b=l], know [na: > n8@], thought [T@Ut], blow [bla:], loose [laUs], right [Ri:t],


bad one [bad@n] and good one [gUd@n] and quarter [kwa:t@] grammar have as full verb (I didn’t have a great lot of cables; he hadn’t a coal loose in the place) third person plural was (the coals was that hard; them at was in luck) for to + infinitive (for to just get your tub full) third person plural is (big hewers is men what used to get a lot of coal; them that’s living in the sunshine) relative pronoun– what (men what used to get a coal; secret weapons what they used to blow the coal ); zero relative pronoun ( there was one young to me ); relative pronoun – at (them at was in

lot of up lad _ came luck)

preterite come (when the putter come in; when the lads come back) first person singular object pronoun – us (get us?) use of thou (thou knows) verbal inflection (I says; marrows works double; marrows consists of three sets) determiner and demonstrative pronoun, those – them (them that’s been living in the sunshine; them that’s been shut up; to them places; them at was in luck) third person plural has(them that’s been shut up) there is + plural complement (there’s eighteen sets); there was + plural complement (what places there was to cable) of + pronoun–on (you couldn’t make a better on it) note use and phonetic quality of utterance final discourse markers you know [j@ na:] and thou knows [Da na:z]. Note also the phrase time after number~times out of number = time after time

Bite C908/48 North - Sheffield Duration 00:09:05 Recording date


Recording locations  Sheffield, Yorkshire: OS Grid Reference(435500,387500) Producers

University of Leeds


Ellis, Stanley (b.1926

Speakers  Smedley, W. S. (b.1888, male, steel worker) Description  The speaker describes the process of making steel. The original recording appears to have been paused on one occasion. Rotherham is a large town to the northeast of Sheffield. Lexis: tapping = act of piercing vessel to draw off liquid metal; ladle = mould to hold molten metal; melter = person who smelts metals in factory ; fracture = sample of metal for testing; aught = anything; slag = vitreous substance separated from metal in the process of smelting; whilever = while, whilst; naught = nothing; lander = channel for conveying molten metal from furnace to mould; teemer = person who empties, pours or unloads Phonology: definite article – [? ~t]; H-dropping; <-Vt#> + V –[4 ~ r/]; Yorkshire assimilation (pull that old slag[OUlt slEg] off; a good crane [gUt kr/e:n] driver); to + infinitive – [?] (sometimes I might have [?] say) FACE [e: > E:]; START[a:]; GOAT [O: ~ OU]; MOUTH [a:]; PRICE [A:I]; GOOSE [Uu]; happY [I]<wa-> –[wa]; <-ever-> – [Iv@]; <-ook> –[u:k] note also heat[I@t], furnacES [f@:nIs@z], sweaters [swI@t@z], putting [pU4In], meltED [mElt@d], do [dU], take [tEk] and break [br/Ek] and make [mEk] and making [mEkIn], twenty


[twEnte], with [wI], half [E@f], yet [j@t], give [gI], over [o.@], in [I], draw a sample [dr/O:w @ samp=l], us [@z], aught [OUt] and naught [nOUT], slag [slEg ~ slag], one [wQn], going to [gUn@], because [bIkUs], lose [lOIIz], too cold [t@ kOUld], particular [p@tIk@l@], always [O:l@s], right [r/EIt], goes [gUz] and go [gU@], steam [stI@m] and Sheffield [SEfIld] Grammar: verbal inflection with plural noun (down comes them‘  trodes) determiner, those – them (down comes them‘ trodes)  ero article (_melter has sole responsibility for that z furnace; it looks like half _ egg; to send us _ analysis; _lander’s like a spout; can’t shut _ steam off; he’s _ responsibility for that) ender assigned to it (we might want to boil her down; g give her another dose oil; let’s boil her down a bit further; until I get her somewhere within a limit; when we get her down to just what we want her ;to get her just what they want for tapping purposes; she’s too hot; we’ve got her too hot; se of thou (it looks like half egg when thou’s took it u out) past participle took (when thou’s took it out) zero of (give her another dose _ oil) hird person plural were (whether it were hot or whether t it were cold; whether it were too hot) litic have (if he’s a running nozzle ; he’s c responsibility for that; he’s a big responsibility; he’s as much responsibility, really, as a melter has for the furnace – he’s as much responsibility for his ladle = he has) inverted verb phrase as tag (he’s a big responsibility, has a teemer) note use and phonetic quality of utterance final discourse markers you know [j@ nO:] and like [lAIk]. Note also construction I’ll not send a sample in yet = I won’t send a sample in yet

Bite C908/51 North West - Cheshire Duration 00:04:19 Recording date


Recording locations  Farndon, Cheshire: OS Grid Reference(341500,354500) Producers

University of Leeds


Ellis, Stanley (b.1926

Speakers  Davies, Walter (b.1889, male, farmer) Description  Walter talks about calving - he describes the normal procedure for a straightforward birth and outlines a number of potential complications and solutions to problem births. Rossett is a village just to the northwest of Farndon. Lexis: break = to lose calf prematurely, abort (of cows); shape ~ passage = vulva(of cow); ah = yes; reed ~ calf - bed = uterus (of cow); anyhow = anyway; shippon = cow - shed; heifer = young cow that has not had calf; by Gum! = by God! (exclamation of disbelief, surprise); scrawp = to scrape;straight = straightaway Phonology: H-dropping; < -ng#> + V – [Ng]; <cl -> –[tl] GOAT [o:]; FACE [i:]; PRICE [Ai]; START [a:]; GOOSE [Iu:]; MOUTH [{U]; STRUT [U]; BATH [a] <-ook> –[u:k] note also because [bIkQz], generally [dZEn=L/i], very near [vE.nI@], tongs [tUNgz], go [gU], shan’t [SQn@], one [wQn], always [O:lw@z ~ O:lwIz], either [i:D@], old [EUd] Grammar: have as full verb (we have a rule here)


zero plural marker on nouns (the next three week; seven mile away) third person singular feminine subject pronoun – hoo (hoo’s a - bulling again; if hoo breaks again; hoo was giving seven gallons of milk; I thought hoo’d last till morning; hoo was all right; hoo was just feigning a - calving; look what hoo’s doing; hoo was feigning again; hoo had flooded the place with blood; I knowed hoo’d scrawped her reed; in an hour hoo’d cleansed; hoo’d’ve been dead when I got up the next morning; two minutes after hoo’d calved, hoo was dead; when hoo’s calving) <a + - ing> (hoo’s a -bulling again; hoo was just feigning a - calving; always harder time a - calving if they come backwards) relative pronoun – what (it’s generally a bit of acidity of the womb what causes them) zero indefinite article (with _ instrument in their inside) adjective as adverb (it’s very near like a pair of sugar tongs; I very near lost a valuable calf about a month ago) determiner, those – them (he leaves them instruments sticking out in her shape about that far) preterite come (he come back) preterite knowed (I knowed that; I knowed what was the matter; I knowed hoo’d scrawped her reed; he knowed I’d got some valuable stock) preterite give (then he give her an injection) preterite seed (if you seed one) double subjunctive in conditional clause (if I hadn’t’ve sat up with that cow) note use and phonetic quality of utterance final discourse marker like [lAIk] and form of address mister [mIst@]. Note also constructions he’ll not calve tonight = he won’t calve tonight and there generally comes a drop of blood = there is generally a drop of blood.



Bite C908/52 East Midlands - Nottinghamshire Duration 00:08:30 Recording date


Recording locations  Oxton, Nottinghamshire: OS Grid Reference(463500,351500) Producers

University of Leeds


Ellis, Stanley (b.1926

Speakers  Strutt, Percy (b.1885, male, retired farm worker) Description  Percy talks about his knack with difficult horses. The original recording appears to have been paused on one occasion and the recording stops before the speaker has finished his account. Hawksworth is a village to the southeast of Oxton and Winkburn, Hockerton and Maplebeck are all villages just to the northeast. Lexis: cause= because; stave= handle, shaft; standing= stall in stable; tit= small horse; besom stave= broom handle; hiding= beating, thrashing; theirsens= themselves; and all= too, also, as well; score= twenty (or multiple thereof); aught= anything; naught= nothing; halter= tethering rope used to tie up horse; afore= before; gaffer= boss; manager (colloquial); hae= to have; (any) road= (any)way; mam= mother (term of endearment); naught= nothing; twitch= noose used to restrain horse during painful operation; hissen= himself; colt= young horse; filly= young female horse Phonology: occasionally definite article >[D]; H-dropping; <-Vt#> + V> [r/] PRICE [A: ~ A: I]; FACE [E:]; START [a:]; GOAT [o: ~ @u]; MOUTH [{:]; NURSE [I: ~ @:]; STRUT [U]; happY [E ~ I] <-old> [EUd]


note also (be) cause [k@s], rough one [r/Uf@n] and black one [blak@n], horse [Qs], doesn’t [dOnt], goes [gUz] and going [gUIn], years [jI:z], in [I], one [wQn], half [a:f], won’t [we:nt], aught [@Ut] and naught [n@Ut], broke [br/Qk], bought [b@Ut] and thought [T@Ut], over here [Qv@r/I@] and there [DI@], fodder [fQD@],had [Ed], halter [EL/t@],took [tUu:k], found [fUnd], mother [mQD@], works [wI:z] and worked [w@kt], with [wI], take [tEk] and make [mEk], home [Qm], only [OnI], wasn’t [wQnt], stone [stQn], couldn’t [kUnt], took [tUuk] Grammar: zero indefinite article (I were _ rough one; I could hit _ horse and hold him; if a man’s got to hit _ horse); zero definite article (what’s _ matter?; _ gaffer were at home) zero to + infinitive (you’ve got _ be friends); for to + infinitive (for to cart milk, sort of thing) have as full verb (I’d eight in stables) preterite and past participle gen (I gen them a feed; I gen them the bloodiest hiding; they gen me a drink; I’d gen him a good nick) zero plural marker on nouns (120 pound; six pound apiece; eight stone) multiple negation (they’d never done naught; he couldn’t make naught on him) verbal inflection with plural pronoun (they says,“Who are you?”; I says,“My name’s Strutt”) third person singular were (his name were (?) Tommy Terror; gaffer were at home; this chap were coming; his name were (?) Darnell; he thought it were me); first person singular were (I were going down Long Langley) of + pronoun > on (he thought the world on you; he couldn’t make naught on him; I put one on them on his nose; I put one on them on his ear; bring both on them) preposition, past > by (I’d come by it) frightened of frightened at (he was frightened at him) preterite begun (he begun to sweat; sweat begun to drop under his belly)

Bite C908/57 Central - Rutland Duration 00:09:34 Recording date


Recording locations  Lyddington, Rutland: OS Grid Reference(487500,297500) Producers

University of Leeds


Ellis, Stanley (b.1926

Speakers  Manton, W. (b.1890, male, retired farm labourer) Description  Mr Manton describes how he learnt to lay a hedge and describes how he regularly won prizes in local competitions. The original recording appears to have been paused on one occasion. Lexis: lay= to plash a hedge (interlace or intertwine stems and branches of young trees and brushwood to fill in gaps at bottom of hedge); hatchet= light, short-handled axe; stoven= stump of tree from which young shoots spring; road= way; wych elm= type of broad-leaved elm, witch hazel, Scots elm; cause= because; chain= linear measure of 66 feet (four poles); want= to need Phonology: occasional H- dropping; hypercorrect [h] (honest [hQnIst]) PRICE [A:I]; GOAT [{U]; START [a:]; FACE [{I]; MOUTH [a:@]; STRUT [U]; BATH [a > a:] <-thing > [TINk] note also one [wQn > wUn], go [gU ~ gu:] and going [gUIn], (be)cause [bIkUz ~ kUz], perhaps [pr/aps], hollOW [hQl@], hazel [hEz@L/], take [tEk] and make [mEk], horse [Qs], only [QnI], always [O:l@z], have [Ev], do [dU], I should think [aSTINk], young ones [jUN @nz] and for [fQ] Grammar: relative pronoun > as (a hedge as you’d lay, everything as I do practically; there wasn’t so many as’d do that work); relative pronoun > what (this man what I’m a- cutting for now; I’ve done pieces in this hedge what I’m a- doing now)


zero auxiliary (you _ got to use a knife; you _ got to see in front of you) first person singular auxiliary have > am (I’m got prizes; I’m entered you in the novice class) double subjunctive on conditional clause (if I’d’ve wanted= if I’d wanted) <a +-ing> (this man what I’m a- cutting for now; I’m a-going to set in here; now they’re a- getting two pound, two pound ten; it just depends on the class of hedge you’re a- cutting; I’ve done pieces in this hedge what I’m a- doing now; if you’re a- chopping it down) first person singular were (I were several weeks doing it) preterite done (he done a piece of it– done about twelve yards I should think) third person singular be + negative particle > ain’t (there’s a competition next week, ain’t there?) there was + plural complement (there wasn’t so many as’d do that work) zero plural marker on nouns (two pound, two pound ten; every ten year; fifty year)

Bite C908/55 West Midlands - Staffordshire Duration 00:03:44 Recording date


Recording locations  Alton, Staffordshire: OS Grid Reference(407500,342500) Producers

University of Leeds


Ellis, Stanley (b.1926

Speakers  Warren, L. (b.1877, male, retired sexton) Description  Mr Warren relates a couple of anecdotes about a local man who had a reputation for trying to con people. Froghall (to the northwest), Oakamoor (just to the northwest) and Ellastone (just to the east) are all villages close to Alton. The Towers refers to Alton Towers, historically the seat of the Earls of Shrewsbury. Lexis: slack= refuse coal; tithe -barn = barn for holding parson’s tithe corn (share of harvest traditionally given to parson); drug=low truck for carrying heavy articles phonology definite article > [D ~ T]; H-dropping; to + infinitive > [?] (going [?] be left up at Froghill and Oakamoor together; they were taking the footballers somewhere [?] play; they wanted him [?] pay for the thing over again; that’s what he tried [?] do; he manages [?] get it home) MOUTH [a:]; FACE [ei]; FLEECE [EI]; PRICE [A: I]; START [a:]; STRUT [U] <-old> >[EUd] note also weren’t [wA:n@], (same as) they are [D@r/ a:] (now), going [gUIn] and go [gU:], wagons [wagInz], one [wQn], there were [DI w@], there [DI@], don’t [dUn@] and didn’t [dIdn@], in [I], thought [TOUt], fortnight [fO:tnIt], couldn’t [kUnt], onto a [Qnt@r/ @], bus [bUz], horse [Qs],


taking [tEkIn], nothing [nUTIn], barrel [bar/Il], his one [Iz @n], home [oUm] and traveller [tr/avIl@] grammar relative pronoun > as (this chap as told me about these wagons of slack; I think he produced him the bill as he’d settled; there were another fellah as lived down here; he gets onto this same fellah as had this odd barrel; I think he produced him the bill as he’d settled); zero relative pronoun (there were a fellah _ had a little smallholding) third person singular were (there were another...there were a proper tithe barn; I don’t know what firm it were; he reckoned he were travelling for a firm in the village; I don’t know what it were; he were in a flutter; there were another fellah as lived down here; little eighteen I think it were) have as full verb (they’d a servant woman there) past participle gotten (he’d gotten round him for to have some beer) for to+ infinitive (he’d gotten round him for to [f@?] have some beer; I happened for to [f@?] be in the house at the time; this old youth asked him if he’d order him a little barrel for to [?] come with his one at same time) zero article (they thought they’d give a bit of _ order; they gen him _ order for some sort of beer; he was just in_ hurry; he used to be a keeper at _ Towers; a little barrel for to come with his one at _ same time) preterite gen (they gen him order for some sort of beer) preterite come(after this beer come, they paid him for it; her come in and heard what he said; when summer come along) feminine subject pronoun > her (her come in and heard what he said) multiple negation (he didn’t get nothing) ditransitive produce(I think he produced him the bill as he’d settled = I think he produced for him the bill that he’d settled)



Bite C908/23 South East - Berkshire Duration 00:06:10 Recording date


Recording locations  Buckland, Berkshire: OS Grid Reference(434500,198500) Producers

University of Leeds

Recordist  Barry, Michael (male, SED fieldworker) Speakers  Carter, Albert (b.1877, male, carter), unidentified (female) Description  Albert talks about working conditions when he first started out as a carter and describes a number of jobs on the farm, such as ploughing and stacking. Lexis: cause = because; twelve-month = year; day-man = farm labourer; rick = stack; half-a-crown = 2/6 d Phonology: definite article + V –[D] (the other [DVD@`] and by the acre [bI De:k@`]); rhoticity; H - dropping MOUTH [@U ~ {U]; PRICE [@I]; CHOICE [QI]; GOAT [o: > @U]; FACE [e: ~ eI]; PALM [a:], START [A`: > a`:]; NURSE [@`:]; NORTH [O`: > A`:]; BATH [a:]; lettER [@`] <-ow>– [@] note also (be)cause [kOs ~ bIkOs], with [wI], us [Vs], (a-) going [gOUIn ~ @gwaIn], kept [kEp], it was [tw@z], half-a-crown [a:f@kr/{Und] and Berkshire [b@`:kS@`] Grammar: third person singular have (it certainly haven’t improved a lot of it; can’t say as it have improved it) complementiser, that – as (can’t say as it have improved it)


third person plural was (things was better off in they days nor it is today; when the wages was lower people was combined; all our corn ricks was always built on a round scale; it varies from what the crops was; the wagons then was different nor they are today); there was + plural complement (there was two shepherds and a cowman; there was four men – three beside myself) determiner, those – they (in they days); – them (in them days) comparative particle, than – nor (things was better off in they days nor it is today; when the wages was lower people was combined and made better use of a lot of things nor they do today with all this big money; the farm land was in better state nor what it is today; if they beat me in ploughing I was more nor pleased; you didn’t used to get anything more nor three shillings; the wagons then was different nor they are today) preterite begun (things begun to improve and jump up) relative pronoun – as (not with the wages as is now) third person plural is (not with the wages as is now); there is + plural complement (there’s no stable chaps) <a + -ing> (they don’t realise, you see, what the country is a- paying for them; in them days as I was a-speaking of;everyone was a-taking an interest; we had all this agoing on through the summer; two on the rick beside myself and one a-putting on them off onto the rick) <a> + past participle (I’d a-got four and three–seven chaps in the cart stables) otiose of – on (two on the rick beside myself and one a-putting on them off onto the rick = one putting them off onto the rick) preposition, by – with (drawn about with the horses, not with a tractor like they are today)

Bite C908/31 South - Hampshire Duration 00:03:30 Recording date


Recording location  Hatherden, Hampshire: OS Grid Reference (434500,150500) Producers

University of Leeds


Wright, John (male, SED fieldworker)

Speakers  C.H.D. (b.1898, male, former builder & gamekeeper) Description  Charlie talks about his work with sheep and as a gardener. He also tells an anecdote about a trip to Bedwyn. Clanville (just to the southwest of Hatherden) and Great Bedwyn (to the northwest) are nearby villages. Lexis: hurdle = fence used for sheep pen; cake = compressed seed (such as cotton-seed or linseed) in flattened form used for feeding sheep; Hampshire Downs = breed of large sheep with heavy, coarse fleece; locus-bean = long flat horn-like pod containing numerous hard seeds embedded in pulp (fruit of carob-tree); this here = this; pea-huck = empty pea pod; about = around; van = covered horse-drawn vehicle for conveyance of goods; ah = yes; party = person; nipper = young child Phonology H - dropping; rhoticity; occasional T- glottaling; <f->−[v] (first [v@`:st] andfeed [vi:d]); also <s-> − [z] (six[zIks], see [zi:] and herself [@`:zEL/f]) and voiceless <th-> −[D] (thing [DIN]) MOUTH [EU]; PRICE [VI]; FACE [e:I]; START [A`:]; NURSE [@`:]; LOT [A]; lettER [@`] note also this here [DIs j@`:], country [kVn?r/i], syrup [s@`:r/p],


after [a:?@`], butter [bVd@`], horse(s) [O`:sIz ~A`:s], ah [a:],little [lI?=L/] and gived [gId] Grammar: there is + plural complement (there were more sheep about in them days than there is now) determiner, those – them (in them days) verbal inflection with plural pronoun ((we) gets up to Bedwyn) preterite come (along come a party along on the road;her little nipper come along) masculine object pronoun – hine (she says,“What a nice horse that is,” and patted hine on the neck; this here party gived him such a smack up the ear-hole and knock hine for six); feminine subject pronoun –her(her just had a bloody kid (?) with her, her have; her was so hot, her was, her couldn’t help herself, her couldn’t) use of ye (don’t ye go talking to her) third person singular have (her just had a bloody kid (?) with her, her have) preterite gived (this here party gived him such a smack up the ear-hole and knock hine for six) zero past tense marker (this here party gived him such a smack up the ear-hole knock hine for six = and knocked him for six)

Bite C908/65 South West - Somerset Duration 00:06:58 Recording date


Recording locations  Blagdon, Somerset: OS Grid Reference(350500,158500) Producers

University of Leeds


Ellis, Stanley (b. 1926

Speakers  King, George (b.1872, male, retired farm worker) Description  George describes some severe winters and recalls struggling through snowdrifts to get to his animals and digging channels to allow food to get through to isolated settlements. The original recording appears to have been paused on one occasion. The Mendips refers to the hills that run to the southeast of Blagdon. Lexis: colt = young horse; lay = to convert arable land into pasture; that there = that; shorthorn = breed of cattle with short horns, originally bred in north-eastern counties of England; poll = hornless cow; beast = cattle; ne’er = never, not at all; tother = the other; whicker = to neigh, whinny; thick = those; rig = to romp about, climb; scritch and scratch = to scratch continually; great = big, large; mind = to remember; haul = to pull, drag; motor = car; this here = this; ‘tato = potato Phonology: definite article + V–[D] (the animals [DanIm=L/z]); H dropping; L - vocalisation; rhoticity; occasionally <s -> –[z] ( seed [zId]) and voiceless <th-> –[D] ( thought [DA:t]) or [d] (through [dr/u:]) GOAT [o: ~ OU]; PRICE [VI]; FACE [eI]; THOUGHT [A:]; NORTH [A`:]; START [A`: ~ V`:]; NURSE [@`:]; LOT [A ~ Q]; lettER [@`] note also


after [a:ft@`], there [DE@`] and where [w@`], it isn’ t [tId=n], so deep [s@ di:p], nothing [nVfIn], horses [QsIz], wasn’t [wOd=nt], great [g@`:t], give [gI], only [Qni], going [gwEIn], generally [dZEnli], telegraph [tIlIgra:f], posts [po:stIz], ‘tatoes [teIt@`z], with [wI] Grammar: zero to + infinitive (the animals have _ be fed; then we got the baker’s van _ come in behind us) third person plural object pronoun – they (I had to go and look after they); third person plural subject pronoun – them (where the devil be them to?); first person plural subject pronoun – us (we went up after some ‘tatoes, didn’t us?) zero of (on top _ the snow; I had to crawl over the top _ the gate; like a sheet _ ice that there thick; haul the horse out _ the cart; on the top _ the trees there) multiple negation (you couldn’t see ne’er a hedge; not a soul about nor nothing else) third person singular were (it were like a mountain in front of me; that were the worstest time as ever I had) first person plural were (I were only a boy then) preterite seed (you never seed the gate) past participle blowed (the wind’d’ve blowed it, like) preterite drug (I drug my way again over) preterite done (I went and done that) third person plural be (where the devil be them to?) of + pronoun – on (thick horses rigged and scritched and scratched and got out on it) preterite give (I give some grub to each and said,“That’ll keep ye warm”) use of ye (I give some grub to each and said,“That’ll keep ye warm ”) relative pronoun, that –as (that were the torridest time as ever I had; that were the worstest time as ever I had) non-standard word order with ever (that were the torridest time as ever I had; that were the worstest time as ever I had; that were the worst time as


Sounds supplied by the British Library from its collection of recorded accents & dialects. All recordings made between 1950 and 1961. Number of items in collection: 287

Photography catalogue showing accompanying images also available, includes the photography of: Humphrey Spender Richard Billingham Ben Harris Martin Parr John Benton-Harris Chris Killip Graham Smith MarkĂŠta LuskacovĂĄ Brian Griffin Paul Graham

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