Talk:East Midlands English

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See Talk:Midlands English for previous discussion Could Wikipedians with any comments about East Midlands English please post here from now on. Thanks.


This was a puzzling term I recall hearing from my Nottingham-born great-aunt and a couple of other relatives when I was a child but haven't heard it for a very long time. "Munt" (or mun't) appears to be a contraction of "mustn't" but clearly spoken as "munt". I'm not sure of the origin of what I found to be the more common "mon't" as in "you mon't do that or you'll burn your finger" unless it is a further corruption of "mun't". The meaning of the two words is identical - "must-not".Madmax69 17:22, 30 July 2007 (UTC)

Further family enquiries reveal that "mun't" was spoken in Tamworth (West Midlands) by relatives as far back as the 1920s whereas "mon't" seems to be common to the East Midlands and, again goes back possibly as far or further. Madmax69 17:28, 30 July 2007 (UTC)

A similar contraction of "couldn't" has been known to give rise to unfortunate misunderstandings with non-dialect speakers! Grubstreet (talk) 12:56, 12 March 2009 (UTC)

I live in Mansfield and my mother sometimes uses "mon't" for must not, as in "Yer mon't!". As far as I know, her parents were from Lancashire way. I was beginning to think it was just my odd family! The "couldn't" contraction is also alive and well around here! 16:50, 19 April 2014 (UTC)

Formal AddressEdit

Contrary to many claims the formal style of address "Thou" is still alive but suffering from an extreme contracted form, at least in the North Nottinghamshire/South Yorkshire border area. "Thas'll" is very common as in "Thas'll hay ter goo ter t' shops fer sum milk" as "Thou shall have to go to the shops for some milk". Note "thou" here is transformed to "tha..." in most cases but "thos'll" is also common depending on how broad the local accent is. Thee and thy, even in contracted form are less common if not altogether obsolete in the East Midlands although common in Yorkshire still. Madmax69 17:22, 30 July 2007 (UTC)


Verb. North Notts (at least), "larrup" is to hand out a beating (or punishment) either to a child or adult. A common alternative being a "pasting". Common phrases - "I'll paste your backside" or "I'll give you such a larrupin"


Male relative a form of address. "Heyyup our youth" (Hello my brother). "Our youth will come over later" (my younger brother will come over later). Similar to "Heyyup arr kid" (hello friend/brother).

I think this may be worth mentioning, but I perceive its use (at all, and after that, degree of) as being somewhat patchy. In 18 years living in Leicester, I did not hear it said once. At the other end of the scale, in Derby and very nearby, it seems to be as broadly applicable as 'mi duck' in male-to-male greeting. On a visit to Chaddesden, I was, to my surprise, addressed "ey up, youth" by a complete stranger at least 15 years my junior. As a 50-year-old, I was somewhat bemused to be addressed as 'youth'! A friend with me at the time (a local) says this is no more uncommon than the use of 'mate' in London or 'pal' in Glasgow. So the 'younger relative' aspect seems not to be anything like a qualifying principle in those parts. More data on this would be interesting. Grubstreet (talk) 10:54, 12 March 2009 (UTC)

Nottingham City/Selston-Kirkby Accent ChangeoverEdit

There is a noteable increase in broadness of the Nottingham accent between Hucknall and districts of Nottingham City. Furthermore the accent becomes markedly more like South Yorkshire from Kirkby in Ashfield or Selston northwards. For example Selston is often pronounced "Seltston" and Kirkby-in-Ashfield as "Keeerk-bee" 16:42, 27 July 2007 (UTC)

Separation of West and East Midlands begins hereEdit

Since the pages regarding the Midlands have recently been split, the talk pages also need to separate. To add any comments on West Midlands English, please click the link at the top of the page to proceed back to the west midlands page.

Codeye 03:57, 16 December 2006 (UTC)

I think the problem with this article is that it attempts to make a case for an East Midlands English when there is really no such thing! I'm from Leicester, I'm probably a bit posh as my mother is a well spoken Scot, but my father's family were Leicester. (That's the correct way of phrasing that sentence around here, folks.) My grandmother pronounced her home town of Wigston as "Wixon" and both of my father's parents used "duck" as a term of address. It is still heard occasionally, though I have never heard my father (now 70) use the word. "Frit" (for frightened) is a word, however that he has used. Rough people round here pronounce the name of my city "Lesto" ( the "o" rhymes with the o in cot). I have never in my life heard anyone around here use terms such as "thee" and "thou". They may do elsewhere in the Midlands but certainly not in Leicester.

I worked in Northampton recently and the people I worked with mostly had what I would describe as a London accent. By contrast people from Derbyshire, expecially northern Derbyshire sound very "northern" to my ears - their accent is radically different from that spoke by people from Leicester. There is really no comparison at all.

To suggest that there is an East Midlands accent really is too crude an approximation. — Preceding unsigned comment added by Johnpretty010 (talkcontribs) 23:56, 18 May 2012 (UTC)

Northamptonshire EnglishEdit

Northampton is split in two both in the historical and dialect sense.

The Danelaw split the present county into a Viking north and a Saxon south. This is quite plainly heard, with people in the south speaking more like people from Oxfordshire or Cambridgeshire and people in the north sounding more like people from Leicestershire.

The towns are slightly different, with Corby having its distinct character and Northampton the result of migration form the home counties and London. RP, estuary English, and south Northamptonshire from the older inhabitants, are all common sounds.

When I lived in Northampton, as a child, my accent was a mix of local south Northamptonshire and RP from school friends and their migrated middle class families.Jm butler 10:38, 1 February 2007 (UTC)


""Ey Up" (often spelt ayup / eyup) is a greeting of uncertain origin": as a Yorkshireman I too was uncertain of this, although I suspected it was a Nordic remnant. Then I heard a Swedish aquaintance greet a fellow Swede with the welcome "Hej Hopp" which he told me was rural Swedish slang. I can't find a proper reference, but it doesn't take PhD in Linguistics to link the two given its distribution in regional English dialect.BaseTurnComplete (talk) 21:52, 20 November 2008 (UTC)

Yes, while eh/ey/hi/hey/hej/hei/he is a greeting or call for attention in many languages, the 'hopp' is suggestive. It would almost be worth checking for usage of 'ey up' against every English town with a name ending in '-by' to see if there's an obvious 'Viking' trail. (Any Swedish speaker out there able to indicate whether that's 'hopp' as in 'hop/jump/skip' or as in 'hope'?) Grubstreet (talk) 12:47, 12 March 2009 (UTC)

I am learning Swedish and have some Swedish penpals and language partners. 'Hopp' here indeed means jump so 'hej hopp' literally means 'hi, jump' (as confirmed by a native Swede). Given that the areas where 'Ey up' is in common use were once under the Danelaw it does seem to be a linguistic remnant of Nordic speech from a language such as Swedish — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 22:57, 15 June 2011 (UTC)


Surprised not to see this contraction of 'frightened' in the list of E Mids vocabulary, considering how much press attention was given to Margaret Thatcher's very rare lapse into dialect in using this word during Prime Minister's Questions in 1983. It was, at the time, described by many reporters as 'Lincolnshire', but it was also widely and frequently used in Leicester in my childhood. With wonderful assonance, someone in a state of sheer terror would be described as 'frit shitless'. Grubstreet (talk) 13:12, 12 March 2009 (UTC) Frit was also widely used in Lancashire when I grew up there. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 23:12, 15 June 2011 (UTC)

Feminine Pronoun 'Ow'Edit

May I suggest a section on the use of the feminine pronoun 'ow'. As a native of Heanor, (born in Loscoe), it was/is not uncommon to hear women refered to using the pronoun 'ow' rather than 'she'. E.g. "Where's mum?", (response), "Ow's gone t' shops..." or "Ow's a raight un..." in describing a female character. Admitedly in the last conversation I had on the subject, a female native dialect speaker expressed the opinion that such usage was derogotary. I disagree; let's have a section on it! Allistair Lomax (talk) 15:07, 29 December 2010 (UTC)

The above is highly likely to be another remnant of Scandinavian influence. As the Wikipedia article on Norwegian dialects shows 'she' is 'ho', 'hau', 'hu' or 'a'...with clear parallels to 'ow'. On a related note the East Midlands 'duck' always struck me as a possible throw back to Scandinavian dialect for 'you'; again see Norwegian 'dykk', 'dokker', 'dåkk', 'døkk', etc. Vauxhall1964 (talk) 20:37, 11 February 2013 (UTC)


I've lived in Nottingham all my life and travelled to many areas in the East Midlands, but I've never heard 95% of this stuff. I ran this past a few friends and they too agreed that it's total garbage. This isn't an age or class thing either, since the people I asked ranged from their 20s to their 50s and come from different walks of life. In fact, I'd say some of this article is downright offensive and makes us sound like total delinquents. Most of the slang I hear these days isn't even mentioned on here, and some of the meanings shown are totally incorrect. For example, a sket is more often used to mean a druggie or a girl that sleeps around. In my opinion the publication this was sourced from must be incorrect or severely out of date, or it must be focusing primarily on obscure slang used in very small communities. I'd appreciate it if someone could go through and verify these individually, and clarify in which areas specifically (if indeed anywhere) they are used. I also think it would be beneficial if someone would edit the article to reflect the fact that not only do 90% of us not talk anything like this, but also that these are not widely known slang terms across the whole of the East Midlands. (talk) 19:05, 16 May 2011 (UTC)

am in the south but most of my family speak broad Lincolnshire dialect, and a good half of whats in that article is familiar. The Lincolnshire greeting of "now then" is accurate. Mardy is moody, roaring is crying, mesen (myself) saying "on" instead of "of" as in "theres two on em", the familiar "Duck" greeting, one of my favourites "Ee frit me oop" (he frightened me), awming, (wriggling about), yon/yonder (over there), and so on. Ive never touched the article by the way. The fact is, that broad dialects and their terms are fast dying out due to widespread tv and general movement of the public. —Preceding unsigned comment added by Panderoona (talkcontribs) 20:36, 16 May 2011 (UTC)
I think the contribution from shows the kind of uneducated bias that has contributed the decline of our distinctive speech in the East Midlands. The use of the words 'slang', 'delinquent', 'offensive' reminds me of some of the teachers of my youth, who tried to stamp out our dialect because they were basically snobs. I suggest he gets over his bias, and talks to the right people. May I suggest he starts his enquiries off on 'Tag Hill' in Heanor, Derbyshire? He'll hear more than enough to prove the point. Other than that, it might be helpful to merely quote our fellow delinquent, D. H. Lawrence, "...An' stop they scraightin' childt, Do shut thee face!...", you know, just to get him started. (D. H. Lawrence, The Colliers Wife See here

--Allistair Lomax (talk) 20:09, 27 June 2011 (UTC)


A lot of this stuff is used in North Staffordshire too. In fact there's an area from Crewe / Market Drayton to Derby / Chesterfield which uses largely the same dialect and slang, albeit with minor variations in pronunciation. It's misleading to call this 'East Midlands English'. --Ef80 (talk) 01:06, 12 November 2012 (UTC)


This article really needs a section on phonology, and unfortunately, I've neither the knowledge, nor the expertise to write it myself. Can anybody maybe get on that? (talk) 01:23, 13 February 2015 (UTC)

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