Sunday, August 17, 2014

Grimalkins, Buffers, Prancers and Chick-a-Biddies: Animals of the Regency Era

by Maria Grace

Francis Grose 
Author of Dictionary of The Vulgar Tongue
We have a house full of cats and a dog who thinks she a momma-cat.  They all have their own proper names. But they've also got multiple nicknames each. I may just incorporate a few of these regency Era slang terms as new nicknames for them!
  • Grimalkin. 
  • Tibby.
Ram Cat. A he cat.
Gib Cat. A northern name for a he-cat, there commonly called Gilbert.
Cherry-coloured Cat. A black cat, their being black cherries as well as red.
Smellers. A cat's whiskers.

  • Buffer
  • Jugelow
Gnarler. A little dog that, by his barking, alarms the family when any person is breaking into the house.
Rum Bugher. A valuable dog. 

  • Grogham
  • Keffel
  • Prad
  • Prancer
Rip. A miserable rip; a poor, lean, worn-out horse.
Roarer. A broken-winded horse.
Rum Prancer. A fine horse. 
Star Gazer. A horse who throws up his head
Queer Prancer. A bad worn-out foundered horse
Scarlet Horse. A high red, hired or hack horse: a pun on the word hired.
Galloper. A blood-horse, a hunter.
Gibbe. A horse that shrinks from the collar, and will not draw.

Chickens ect
  • Cackler. 
  • Margery Prater.
  • Chick-a-biddy. 
Sucking Chicken. A young chicken
Cackler's Ken. A hen-roost. 
Cackling Cheats. Fowls. 
Cackling Farts. Eggs. 
Cobble Colter. A turkey.
Gobbbler. A turkey cock.
Quacking Cheat. A duck.
Tib Of The Buttery. A goose.

  • Dunnock. 
  • Mower. 
Cow's Spouse. A bull.
Churk. The udder.

  • Blater
  • Cow's Baby
  • Essex Lion
  • Quaking Cheat
  • Rumford lion

  • Bleating Cheat
  • Woolbird
  • Havil
Bleating Rig. Sheep-stealing. 

  • Grunter. 
  • Swing Tail. 

  • Active Citizen 
  • Creepers 
  • Scotch Greys  

Other Animals
Dickey. An ass.
Roll your dickey; drive your ass.
Kingswood Lion. An ass. Kingswood is famous for the great number of asses kept by the colliers who inhabit that place.
Long One. A hare: a term used by poachers.
Pantek. A hart; that animal is, in the Psalms, said to pant after the fresh water brooks
Sea Lawyer. A shark.

Quoted from: Grose, Captain (Francis). (2004) Dictionary of the Vulgar Tongue, 1811 ed. Ikon Classics

 Maria Grace is the author of Darcy's Decision,  The Future Mrs. Darcy, All the Appearance of Goodness, and Twelfth Night at LongbournClick here to find her books on Amazon. For more on her writing and other Random Bits of Fascination, visit her website. You can also like her on Facebook, follow on Twitter or email her.
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