Mark Lawn returns with a guide for foreigners (anyone south of Diss or west of Lynn) a gorn to Carra Rud on a Satdee (or a Tewsday)
I was born in Norwich and have lived here all my life, and I sound like it an’ all.
As my young season ticket holding grandsons like to say, “there is a “t” sound in that word” and “you sound like a farmer”. Theere got a nurv and shud no bearter.
So, to help all young Canaries and visiting fans, here’s a guide to speaking proper.
First the history: Norwich is distinct from its county sibling of Norfolk, being harsher, faster and with a tendency to run words together, as in “owdidsitygiton?”
The dialect is largely Anglo-Saxon based with input from the Vikings, Danish, Norman and German invaders; together with Dutch and Waloon weavers and protestant and Huguenot refugees.
Norwich is also distinct in its pronunciation from other southern English accents. The letter “H” is rarely dropped; the “y” sound in words like “few” are not sounded so it becomes “foo”. Stressed vowels are lengthened “Norwich” becoming “Naahritch” and the suffix “ing” pronounced “en” so “playing” becomes “playen”. Meanwhile, vowel sounds are run together, so “going” becomes “gorn”.
Grammar is also different in Norfolk. We have (probably from the Walloons) the wonderful third person singular of the verb “to go”, which as the Nimmo Twins have made famous becomes “she go” rather than “she goes” and “I’m not” invariably becomes “I int”. “It” is often replaced by “that”.
The past tense is also different. “Showed” becomes “shew”; “drive” becomes “driv”; “frozen” becomes “froze” and so on.
Plurals are rarely used and many verbs have no past tense at all for example come, give and go i.e. “He come round mine”, “gi me the pink’un” and “that was a good un”.
The word “do” is a brilliantly versatile all-purpose word in Norfolk. For instance, the phrase “do he do as he do do, do you let me know” meaning “if he does as he normally does, please inform me as such”.
Other good words include “squit”, meaning rubbish (allegedly originally used to describe dogs diarrhea) and the highest form of praise “arwrite” originally used for beating town “that was arwrite”, or Teemu Pukki scoring 29 goals in a season “he dun arwrite dint ee”.
Finally… most away fans have limited time in the Citee and Carra Rud is close to the station, however if time allows a visit to the Carsellmewseam is well worth it, with a fine view of the maakett place and citee asahull. You might even catch a glimpse of the Lormar Kenny Mclean
Enjoy your visit buhs and gals.