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Southern Slang Dictionary

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The Southern Slang Dictionary will help you avoid confusion if you are planning to visit the South. Use this slang dictionary to help you to understand what's going on all over the South.

These are some of them most common (and not so common) Southern slang terms I hear in Arkansas.

Ain't
Pronunciation: 'Ant
Etymology: contraction of are not
Date: 1778
1 : am not : are not : is not
2 : have not : has not
3 : do not : does not : did not -- used in some varieties of Black English

Air-Up
Function: Verb
To pressurize or inflate. Example: "Air-up your car tires before you go on a long trip."

A larking
Function: Verbal phrase
Originates from the word "lark" which means to engage in harmless fun or mischief. To go a larking means to play a prank or joke on someone.

All y'all
Etymology: Intensive form of y'all
This usage states "you all" more emphatically. For example, saying "I know y'all," would mean that one knows a group of people; saying, "I know all y'all" would mean that one knows the members of the group individually.

Arkansas toothpick
Function: Noun
A large knife.

Arkansawyer, Arkansan, Arkie
Function: Adjective or noun
1: A resident or native of Arkansas.
2: Referring to a resident or native of Arkansas.

Bowed Up
Function: Colloquialism
Marked by impatience or ill humor . Refers to the way a snake bows up his head before he strikes.

Bread Basket
Function: Colloquialism
Stomach.

Cattywampus
Function: Adjective
Askew. Example: The storm knocked the boat cattywampus and it started to take on water.

Chief Cook and Bottle Washer
Function: Colloquialism
A person capable of doing many things.

Darn tootin'
Function: Colloquialism
For sure. Correct. "You're darn tootin', that is oil."

Egg on
Function: Verbal phrase
To urge to do something. Example: "He only did it because the crowd egged him on."

Figure
Function: Verb
To calculate, consider, conclude or decide. Example: "He hadn't figured on winning the lottery."

Fit As A Fiddle
Function: Colloquialism
In good shape, healthy.

Fit to be tied
Function: Colloquialism
Angry.

Fixin'
Function: Verb
To get set : be on the verge Example: We're fixin' to leave soon.
Function: Noun
Customary accompaniments. Example: We had a turkey dinner with all the fixins.

Frog Gig
Function: Noun
A pole used to spear frogs for cooking.
Function: Verb
The act of hunting frogs for meat. Often called "frog gigging."

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