Geordie is term used to describe a person originating from the North East of England, especially Tyneside and even more especially an individual from Newcastle upon Tyne. There are a number of rival theories to explain how the term came about.

A rather fanciful explanation is that it was established during the Jacobite Rebellion of 1745. The Jacobite rebels declared that the natives of the area were staunch supporters of the Hanoverian King George II or "George's men" and later 'Geordies'.

An alternative (and more likely) explanation for the name is that local miners used "Geordie" safety lamps designed by George Stephenson, rather than the "Davy Lamps" designed by Humphry Davy which were used in other mining communities. This is the version that is preferred by the Geordies themselves.

Geordie is also a term for the distinctive dialect of the Geordie people. Geordie derives much less influence from French and Latin than does Standard English, being substantially Angle in origin.

Personal pronouns differ markedly from Standard English: Geordies use "we" for "us", "youse" for plural "you", "me" for "my", "us" for "me", "wor" for "our".

Vowel sounds are also quite unusual. "er" on the end of words becomes "a" ("father" is pronounced "fatha", both "a" sounds as in "hat"). Many "a" sounds become more like "e": "hev" for "have". Double vowels are often pronounced separately: "boat" becomes "boh-ut". Some words acquire extra vowels ("growel" for "growl", "cannet" for "can't"). The "or" sound in words like "talk" becomes "aa", while "er" sounds in words like "work" becomes "or".

Geordie also has a large amount of vocubulary not seen in other English dialects. Words still in common use today include "canny" for "pleasant", "gadgie" for "man", "hyem" for "home" and "hacky" for "dirty". When a Geordie uses the word "larn" for teach, he is not misusing the English word "learn", he is using the Anglo Saxon word "laeran" which meant teach.

External links