Written in Black and Wight: L

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The quiz series dedicated to the Isle of Wight's dialect continues! Many words and everyday examples of their use in years gone by has been preserved in A Dictionary of Isle of Wight Dialect by WH Long (1886) and Isle of Wight Dialect by Jack Lavers (1988)1.


This week is words beginning with L. Did you know that in the Isle of Wight dialect, 'Linkister' meant linguist or interpreter? There really is a word for almost everything, and sometimes almost everything defined in one word...

Isle of Wight

Excess Luggage

In the Isle of Wight dialect, 'Lug' was a word with many meanings. But which of the meanings below is made up?

  • A sandworm, often used as bait.
  • A leg.
  • To pull or haul.
  • 5½ yards of land. An acre is 40 lugs × 4 lugs.
  • A rod used to measure land.
Isle of Wight

Quick Fire Round: Food and Drink

Can You correctly match these mixed up foods?

LebbFood or ale paid to labourers as part of their wages
LebbensesCalf's stomach
LeerLate morning beer
LickerdishLambs' testicles

Main Round

Isle of Wight

Can You identify which of the three meanings is the correct one for the words below?


  • Topsoil.
  • A lawyer
  • A bricklayer or builder.

Lantern Jaas

  • Conical extinguisher used to snuff out candles.
  • Local shark with bioluminescent protrusion.
  • The jaws of a thin, bony person.


  • Someone who has lost their voice.
  • Something decorated in bright, ghastly, clashing colours, such as the Koan.
  • Mythical person who makes others lazy.


  • Both a beating and someone walking with a shuffling gait.
  • Hutch, run or cage used to keep coneys in for breeding.
  • A stick used to write or draw with in mud or sand.


  • Something borrowed.
  • Time before Easter.
  • A pair of spectacles.


  • Outhouse toilet.
  • A rude remark, limerick or poem.
  • Sheltered place out of the wind.


  • Edible parts of the inside of a bird removed before cooking.
  • Rags or tatters.
  • Gallows.


  • Something remarkable.
  • Hard-boiled sweet, lollipop, gob-stopper or stick of rock.
  • A person or animal, such as a dog, panting heavily.


  • Ship hull cleared of barnacles and limpets.
  • An entirely wooden building, ie made without any limestone quarried from Quarr.
  • Something broken beyond repair.


  • Talking nonsense.
  • Sage advice.
  • Description of the coastal outline of the Isle of Wight.


  • A lobster.
  • Sudden loud noise.
  • Someone from Liverpool or the Wirral.


  • Trousers and other items of clothing for peoples' legs and lower regions.
  • Someone's thoughts, supposition or opinion.
  • Lice.


  • Rock pool.
  • Money.
  • An unpleasant taste or having something unexpected, such as a hair, in your mouth.


  • Someone who finds something useful or valuable washed up on the shoreline.
  • He's a lumberjack and he's okay, he sleeps all night and he works all day.
  • Storm coming in from the south-east.


  • The Solent on a windy day.
  • Something very heavy.
  • Hammock.


  • Dust cart or other vehicle carrying something smelly.
  • Hot, spicy food that causes multiple trips to the toilet.
  • Loose talk and/or nonsense.

Click on the picture for the answers!

Map of the Isle of Wight in words.Isle of Wight
A - B - C - D - E - F
G - H - I - J - K - L
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18.09.17 Front Page

Back Issue Page

1Other dictionaries include A Glossary of Isle of Wight Words by Major Henry Smith and Charles Roach Smith (1876), The Encyclopedia of Isle of Wight Words, Placenames, Legends, Books and Authors by Edward Turner (1900) and The English Dialect Dictionary ed. Joseph Wright (1906). Other works include poem A Dream of the Isle of Wight by Mrs Mary Moncrieff (1863) and Legends and Lays of the Isle of Wight by Percy Goddard Stone (1911).

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