Swear words for small town people

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Saaropean
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Swear words for small town people

Postby Saaropean » 2010-09-04, 7:09

A colleague of mine lives on his in-law's farm. Last week he organized a party there. His mother in-law told us guests the following story:
There has always been a rivalry between her village (Göggelsbuch) and the neighbouring town (Allersberg). They even have special swear words for their neighbours: Göggelsbuchers call Allersbergers [ˈdroʊ̯tˌtseɪ̯çɐ]* ("wire-drawers") because they used to make a living from producing wire. Allersbergers call Göggelsbuchers [ˈroʊ̯mˌbladn̩]** ("turnip bald heads"), because they used to grow turnips, and they had an usually high rate of bald men. Until the mid-20th century, you could be beaten up for saying [ˈroʊ̯mˌbladn̩] in Göggelsbuch...

Do you know any similar names for people from small towns?

I know that the people of Pirmasens are called [ˈʃlɐbəˌflɪgɐ]*** ("slippers menders"), referring to the early years of the town's shoe industry.

* [ˈdroʊ̯tˌtseɪ̯çɐ] is the East Franconian pronunciation of "Drahtzieher." The Standard German pronunciation is [ˈdʁaːtˌtsiː(j)ɐ].
** [ˈroʊ̯mˌbladn̩] is the East Franconian pronunciation of "Rübenplatten" or "Rübenglatzen" The Standard German pronunciation is [ˈʁyːbənˌplatʰən] or [ˈʁyːbənˌglatsən].
*** [ˈʃlɐbəˌflɪgɐ] is the Rhine Franconian pronunciation of "Schlappenflicker" or "Pantoffelflicker." The Standard German pronunciation is [ˈʃlapʰənˌflɪkʰɐ] or [pʰanˈtʰɔfəlˌflɪkʰɐ].

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Re: Swear words for small town people

Postby DelBoy » 2010-09-04, 10:59

These aren't exactly swear words, but more or less friendly insults between Dubliners and people outside of Dublin (they can be used in a very ...ah...unfriendly way too):

To Dubliners, anyone from outside of Dublin is a 'culchie' (I've heard different origins for the word, e.g. from the Irish "cúl an tí" ["back of the house"] or from the name of a small, remote town in Mayo called Kiltimagh/Coillte Mach). The word is also used by people from other towns and cities to refer to rural people, but to Dubliners, whether or not you come from Cork city or Kiltimagh, you're a culchie.

Another word for rural people used by city people is "bogger" (from the bog).

One that is used by people outside of Dublin to refer to Dubliners is "jackeen" (which I think comes from the Union Jack and the Irish diminutive suffix '-ín'.

Then there's the distinction between north and south of the border - a term used by people in the Republic of Ireland for the Northern Irish is 'Nordy', and in return, they call folk south of the border 'Mexicans'.

(And there are a lot more offensive terms, but let's leave it at that...) :mrgreen:
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Re: Swear words for small town people

Postby linguoboy » 2010-09-07, 15:22

DelBoy wrote:To Dubliners, anyone from outside of Dublin is a 'culchie' (I've heard different origins for the word, e.g. from the Irish "cúl an tí" ["back of the house"] or from the name of a small, remote town in Mayo called Kiltimagh/Coillte Mach). The word is also used by people from other towns and cities to refer to rural people, but to Dubliners, whether or not you come from Cork city or Kiltimagh, you're a culchie.

And then there are "Dulchies", who are people who have left Dublin to settle in rural or semi-rural areas.

The small towns I lived in didn't seem to have any pronounced rivalries with their neighbours. To the extant that they do, it tends to come out at sporting events. (High school and college sports are a big deal in much of the USA; which ones are most important varies considerably by region. When I was growing up, we had insulting nicknames for all the high schools in the area.) I live in a big city now, and most of our contempt is directed at suburbanites. But, sadly, we don't have a colourful vocabulary for insulting them.
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Re: Swear words for small town people

Postby KingHarvest » 2010-09-07, 16:32

When I was studying in Greece I was in the Peloponnesus with a class looking at Mycenae. The professor was pointing out landmarks from a bit of a hill, noting a stretch of hills/mountain that looked liked a human and told us that it was supposedly Agamemnon's resting place. A girl pointed to another mountain that looked like a face and asked if it had any mythological connotations. The professor said actually an Albanian village was at the foot of the mountain and that she wouldn't tell us what the Greeks called it because it was a very rude name. :lol:
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Re: Swear words for small town people

Postby Oleksij » 2010-09-11, 20:02

KingHarvest wrote:When I was studying in Greece I was in the Peloponnesus with a class looking at Mycenae. The professor was pointing out landmarks from a bit of a hill, noting a stretch of hills/mountain that looked liked a human and told us that it was supposedly Agamemnon's resting place. A girl pointed to another mountain that looked like a face and asked if it had any mythological connotations. The professor said actually an Albanian village was at the foot of the mountain and that she wouldn't tell us what the Greeks called it because it was a very rude name. :lol:

That reminds me of a Greek joke:

'Ενας μικρός είναι με τον πατέρα του - κοιτάει κάτω μεταξύ τα πόδια του και ρωτάει: "Μπαμπά, τί είναι αυτό;" Ο μπαμπάς του απαντάει: "Αυτό, αγόρι μου, είναι πουλί." Τοτε ο μικρός κοιτάει πάνω στον ουρανό, και βλέποντας μερικά περιστέρια σε πτήση ρωτά: "Τότε τί είναι αυτά;" - "Αυτές είναι πούτσες."
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Re: Swear words for small town people

Postby Meera » 2010-09-12, 3:56

In the United States they are called, "red necks", "hilibillys" or "hicks".


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Re: Swear words for small town people

Postby Formiko » 2010-09-12, 5:00

In the US there's also "white trash"
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Re: Swear words for small town people

Postby Varislintu » 2010-09-12, 7:48

If I've understood correctly, Turkuans are / have been called 'pösilö', which means something like "idiot" or "dumb person". But apparently you can use the term 'pösilö' without referring to Turkuans, too. To be honest, it's still not quite clear to me. There is a deep rivalry between the cities Turku and Tampere, so I wouldn't be surprised if it's something that Tampereans have come up with.
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Re: Swear words for small town people

Postby Leopejo » 2010-09-12, 22:35

Varislintu wrote:If I've understood correctly, Turkuans are / have been called 'pösilö', which means something like "idiot" or "dumb person". But apparently you can use the term 'pösilö' without referring to Turkuans, too. To be honest, it's still not quite clear to me. There is a deep rivalry between the cities Turku and Tampere, so I wouldn't be surprised if it's something that Tampereans have come up with.

I was called pösilö and pöhkö interchangeably by a stadilainen. No wonder we are not together anymore :wink:

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Re: Swear words for small town people

Postby DelBoy » 2010-09-13, 11:03

linguoboy wrote:And then there are "Dulchies", who are people who have left Dublin to settle in rural or semi-rural areas.


Hehe, never heard that one before! Must have been coined since I've been abroad! I know a good many dulchies in that case too!
(Makes me think we need a term for culchies who've settled permanently in Dublin though... Culcheens?)
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Re: Swear words for small town people

Postby linguoboy » 2010-09-16, 20:51

Meera wrote:In the United States they are called, "red necks", "hilibillys" or "hicks".

Those are all names that more urbanised people would use for small-town people. They aren't generally used by small-town people to insult other small-town people, which seemed to me what Saaropean was asking about. (Though, of course, no matter how countrified you are, there's always someone you can look down on from deeper in the backwoods. For instance, "hicks" [i.e. unsophisticated rural folk] often look down on both "hillbillies" [i.e. poor upcountry folk] and "rednecks" [i.e. poor white farmhands].)

In my part of the country, the all-purpose insult for people from the country was "hoosiers", and it was even extended to those who had been brought up in the city or suburbs but still retained a number of traits pegged as unsophisticated. (In that sense, it is closer to a more class-based term like "white trash".)
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Re: Swear words for small town people

Postby Formiko » 2010-09-16, 21:28

linguoboy wrote:
Meera wrote:In the United States they are called, "red necks", "hilibillys" or "hicks".

Those are all names that more urbanised people would use for small-town people. They aren't generally used by small-town people to insult other small-town people, which seemed to me what Saaropean was asking about. (Though, of course, no matter how countrified you are, there's always someone you can look down on from deeper in the backwoods. For instance, "hicks" [i.e. unsophisticated rural folk] often look down on both "hillbillies" [i.e. poor upcountry folk] and "rednecks" [i.e. poor white farmhands].)

In my part of the country, the all-purpose insult for people from the country was "hoosiers", and it was even extended to those who had been brought up in the city or suburbs but still retained a number of traits pegged as unsophisticated. (In that sense, it is closer to a more class-based term like "white trash".)


Where I am from (NYC) , everyone NOT from NYC or Long Island was from "upstate" whether or not you are really from upstate. I now live in upstate NY (Hudson River Valley), only 40 minutes from NYC and we call people north of Syracuse upstate. We call our area downstate. There are towns where I grew up that you never wanted to tell people you were from there. But that's definitely class-based. An area called "5 Towns" (Cedarhurst, Hewitt, Laurelton, etc) is 80% Orthodox Jew so if you live there and you're not Jewish, then you're married to one. Doctors live in towns like Lynbrook, and attorneys live in Oyster Bay. But the big Kahuna on Long Island is Garden City. Actors, politicians and the filthy rich live there. We commoners can't afford to DRIVE on their roads. :) Where I live now, 20 miles from my house is Franklin Lakes, which is where "Real Housewifes of NJ" is filmed. Then the show Jersey Shore. Way too pretentious for me. The place drips with pretension.
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Re: Swear words for small town people

Postby linguoboy » 2010-09-16, 21:40

Formiko wrote:Where I am from (NYC) , everyone NOT from NYC or Long Island was from "upstate" whether or not you are really from upstate.

Same here in Illinois: anyplace not part of the Chicago metropolitan area[*] is "downstate". And some nebulous chunk of "downstate" is "Southernillinois" (pronounced as if all one word). As a downstate politician is famously reputed to have said, "The South always starts ten miles south of wherever you happen to be standing." The nickname of Southernillinois, whose most prominent town is Cairo, is "Little Egypt".

You'd think that because this part of the state was looked down upon not only by Chicagoans et al. but also by St Louisans--and Evansvillians, for all I know--that there would be a number of colourful terms for its inhabitants. But I've never heard any, not even something as obvious as "(Little) Egyptians".


[*] I will swallow a Daley before I'll refer to it as "Chicagoland".
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Re: Swear words for small town people

Postby Formiko » 2010-09-16, 21:58

linguoboy wrote:
[*] I will swallow a Daley before I'll refer to it as "Chicagoland".

Are parts of Iowa considered part of the Chicago metro area?
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Re: Swear words for small town people

Postby loqu » 2010-09-17, 6:16

Isn't 'hoosier' the name for those from Indiana??? Had an affair with one from Bloomington or sth like that and he told me so.
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Re: Swear words for small town people

Postby linguoboy » 2010-09-17, 14:49

loqu wrote:Isn't 'hoosier' the name for those from Indiana??? Had an affair with one from Bloomington or sth like that and he told me so.

It's that, too. But in the St Louis area, it has the additional meanings I mentioned--and these are in fact primary. I was well into my teens before I realised Indianans used it as a neutral self-designation. (When the movie Hoosiers came out, I was stunned anyone would think that was a good title for anything. It was right around the time that my father got very upset at me for referring to the kids in the hick town where we lived as "hoosiers".)

FYI: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hoosier#Hoosier_In_Missouri.
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Re: Swear words for small town people

Postby jake12 » 2010-09-27, 1:06

linguoboy wrote:In my part of the country, the all-purpose insult for people from the country was "hoosiers", and it was even extended to those who had been brought up in the city or suburbs but still retained a number of traits pegged as unsophisticated. (In that sense, it is closer to a more class-based term like "white trash".)

Hey! I resent that! :evil:

Just kidding, but I never knew that Hoosier was considered an insult anywhere. Although I've always thought it was a weird way to denote someone from Indiana when something like "indianian" would work just as well.

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Re: Swear words for small town people

Postby linguoboy » 2010-09-27, 15:32

jake12 wrote:Just kidding, but I never knew that Hoosier was considered an insult anywhere. Although I've always thought it was a weird way to denote someone from Indiana when something like "indianian" would work just as well.

But you can have so much more fun with nicknames. Right after college, I made a short road trip to Indiana with a good friend who referred to it as the "Hoosier Illusion Tour".

I don't know of any nicknames for Missourians besides "Missouri mules". And I imagine there are places enough in the USA where "Missourian" by itself is an insult.
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Re: Swear words for small town people

Postby KingHarvest » 2010-09-27, 17:56

Missoureh!
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Re: Swear words for small town people

Postby linguoboy » 2010-09-27, 19:45

KingHarvest wrote:Missoureh!

Is that someplace in Iran?
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