"swamp yankee"

Barnhart barnhart at HIGHLANDS.COM
Tue Jul 18 22:34:52 UTC 2006

In OEDs has a quote from H. Kurath (1941) and from American Speech (1963).

1963 Amer. Speech XXXVIII. 121 The term _swamp Yankee may be defined as 'a
rural New England dweller who abides today as a steadfast rustic and who
is of Yankee stock that has endured in the New England area since colonial

Kurath quote mentions hayseed or hayseeder, rustic, and hayback.


barnhart at highlands.com

Paul Johnston <paul.johnston at wmich.edu> on Tuesday, July 18, 2006 at 5:00
PM -0500 wrote:
>---------------------- Information from the mail header
>Sender:       American Dialect Society <ADS-L at LISTSERV.UGA.EDU>
>Poster:       Paul Johnston <paul.johnston at WMICH.EDU>
>Subject:      Re: "swamp yankee"
>I've heard the expression to refer to anyone from SE New England,
>particularly around Providence, Fall River or New Bedford.  I've also
>of the SE New England dialect called "Swamp Yankee" by Bostonians, though
>the people of the area concerned regard the term as derogatory.
>Paul Johnston
>----- Original Message -----
>From: "sagehen" <sagehen at WESTELCOM.COM>
>Sent: Tuesday, July 18, 2006 10:58 AM
>Subject: "swamp yankee"
>> ---------------------- Information from the mail
>header -----------------------
>> Sender:       American Dialect Society <ADS-L at LISTSERV.UGA.EDU>
>> Poster:       sagehen <sagehen at WESTELCOM.COM>
>> Subject:      "swamp yankee"
>> A question from another list:
>> "-I am reading a book by David Handler, set in Connecticut,
>> that refers to several of the characters as swamp yankees.  My husband
>> born in Connecticut, not far from where the story is set, but this is
>> a phrase he is familiar with."
>> Reading the same book as this poster, I simply assumed a reference to
>> poor, landless, powerless class.  Does the phrase have some more
>> meaning?
>> A. Murie
>> ------------------------------------------------------------
>> The American Dialect Society - http://www.americandialect.org
>The American Dialect Society - http://www.americandialect.org

The American Dialect Society - http://www.americandialect.org

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