‘Now then mardy bum’: 12 uniquely Wakefield and Yorkshire insults and their history

The Yorkshire dialect is nothing if not unique, with locals creating their own unique quips over the years - including an array of insults.

Monday, 2nd March 2020, 10:49 am
Updated Monday, 2nd March 2020, 10:49 am
Now then mardy bum: 12 uniquely Wakefield and Yorkshire insults and their history

To those who live here, there is nothing unusual about the way we speak, but the Yorkshire dialect is often thought of as simple speech for simple folk. But it has a long and ancient history, with many words reflective of the language used by the Angles, Saxons and Vikings, and most of the distinctive words date back to when the Romans left Britain around 400AD. The Angles laid the first foundations of the Yorkshire dialect and it still retains many old words that have since been discarded from Standard English. Key characteristics include shorted vowel sounds, dropped ‘h’ and ‘g’ sounds at the start and end of words, and the letter ‘t’ generally being half pronounced, or dropped all together. The unique turn of phrase has brought with it a number of classic insults over the years that only true Yorkshire folk can deliver with such passion, fury and annoyance. How many of these do you know?

Used to describe someone in a bad mood, the term mardy has spurned a number of common phrases, including mardy bum, mardy cow and mardy b*gger.
Derogatory, but fairly inoffensive now, this slang term is used to call someone a fool or an idiot.

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This phrase is used to describe a person who is in a grump or a foul mood.
Originally used to refer to offal that was produced en masse in lines in West Yorkshire, the linens and odour of were informally referred to as Waz Socks, but the term is now used to describe a person with no point or worth.
Now more widely synonymous with idiot, this word can also be used to describe someone who is obnoxious, irritating, drunken, or as an extension of tosser, meaning a man who masterbates.
Used to insult someone who is either afraid of the cold, or feels the cold even when its warm. For example, its not cold, you nesh sod!
Another fairy inoffensive slang insult, which has similar connotations to idiot.
A commonly used insult to refer to someone who is behaving daft, or like an idiot.
An effective phrase to use when you want to angrily tell someone to leave you alone, or go away.
Used to describe a person who is unattractive, like the arse end of a donkey.
While it can be used affectionately, this word describes a person who is foolish, an idiot, or objectionable.
Originating from Old Norse, meaning female dog, specifically a mongrel, the term is often applied to describe a coarse or unpleasant man.