N - Buckinghamshire Vocabulary
The following list of words are quoted from three articles published in the "Records of Buckinghamshire" by Alfred Heneage Cocks, M.A, between 1897 and 1909 (some editing has been used to produce a unified list). See the introduction for further details..
NABS, ? for neighbour. "I gin 'im (a rat) one with my shovel, and there was my nabs as dead as a nit."
NAG, the meaning given in the dictionary is "a small horse; a pony; hence, any horse." AS hnoegan, to neigh. The word is only used by agriculturists, and I should define its meaning as "a horse not employed on the land." "A horse not employed in agriculture" would hardly be correct, because a typical nag is the horse a farmer drives to market in a spring cart; and probably the old crocks employed at the present day to run the milk destined for London, to the railway station twice a day, are also nags. Probably NAG or NAG-HORSE would include all horses that proceed more or less constantly at a trot (i.e., beyond a walking pace), whether saddle or harness horses, and irrespective of the number of hands in height. A hack would be a nag-horse, and probably a hunter, and even probably race-horses might be included. NAG-STABLES are those which every one except agriculturists would call the stable; whereas to farm-hands the farm-stables constitute the stables, par excellence, and the other buildings are nag-stables. Verb (also spelt KNAG);. see Mag.
NARROW-POST (pronounced nar-poost), a skinflint, miser.
'NATION-SAZED (damnation, -?), extremely.
NAVVIED, ? incapacitated. "'E's navvied up a-bed with a cold or summat."
NAWIN', for nothing. In the villages N. of Wing, it is pronounced noth'n, especially when the word is emphatic.
NEAR, mean, stingy.
NECK-HOLE, the back of the neck, the aperture between coat-collar and neck.
NEEST, NEESTIE, plural sometimes NEESTESSES, or NESTIES, a bird's nest.
NETTLE-CREEPER, the Whitethroat (Sylvia cinerea). This name is a common one for this bird (see Saunders, Manual of British Birds , p. 42), but Mr. Summers doubtfully thinks that round Beaconsfield it indicates the Coal Tit (Parus britannicus)?
NEVER, intensitive form of negative. "I never seen him yesterday." "I never done it." "I never had ne'er a one."
NEVER-SWEAT, a fussy or restless person, especially a fidgety child, is called "old never-sweat."
NIB = Dab or Dabster, (which see). NIBBY = Nobby (infra).
NICK (verb), to touch slightly, or graze. (Subst.) a notch. "As near as nick it" is a common phrase.
NIGH HAND, TO, near. "It's nigh 'and to four o'clock." "He lives nigh hand to the turning."
NILE-BIRD, the Wryneck (Junx torquilla); more commonly called the Cuckoo's Mate.
NIP, TO, to move nimbly or suddenly: "He nipped in like a shot. " (Subst.) = a drink of spirits; not used of other drinks. NIPPER: "Quite a nipper" = only quite a little boy. "He is a nipper," = a sharp customer in rather a contemptuous sense. Halliwell gives as the only meaning, a cut-purse.
NITS, the ova of lice. "Dead as a nit" is not so appropriate as most such phrases. I have heard it used of something causing lumps in paper-hanger's paste; "Why, this is full of nits!" In a book in my possession, "The Toilet of Flora," a collection of recipes for cosmetics, etc., dated 1772 (which originally belonged, I believe, to one of my great-grandmothers), is one for "A Liniment to destroy Nits" in the hair!
NO-HOW, in disorder, untidy, unsatisfactory. "Things are all no-how."
NO MATTERS. "It's no great matters," equivalent to "It's not much account" = of little importance; not much value.
NOB (? KNOB), a "swell". Also = dabster. The nobs = the gentry, the "quality." NOBBY (? KNOBBY) (adj.), neat, smart.
NOBLE, large, tall. "A noble man" = a big man.
NOINTED, wicked, mischievous. NOINTER (subs.), "a regular nointer."
NOISE, A, a scafolding.
NOR, than. " He a'in't no better nor 'e ought to be."
NOT WHATEVER, on no account. "I woon't 'a'gin it 'im, not whatever."
NUM(B)IFIED, numb, benumbed.
NUMMER, for NUM(B)ER, an astonishing character, an "out-and-outer."
NUTHER, for NEITHER. "I dooan't much like it, nuther." NUTHER HARD WOOD NOR BUSH-FAGGOT, = neither good nor bad, neither hard-working nor lazy, etc. "Oh, 'im! 'E's nuther 'ard 'ood nor bush-faggot."