Thursday, June 14, 2012

Glossary of Regency Period Terms and Idioms

Since I've been proofing and publishing my grandma's historical novels, I've come across a lot of idioms and words I don't know. Here's a short list to help out those who may be running into the same problem. I'll post more as I go.

The Regency period was between 1811 and 1820, though many of these words were used throughout the 1800s. 
Glossary of Regency Terms and Idioms:

“Children born on the wrong side of the blanket”: An illegitimate child.

“Queer as Dick's hatband": Perverse, absurd, peculiar.

“Shoot the cat”: To vomit.

“Shot in the neck”: Drunk.

Banns: The banns of marriage. The public announcement in a Christian parish church of an impending marriage between two specified persons.

Bluestocking: An educated, intellectual woman.

Billet-doux (French): A love letter.

Brangle: A noisy contest or dispute, squabble.

By-blow: an illegitimate child.

Cant: Jargon or argot of a group.

Chit: A child.

Cicisbeo: Lover, Gallant, or cavalier servant of a married woman.

Cony: a fool or dupe.

Cur: An ill-natured mixed-breed dog, mutt. Mean cowardly or unpleasant.

Fribble: To waste time.

Gapeseed: a person who stares idly or in idle wonderment instead of tending to business.

Le Beau Monde: Fashionable society.

Looby: Awkward clumsy man.

Orgeat: A sugary syrup drink made from barley.

Popinjay: Someone given to pretentious displays.

Rakehell: A heartless womanizer.

Terradiddle: Pretentious nonsense.

My sources were the Encarta Dictionary and Wikipedia

1 comment:

  1. Love it! Your grandmother is a great regency author. Thanks for publishing them.