CRAIG BROWN: Learning to speak Mitford is quate naice!
A BBC adaptation of Nancy Mitford’s novel The Pursuit Of Love begins this Saturday. But will you understand what they are saying? Over the next few weeks, be sure to keep this handy Teach Yourself Mitford guide by your side at all times.
Arr: Period of time composed of 60 minutes. ‘Just awf to the market! We wain’t be more than en arr.’
Airn Tut Ayne: Provide with amusement or enjoyment (see also Sairmusing). ‘We’ve hauled in a cunjrah to airn tut ayne us.’
Barn Glare: One-storey dwelling. ‘Poor Charles. Lorst all his kesh. Hez to mek do with a barn glare.’
Basicull: Two-wheeled vehicle, propelled by pedals.
Bend: A small group of musicians. ‘There’s nothing like a jezz bend to liven things up.’
A BBC adaptation of Nancy Mitford’s novel The Pursuit Of Love begins this Saturday. Pictured: Nancy Milford in the 1920s
Bed: Opposite of good.
Bessa Clare: At heart; fundamentally. ‘Bessa clare, Sir Oswald was a thoroughly decent man.’
Bellay: Art form that employs dance and music to convey a narrative.
Chetswarth: Debo Mitford’s home in Derbyshire.
Chomming: Delightful, attractive. ‘Say what you like about Edolf, but we always found him uttleh chomming.’
Crawspetch: Bad-tempered person. ‘Winston could be an awful old crawspetch.’
Creme: Offence punishable by law. ‘Make the punishment fit the creme.’
Dernchew: Question expecting agreement. ‘It’s simply pelting outside. I think we might stay indoors, dernchew?’
Ears: Opposite of nair. ‘Did you or did you not commit the crime?’ ‘Well, ears and nair.’
Chomming: Delightful, attractive. ‘Say what you like about Edolf, but we always found him uttleh chomming.’ Pictured: Fabrice, played by Assaad Bouab, and Linda, played by Lily James in The Pursuit of Love
Ebb Slooply: Eager form of agreement. ‘London can get awfleh hot in the summer.’ ‘Ebb Slooply.’
Ebb Slooscreem: Very amusing person. ‘Guy wore his pants on his head. He’s an ebb slooscreem.’
Eccurate: Correct in all details. ‘Is your clock entarly eccurate?’
Eck Shlay: As a matter of fact. ‘Which damn fool parked their car on my lawn?’ ‘Well, eck shlay, sir, it was I.’
Eggravating: Annoying, irritating.
Elairn: All by myself. ‘At times like this, one longs to be elairn.’
End: Popular conjunction, eg War End Peace by Count Tarlstoy.
Entique: Old collectable object. See also Fy Nart. ‘Say what you like about Hermann Goering, but he did have the most wonderful collection of fy nart end entiques.’
Ettic: Space or room inside the roof of a building.
Farn: Light-hearted amusement. ‘Theng sorefully for a simpleh syooper weekend. Sarch farn!’
Wall sworts: A wide variety of people. ‘It takes wall sworts.’ Pictured: Lily James (right) as Linda in the Pursuit of Happiness
Frenk: Honest, sincere. ‘To be frenk, I’ve never gorn a bundle on Blenheim. So poky!’
Hairdew Do: Formal greeting upon meeting someone for the first time.
Hape: To want something to be the case. ‘I do hape you are well.’
Hice: Building in which to live. ‘A hice is not a hairm.’ See also: Pellis, Barn Glare.
Kings Raird, The: London’s principal thoroughfare.
Mais: To the greatest extent. ‘We had THE mais gharsleh time! The soup was at best lukewarm and the main course was five minutes late.’ ‘Oh, how meddening!’
Mais Fraffawbaw: Exceedingly dull person. ‘Please don’t sit me next to Jeffreh! He’s THE mais fraffawbaw!’
Meddening: Exasperating. ‘We got caught in a treffic jem!’ ‘Oh, har meddening for you!’
Nardez: At the present time. ‘Young people have no manners nardez.’
Nepkin: Piece of cloth employed at meals to wipe the fingers or face.
Nonspix: Situation in which two or more people refuse to talk to one another. ‘Diana and Jessica are on nonspix, sedleh.’
Pemela: Sister of Nancy, Diana, Jessica, Deborah and Unity.
Sairmuzing: Extremely entertaining. ‘Ers, Edolf could be tricky, but on the other hend, he was sairmuzing.’ Pictured: Lily James (left) as Linda and Emily Beecham (right) as Fanny in BBC’s The Pursuit of Love
Rarely: Indication that a message has been heard. ‘I hear Totty is planning to divorce Boofy.’ ‘Oh, rarely?’
Rahl Femleh: The King and Queen and their awfspring.
Renk: Position in social hierarchy.
Rest Raw: Establishment in which paying customers sit and eat.
Sairt seems: Expression of tentative or grudging understanding or agreement. ‘Aim head over heels in love with Bartie.’ ‘Sairt seems.’
Sairmuzing: Extremely entertaining. ‘Ers, Edolf could be tricky, but on the other hend, he was sairmuzing.’
Slaine Square: Meeting place at one end of The Kings Raird.
Syoota Baw: Appropriate, acceptable. ‘We must find a syoota baw nenneh to look after the children.’
Treffic Jem: a line of stationary or slow-moving vehicles.
Quate: I agree. ‘Nothing worse than when staff let one darn.’ ‘Quate. Simpleh meddening.’
Vair: Extremely. ‘Wishing you a vair heppy new yah.’ or ‘We live in a vair naice hice.’
Wall sworts: A wide variety of people. ‘It takes wall sworts.’
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