Dictionary of American Regional English, DARE, English, slang, HUPDo you call it a sub? A grinder? A hoagie? A poor boy? That all depends on where you live.

The Dictionary of American Regional English has been more than 40 years in the making. In the early 60s, lexicographers and linguists led by the University of Wisconsin at Madison sprawled all over the country in search of unique words. They found zin-zins (a duck near New Orleans that is very juicy when cooked) and unsweet tea (to distinguish from sweet tea in the South). You probably won’t hear the word “hella” outside of northern California or “wicked” outside of western Massachusetts. More than 20 years after the first volume in 1985, the fifth and final volume of the DARE (with letters Si-Z) comes out Tuesday, March 20. We talked to Elizabeth Little, author of the book, Trip of the Tongue, about regional dialects and her own road trip in search of lost languages across the United States.


Hot Word: How do you define the line between dialect and language? The Dictionary of American Regional English contains many terms that the average American English speaker would not recognize, but it does not catalog separate dialects.

Elizabeth Little: That’s an incredibly difficult question, as the terms “dialect” and “language” are used in a number of different ways—and very few of the definitions used are particularly clear-cut or consistent. For instance, we often refer to “dialects” of Chinese when in fact many of these so-called dialects are as mutually unintelligible as Spanish and Italian. Meanwhile, we classify Norwegian, Swedish, and Danish as separate languages when in fact they have been so tangled together over the years that a speaker of one can easily read the two others—and speak the two others with relatively little effort.

Honestly, I’m not sure if I’ve been consistent with my use of the terms over the years, because as my understanding of language (and the various social, economic, and political forces that influence it) has grown, so has my use of the terms evolved.

The way I typically try to think of it—and this is a necessarily simplified model, so it’s certainly not a perfect depiction of the real world—is that a given language is a collection of dialects. These dialects form a continuum of mutual intelligibility, with speakers of the dialects on either end of the continuum sometimes having real difficulties understanding one another.

Meanwhile, the “standard” language in a given country—which we often conflate with the language itself—is the particular dialect used by institutions. (It has been said that a language is just a dialect with an army and a navy. But I typically find it more helpful to think of things this way: A language is just a dialect with standard-issue textbooks and a disapproving glare.) Like I said, it’s an incredibly difficult question.

Anyway, to make a long story short, I am very interested in English-language variation throughout the United States. I think the twists and turns our language takes—and how those twists and turns are perceived—is extremely valuable data for anyone interested in understanding power and prejudice in American society.

Also, it’s just really cool. The DARE is basically catnip for linguaphiles, and I can’t recommend it highly enough as a great way to get lost in American English on a lazy afternoon. One of my favorite entries is julebukk, a term primarily used in historically Norwegian communities in Wisconsin, Minnesota, and North Dakota. It is used to describe the masked revelers who travel from door to door between Christmas and New Year’s, a Christian homage to the old tradition of dressing up in goatskins during the winter solstice festivals (i.e., Yule).

The DARE includes this wonderful quote from one of its informants in Wisconsin, a delightful illustration of the difficulties we sometimes encounter as we navigate the cultural complexities of American life:

People in Stoughton will still go julebukking before Christmas. The first time julebukkers came to our door, I had no idea what was going on. Several people wearing ragged old clothes and rubber masks that covered their faces pushed their way into the living room and silently pointed opt the mugs, shot glasses, and plates they were carrying. They wouldn’t speak or identify themselves. I didn’t realize they were expecting cookies and a cup of Christmas cheer—I almost called the police!


HW: What inspired your linguistic travelogue?

EL: It all started when I moved to Queens, really. I’d been living in New York City for a couple of years at that point, but somehow I’d managed to see very little of the city. Then I moved to this incredibly diverse neighborhood—and, not unrelatedly, started working from home—and I began to realize just how many languages and cultures were bumping up against each other on a daily basis. That’s what first led me to think about the language experience in a nation comprised largely of immigrants and their descendants.

I actually originally planned to limit my investigation to New York, but I decided that there were many more dimensions to the country’s linguistic history that I wanted to explore. Also, I just really like road trips. So I started to compile long lists of cities and towns and languages and cultures, and soon enough I found myself heading west to North Dakota on the first of many adventures.

HW: Have you learned (or tried to learn) any of the languages you chronicle?

EL: I try to learn a little bit of just about every language I come across—it’s a bit of a compulsion, really—so I’ve certainly spent some time with primers and textbooks for the languages I write about in the book. I was more focused on my research than on the language study, though, so I certainly didn’t develop any lasting proficiency.

I spoke quite a lot of Spanish going into my research, but that’s the only language I would claim any level of fluency in. I will say, though, that because the creole languages I write about (Louisiana Creole, Haitian Creole, Gullah) are influenced by languages I know (English and French), I am able to read quite a bit in those languages. That said, Haitian Creole is different enough from Standard French that I really do need a lot of help.

I would love to be able to spend some real time studying many of the Native languages I discuss, Navajo in particular, but I find those languages so challenging that it will take time and effort that I don’t quite have at the moment. Toddlers do tend to get in the way of just about everything.

HW: What’s the most interesting language you encountered?

EL: Well, I honestly found them all interesting or I would have cut them from the book. But for me, as I hinted at above, the language I would most like to investigate further is Navajo. It is so different from English—and from any other language I’ve studied in depth—and I would love to see if my brain is flexible enough to wrap itself around its constructions (its verbs in particular).

I’m fairly certain, unfortunately, that my tongue won’t be able to wrap itself around its pronunciations. But I’d hope that I would be able to make up for with enthusiasm what I might lack in phonological proficiency

HW: What did you find most surprising on your journey?

EL: I was most surprised—although I think it would be more accurate to say taken aback—by the ways in which non-English-language speakers were actively targeted in the name of cultural assimilation. We’re so often led to believe that it’s a voluntary process, that we all choose to jump into the American melting pot of our own free will. And of course sometimes it is. You can’t deny that English speakers enjoy substantial economic advantages in the United States.

But sometimes it isn’t so simple. Sometimes the government decides to send Native children to boarding schools where they are beaten if they try to speak their mother tongue. Sometimes teachers tell creole speakers that their language is just “bad French” or “bad English.” Sometimes politicians try to imply that speaking any language other than English is un-American.

I found examples of these tactics again and again, and it really impressed upon me the tremendous assimilatory pressure that exists in the United States. I find it discomfiting to say the very least.

HW: Do you think any of these endangered languages may be saved?

EL: That depends on what you mean by “saved.” In Native communities there is particularly strong support for language preservation and revitalization. But depending on the vitality of the language in question, this might just mean making sure a language is documented for posterity. In the case of Mashantucket Pequot, which died out before anyone had the chance to fully document it, the tribe is attempting to piece the language back together from what materials do exist. Makah Nation, on the other hand, is teaching the Makah language to all its Head Start students and also offering upper-level language classes at the high school level. For more vigorous languages like Navajo, however, the efforts are focused on leveraging community pride and cohesion in an effort to slow the language’s decline.

But despite everyone’s best efforts, it seems very unlikely that these languages will be able to maintain native-speaking populations for very much longer. The core populations are, with very few exceptions, too small, and the gravitational pull of the English language is too strong. The Navajo, I think, have the best chance of keeping their language going, as they have a relatively large population and strong cultural and political institutions in place. I sincerely hope they succeed.


Nutraceutical Business & Technology November 1, 2010 | Riddick, Linwood As soon as you mention sports nutrition, most people immediately think about bodybuilders and elite athletes. However, current trends suggest that the sports nutrition market is thriving because of the average consumer ‘s growing desire for a healthy lifestyle. This increases the need for functional food and beverages to not only deliver the sought after nutrients, but to taste good as well.

wo of the most important aspects of getting fit and living a healthy lifestyle are diet and exercise. As stated by Alison M. Hill: “Regular exercise and consuming long-chain omega-3 fatty acids from fish or fish oil can independently improve cardiovascular health, but combining these lifestyle modifications may be more effective than either treatment alone.” Contrary to its negative image, not all fat is bad. Good fats are dietary ones that help to maintain a healthy body and are beneficial at all life stages. Your body requires a regular, daily intake of good fats to function properly and to stay healthy. Although omega-3 is vita to overall good health, the human body is not able to produce enough of it on its own. As such, it must be included in the diet, either by eating oily fish, foods/beverages fortified with omega-3 EPA/DHA or by taking fish oil supplements.

What Is It About Fish Oil?

The omega-3s are a family of essential fatty acids that includes EPA (eicosapentaenoic acid), DHA (docosahexaenoic acid) and ALA (alpha-linolenic acid). Oily fish (such as sardines, anchovies, mackerel and salmon) are the primary natural sources of omega-3 EPA/DHA, which contribute to the many health benefits associated with omega-3s. ALA – found in flax, as well as hemp, chia and other plants – is converted to omega-3 EPA/DHA by your body. However, the convers??n rate is very low – less than one per cent. As a result, ALA is not considered to be a viable source of omega-3 EPA/DHA. Omega-3 EPA and DHA are needed throughout your whole body at every life stage, whether you are a gold-winning Olympian or an individual looking to live a healthy lifestyle. These two “healthy” fats play complementary roles in human health: DHA has a structural role in cell membranes, ??ding in normal growth and development, whereas EPA plays a physiological role, acting as a building block for the cells in your vital organs. Omega-3 from fish oil benefits the whole body by providing EPA and DHA, body-ready forms of omega-3. It is also an essential piece of the overall health puzzle, particularly for those who exercise, weight train or suffer from sports injuries or aching joints, etc. Market researcher Nielsen notes: “Omega-3 products have bucked the recession to a record 42% growth in 2009, as consumer interest in healthy eating grows and product prices drop.” With increasing numbers of scientific studies reporting the health benefits of omega-3 EPA/DHA, more manufacturers are incorporating these essential nutrients into their sports nutrition supplements and products. here all fish oil benefits

Omega-3 EPA/DHA and Expercise More than 14,000 scientific studies, published during the past 35 years, have consistently shown that omega-3 EPA and DHA are important to health throughout every life stage. Consumers are becoming more interested in healthy eating and living and are recognizing that omega-3 EPA/DHA is an important lifestyle component – from birth to old age. Maintaining a healthy blood pressure is important for a healthy, active lifestyle. Researchers in Australia studied 1 6 healthy male cyclists and found that supplementing these well-trained participants with fish oil for 8 weeks significantly lowered their blood pressure (among other benefits) during exercise. As seen in this study, omega-3 was reported to have shown a positive effect on the athletes’ blood pressure, which may also result in other benefits for the body.

Okay, so you understand the benefits of omega-3 EPA/DHA, but you don’t like the taste of fish. Or, you find that you just don’t tend to reach for the salmon at the grocery store! Always eating healthily is easier said than done, and despite your best efforts, breaks in the regimen and food binges are going to happen. You’re probably not meeting your recommended daily intakes of vitamins and nutrients. Don’t worry; you’re not the only one. There aren’t many people that can honestly say that they can put a tick beside each section of their “daily food guide.” When you are dieting, working out or just trying to eat better, everything you put in your mouth counts. If you find it difficult to meet all the daily eating requirements, this is when a carefully chosen supplement can factor into your diet. Although eating a well-balanced diet should be your number one goal, the right supplements can fill in the gaps when your diet is lacking or when you opt for pizza instead of the salmon or skinless, boneless lean chicken main course. see here all fish oil benefits

Supplements such as omega-3 fish oil capsules are an easy way to get your daily dose of omega-3 EPA/DHA, while not preventing you from preparing and consuming the food you’d normally choose. However, supplements will not offset poor eating habits, and should be used in combination with a well-balanced diet and an active lifestyle. Exciting research has been reported and new studies continue to be done that look at the potential benefits of EPA/ DHA for athletes – and the average consumer participating in sport and healthy pastimes. The cardiovascular benefits of EPA/DHA are well known and offer potential benefits to athletes and fitness enthusiasts alike. Research indicates that EPA and DHA offer great potential in other areas as well; along with the sporting community, we wait with anticipation as this research continues to develop. Choosing a specific diet that’s appropriate to your lifestyle and level of exercise and fitness is important. Whether this includes meal replacements, protein and weight management powders, powdered sport drinks, fortified food and beverages or just a healthy, well-balanced diet, consumer demand for nutritional sport and weight management powders is increasing. Being able to incorporate essential nutrients, such as omega-3 EPA/DHA, easily and in a variety of ways helps in the fight to achieve your health and fitness goals.

Need More Convincing?

According to Mens Health, fish is a big seller with US National Football League (NFL) players; foods with a high omega-3 fatty acid content are thought to help repair the wear and tear of strenuous exercise. The health benefits of omega-3 fatty acids are well known and wide-ranging, and they can easily be added to any diet. Whether you’re a professional football player or an average person looking to increase your level of health, fitness or overall well-being, omega-3 EPA/DHA supplements, fatty fish and fortified foods provide the essential nutrients that your body needs. Not only are consumers becoming more aware of the need for and the benefits of a healthy lifestyle, they are also becoming more educated about what essential nutrients our bodies need. People are putting more emphasis on health, fitness and overall wellbeing. As such, consumer demand for healthy, nutritious and often multipurpose functional foods and drinks has increased significantly during the last few years. Fortified food and beverages remain popular in sports nutrition and continue to increase as the trend evolves from simply removing unwanted ingrethents such as sugar, fat and sodium, to putting nutrients back in, like omega-3s and vitamins.

According to Douglas Kaiman: “I see a movement towards products and ingrethents that are easily understandable to the consumer and are paired with lifestyle changes, rather than magic bullet approaches that are surrounded by hype.” With the increased awareness of the need for a healthy diet, consumers are turning to exercise and healthy products with clear, proven benefits that can easily be incorporated into a healthy eating routine . . . instead of relying on “quick-fix” miracle treatments. Products such as MEG-3 Powder-loc enable you to successfully incorporate omega-3 EPA/DHA into a variety of food and beverage applications. MEG-3 Powder-loc microencapsulation technology uses a double shell protection system to keep the EPA and DHA locked into the microcapsule, while keeping the taste and smell of the fish locked out. From athletes to people just looking to improve their diets, Ocean Nutrition Canada makes it easier to add omega-3 EPA/DHA into your healthy sports nutrition regimen.

[Sidebar] US sales of sports nutrition supplements jumped 6.8% to $2. 7 billion in 2008. ” [Author Affiliation] For more Information Linwood Riddick VP Marketing and Communications Ocean Nutrition Canada Limited 101 Research Drive Dartmouth, Nova Scotia Canada B2Y 4T6.

Tel. +1 902 480 3200 lriddick@ocean-nutrition.com www.ocean-nutrition.com Riddick, Linwood


  1. Mackenzie -  April 13, 2012 - 12:26 pm

    In the book Tuck Everlasting, they use flapjacks instead of pancakes

  2. April -  April 9, 2012 - 11:58 pm

    What about Flapjacks and Pancakes or Soda and Pop? Before I moved from my birth state of California to Washington, I had never heard the word Pop in reference to Soda except on television.

    Of course, most of the big differences have stayed East of a certain particular landmark of which I cannot remember quite as well as I ought to.

  3. The Cheshire Cat -  April 2, 2012 - 2:31 pm

    Well according to subway it’s a sub and a grinder! I’ve only heard it be called a hoagie in a book.

  4. Grammar Forever -  March 29, 2012 - 3:56 pm

    This reminds me of the time that I heard the word hearth pronounced ‘herth’, like ‘h’ and then ‘earth’. I was so confused because I pronounce the word ‘harth’. I still think that I am right, but some people say or pronounce things differently. I guess that their accent/dialect was just different.

  5. mary torres so uncuffed -  March 27, 2012 - 2:46 pm

    like this dummy lol just kidding :(

  6. mary torres so uncuffed -  March 25, 2012 - 5:53 pm

    thats nice to know

  7. Anita Tea -  March 24, 2012 - 1:49 pm

    Every country’s different regions have variations of dialect, America is no different from any other country,
    Here are all the different linguistic varieties

    American English (AmE, AmEng, USEng)
    African-American Vernacular English (AAVE)
    Chicano English
    General American
    New York Latino English
    Pennsylvania Dutchified English
    Northeastern dialects
    Boston English
    Hudson Valley English (Albany)
    Lake Dialect or Lake Talk
    Maine-New Hampshire English
    New York City Dialect, Northern New Jersey Dialect (New York metropolitan area)
    Providence-area English
    Vermont English
    Philadelphia-area English
    Pittsburgh English
    Buffalo English
    Inland Northern American English (includes western and central upstate New York)
    Northeast Pennsylvania English (Scranton, Pennsylvania-area)
    Mid-Atlantic dialects
    Washington D.C. Metropolitan Area Accent (D.C. Slang)
    Hillbilly (mostly in the Appalachian areas of Virginia, West Virginia, and the Carolinas)
    Inland North American (Lower peninsula of Michigan, northern Ohio and Indiana, the suburbs of Chicago, part of eastern Wisconsin and upstate New York)
    Buffalo English
    North Central American English (primarily Minnesota, but also most of Wisconsin, the Upper peninsula of Michigan, and parts of North Dakota, South Dakota, and Iowa)
    Yooper dialect (the variety of North Central American English spoken in the Upper Peninsula of Michigan and in some neighboring areas)
    Midland American English
    North Midlands English (thin swath from Nebraska to Ohio)
    St. Louis dialect
    South Midland (thin swath from Oklahoma to Pennsylvania)
    Appalachian English
    Southern English
    Tidewater accent
    Virginia Piedmont
    Virginia Tidewater [3]
    Coastal Southeastern (Charleston, South Carolina, Savannah, Georgia area)
    Cajun English
    Harkers Island English (North Carolina)
    Ozark English
    Piedmont Dialect
    Southern Highland English
    Florida Cracker Dialect
    Gullah or Geechee
    Tampanian English
    Yat (New Orleans)
    Western English
    California English
    Utah English
    Wyoming English
    Idaho English
    Hawaiian English
    Pacific Northwest English

    Diversity CAN BE A POSITIVE Attrabute after all OUR country was founded “The Melting Pot of the World”…..

    Proud to American no matter what dialectic territorial part of the country you live:)

  8. mary torres so uncuffed -  March 23, 2012 - 1:48 pm

    @the caitlyn lol funny ;)

  9. THE Caitlyn -  March 22, 2012 - 6:03 pm

    I need a man too. or girl ;)
    and its called ur mom! lol jk

  10. mary torres so uncuffed -  March 22, 2012 - 1:00 pm

    i need a man lol ;)

  11. Ana -  March 21, 2012 - 8:24 pm

    LOL i’m an idiot.

  12. Ana -  March 21, 2012 - 8:23 pm

    I saw wicked all the time and I live in PA <:

  13. iam dtaunt -  March 21, 2012 - 5:31 pm

    weelllll, did i miss somethin’? .. whas’ the answer to the original question?…

  14. Rustgold -  March 21, 2012 - 5:23 pm

    What happened to the previous blog which suggested that English was losing all of its words, with English words being killed off by the thousands?

    Did somebody turn off the distress signal?

  15. carolelee -  March 21, 2012 - 4:40 pm

    You will find “wicked good” fur lined slippers in the L.L.Bean catalog, from Mass. Not only are they truly “wicked good”, they’re wicked warm.

  16. Anonymus -  March 21, 2012 - 4:35 pm

    uhhhh that’s true. my cousins in ohio said “hella’ isnt a word but i told them it is in cal and they dont say nothin .

  17. wyatt -  March 21, 2012 - 1:31 pm

    native american language P.S. chowder is “chowdah” in Maine.

  18. suzieque -  March 21, 2012 - 1:22 pm

    A hero

  19. Yea right -  March 21, 2012 - 12:26 pm

    POOR sorry for spelling

  20. Yea right -  March 21, 2012 - 12:26 pm

    This is made for “POOE BOYS”

1 2 3

Leave A Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked (required):

Related articles

Back to Top