Home History The Fairies | Anglo-Manx Dialect from 1905

The Fairies | Anglo-Manx Dialect from 1905

by Bernadette Weyde

⬥Did you avar heer the lek of yandhar? Whey, they say they’re are things talkin’ at Jimmy Juan Nan’s.

⟡Aw, well, well, man! I’m nor a bit surprised at that. For yandhar house Jimmy lives in was built on rale fairy groun’. Theer used to be a reg’lar circle of thrammon threes roun’ yandhar at one time.

⬥Whey? Yer know the bit of a sthrame that runs near it? I’ve hard oul’ Sarah meself tell how she has seen the lil fallas theer playin’ about with lil candles in theer han’s. Aye, many a time.

⟡I remember one time, man. She said she was kep’ late at some house and she hed to come right by the sthrame to get home; an’ the noise she hard was tremenjus – crackin’ of whips an shoutin’ an’ one thing an’ another. She couldn’ see nawthin’ eather, though it was a bright moonlight everin’ too; but anyway, she thought she hed batthar get home as fas’ as she could for fear she might be tuk with the fairies.

⬥Aw! Deed yiss, an’ middlin’ frek’end she was too. That was long afore yandhar house was built an’ oul’ Juan hisself was the fus’ Juan to live on it, afore Jimmy Juan Nan hed it.

⟡They hard the fairies in oul’ Juan’s time too. They used to come in of a night quen they hed all gone to bed – aye, reg’lar – but navar did a bit of harm. No, indeed, theer seemed to be luck on oul’ Juan.

⬥Yer see, he was mighty particular, man, to lave a bit of fire, an some mate an’ a dhrink of wather for them. Indeed, he did it as reg’lar as reg’lar avary everin’. An’ if it was a bit coul’ and stormy, he always went to bed arly as he said hisself, to let the lil fallas come in an’ hev a warm.

⟡But theer’s not been so much luck on Jimmy at all – for he’s been a bit near. Well, p’raps not that eather – but he don’t believe in such things. So the lil fallas, hev tuk the smull I expec’, an’ are makin’ the house oncomfortable for him an’ they can be a bit ‘devagough’ quen they’re offended, I tell yer.

⬥Aw, well, well! It’s bes’ to keep the right side of them for all. An’ Jimmy would do well to lave a bit of fire an’ a dhrink an’ a mouthful for them, for all. It wouldn’ do him a bit of harm an’ it might do a power of good to him.

⟡Aw, ‘deed, yiss!


Juan = pronounced joo-an
avar = ever
heer = hear
lek = like
yandhar = yonder
rale = real
thramman threes = trammon trees (elder trees)
sthrame = stream
hard = heard
lil fallas = Little Fellas/Themselves/Fairies
tremenjus = tremendous
nawthin’ = nothing
eather = either
everin’ = evening
hed = had
batthar = better
tuk = taken (by the Fairies)
yiss = yes
frek-end = frightened
fus’ = first
oul’ = old
quen = when
navar = never
lave = leave
wather = water
avary = every
coul’ = cold
hev = have
smull = the sulks
devagough = perverse

text source: Isle of Man Examiner 7 Jan 1905 by Mona imuseum.im
photo source: Thatched Manx Cottage at Poyll Breen, Balladoole, imuseum.im

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