Word of the Week (176): BORRELL (probability 22883), by David Sutton

BORRELL (which has variants BOREL and BORRELL) is an archaic adjective meaning rustic. and hence clownish; it derives from the Old French burel, a kind of coarse cloth.

There is a long tradition of towny condescension whereby country dwellers are perceived as dimwitted unsophisticates. This has given us many more such derogatory terms, such as RUBE, BUMPKIN, HAYSEED, CHAWBACON, PIGSCONCE, HILLBILLY, BACKWOODSMAN, STAUMREL, JOSKIN and WOOLLYBACK. The Irish CULCHIE and BOGTROTTER I take also to have a derogatory tone, as I do the South African JAAP and the Australian BUSHY (note that this is nounal in the sense of one who lives in the bush, hence BUSHIES).

If you want bucolic adjectives, there is BUMPKINLY, BUMPKINISH, BACKWOODSY and HICKISH

Just off to chew a straw, lean on the gate and have another go at counting my two pigs...


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