A Glossary of Medieval Terms

Hark, my poppets, and ye shall hear many a strange word in the scripts ye read…

Prey tell, what may they be?

A list of common terms in the Middle Ages:

Alack!/Alas – an exclamation

Anon – (see you) later

Belike – maybe, perhaps

Chide – scold or nag

Comely – pretty

Cutpurse – thief

E’em – evening

Enow -enough

Ere – before

Fie – a curse

Hark – listen, pay attention

Hither – here

Huzzah! – a cheer

Indeed/In Truth – really?

In Faith/Faith– in truth, a mild exclamation

Jack – tankard

Jest – joke

Looby – fool

Marry! – an exclamation of shock

Mayhap – perhaps

Morrow – days or tomorrow

N’er – never [pronounced: nair]

Of a Good Stomach – brave

Oft – often

Perchance – maybe, possibly

Pigsticker – large, scary knife

Poppet – a doll, a young child

Pray tell – please tell me

Privy – bathroom (outhouse)

Scummer – animal dung, an exclamation

Serf – a peasant

Sommat – something

Sweeting – pet name for both lovers and children

Tosspot – drunkard

Vexed – annoyed

Wench – a young woman (did not mean prostitute in medieval times, it simply meant girl)

Wherefore – why?

Ye – you

Yonder – over there

(Tamora Pierce’s glossaries are also a wonderful resource for medieval terms used in her books)


~ by monierosie on April 26, 2012.

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