Chincoteague Island is its own little world. It has a rich history, a unique culture, fun local traditions and even its own dialect.
As you make your way around the island you’ll likely hear many of the terms or phrases below, so here’s a handy guide to the local lingo.
Teaguer: a born and bred Chincoteague local
The Tump: A term used to refer to Chincoteague Island
Son: An exclamation along the lines of oh boy or a way of referring to someone
i.e. “Son, I called out of work today and I’m going to the beach!” or “I haven’t seen you in forever, son!”
Bae: A way of referring to someone that’s like son but used especially when a teaguer can’t remember your name. Used on the island long before the popularization of the word as slang.
Up the Neck: The North end of Chincoteague Island
Down the County: Any portion of Accomack County south of Chincoteague
Up the Road: Anywhere north of the island
‘Magine: Confirmation like I suppose so or an exclamation of agreement
i.e. ”Is it going to rain?” “’I ’Magine.” or “Did you have fun at the carnival?” “’Magine”
Turn Circle: The roundabout on Maddox Boulevard
Hoss Penning: What many teaguers call Pony Penning
By ‘n By: Eventually
i.e. I’ll be there by ‘n by
Breaklighting: The practice of tapping your brake lights when you pass someone on the island that you know. They will look for the break light flash in their rearview mirror and reciprocate with their own break light tap.
Squall is Coming: A storm is brewing
How ‘Bout it: An acknowledgment similar to I know, right.
i.e. “Been a good summer for flounder.” “How ‘bout it!”
Salts: Chincoteague oysters
None: Often used as a double negative
I.e.: “It ain’t raining none” to mean it’s raining really hard.
Ain’t no count: Someone or something that is worthless
Good Lord Willing and the Creek Don’t Rise: If everything goes well
i.e. “Are you coming for supper on Sunday?” “Good Lord willing and the creek don’t rise.”
Higher Than Quinine: Something that’s expensive
You Know Not: An exclamation similar to I know you didn’t just do that or oh no you didn’t
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