Flying pigs in No Man’s Land

Posted by ap507 at Jun 06, 2014 10:02 AM |
New introduction to The Lingo of No Man’s Land written by Professor Julie Coleman

British soldiers in the trenches during the First World War had a rough time: they had to avoid archies, crumps, flying pigs and fish tails – all while smoking shag, drinking tot and hunting for seam-squirrels and cootes.

While these outlandish words may have fallen out of popularity in recent years, they were part of a distinct language of slang terms invented during the First World War that have been catalogued in a contemporary dictionary which has been given new life.

The Lingo of No Man’s Land, which was republished in March of this year by the British Library with a new introduction by Professor Julie Coleman from the School of English, contains a detailed list of words, terms and colloquialisms from the trenches compiled by a Canadian soldier, Lorenzo Napoleon Smith, in 1918.

Professor Coleman will be talking about the dictionary at the ‘Languages and the First World War’ conference in Antwerp on Wednesday 18 June and at the British Library on Friday 20 June, where studies into changes within languages and how languages influenced each other during the war will be discussed.

For further information about the life of Lorenzo Napoleon Smith read Professor Coleman’s blog here.

For more information about the ‘Languages and the First World War’ conference in Antwerp on Wednesday 18 June see here.

The Lingo of No Man's Land can be ordered at the University's bookshop here.

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