Belfast Accent Confuses Judge

Published: 26 June 1913

The Manchester Guardian has reported that a newly installed Resident Magistrate in Belfast has struggled with the local accents. He was hearing a case in which a man was accused of assaulting his wife. The Magistrate asked the wife what had happened. She replied, ‘He hit me over the head wi’ the matta’. The Magistrate failed to understand what this object was, and was informed that the woman meant a motto. Still perplexed, the Magistrate was told by the witness, ‘Ach, don’t you know, it’s thon wee thing wi’ a frame round it, and “God Bless This House” in the middle’.

Century Ireland

The Century Ireland project is an online historical newspaper that tells the story of the events of Irish life a century ago.