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Wondrous Words Wednesday

We have an abundance of wildlife, home travel and outdoor activity and nature programmes, crowding onto our screens at the moment. One of the most recent programmes, now in its third series, is ‘Secret Britain’. Recently, the team travelled to Cumbria, home of The Lake District, on the North West coast of the UK. Whilst talking to the locals, these two words were mentioned and I rushed to jot them down, so that I could share them with you.

Picture Of Series Three Secret Britain Presenters


All Cumbrians instinctively know what a lonning is. It’s a dialect word shared with their friends in the North East (although they tend to spell it “lonnen”). The Lakeland Dialect Society defines a lonning as a lane, and when many lonnings were “upgraded” to roads in the 19th century they were often re-named lanes. Hence Rosemary Lonning in Whitehaven became Rosemary Lane.
There are tens of thousands of books detailing walks and footpaths in Cumbria but amazingly there isn’t one specifically on lonnings. So I donned my boots to explore this Cumbrian phenomenon.
It soon became clear that “lane” is not sufficient as a definition. Some lonnings are barely tracks in the landscape while others are wide enough for tractors and 4x4s.


To walk at a slow, leisurely pace

Generic Picture of An Unknown Person Reading a Book

These next couple of words, I have jotted down randomly, as the opportunities have presented themselves, although I have neglected to capture quotes or sentences in which they have been used.


A person who delivers or writes an encomium; a eulogist.

A person who publicly praises or flatters someone else.



The restoration and upgrading of deteriorated urban property by middle-class or affluent people, often resulting in displacement of lower-income people.

A process by which middle-class people take up residence in a traditionally working-class area of a city, changing the character of the area.

The upgrading of run-down urban neighbourhoods by affluent people who buy and renovate the properties, thereby displacing the resident poor.

… Is An image for the weekly meme Wondrous Words Wednesdaya weekly meme where we share new (to us) words that we have encountered in our reading. It is hosted by Kathy, over at ‘BermudaOnion’s Weblog’.You can either stop by and leave a link to your own ‘mystery’ words of the week, or just browse the eclectic mix of words that others have discovered, there is always a great selection.

Don’t forget that Kathy and the rest of us, all love to read your comments  as well, so that we can visit and share your words of the week!

Written by

I can’t remember a time, even as a child, when I haven’t been passionate about books and reading.
I began blogging, when I realised just how many other people out there shared my passion for the written word and I have been continually amazed at the wealth of books that are available and the amount of great new friends I have made, from literally 'The Four Corners Of The World'.

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  • You are so smart to write down the words like that! I often worry that I won’t spell them correctly if I do. I knew gentrification but the other words are new to me. I like the sound of lonning – it would sound romantic to say you strolled down the lonning.

    • Hi Kathy,

      A stroll down the lonning certainly does sound more romantic than a stroll down the lane.

      So whilst not everything from the past is always better, there may be some things which should be left unchanged, as most areas of the UK wouldn’t know what a lonning was and would only ever have heard of a lane, which is why the word was unfamiliar to me.

      Thanks for hosting and enjoy the rest of your week 🙂

  • Apart from Gentrification all new words to me.

    I had some noted down somewhere that I was planning to share with you but alas seem to have lost the scrap of paper on which I’d made a note of them.

    • Hi Tracy,

      You have no idea how many times I make hubbie pause a television programme, so that I can jot down a new to me word. Similarly, if we are out and about checking one of our Wessex ‘Treasure Trails’, and I spot a new to me word on a plaque or building, we invariably come home with my scribble across the trail, so that I don’t forget the word.


      I always have pen and paper (no pun intended) to hand when I am reading a book, so that I can jot down any words at the same time as I might be logging any memorable passages…..

      I know, I’m a bit nerdy, but I’ve always been the same 🙂

      Thanks for stopping by, I always appreciate your comments.

    • Hi Margot,

      I have to admit that US television is an acquired taste, consequently when we visit, we seldom choose to watch anything. Having said that, the non mainstream UK channels, are adopting pretty much the same approach as your own networks, with the volume and frequency of adverts, increasing all the time. We are lucky in that, so far, the UK state sponsored BBC networks, remain advert free, although I believe that Stateside, adverts are added in to all programming!

      As I said, we do have an abundance of wildlife, home travel and outdoor activity and nature programmes, crowding onto our screens at the moment and whilst they are all slightly different and of excellent quality individually, the content and messaging does tend to overlap quite a lot, which can be a little repetitious.

      I hope you spot ‘Secret Britain’ in your TV listings, very soon and thanks for visiting today 🙂

    • Hi Mary Ann,

      I too think that ‘slare’ and ‘lonnings’ are my favourite words this week. Discovering the diversity of dialects, together with local words and sayings, is always great fun. Even the meaning of a word can differ from one end of the country to the other, which can sometimes be quite disconcerting and definitely makes for some interesting conversations.

      Thanks for taking the time to visit this week, I always appreciate your comments 🙂

  • Add me to Kathy and Tracy in that I knew ‘gentrification’, but the others were all new to me….and I like all of them. I especially hope I can remember ‘slare’. It’s a fun word!

    I’ve run across a number of words since you last joined in this meme, but I didn’t write them down. Looking back at the dictionary on my phone, I see that I looked up the word “rotogravure” and remember it was in The Fountainhead by Ayn Rand. Rather than laboriously type out all the definitions here, I’ll let you look it up, too! 🙂

    And while not new to me, I did enjoy some of the words used in the last of Liza Perrat’s Bone Angel Trilogy, especially “yestermorn”, as it’s so much more specific than just plain old yesterday.

    • Hi Kelly,

      ‘Slare’ is a good word, which does sound a little more romantic than going for a ‘stroll’ I suppose. I did think though, that it also rather reminded me of ‘slouch’, which is not so nice!

      ‘Yestermourn’ is another one of those romanticised words, which certainly isn’t the image summoned up when I read your last shared words from the book, where you describe “The smell of Death lingering on my skin” Now I am left wondering which order your words were used in and whether the story has a happy or sad ending!

      ‘Rotogravure’ is another new to me word and one which I had great fun checking out, although I can quite see why you didn’t want to try and offer a concise definition for it 🙂

      Thanks for sharing, you always come up with some great words 🙂

    • Hi Debbie,

      Great to have you stop by for the first time, this week. I enjoy ‘meeting’ new people and always look forward to reading any comments and thoughts received 🙂

      ‘Gentrification’ is a word I had more or less worked out for myself, however, when I actually came to check out the full definition, I was a little surprised at the bluntness of the explanation. There are so many rural areas of the UK being overtaken by people buying second homes and not living in them on a regular basis, thus changing the makeup of a community, that I can quite see that such strong language should be used to describe what is happening!

      As with just about every other country in the World, the UK has so many regional dialects, almost to the point of individual languages, that to move from one area to another, is almost akin to visiting a foreign country. However, for such a small country in the scheme of things, the variances in dialect, do seem rather excessive. Regional programmes are always a great source of words for my WWW posts 🙂

      Enjoy the rest of your week.

        • Hi Debbie,

          I fear that I am as ‘old’ as yourself, which is more middle aged by the way 🙂

          Much of my techie stuff is only there because of hubbie and even then I’m not really sure what half of it does, or how to best use it!

          At the moment I am fighting shy of starting a Facebook page, although I am working up to it. Apparently the RSS feed button at the top of the page, is easy to subscribe to and should offer regular updates.

          We are in the process of changing the look and feel of the site, to try and drag me into the 21st Century, so watch this space!!


  • The only one I knew here is gentrification. “Slare” is an especially wonderful one, because it’s something I also enjoy doing.

    • Hi Hila,

      I guess that ‘slare’ would be a good word to use in conjunction with the William Henry Davies poem….


      What is this life if, full of care,
      We have no time to stand and stare.

      No time to stand beneath the boughs
      And stare as long as sheep or cows.

      No time to see, when woods we pass,
      Where squirrels hide their nuts in grass.

      No time to see, in broad daylight,
      Streams full of stars, like skies at night.

      No time to turn at Beauty’s glance,
      And watch her feet, how they can dance.

      No time to wait till her mouth can
      Enrich that smile her eyes began.

      A poor life this if, full of care,
      We have no time to stand and stare.

      It just seems to fit so well, don’t you think?

      Thanks for visiting this week and I hope that all is well with you 🙂

  • Secret Britain sounds interesting. All of these words are new to me except gentrification. I like slare as well and the William Henry Davies poem you shared above 🙂

    • Hi Naida,

      We have so many excellent programmes about the British countryside, that there is never a shortage of undiscovered corners of the Country to explore.

      This genre of programme is increasing in popularity all the time, so whether more people are planning to ‘staycation’ in the future, or whether folks are planning more additional mini breaks at home, who knows?

      William Henry Davies is what I would describe as typical British poet, prone to waxing lyrical and writing quite flowery and romantic poetry, although I was interested to read that he spent much of his life as a travelling tramp or hobo, both here in the UK and in the US.

      The poem ‘Leisure’ is one which most of us learned at school and is easily remembered to this day. I’ll leave a link to a site where you can check out some of his other poems, should you so wish …


      I haven’t been around online too much of late, however I hope that you are keeping well and thanks for stopping by 🙂

Written by Yvonne
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