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A History of the Gipsies by Walter Simson

And speaks the Hindostanee language


My

informant understood, he said, two of the dialects of Hindostan, the one called the Hindoo, and the other the Moors' language. The former, he said, the English in India generally spoke, but understood little of the latter; and that he himself did not know a word of the language of the Brahmins. When he failed to produce, in the Moors' language, the word corresponding to the Gipsy one, he frequently found it in what he called the Hindoo speech. The greater part of the Gipsy words, as I have already mentioned, were familiar to his ear; but many of them that signified one thing in his speech, meant quite another in Gipsy. For example, the word _Graunagie_, in Gipsy, signifies a _barn_; with Lobbs, it meant an _old rich man_. _Coories_, bed clothes or blankets, signified, in Lobbs' dialect, _ornaments for the ears_. _Dill_, a servant maid, according to Lobbs, was a _church_. _Shan davies_, a bad day, was the Hindostanee for _holiday_. _Managie_, a woman, signifies the _name of a person_, such as John or James. _Chavo_, a son, meant a _female child_; and _Pooklie_, hulled barley, _anything fine_. The two Gipsy words _Callo_ and _Rat_ are black and night; but, according to Lobbs, _Callorat_ is simply anything dark.[220]

[220] In the report of the Fourteenth Gipsies' Festival, held at Southampton, under the superintendence of the Rev. James Crabb, the Gipsies' friend, on the 25th December, 1841, is the following statement:

justify;"> "The above gentleman, (the Rev. J. West, one of the speakers at the festival,) with the Rev. Mr. Crabb, and two elderly Gipsies, who speak the Gipsy language, called, the following morning, on a lady who had long resided in India, and speaks the Hindostanee language; and it was clear that many of the Rommany (Gipsy) words were pure Hindostanee, and other words strongly resembled that language."--_Hampshire Advertiser, 1st January, 1842._

This statement, made some years subsequent to the period at which I took down the words from Lobbs and the Gipsies in Scotland, is nearly in my own words, and proves that my opinion, as to the close affinity between Hindostanee and the Scottish Gipsy language, is correct.

To confirm my collection of Scottish Gipsy words, I will collate some of those which I sent to Sir Walter Scott, for examination but not for publication, with those to be found in Mr. Baird's report, a publication which I first saw in 1842.

SCOTTISH GIPSY. YETHOLM GIPSY. ENGLISH.

_Gaugie_, _Gadge_, Man. _Managie_, _Manishee_, Woman. _Mort_, Wife. _Chavo_, (_chauvies_, _Shavies_, children,) children, Son. _Praw_, _Goure_ a boy, Son. _Prawl_, _Rackle_, a girl, Daughter. _Riah_, _Rai_, a gentleman, A chief. _Rajah_, Governor. _Baurie_, _Bare_, Good. _Sherro_, _Shero_, Head. _Yak_, _Yack_, Eye. _Yaka_, Eyes. _Nak_, _Nak_, Nose. _Mooie_, _Moi_, Mouth. _Vast_, _Vastie_, Hand.


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