Hal Pictures Green Lantern Butt's FOREVER!: What IS a Baltimore accent?

Green Lantern Butt's FOREVER!

Now with Guy Gardner's Seal of Approval!

Thursday, July 05, 2007

What IS a Baltimore accent?

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For those of you who may be new to this blog, Guy Gardner is my favorite Green Lantern. Part of his appeal...apart from being an obnoxious red-head... is that he is from Baltimore.

My Mother was born in Baltimore. My Grandmother was born in Baltimore, and so was my Grandfather. Hell, my great great great Grandfather, Joshua Lee was born in 1783, in the Freedom district of Baltimore County. So we were there for a long time. I however have never ever even been to Baltimore, and one of these days, I really ought to go.

Anyway, a great deal has been made of the idea that Guy as a pronounced Baltimorean accent. Now my Mom does put an "r" into words like Washington, so that it comes out as "Warshington". Is this an example? Maryland was a southern state, even though it did not join the Confederacy. Nevertheless, a LOT of Marylanders fought for the South. Not my ancestors, we had a fight with our Lee cousins in Virginia and had become rabid Abolitionists. Is it a variation on the Virginia Tidewater dialect?

What IS a Baltimore accent?


At 10:51 AM, Blogger Ames said...

"Baltimore’s accent exemplifies a dialectal continuum between Tidewater American English, a southern dialect, and Delaware Valley American English, a common coastal dialect, loosely possessing the vowel shifts of the former and general pronunciation of the latter. For instance, "Baltimore" is pronounced "Bawldamer" or even "Balmer," and "Maryland" becomes "Murland" or "Murlan." Other common pronunciations include "ool," "amblance," "wooder," "warsh," "sharr, or shaow" "dug," "couwny" "tew" (oil, ambulance, water, wash, shower, dog, and county, two, respectively)." http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Culture_of_Baltimore

Gotta love wikipedia.

At 11:19 AM, Blogger mdactor1980 said...

I never knew this about Guy Gardner... but exciting nonetheless.

As a Baltimore-on... here's some further examples

"Yew gowin downy ocean, hon?"
- Are you going down to the ocean?

Hon is a term of enderament that we use for just about every person we talk to here. You don't even have to know the person. In baltimore... it's practically verbalized punctuation.

"Ah sawzem poleez offsirs downy Rool Farms yesty."

I saw some police officers down at the Royal Farms yesterday.

Basically, we don't like t's or d's, we like to drag out our o's, improperly ephasize our a's, and add r's wherever the hell we please. It's special!

At 11:19 AM, Blogger Sheana said...


Okay, the thought of Guy talking like this cracks me up a bit.

At 7:27 AM, Blogger SallyP said...

I read somewhere that Guy would probably pronounce "Warriors" as "Wurry-ers".

Can you imagine what would have happened if Chris Claremont had been writing Green Lanterns? Kyle would sound like Banshee for Gawd's sake.

Kyle...."Faith and Begorrah!"

I think that John's from Detroit, so he is probably safe.

Actually I've always thought that Fire and Ice should have hints of accents as well. English is neither of their first languages...Bea is Brazilian, and Tora speaks Norse/Ice Deity.

Would Wonder Woman have a hint of an accent?

At 10:48 AM, Blogger Ames said...


Think Xena yell.

At 11:32 AM, Blogger David C said...

Wow, I never even realized that Guy was from Baltimore before. It'll be fun to re-read him with a Baltimore accent.

It's the vowel sounds that are most distinctive to me - particularly the elongated "long O" sounds, but others too.

On radio's (DC-based) Don and Mike show, they occasionally do a hilarious riff on the Baltimore accent based on an imaginary trip to the Inner Harbor. The O's are the highlight, but the "A" sounds are also noteworthy.

"We went down to see the O's a Camden Yard. It's a shame, though, they just haven't been the same without CAL! Y'know, if he ran for mayor, he'd be Mayor CAL! After the game, we saw the BROMO-seltzer tower then went to the ESPN Zone and had some Natty Bohs!"

(Natty Boh = "National Bohemian," beloved awful local beer.)


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