Saturday, June 9, 2007

Redd Up Around The World

Pittsburgh's not alone in redding up. File this under things found while googling other things.

The Da Voar Redd Up is a spring cleanup that's been around for 20 years in Shetland.

Where's Shetland? Well, let's check the Shetlopedia. A link there tells us "Shetland is the most northerly Island group of Scotland."


Anonymous said...

From a link on (pointing at I find the website. Here they explain that 'Redd up' means (quoted from

redd up = tidy up, as in Da Voar Redd Up

Now do you call yours a 'Redd up' as well? And if so, where does your name come from? Surely you're not from Shetland? ;)

Bob Mayo said...

Thanks, anonymous. I take it that you may be a visitor to the blog from outside the U.S.?

The local dialect in our city is nicknamed "Pittsburghese". See this link:

It notes:
"The language of the early Scots-Irish settlers had the greatest influence on the speech of southwestern and western Pennsylvania, an influence reflected mainly in the retention of certain lexical items (cruds or cruddled milk, hap, jag, jagger, nebby, neb, neb-nose, nebshit, redd up (emphasis added), slippy, yinz/yunz/you’uns, "punctual" whenever and possibly "positive" anymore and reversed leave~let transitivity), but also in the like, need, or want + past participle grammatical constructions and the discourse marker ‘n’at."

Wikipedia's entry on Pittsburgh English also gives the following definition:

"redd up (also ret, rid(d)) v. "also with out; to tidy up, clean up, or out (a room, house, cupboard, etc.); to clean house, tidy up; hence v bl. redding up housecleaning; tidying up" (Hall 2002). Also see Dressman (1979); McElhinny (1999); Johnstone, Andrus and Danielson (2006).
Example: "Yinz better redd up this room."
Geographic distribution: Dressman (1979) notes that it is common to the Pittsburgh area and throughout Pennsylvania, but less so in Philadelphia. It is also scattered about New England States and in New Brunswick, though its occurrence is heaviest in Pennsylvania. Hall (2002) states that its distribution is “scattered, but chiefly N. Midland, esp PA.”
Origins: Scots-Irish (Dressman 1979)."