Irish yahoo

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BMarti

New Member
Italian
Hi!
I'm reading Paxman's book "The English" and he mentions the "Irish yahoo". I have found the definition of the word "yahoo" in the dictionary, but I think there is something more implied and I can't find anything about it on the internet or in any dictionary..does anyone know what a "Irish yahoo" is?

Thank you!
 
  • velisarius

    Senior Member
    British English (Sussex)
    Collins Dictionary gives:
    Word origin of 'yahoo'
    C18: from the name of a race of brutish creatures resembling men in Jonathan Swift's Gulliver's Travels(1726)
    The Irish labourers who emigrated to the mainland were not well thought of by the local population.
     

    m bell

    Banned
    English - UK
    When used to mean "a boorish, crass, or stupid person" is it pronounced "yay hoo" or "yaa hoo"? I mean, does the first syllable rhyme with "bray" or "bra"?
     

    m bell

    Banned
    English - UK
    That's what I thought too. The American pronunciation puts the stress on the first syllable too but rhymes it with "bray" (Merriam-Webster).
     

    PaulQ

    Banned
    UK
    English - England
    That's what I thought too. The American pronunciation puts the stress on the first syllable too but rhymes it with "bray" (Merriam-Webster).
    So how does AE pronounce the search engine "Yahoo.com"? BE = yaa-hoo
     

    m bell

    Banned
    English - UK
    So how does AE pronounce the search engine "Yahoo.com"? BE = yaa-hoo
    Sorry, I thought it was clear that I was talking about how Americans pronounced it when using it to mean "a yokel". Otherwise, they pronounce it with the first syllable rhyming with "bra".
     

    AnythingGoes

    Senior Member
    English - USA (Midwest/Appalachia)
    So how does AE pronounce the search engine "Yahoo.com"? BE = yaa-hoo
    The web portal's first vowel is the vowel in "bra". The pejorative term sounds like "yay who" when I say it or hear it said.
     

    m bell

    Banned
    English - UK
    PaulQ: Merriam-Webster gives both pronunciations: the one where "ya" rhymes with "bra" and the one where it rhymes with "bray". However, when used to mean "a provincial boob" Americans pronounce it so that "ya" rhymes with "bray". I know Merriam-Webster doesn't state this, but I am quite sure that you cannot use the other pronunciation if you intend this meaning.
     

    kentix

    Senior Member
    English - U.S.
    I rhyme it with bra in all uses.

    Early Yahoo TV ads I remember had a yokelish voice practically yodeling it with the pronunciation of bra.

    Yaaaaaaaahoooooo dot com

    Very long and drawn out
    Very short and quick
     

    m bell

    Banned
    English - UK
    That's really weird. I thought I'd heard Americans say "yay-hoo" when meaning "a provincial boob". Well, I guess it varies from region to region. :)
     

    sdgraham

    Senior Member
    USA English
    That's really weird. I thought I'd heard Americans say "yay-hoo" when meaning "a provincial boob". Well, I guess it varies from region to region. :)
    I only heard "yay-hoo" growing up in Chicago and Los Angeles, don't recall hearing it at all in that context the last 60 years or so.
     
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