Glossary

A glossary of terms related to walking. Compiled by the community.

Glossary of walking art

There are 30 definitions in this directory beginning with the letter S.
Saunter
A slow, leisurely walk that encourages musing or a sense of wonder (see attested Middle English etymology).
Submitted by: Sonia Overall

scow-ways, also scowish
on a slant, as in “Walk scow-ways across the street as slow as you can and dare them to hit you.” from the Dictionary of Newfoundland English (University of Toronto Press, 1982). Many of these terms are from the 17th-century and were brought to Newfoundland with the settlers from England (the majority were from Wessex, mainly the counties of Dorset and Devon), and from Ireland (the majority were from a 30-mile radius of the city of Waterford). These terms survived here in Newfoundland after falling out of use in their original countries.
Submitted by: Marlene Creates

scrawl
to move slowly or with difficulty; to walk in a clumsy, awkward manner. from the Dictionary of Newfoundland English (University of Toronto Press, 1982). Many of these terms are from the 17th-century and were brought to Newfoundland with the settlers from England (the majority were from Wessex, mainly the counties of Dorset and Devon), and from Ireland (the majority were from a 30-mile radius of the city of Waterford). These terms survived here in Newfoundland after falling out of use in their original countries.
Submitted by: Marlene Creates

scroop
to squeak or creak, like new shoes or boots, as in “The scrooping of new ‘Sunday' boots gave a great pleasure to the wearers while walking into church because it indicated a degree of prosperity.” from the Dictionary of Newfoundland English (University of Toronto Press, 1982). Many of these terms are from the 17th-century and were brought to Newfoundland with the settlers from England (the majority were from Wessex, mainly the counties of Dorset and Devon), and from Ireland (the majority were from a 30-mile radius of the city of Waterford). These terms survived here in Newfoundland after falling out of use in their original countries.
Submitted by: Marlene Creates

scurrifunge
to work or walk hurriedly. from the Dictionary of Newfoundland English (University of Toronto Press, 1982). Many of these terms are from the 17th-century and were brought to Newfoundland with the settlers from England (the majority were from Wessex, mainly the counties of Dorset and Devon), and from Ireland (the majority were from a 30-mile radius of the city of Waterford). These terms survived here in Newfoundland after falling out of use in their original countries.
Submitted by: Marlene Creates

shaugraun / shogarawn
a wandering condition, a drifting or vagabond state, as in “He’s gone on the shogarawn.” from the Dictionary of Newfoundland English (University of Toronto Press, 1982). Many of these terms are from the 17th-century and were brought to Newfoundland with the settlers from England (the majority were from Wessex, mainly the counties of Dorset and Devon), and from Ireland (the majority were from a 30-mile radius of the city of Waterford). These terms survived here in Newfoundland after falling out of use in their original countries.
Submitted by: Marlene Creates

shoggle & worple
Since the 1500s, shoggle has been a word for various sorts of shaking—no wonder it became a word for unsteady walking in the 1800s. Zombies and toddlers are big shogglers. Another term sometimes applied to such precarious ambling is warpling. Credits to Mark Peters for these words mentioned in his article, see this.
Submitted by: Geert Vermeire

shuffle
In terms of negotiating ice underfoot, here in Quebec the Anglos don’t have the same lovely language as the Newfounders. We certainly shuffle. Another s word! We take small sliding steps, weight forward, no heel planting but full foot down. We think of it as a penguin walk (somthing you can visualize) — and are often attired in puffy warm dark clothing reminiscent of said sweet creatures.
Submitted by: Kathleen Vaughan

skirr
to hurry about in search of something, to take a short walk, to hike. “Send out horses, skir the country round.” (Shakespeare, Macbeth.)from the Dictionary of Newfoundland English (University of Toronto Press, 1982). Many of these terms are from the 17th-century and were brought to Newfoundland with the settlers from England (the majority were from Wessex, mainly the counties of Dorset and Devon), and from Ireland (the majority were from a 30-mile radius of the city of Waterford). These terms survived here in Newfoundland after falling out of use in their original countries.
Submitted by: Marlene Creates

Slape
To 'slape' off…slippery, also from Icelandic – to become fee, to escape, to get off. It is thought possible that the Yorkshire dialect forms had the early meaning ‘to slip away’. Also in Yorkshire – slape ale is a free ale or a beer bought for you by someone else.
Submitted by: Karen Smith

Sleepwalking / somnambulism
Walking while asleep.
Submitted by: Louise Ann Wilson

slew
a short walk or stroll, as in “I’ll take a slew around the harbour before going to bed.” from the Dictionary of Newfoundland English (University of Toronto Press, 1982). Many of these terms are from the 17th-century and were brought to Newfoundland with the settlers from England (the majority were from Wessex, mainly the counties of Dorset and Devon), and from Ireland (the majority were from a 30-mile radius of the city of Waterford). These terms survived here in Newfoundland after falling out of use in their original countries.
Submitted by: Marlene Creates

slinge / slindge
to slink off or about, to idle, to loaf, as in “They were never working—always slingin’ about.” from the Dictionary of Newfoundland English (University of Toronto Press, 1982). Many of these terms are from the 17th-century and were brought to Newfoundland with the settlers from England (the majority were from Wessex, mainly the counties of Dorset and Devon), and from Ireland (the majority were from a 30-mile radius of the city of Waterford). These terms survived here in Newfoundland after falling out of use in their original countries.
Submitted by: Marlene Creates

slow marathon
A marathon length walk in Huntly/Aberdeenshire and other places, where people can walk as slow as they like. Celebrating the human pace, it is both an endurance event as well as a poetic act that brings together friendship, physical activity and an appreciation of our varied landscapes.
Submitted by: Claudia Zeiske

snaffle & snoodle
These fanciful-sounding words have no definitive origin: They probably just sounded right to someone who was sauntering, which is what they both mean. An Oxford English Dictionary (OED) example from 1821 describes someone “soodling up and down the street.” Credits to Mark Peters for these words mentioned in his article, see this.
Submitted by: Geert Vermeire

snudge
The first sense of snudging refers to being cheap, stingy, miserly, and Scrooge-like. Such penny-pinching behavior isn’t associated with great posture, and perhaps that’s why the word later referred to walking with a bit of a stoop. An English-French dictionary from 1677 captures the essence of snudgery: “To Snudge along, or go like an old Snudge, or like one whose Head is full of business.” Snudging is a little like trudging. Credits to Mark Peters for these words mentioned in his article, see this.
Submitted by: Geert Vermeire

soak
to walk slowly and heavily along, as in “I must soak home and get a bite to eat.” from the Dictionary of Newfoundland English (University of Toronto Press, 1982). Many of these terms are from the 17th-century and were brought to Newfoundland with the settlers from England (the majority were from Wessex, mainly the counties of Dorset and Devon), and from Ireland (the majority were from a 30-mile radius of the city of Waterford). These terms survived here in Newfoundland after falling out of use in their original countries.
Submitted by: Marlene Creates

softs
bare feet, as in “walking on one’s softs.” from the Dictionary of Newfoundland English (University of Toronto Press, 1982). Many of these terms are from the 17th-century and were brought to Newfoundland with the settlers from England (the majority were from Wessex, mainly the counties of Dorset and Devon), and from Ireland (the majority were from a 30-mile radius of the city of Waterford). These terms survived here in Newfoundland after falling out of use in their original countries.
Submitted by: Marlene Creates

sog
to walk slowly and in a leisurely fashion, as in “The old man was just soggin’ along.” from the Dictionary of Newfoundland English (University of Toronto Press, 1982). Many of these terms are from the 17th-century and were brought to Newfoundland with the settlers from England (the majority were from Wessex, mainly the counties of Dorset and Devon), and from Ireland (the majority were from a 30-mile radius of the city of Waterford). These terms survived here in Newfoundland after falling out of use in their original countries.
Submitted by: Marlene Creates

sole trader
Interested in walking their socks (and shoes off) and at the end of the journey tries to swap for another, brand new or slightly used pair.
Submitted by: Hilary Ramsden

squail-legs
pigeon-toed person. from the Dictionary of Newfoundland English (University of Toronto Press, 1982). Many of these terms are from the 17th-century and were brought to Newfoundland with the settlers from England (the majority were from Wessex, mainly the counties of Dorset and Devon), and from Ireland (the majority were from a 30-mile radius of the city of Waterford). These terms survived here in Newfoundland after falling out of use in their original countries.
Submitted by: Marlene Creates

squoil
to wear down a heel so that the boot or shoe is mis-shapen, as in “The heels on his boots were squoiled down.” from the Dictionary of Newfoundland English (University of Toronto Press, 1982). Many of these terms are from the 17th-century and were brought to Newfoundland with the settlers from England (the majority were from Wessex, mainly the counties of Dorset and Devon), and from Ireland (the majority were from a 30-mile radius of the city of Waterford). These terms survived here in Newfoundland after falling out of use in their original countries.
Submitted by: Marlene Creates

Staag
v - to walk stiffly and slowly: When ower da crö da sun wis high, Oot staagin cam da Setter kye
Submitted by: Janette Kerr

steeve
to walk silently and sneak about, as in steeving around. from the Dictionary of Newfoundland English (University of Toronto Press, 1982). Many of these terms are from the 17th-century and were brought to Newfoundland with the settlers from England (the majority were from Wessex, mainly the counties of Dorset and Devon), and from Ireland (the majority were from a 30-mile radius of the city of Waterford). These terms survived here in Newfoundland after falling out of use in their original countries.
Submitted by: Marlene Creates

Stend
v - to walk with long, purposeful strides: Here's Robbie comin stendin up da rodd.
Submitted by: Janette Kerr

Stramp
v - to walk firmly: Dere dey wir, strampin back an fore
Submitted by: Janette Kerr

streel
to drag along the ground, to trail or hang untidily, as in “He was streelin’ along behind us all the way home.” from the Dictionary of Newfoundland English (University of Toronto Press, 1982). Many of these terms are from the 17th-century and were brought to Newfoundland with the settlers from England (the majority were from Wessex, mainly the counties of Dorset and Devon), and from Ireland (the majority were from a 30-mile radius of the city of Waterford). These terms survived here in Newfoundland after falling out of use in their original countries.
Submitted by: Marlene Creates

stroam
Do you like to stroll? Are you a fan of roaming? Then you should give stroaming a try. This is a word blend, just like brunch. In her 1796 novel Camilla, Frances Burney described a character who “stroamed into the ball-room, with the most visible marks of his unfitness for appearing in it.” The OED indicates that stroaming involves “long strides” and/or idleness, so watch your form and attitude when out on a stroam. Credits to Mark Peters for these words mentioned in his article, see this.
Submitted by: Geert Vermeire

Suriashi-marche féminine
A project where performance and urban society are investigated from within a Japanese practice called suriashi (which translates as ‘creeping/rubbing/sliding foot’).
Submitted by: Ami Skånberg Dahlstedt

Surrogate walk/walker
A walk undertaken on behalf of someone who can no longer walk.
Submitted by: Louise Ann Wilson


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