I was reading The Invisible Man by H.G.Wells and I came across this sentence:

There was my sister's son, Tom, jest cut his arm with a scythe, tumbled on it in the 'ayfield and, bless me! he was three months tied up sir.

What is the meaning of jest and 'ayfield over here? Well according to the Cambridge dictionary jest means : something that is said or done in order to be funny. I am not sure if the given usage is in the same context.


That’s of course eye dialect for just and hayfield:

  • the use of misspellings that are based on standard pronunciations (as sez for says or kow for cow) but are usually intended to suggest a speaker's illiteracy or his use of generally nonstandard pronunciations. (M-W)
  • 2
    Right. The suggestion is of a rural accent. IMO it's intended to be comic - the villagers are being depicted as unsophisticated yokels. The story is set in Iping so the dialect should be Sussex - but it might not be, depending on how familiar Wells actually was with the area. See also: english.stackexchange.com/questions/205622/… – A E Apr 12 '15 at 17:51
  • I did not know that. +1 – Karan Singh Apr 12 '15 at 17:55

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