As if the story about Dominic Cummings couldn’t become any more ridiculous, it’s now emerged that the phrase ‘Barnard Castle’ means ‘a pathetic excuse’ up in Durham.
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The revelation was made by the The Tales of the British Isles Twitter account, who shared a picture of a page published by Brewer’s Britain and Ireland descrbigin Barnard Castle as slang for a coward up in Durham. Here’s the exact definition:
This seems too perfect. From Brewer’s Britain and Ireland, 2005.
“That’s Barney Castle” meaning “That’s a pathetic excuse” pic.twitter.com/Ib90ld26k5
— TalesoftheBritishIsles (@BritIslesTales) May 25, 2020
This idea was backed up by ‘A Dictionary of Slang’ by Eric Partridge, whose eighth edition of which was published in 1984. This book defines the word ‘barney’ as humbug, cheating, low, dating from 1864, saying the following:
This sense may have a different origin. Come! Come! That’s Barney Castle! an expression often uttered when a person is heard making a bad excuse in a still worse cause.
I mean to say that’s perfect in this situation is almost an understatement. Sometimes I think the current government is purposefully trolling the public by throwing in these little Easter Eggs for us sometimes because it’s almost too hard to believe that this is just a coincidence, especially as dumb stuff like this seems to have happened all the time in the last couple of years – and seems to constantly be surpassed as well. Probably won’t even be a week until something even more ridiculous has happened.
For more of the same, check out all the best memes associated with Cummings’ journey to Durham. Fantastic.