Some of this text borrowed from “The Northern New England Accent in a Nutshell,”
by Mike Szelog
I feel I have to address what may be the most quintessential word in the Northern New England repertoire. This is, of course, “wicked.”
“Wicked” — in addition to its normal meaning of bad/evil (same meaning as in other parts of the English speaking world) in New England has an added attraction. It is essentially an intensifier and may be used in a positive or a negative way or even a fairly neutral matter-of-fact way—again, depending on the situation at hand.
Here’s an example of the use of “wicked” (written in a wicked thick/broad New England accent):
“Hey, John! Heard Chestah an’ Vern went up to Berlin (that’s this pahst week ta do some huntin’, snow and all!”
“Ayuh, said they had a wicked hahd time gettin’ up there with the snow, but the huntin’ was wicked good. ‘Course that blizzahd they had the lahst night theyah was a wicked pissah, ayuh! Guess they couldn’t get that cah of Chestah’s stahted the next mornin’ thought they’d have to go the bahn and get that John Deeyah tractah goin’ and ride it all the way back to Franconiar!”
I have been meaning to try out some of this new vocabulary on my Northwestern-speaking friends but have not yet had the opportunity. In the meantime, here is a wicked good photo of late afternoon at Melvin Bay. Enjoy!