Common Phrases You Probably Use If You’re From Norn Iron

Naturally, we don’t tend to pick up on what phrases we use or how often we use them in our own country. It makes complete sense as we are speaking with people with the same accents and turns of phrases, inevitably we get habituated to it.
However, I am a Scotsman living in Northern Ireland and over the last few years I have definitely picked up on a lot of amazing phrases people from Norn Iron use, some of which you might not even realise you use. I’ve compiled a list here of common phrases you probably use if you are from Northern Ireland!

God Love Em

The classic term of endearment for someone who has done something good or is trying hard or is just lovely. I always hear the phrase, “Aww, God love em!”.

Sure at the end of everything

One of my favourite phrases is that lots of sentences begin or end with sure. “Sure, it’ll be fine.”, “We’ll go later, sure.”


Catch Yourself On

I have been told this many times, especially when I’ve said something stupid…


And All That There

I spoke to a few friends of mine about this one and they had no idea they used it. Just the other day I heard, “The insurance will cover that and all that there.”


Describing people as a Melter Or Melt

I had never heard of this before and was completely confused when someone said, “Aye, they are such a melter.”


What You For Doing

One I am asked on nearly a nightly basis by my girlfriend. It is a brilliant Northern Irish phrase for, “What are you planning on doing?” I always get asked, “Right, what you for doing?”


A Wee Dander

“You up for a wee dander?” Is a much better way of asking to go for a walk.


That’s Grand

A lovely way of saying, “that’s fine”. “It will be grand, sure” or “Sure, that’s grand”.


So It Is

Another brilliant little phrase that comes after many sentences!


Of An Evening

This is another one some people are completely oblivious to. One example is, “We watch TV of an evening.”



The affirmation of choice in Norn Iron.


What’s The Craic?

The greatest of all greetings and a better way of asking what you have been doing.


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About Graham Ferguson

Hello, I'm Graham, a writer based in Scotland. Besides writing, my biggest passions in life are history and the outdoors, I can't get enough of them!
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