10 Words That Have Different Meanings In Southern States


It’s no surprise that people from the South have a vernacular unlike the rest of the country. Although we all live in the same country, we use some words differently based on where we grew up.

There is a long list of very common words that have multiple meanings. So, we compiled a list of words that pull double duty that we use on an almost daily basis. We’ve included what the word means in the South, and how everyone else in the country uses it.


Both definitions are right, but the Southern definition is more right, just sayin’!

Let’s take a look!


In the South: A kiss

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Meeting baby sis for the first time?

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Everywhere Else: A sweet-tasting ingredient in food. Ex: Pure Cane Sugar, brown sugar, etc.


In the South: A bread based side dish most people will serve on Thanksgiving

Everywhere else: Condiment you put on salad


In the South: Sweetened iced tea

Everywhere: Unsweetened black iced tea



In the South: When you are getting prepared to do something

Everywhere Else: Something you do when something is broken


In the South: A shopping cart

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Tarjé ?

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Everywhere Else: A horse-pulled mode of transportation


In the South: Any carbonated beverage


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Everywhere Else: Coca-cola


In the South: Slow-cooked meat that goes well with barbecue sauce (ex. pulled pork, brisket)

Everywhere Else: Grilling hot dogs and burgers in the backyard


In the South: Peanuts

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Everywhere else: A goofball


In the South: Cooked collard greens

Everywhere else: Salad, or green vegetables


In the South: Misbehaving, spiteful rudeness

Everywhere else: A person who is not attractive

Do you say any of these words? Are there any we missed? Let us know in the comments!

In the meantime, watch Reese Witherspoon explain some Southern slang below.