Dictionary of Cape Breton English

Table of contents


Sample DCBE Entry

Map of Cape Breton Island


Dictionary of Cape Breton English

Works Consulted


“A most welcome addition to the study of regional lexis in Canada. This book enriches the historical perspective in Canadian English and offers readers, at long last, a point of departure into the vocabulary of Cape Breton Island. ”University of British Columbia

The first regional dictionary devoted to the island’s linguistic and cultural history, the Dictionary of Cape Breton English is a fascinating record of the island’s rich vocabulary. This substantial and long-awaited work of linguistic research captures Cape Breton’s social, economic, and cultural life through the island’s language. The Dictionary of Cape Breton English can be read with interest by Backlanders, Bay byes, and those from away alike.


  • Winner, Choice Outstanding Academic Titles, 2017 2017


"It may seem odd to suggest a dictionary is a fun read, but the Dictionary of Cape Breton English (DCBE) by academics William J. Davey and Richard MacKinnon is just such a book…. This should appeal to word lovers, writers, social historians and the curious. It would also be a great gift for Scrabble players anywhere. "

- Alan Lynch

‘Highly recommended. All readership levels. ’

- J. Adlington