Barlow knife a jackknife with one blade.
bars a thing that blocks the way or prevents entrance or further movement, as in a sandbar.
bilgewater water that collects in the bilge of a ship, slang for worthless or silly talk.
black slouch a felt hat with a broad, floppy rim.
blame a milder slang alternative for “damned.”
bowie a steel knife about fifteen inches long, with a single edge, usually carried in a sheath.
buckle to paddle hard.
bullyragged scolded, chastised.
Cairo city in southern Illinois, at the confluence of the Ohio and Mississippi Rivers.
calico a printed cotton fabric.
camp-meeting here, a religious revival.
Capet Hugh Capet, king of France (987-996); here, the duke’s reference to the king.
carpet-bag an old-fashioned type of traveling bag, made of carpeting.
Congress-water mineral water from Saratoga said to have medicinal properities.
corn-pone corn meal.
cravats neckerchiefs or scarves.
curry-comb a metal comb.
dauphin the eldest son of the king of France, a title used from 1349 to 1830.
delirium tremens involuntary muscle spasm usually associate with drinking alcohol and characterized by sweating, anxiety, and hallucinations.
dog-fennel any of several weeds or wildflowers of the composite family, having daisylike flower heads.
doggery a saloon.
dog-irons iron braces used to hold firewood.
down in de bills predestined, foreordained by divine decree or intent.
doxolojer the doxology; a hymn of praise to God.
erysipelas an acute infectious disease of the skin or mucous membranes caused by a streptococcus and characterized by local inflammation and fever.
fan-tods the nervous fidgets.
five-center piece monetary equivalent of a nickel. Nickels were not minted until after the Civil War.
forty-rod cheap whisky.
fox-fire the luminescence of decaying wood and plant remains, caused by various fungi.
gabble to talk rapidly and incoherently; jabber; chatter.
galoot [Slang] a person, esp. an awkward, ungainly person.
gingham a yarn-dyed cotton cloth, usually woven in stripes, checks, or plaids.
habob aristocratic member of the community.
harrow a frame with spikes or sharp-edged disks, drawn by a horse or tractor and used for breaking up and leveling plowed ground, covering seeds, rooting up weeds, etc.
harrow-teeth wood or metal spikes used to plow land.
high-toned aristocratic or snobbish.
irish potato the common white potato; so called because extensively cultivated in Ireland.
jackstaff an iron rod or wooden bar on a ship to which the sails are fastened.
jimpson weed jimson weed; a poisonous annual weed (Datura stramonium) of the nightshade family, with foul-smelling leaves, prickly fruit, and white or purplish, trumpet-shaped flowers.
juice harp jew’s harp, a small musical instrument consisting of a lyre-shaped metal frame held between the teeth and played by plucking a projecting bent piece with the finger.
Langudoc Languedoc, historical region of southern France.
lay in ambuscade hide in ambush.