THROP’S wife has been identified. Well, one of them has.
There has been plenty of speculation about who she was although the true answer is that her history is probably lost in the mists of time. She certainly dates back to the turn of the last century.
Arnold Kellett’s famous Yorkshire Dictionary of Dialect, Tradition and Folklore, says of her: “Yorkshire housewife of whom no details are known except that she was proverbially busy – giving rise to the saying ‘as throng as Throp’s wife.’”
But Geoff Mellor from Waterloo, who is 85, says he remembers that stories about Throp’s wife were published in the Examiner almost 70 years ago when he was serving in the Royal Navy during the war.
They were, he says, the enterprising work of a writer from Golcar who had taken the expression “as throng as Throp’s wife” and built around it a family and friends.
He recounted their adventures, says Geoff, much in the style of Last of The Summer Wine.
Sam Throp was the husband and his wife was Alice Ann Throp who was forever doing housework. Sam would escape to the club to meet his two friends and they would philosophise about the world and get into scrapes.
While he was in the service, Geoff’s family would send him the Weekly Examiner and he enjoyed the Throp stories and those of Old Joss which were in dialect.
“I used to recite them on the mess deck,” he says. “There were quite a few puzzled expressions but a few lads from Sheffield were there and they understood them.”
And to add to the list of bygone expressions readers have submitted, he says his grandma, who was from Golcar, used to describe someone was “yerrybrains” – meaning scatterbrained.