‘She ate it ravenously, half-standing in shallow water, yinnying at shadows as she clawed and swallowed.’

‘With a yinny of anger she threw him off.’

This otter cry of fear, anger or desperation seems to have been invented by Williamson or taken from his rich store of dialect words. It doesn’t (yet) appear in the monumental online OED with its 600,000 words, so I am glad to feature it here.

See also ’tiss’ and ‘yikker’.

Source: Henry Williamson, Tarka the Otter: His joyful water-life and death in the two rivers, illus. C.F. Tunnicliffe (Harmondsworth: Puffin Books, 1976 (1927)), p. 22 and 87


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