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Here are 10 Words You’ll Only Understand if you Hail from Virginia




Welcome to our exploration of the linguistic tapestry unique to the Old Dominion State, where the echoes of colonial history mingle with the tranquil beauty of the Blue Ridge Mountains and the vibrant energy of Hampton Roads. From the fertile valleys of the Shenandoah to the historic waters of the James River, Virginia’s vocabulary reflects the rich heritage and diverse landscapes that define life in this historic Commonwealth. Join us as we uncover 10 words that provide insight into the experiences and identity of those hailing from Virginia.


Refers to the coastal region of Virginia, characterized by its low-lying terrain, tidal estuaries, and historic cities such as Norfolk and Virginia Beach.

Old Dominion

A nickname for Virginia, derived from the state’s historical significance as the first English colonial possession in North America, also used to describe the state’s prestigious university, Old Dominion University.

Blue Ridge

Refers to the Blue Ridge Mountains, a subrange of the Appalachian Mountains that runs through Virginia, known for its scenic beauty, hiking trails, and the scenic drive along the Blue Ridge Parkway.


Refers to Virginia’s official designation as a commonwealth rather than a state, a term that reflects the state’s political history and commitment to the common good.

James River

Refers to the major river in Virginia, named after King James I of England, which flows through the central part of the state, including the capital city of Richmond.


Refers to the Colonial era of Virginia’s history, particularly the period of English colonization in the 17th and 18th centuries, which left a lasting legacy on the state’s culture, architecture, and institutions.


Refers to the Shenandoah Valley, a picturesque region in western Virginia nestled between the Blue Ridge and Allegheny Mountains, known for its fertile farmland, wineries, and historic towns.


Refers to the site of the first permanent English settlement in America, established in 1607 in present-day Virginia, now preserved as Historic Jamestowne, a National Historic Site.

Hampton Roads

Refers to the natural harbor and port area in southeastern Virginia, including the cities of Hampton, Newport News, Norfolk, and Portsmouth, known for its maritime heritage and military presence.


Refers to the flowering dogwood tree, the state tree of Virginia, known for its delicate white or pink blossoms that bloom in the spring, symbolizing the arrival of warmer weather and the beauty of the Virginia landscape.

Currently residing in Phoenix, Arizona with his wife and Pomeranian, Mochi. Leo is a lover of all things travel related outside and inside the United States. Leo has been to every continent and continues to push to reach his goals of visiting every country someday. Learn more about Leo on MuckRack.

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