As Maggie MacKeever, I write historical romances. The large majority of them have been set in Regency England. The Regency period was the period between 1811 and 1820, when King George III of England was deemed unfit to rule and his son, later George IV, was instated as Prince Regent. The era is often expanded to include the years between 1795 and 1837. The period was distinctive for its architecture, literature, fashions, politics, snuffboxes and colorful characters and general excess.
I love Regency slang.
Here are some wonderful descriptions of someone who isn’t the brightest candle on the cake:
Bird-witted – inconsiderate, thoughtless
Bottle-headed – devoid of wit
Chaw-bacon – a countryman, or stupid fellow
Chuckle-headed – a stupid person, a blockhead
Clodpole – a stupid fellow, a dolt
Cod’s head – a stupid fellow
Cork-brained – light-headed, foolish
Dunderhead – blockhead, dunce, numbskull
Nickninny – a simpleton
Ninnyhammer – a fool or simpleton
Saphead/sapskull – a simpleton; fool
Simkin – a foolish fellow
Singleton – a very foolish fellow
Pig-widgeon – simpleton, fool
In addition, thanks to the incomparable Georgette Heyer, along these same lines we have:
My personal favorites are ‘knock-in-the-cradle’ and ‘more hair than wit’, which are only bested by ‘his brains are in his ballocks’, found the 1811 Dictionary of the Vulgar Tongue.