What is Bostin’ ?
For anybody outside of the pocket of south Staffordshire, north Worcestershire and north west Warwickshire that form the modern West Midlands, bostin’ may be a completely unknown word.
So where does the word come from? The late Ted Walker, a proud Wednesbury man, compiled The Definitive Black Country Dictionary in 1996. Ted was co-founder of Wednesbury Civic Society in 1951, an ex-Tipton Harrier, and treasurer of Wednesbury Amateur Boxing Club for many years. He was committed to the well being of the Black Country and the recognition of its dialect and history. His book was deeply researched and it is an important work that deserves greater attention.
Ted traced the origins of many Black Country words to Anglo-Saxon, or Old English as it is also called. For example, wammel, meaning a mongrel dog, comes from hwaemelec; babby is from babban; mithered is derived from mythered; and wussa (as in ‘I ay wussa off’) harks back to wyrsa. As for bostin’, Ted believed that it hails from bosten, signifying something to boast about.
Now in the Black Country and Birmingham area bostin’ is used as an adjective, meaning something very good or even fantastic, such as in “we had a bostin’ time”.
(information extracted from iBostin an article written by Carl Chinn)