Document 1526

A Word in George Brown’s Ear

Author(s): Prof Christian Kay

Copyright holder(s): Prof Christian Kay


Dear Mr. Brown, while we admire
Your fight against inflation,
We fear that you will fail unless
You change your appellation.

Today we do not talk of growth,
Increase, or augmentation.
We have a fine new polyword:
You know it – escalation.

It has a rich Johnsonian ring,
An Eastern connotation,
Its use would dignify and soothe
Financial desperation.

So do not speak of rising costs,
Just say they’re escalators –
This is an age that calls its spades
Terrestrial elevators.

This work is protected by copyright. All rights reserved.

The SCOTS Project and the University of Glasgow do not necessarily endorse, support or recommend the views expressed in this document.


Cite this Document

APA Style:

A Word in George Brown’s Ear. 2024. In The Scottish Corpus of Texts & Speech. Glasgow: University of Glasgow. Retrieved 25 July 2024, from

MLA Style:

"A Word in George Brown’s Ear." The Scottish Corpus of Texts & Speech. Glasgow: University of Glasgow, 2024. Web. 25 July 2024.

Chicago Style

The Scottish Corpus of Texts & Speech, s.v., "A Word in George Brown’s Ear," accessed 25 July 2024,

If your style guide prefers a single bibliography entry for this resource, we recommend:

The Scottish Corpus of Texts & Speech. 2024. Glasgow: University of Glasgow.


Information about Document 1526

A Word in George Brown’s Ear


Text audience

Adults (18+)
Audience size N/A

Text details

Method of composition Handwritten
Year of composition 1965
Word count 80

Text type



Author details

Author id 606
Title Prof
Forenames Christian
Surname Kay
Gender Female
Decade of birth 1940
Educational attainment University
Age left school 18
Upbringing/religious beliefs Protestantism
Occupation Academic
Place of birth Edinburgh
Region of birth Midlothian
Birthplace CSD dialect area midLoth
Country of birth Scotland
Place of residence Glasgow
Region of residence Glasgow
Residence CSD dialect area Gsw
Country of residence Scotland
Father's place of birth Leith
Father's region of birth Midlothian
Father's birthplace CSD dialect area midLoth
Father's country of birth Scotland
Mother's place of birth Edinburgh
Mother's region of birth Midlothian
Mother's birthplace CSD dialect area midLoth
Mother's country of birth Scotland


Language Speak Read Write Understand Circumstances
English Yes Yes Yes Yes All
Scots No Yes No Yes Work