Document 1802

Scots Tung Wittins 151

Author(s): Robert Fairnie

Copyright holder(s): Name withheld


Nummer 151
Juin 2006

A guid Scots Tung in yer heid's nae guid if yer mooth's ower blate tae yaise it!

[NOTE: logo here of the dot Sco in original]
Scots Tung WITTINS

Eydently Campaignin tae Uphaud the Scots Language
Ph. [CENSORED: phonenumber] Scots Tung wabsite: Stravaiger Ph. [CENSORED: phonenumber]

The Flee In The Eyntment Wis Yin O Oor Ain
[NOTE: a photograph here of Maureen Watt in original]
"Scots is a hamelt vernacular language that belangs tae Scotland.If Scotland disnae dae ocht tae save it,
naebody else will"
WHEN Maureen Watt MSP taen her aith o lealty tae the Queen in Scots at the sweerin in ceremony o the Scots pairlament in Aprile, she kythed a precedent this side o the Treaty o Union. Naebody haed taen the aith o lealty in Scots afore in this modern Scots pairlament. Gaelic ay, an Catalan tae but never the Scots language. Never until Wedensday the 16t Aprile 2006.

It wisnae juist the Scottish media that cairried wittins o this kenspeckle day for the Scots language. Eurolang wis gey quick tae let the warld o minority leids ken aboot aw that haed kythed an hou important it wis tae the language.

The media's consaits anent this ongaun wis maistly uphaudin an hertenin an it wis juist a peety the flee in the eyntment haed tae come frae yin o oor ain. It wis Douglas Kynoch, author o "A Doric Dictionary" an contributor tae the Lallans magazine, that wis reportit as thinkin that, for aw that a sprinklin o Doric (Scots) words an phrases wad gie colour tae debates, the leid wis limited in a formal settin the likes o the pairlament. For him, it wis said, Scots is the language o the ingle neuk. It's yuiss is for the maitters o hame, maitters tae dae wi fermin, wi fishin an things o that ilk. It wad seem that he thocht the language shuid gaun back tae the kailyaird an bide thair whaur it belanged. He thocht an aw that it didnae hae muckle official or abstract tairms sae it wad be nae yuiss in ony formal settin.

Thae can only be the words o a body that accepts the politically induced brainwashin he haes haed tae dree frae the Scottish education system an estaiblishment. A classic case o the Scots creenge, a creenge that haes its ruits awa back in 1872 when politicians in the Liberal government o William Ewart Gladstone turned thair backs on bilingualism an decidit that Scotland wad become a monoglot English speakin kintrae. The muckle linguistic clearances that colours the thinkin o Douglas an ower mony o his peers the day, stertit back then when English wis politically threapit tae be the only language alloued tae be spoken in aw Scottish schuils frae then on. This new law wis enforced wi liberal yuiss o the tawse an a campaign tae dirl intae the heids o aw the bairns that English wis the only polite an proper wey o speakin an whit yaised tae be cried Scots wis an inferior an vulgar wey o speakin juist yaised bi fowk that wis ower donnert tae learn hou tae speak proper. Efter a while, it wisnae juist the Scots language that wis doonhauden in this wey, but gradually, Scots history wis suppressed then it wis awthin English that wis superior an awthin Scots wis vulgar an inferior. Ay, it's nae wunner the likes o Douglas Kynoch an ithers o that ilk, that haes gien in tae this political brainwashin, is dreein a sair dose o the Scots creenge. It widnae surprise mony if maist o thaim still aye juidges the intelligence an level o education o fowk they meet for the first time, bi hou weel they can speak English an some micht e'en haud some o thair fellae Scots inarticulate if they swither a wee bit wi English, nae maitter hou weel they cuid speak Scots. The inarticulate Scot? When Douglas Kynoch threaps the want o official or abstract tairms in the Scots language, he maun be referrin tae thae words that's unique tae Scots an forgettin aw aboot the ither 70% o the Scots vocabular that's shared wi English. Ye cannae get ony mair abstract nor the Scots word "abstract" itsel that kythes on page twa o the Concise Scots Dictionary. This same dictionary is fu o hunders o official an abstract tairms an this shuid be nae ferlie for the language wis yaised for lang enouch as the language o state for the royal Scottish coort an ye cannae get ony mair formal nor that. It's true that times haes chynged syne thae days but it chynges for aw languages, no juist for Scots. English haes managed tae tak in new official an abstract tairms in that time bi pauchlin frae ither leids includin the classic Latin an Greek an even mony a time frae Scots itsel. Is Scots that donnert that it cannae dae the same?

The Welsh language is takin steps tae mak it easier for Welsh tae be yaised in aw kinna situations includin formal occasions. The Welsh Language Board is biggin up a leet o tairms that can be yaised in thae formal situations. Whit wey can the Scots language no dae the same? Ay ye're richt, the Scots language disnae hae a Scots Language Board nor even an Academy o Scots but we'll wait till the coos comes hame if we wait for the Scots Executive tae dae onythin positive for the language in thon direction athoot bein gien a muckle shove.

Whit wey can the Cross Pairty Group on Scots, alang wi the SLS, SLRC, Saltire Society, SLD an the universities no aw get thegither tae formulate a business plan for the kinna Scots speakin Academy o Scots they aw think Scots shuid hae? If this wis tae be duin an properly costit, it cuid be pitten afore the Scots Executive wi a request for fundin.

The Executive is aye tellin the EC's Comatee o Experts hou it's gaun tae complouter wi the Scots language groups afore fetchin oot its Language Strategy for Scotland whit ever thon means, but they dinnae seem tae can progress frae sayin it tae daein it. Is it no aboot time noo for aw thae un-consulted Scots language groups tae tak the initiative an tell the Scots Executive whit wants tae be duin for oor language raither nor waitin for the Executive tae mak a move?

Scots is a hamelt vernacular language that belangs tae Scotland. If Scotland disnae dae ocht tae save it, naebody else will.

Scots Tung WITTINS
On the wab.
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Jamie Stuart's - Proverbs In The Patter
A review bi Irene Broon - owerset intae Scots bi the Editor
IF ye've watched a foreign picter that's been subtitelt, an it's yin whaur ye hae some kennin o the language it's been made in, it's temptin tae tune in tae the speech an see hou it's been owerset. The ootcome can whiles mean the film bein spylt when ye fund yersel sayin, "That's no richt!" If ye've peyed guid siller tae the picter-hoose, an ye're no fully acquent wi the particlar language, watchin the picter via the subtitles is the best chyce. Hire it on DVD for a mair challengin experience!

On ma first reading o Jamie Stuart's hinner-maist buik, Proverbs in the Patter, A fund masel daein a compare atween the King James owersettin set oot on the left haund pages an Jamie Stuart's Scots vairsion on the richt. Maist o the time there wisnae a problem, but then A'd come ower the likes o "sair shooglie tooth" for "broken tuith" an wunnert whit wis the guid in chyngin it. Howanever, a faurer readin o the Scots proverbs read on thair ain pruived better. The message o the 135 proverbs speaks wi the common sense that Jamie Stuart threaps in the buik's innin tae be in the King James vairsion. The Bible haes been throu at least fower languages afore comin tae Scots, sae it can haurlie be said that the King James is definitive. The sentiments in Scots is maistly warm an accessible, the latter word bein the keystane o a guid owersettin. For exemplar, proverb 9, Ill-will can mak a stooshie, but love can settle a stramash an proverb 131, As in calm waters ye get a keek at yer ain face, so in yer face ye get a keek at yer ain hert.

There maist likely an assumption that a reader o an owersettin o aw or pairt o the Buik o proverbs will, if no Christian, be a believer. This is plain tae see in proverb 67 when the reader is speirt tae "shout Hallelujah" whaur a less personal repone micht hiv been mair the thing. A wad tak issue an aw wi the word 'godless' bein yaised for 'wicked' that cuid hiv steyed the wey it wis, bein a word yaised in baith Scots an English, or e'en gaed ower tae yaisin 'wicket'.

He yaises the word 'gumption', meanin in English, 'wit, pluck or commonsense', in proverb 43, but in proverb 32, its yuiss disnae staund weel for 'discretion'. In like mainner, in proverbs 85, 90 an 122, the phrases, 'sair heid', 'heid bummer' an 'a girn aboot yer face' strikes me as waik owersettins whaur there an inference o deeper feelins frae the King James.

Thae are sma criticisms o whit is maistly a hertfelt labour o love bi Jamie Stuart. A hiv tae say that A think he hisnae duin hissel ony guid bi giein the buik the title Proverbs in the Patter. He haes a guid lug for Scots. It seems tae me that tae refer tae the words he's walit as 'patter' is tae dae doon whit is actually Scots wi a wee bittie Glaswegian dialect that can be read nae bother bi Scots speakers an bi onybody else that's o a mind tae wi a wee bit help frae the glossary.

Proverb 46: Weel-spoken words gie pleisur; fine works hiv their ain blessins.

Proverbs in the Patter – wise words from the Good Book bi Jamie Stuart wi an innin bi Professor Robert Davidson, ae-time Moderator o the General Assembly o the Kirk o Scotland, is publisht bi St Andrew Press an is priced at £7.99.
ISBN 0-7152-0833-0
It can be ordered frae:-
© Irene Broon

Gyan Up An Doon
AN Aiberdeen hotel is speirin for a Doric (Scots) speaker tae help mak thair guests feel mair walcome. The winner o this byordinar competition winna kythe in person but juist as a vyce in the hotel lift.

The Carmelite boutique hotel in Aiberdeen haes juist haed an £85,000 new lift pitten in but the high heid yins thocht the cut gless English vyce that advised the passengers wis ower oot o place an decidit that a mair hamelt vyce wis needit. Sae the lift will suin be gyang up an doon atween flairs een an fower.

Richard Muir, managin director o the Carmelite, on Stirling Street, near tae the toun's train station, says that guests is aye warmly walcomed bi thair staff an they want tae cairry on wi that tone as they mak thair wey up tae thair chaumers. The competition winner will be treatit tae a fower coorse denner an a nicht oot at the hotel forbye haein thair vyce immortalised in the braw new lift.

Doric Motion
THE follaein Motion wis pitten afore the Scots pairlament, written in baith Scots an English, bi Maureen Watt MSP an wis reportit tae hiv gotten a fairly guid an braid meisure o uphaud frae fellae MSPs in the Scots pairlament.

Here ye can see the Scots vairsion o the motion that wis owerset intae English an aw :-
"That the Pairliament merks hou the Doric leid plays a feckfu pairt in the corrieneuchins o the Nor-Aist, eikin muckle tae Scotland's national heirship an forderin the diversitie o Scottish culture, an cries on the Scottish Executif eidently tae upbigg the Doric an Lawland forms o the Scots tung as leivin leids."

Scots Language Maks Debut at the UN, New
IN Mey, the Scots Leid wis giein vyce for the first time at the warld poetry event, The Stanes o Civilization, held at the United Nations in New York.

On Mey 5, Matthew Fitt, co-foonder o Itchy Coo, read a poem in Scots tae 250 delegates in the U.N. Biggin's Dag Hammarskold auditorium. Readin 'Acid Burns' by Mike Cullen frae Itchy Coo's Scots anthology The Smoky Smirr o Rain, Fitt speired poets frae Australia, Wales, the Basque Country, Ireland, Africa and North America tae jyne in a chorus o 'Hoose, hoose, hoose, hoose.'

The UN readin wis co-sponsored by the United Nations SRC Society o Writers, the UN Permanent Forum on Indigenous Issues, and the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO) wi the ettle o heezin awareness o minority and endangered leids in an era o globalization. It wis attendit by Sir Emyr Jones Parry, the UK's Ambassador to the UN.

Afore the Stanes o Civilization readin, the United Nations has ainly recognised Scottish Gaelic (which wis representit this year by poet, Aonghas MacNeacail). At this milestane event for Itchy Coo and for Scots, Fitt read oot a statement addressin the Scottish Executive's attitude tae the leid.
‘I'd like to take this opportunity here at the United Nations to commend the Scottish Arts Council and the Scottish Executive for their strong commitment to the Scots Language. It is hoped that all organisations in Scotland will now support this unique tongue and work to secure its future for the next generation of young Scots.'
© Matthew Fitt

Did Ye Ken?
WHEN a lassie gets cried "hen" in Scotland it haes naethin tae dae wi chooks or birds. "Hen" is a familiar Scots term o endearment for lassies. It is the cutty form o "henney", the Scots word for "honey". Sae, in English, "Hen" = "Hon".

A familiar Scots term for laddies is "son" or "sonny".

Makar's Neuk
The Norlan Lichts o Auld Aiburdeen

The Norlan Lichts o auld Aiburdeen
Are hame, graun hame tae me.
Thon Norlan Lichts o Aiburdeen
Are fit a lang tae see.
A've been a wannerer aa o ma life
An mony's the sichts fit a've seen.
Gweed hist the day,
A'm oan ma way
Tae ma hame i Aiburdeen

Fan a wis a loon, a verra wee loon,
Ma mither sang tae me,
"Up yonner's the Norlan Lichts ma lad,
They're bricht as bricht can be.
Thon are oor hivvenly dincers.
Sich spirkers are hine awa chiels.
Noo dinna foryet i yer hame i the Nor
This veesion o' jigs an' reels."

A've syne stravaiged ow'r maist o the warl.
An traiveled i sinsheen an snaa.
Bit aye thocht oan ma but-an-ben,
An neebors fa cam tae caa.
Thon waarm'd up ma hairt fyle bein hine awa,
Fan myndin ilk kin an freen,
'Sweil Norlan Lichts
Gien glamour bricht nichts,
Tae ma hame i Aiburdeen.

Owerset bi John Henderson (Cyprus)

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APA Style:

Scots Tung Wittins 151. 2024. In The Scottish Corpus of Texts & Speech. Glasgow: University of Glasgow. Retrieved 25 July 2024, from

MLA Style:

"Scots Tung Wittins 151." The Scottish Corpus of Texts & Speech. Glasgow: University of Glasgow, 2024. Web. 25 July 2024.

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The Scottish Corpus of Texts & Speech, s.v., "Scots Tung Wittins 151," accessed 25 July 2024,

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


Information about Document 1802

Scots Tung Wittins 151


Text audience

Audience size N/A

Text details

Method of composition N/A
Word count 2615
General description monthly newsletter

Text medium

Leaflet/brochure (prospectus)

Text publication details

Publisher Scots Tung
Publication year 2006
Part of a longer series of texts
Name of series Scots Tung Wittins

Text type

Prose: nonfiction
Other mixed text type


Author details

Author id 95
Forenames Robert
Surname Fairnie
Gender Male
Decade of birth 1930
Educational attainment College
Age left school 16
Upbringing/religious beliefs Protestantism
Occupation Consultant Marine Structural Engineer (Retired)
Place of birth Musselburgh
Region of birth Midlothian
Birthplace CSD dialect area midLoth
Country of birth Scotland
Place of residence Musselburgh
Region of residence Midlothian
Residence CSD dialect area midLoth
Country of residence Scotland
Father's occupation Fisherman
Father's place of birth Musselburgh
Father's region of birth Midlothian
Father's birthplace CSD dialect area midLoth
Father's country of birth Scotland
Mother's occupation Fishwife
Mother's place of birth Musselburgh
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 At work
German Yes Yes Yes Yes In Germany to communicate with two grandsons
Scots Yes Yes Yes Yes Wherever Scots is understood