Use it or lose it
Author(s): Christine De Luca
Copyright holder(s): Christine De Luca
If you hae access tae a computer (or a göd-natured grandbairn wha'll hae you surfin in nae time ava) dan hae a skoit at dis website.
You'll maybe get a peerie surprise, fur dere you'll fin i a recent volume (Transcript 2- click apö 'backnumbers' fur him) twartree 'pages' aboot Shetland an Shetland writin. Der features on Shetland poetry written baith bi mesell an Robert Alan Jamieson.
Transcript is a online review o writin across Europe. Hit's policy is "ta mak available tae a wider audience excellent writin in peerier - though no lesser - European languages." Fundin comes fae da Culture 2000 programme o da European Union an hit hes partnerships wi organisations fae Iceland tae Greece, an fae Hungary tae Portugal. Da editor, Diarmuid Johnson, bides in Wales.
If you're feelin cosmopolitan you can tab alang da tap o ivery page an hit'll gie you French or German versions o da information. Whit wi lokks o idder information an plenty o 'hot links' tae idder websites -some Shetland eens) you'll fin hit a really fine een tae add tae your 'favourites'. (Ir you still wi me?).
A'll no bore you wi da poetry - you can see dat fur yoursels - but ee thing at got me fairly jimpin wis da description - laekely sadly owre true - o da plight o Shetland spaekin among wir young eens. Here's whit hit says.
Regarding the demise of Norn and the spread of Scots in Shetland, it seems that Shetlanders, over a period of time, adopted Scots and rejected Norn because Scots was the more useful language with the greater status at the time, and Norn had come to be seen as irrelevant.
This model offers parallels to the situation in Shetland today. On one hand, the Shetlandic vocabulary is slowly disappearing so that what remains is a depleted dialect consisting mostly of common English words with Shetland pronunciations. This gradual decline of the characteristic Shetland vocabulary certainly continues throughout Shetland. In the town of Lerwick, however, another situation has arisen: the younger generation does not speak any kind of Shetlandic, but simply standard English, albeit with a local accent.
Göd grief: is dat no jöst most solemn? So get writin, get readin, get spaekin an get textin an surfin, but in Shetlan (as weel as in English, French or Catalan). Mind, hit only taks twa generations ta loss a language. Did you ken at bairns at hae twa wyes o spaekin fluently laern better? Nae winder, hit exercises da mind as weel as da tongue.
PS tae da Editor: whit aboot a policy o ha'in at laest wan article writin i da dialect ivery week? An a dialect poem? An somethin fur bairns?
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Use it or lose it. 2024. In The Scottish Corpus of Texts & Speech. Glasgow: University of Glasgow. Retrieved 26 February 2024, from http://www.scottishcorpus.ac.uk/document/?documentid=445.
"Use it or lose it." The Scottish Corpus of Texts & Speech. Glasgow: University of Glasgow, 2024. Web. 26 February 2024. http://www.scottishcorpus.ac.uk/document/?documentid=445.
The Scottish Corpus of Texts & Speech, s.v., "Use it or lose it," accessed 26 February 2024, http://www.scottishcorpus.ac.uk/document/?documentid=445.
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The Scottish Corpus of Texts & Speech. 2024. Glasgow: University of Glasgow. http://www.scottishcorpus.ac.uk.