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Neil, Can you help me?

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  • Neil, Can you help me?

    I thought I read an answer that you wrote on the difference between Scots and Gaelic that was pretty in-depth, but I can't find it now. Is my mind playing tricks? (This happens quit a bit). Specifically, I'm looking for information on the origins of the Scots language. Do you remember such a discussion, and if so, can you point me in the right direction? This is for an argument I want to make to the chairman of my graduate school where Irish Gaelic, Welsh, and Scottish Gaelic are all taught, but not Scots.
    Luceo non Uro -- I shine not burn

  • #2
    I do remember the discussion, which must be buried in the archive somewhere... good luck finding it!

    Simply put, Scottish Gaelic is a Celtic language, related to Irish Gaelic, Manx, Welsh, Cornish and Breton. Scots is a Germanic language, related to English, German, Dutch and the Scandinavian languages.

    Scots and modern English have common roots in the language of the Anglo-Saxons as spoken 1000 years ago. However the languages developed separately from this common root and, if I recall correctly, the earlier discussion was on whether or not Scots is a dialect of English. My argument is that they are distinct languages with a common root and that, if anything, Scots is closer to the original language than modern English so it might well be more correct to describe English as a dialect of Scots. I would never go that far, but it a good way to upset those who so vehemently denigrate Scots as nothing more than a corruption of "proper" English.


    • #3
      Thanks Neil!

      That information gets me off to a good start. I need to study Scots for my degree plan, but I searched through lots of academic departments hoping to find it. Finally, the only reference to Scots language is in one English course on "The Dialects of English". The course description explains that in that course they will be surveying various "dialects" of English including Scots English, Black English, Valley Girls, and Hip Hop. I am appalled! I don't want to denigrate Hip Hop, but you know better than I do that Scots has a wealth of literature that goes back many centuries. Can you, or anyone else, point me in the right direction to find a book or web-site that could help me prepare for the presentation I plan to make to my University on the value of teaching Scots as a language, not just a passing reference in on over-view class. I logged on to the web-site of the University of Edinburgh and was so impressed with their Scots language and literature classes! And the faculty! There was one woman professor that I thought I might write to for support on my Scots campaign. Previously in this forum we have posted quit a bit of information on learning Gaelic. Can you give me any ideas on good quality Scots instuction? Thanks! Dee
      Luceo non Uro -- I shine not burn


      • #4
        Broad Scots

        Scots is too broad a term to be of much use in a Web search. Using words like Doric and Lallans tends to be more useful for finding relevant material.

        I know the Moray Council has a website promoting the language. Search for Moray claik and you should find it. I have also seen some fairly academic sites on Doric. If I have time this afternoon I'll do a quick search on the Web and post anything I find.


        • #6
          Hi, DCubed, and here are a few links.

 - he Scots Language Society Site

 -A Selected Classified Bibliography of the Scots Language

 - from University of Edinburgh

 - A Beginners' Guide to Offline Language Materials:

          Of course, there is always the quotation (attrib. Uriel Weinreich) that a language is "a dialect with an army and a navy".


          • #7

            Want to speak "Scot",.simply down about 10 whiskeys and just read an English newspaper and you'll be speaking it fine!


            • #8
              Originally posted by ERINGOBRAUGH

              .......simply down about 10 whiskeys and just read an English newspaper and you'll be speaking it fine!
              Does the whisky have to be Irish or American?


              • #9

                By the spelling of "whiskey",.its' gotta be Irish,.but Scotch would do fine!



                • #10
                  DCubed I came across this thread while looking for something from a different board! I wonder, could this possibly be the one you referred to? Nice coincidence if it is!



                  • #11
                    Wow! Thanks all for so many links and so many ideas to support my campaign. Of course a big university is probably not going to listen to one student, but if nobody ever speaks up, they'll go on not teaching Scots, and giving it only a passing mention. It was interesting that in the Celtic Languages department there are only 2 units (that amounts to one year) of Scottish Gaelic, but several years of study in Irish Gaelic and also several years of Welsh. This, combined with not even teaching Scots, results in just about ignoring Scottish literature. While this is an American university, I am talking about bloody Harvard and their supposed to be a university of international stature! Celyn, that was the thread from the past that I was thinking of and it sure has some good points in it. Thanks!
                    Luceo non Uro -- I shine not burn