Although Scotland is still park of the UK the two countries do things quite differently and Scotland has a fair few words and phrases that can confuse even experienced adventurers when you first arrive in the beautiful country.
Historically there’s never been one, sole language spoken in Scotland, in part due to it’s clan fighting history. In the southern areas Lowland Scottish was the norm, off-shore islands as far as Orkney spoke Norn (a form of Old Norse) and Gaelic is still taught in schools today as Scotland moves to becoming a dual-language country.
If you’re visiting Scotland any time soon, then’s here’s a few Scottish words and phrases that might help you out just a wee bit. They sure would have been useful during my visit for Hogmanay and trip to the Highlands in particular!
Loch – Lake; but just don’t ever call it a lake whilst in Scotland, it’s always Loch Ness not lake Ness.
Glen – Valley
Ben – Mountain. So Ben Nevis is Nevis mountain.
Dram – simply means a drink although it usually in relation to Scottish whisky.
Wee – little.
Hogmanay – New Year’s Eve, although it’s a far bigger deal in Scotland than in England. Read more about Hogmanay here.
Aye/Nae – Yes/No
Slainte – cheers! (as in when you’re toasting a drink)
Yer bum’s oot the windae! – you’re talking rubbish/nonsense
Auld – Old
Aye – Yes
Bairn – Baby or Young Child
Blether – Chatter-box
Bonnie – Beautiful
Burn – Stream or Creek
Canny – Careful, or sometimes Clever
Chancer – Con-man, Trickster
Dae – (pronounced ‘day’) Do
Dinnae – Don’t
Eejit – Idiot
Neeps – turnips
Noo – Now
Tattie – Potato
Do you have any more phrases to add?