Census 2011 – Aye Can!

There’s a bit o a smirr on the windae and ahm sittin on my bahookie in the National Library of Scotland in Auld Reekie – wid ye like a bit o a blether on the wab?

Smoky Smirr

For those of you without the guid Scots tongue, I’m telling you that’s there’s a bit of rain on the window and that I’m in Edinburgh, and wondering if you’d like to share a chat on the internet?

I’ve been working on a Scots language project recently, looking at the Scots language used in poetry, novels and short stories, and in modern life too. You could say that many people in Scotland are bilingual – moving between English and Scots, depending on who they are with and where they are. Are you ever thrawn, crabbit, scunnered, puggled, or feart ? You can find very different Scots in Robert Burns, The Broons, the bus, the school yaird, The Hoose at Pooh’s Neuk and even in the Scottish Parliament – haud yer wheesht.

2011 is Census year and for the first time Scots – the people – will be asked about Scots – the language. Folk may not be sure if they ken Scots or no, so there’s a great new website developed by the Scots Language Centre to support the Census questions. Find more at Aye Can!

(Photograph of The smoky smirr of rain : a Scots anthology, edited by Matthew Fitt and James Robertson and published by
Itchy Coo)