Northern and Insular Scots

Overview

The Scots dialects of northern Scotland, Orkney and Shetland are among the most traditional varieties of 'English', exhibiting features not current elsewhere for centuries. Until recently, they were spoken in communities whose traditional occupations have encouraged the equation of speech with local identity. They have all also been affected by contact with Gaelic, or Norse, or both. In recent years, however, the decline of traditional industries has been matched by the discovery of oil off their coasts, ...
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Overview

The Scots dialects of northern Scotland, Orkney and Shetland are among the most traditional varieties of 'English', exhibiting features not current elsewhere for centuries. Until recently, they were spoken in communities whose traditional occupations have encouraged the equation of speech with local identity. They have all also been affected by contact with Gaelic, or Norse, or both. In recent years, however, the decline of traditional industries has been matched by the discovery of oil off their coasts, encouraging inmigration of speakers of many varieties of English and other languages. How well have these varieties maintained their traditional natures at the start of the twenty-first century?

Northern and Insular Scots provides: an approachable description of the phonological, structural and lexical natures of these varieties, a history of the varieties in relation to the areas in which they are spoken, examples of the language of native speakers, an annotated bibliography which points the reader towards more specialised works.

About the Author:
Robert McColl Millar lectures in linguistics at the University of Aberdeen. He has published widely on topics relating to the language use of northern Scotland, as well as on language change and the sociology of language

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780748623174
  • Publisher: Edinburgh University Press
  • Publication date: 3/13/2007
  • Series: Dialects of English Series
  • Pages: 192
  • Product dimensions: 8.40 (w) x 5.40 (h) x 0.40 (d)

Meet the Author

Robert McColl Millar is Senior Lecturer in Linguistics at the University of Aberdeen

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Table of Contents


Acknowledgements     vii
Introduction     1
Northern and Insular Scots     1
The linguistic ecologies of the regions     5
Geography and culture: an introduction     6
A note on terminology: 'Scots' versus 'English'     14
Conclusion     15
Phonetics and phonology     16
Introduction     16
The vowel systems     20
Consonant phonology     61
Prosody     64
Conclusion     64
Morphosyntax     65
Introduction     65
The nouns     66
Pronouns     67
The definite article     71
Adjectives     72
Verbs     72
Conclusion     78
Lexis     79
Introduction     79
Scholarly resources: national     79
Locally focused resources     83
Dialect vocabulary and heritage     92
Discussion     94
Lexical borrowing     95
Conclusion     102
History, including changes in progress     103
Introduction: language contact and language shift     103
NorthernScotland     106
The Northern Isles     123
Conclusion     135
Survey of previous works and annotated bibliography     136
General histories, grammars, studies of phonology and dictionaries of Scots     136
Local history and geography     137
Studies of specific dialects     138
Theoretical views discussed in this book     139
Suggestions for future research     140
Works cited in this chapter and the book as a whole     142
Texts     149
Shetland     149
Orkney     162
Caithness     163
Black Isle     166
Mid-Northern B     167
Mid-Northern A     168
South Northern     171
Index     173
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