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Scots Language Centre Centre for the Scots Leid

Historic quizzes in Scots

3rd August 2017

It is encouraging to see that recently Historic Scotland have begun to introduce some Scots language quizzes for children at some of its North East sites. A set of quizzes produced by Ally Heather for Elgin Cathedral, Fort George and Spynie Palace encourage children to explore these historic sites by asking them questions in Scots about finding certain features. Billed as ‘In wer ain tongue’ and ‘In the Scots tongue’ the language is written in the North East Scots dialect also known as Doric. The quizzes ask the reader to ‘stravaig aroon’ and ‘speir at’ the staff for any help. In Elgin children are asked for instance ‘Foo mony chaumers are in the twa tours? and ‘Foo mony windaes are in the muckle waa ahint the altar?’ while at Fort George they are asked to ‘Follae the nummers an airt-oot aa the answers!’

Such initiatives aimed at both wider learning, and encouraging the use of Scots, are to be commended.