Scots Sangs Fur Schools

Traditional and new Scots songs for use in Scottish schools



aboon: above

airay: basement area

alearie, aleery: crooked

ava: at all

backin rock: distaff for scraps of wool etc

baloo: comforting sound made to a baby, lullaby

baps: bread rolls

baudrons: affectionate name for cat

bawbee: ha’penny

beck: curtsy

begood: began

bellises: bellows for blowing air on a fire

big: build

birken: birch

birl: whirl round

bogle: ghost

bosie: bosom

boukie: body

bowster: bolster

bowsy-leggit: bow-legged

bree: liquid in which something has been boiled or soaked

breeks: trousers

brenty: smooth

brinkie: smooth

brod: sharp-pointed thing, spur

brose: oat-meal mixed with boiling water or milk

brosy, browsy: stout

brunt: burnt

bubbie: breast

bubbly-jock: turkey cock

bummin: bragging, boasting

buss: bush

cadger: hawker, especially of fish

cahoutchie: rubber (F. caoutchouc)

caller: cool, fresh

canles: candles

canny: lucky, skilful

canty: cheery, pleasant, neat

carle: man, fellow

carlin: (old) woman, witch

castock: cabbage

caup: cup or bowl, often wooden

champit tatties: mashed potatoes

chanty: chamber-pot

chap: knock

chapsies: way to claim exemption from forfeit in a game

cheetie: cat

chick: clicking sound made to a horse

chicki naigie: dandling game where child rides the adult’s knee or ankle See also chick and naig

clamjamfry, clanjamfrie: rabble

clash-piety,clash-pyotie : tell-tale

clout: cloth

cob: beat or strike

Cocky Breeky: small boy in first trousers

coffed: bought

coft: bought

collop: slice of meat

coost oot: fell out, disagreed

corbie: raven, crow

craigie: neck

Cripple Dick: lame person

croodin doo: wood-pigeon, term of affection

cuddie: donkey

custock: cabbage or kail stalk

cutty sark: short shirt, undergarment

dang: knocked

deuk's dub: duck pond

dicht: wipe

die: toy, trinket

dight: prepared, wiped

dirk: Highland weapon, short knife worn in the belt, to stab or prod

doo: dove       

doup: bottom

dowt: cigarette end

draff: refuse of malt after brewing

drawers: underpants

drow: drizzle


failie: bit of turf

fair, fairing: gift bought at a fair

far: where

farden: farthing

fat: what

fat maks: what matters

file: dirty

fite: white

fog: grass left in the field to over-winter

furliemajigger: whirligig or showy ornament

fyle: dirty

gallus: bold, cheeky

garten: garter

gate: road, way

gauge: measure, template for the mesh of nets

gem: game

gerse: grass

gib, gibbie: tom-cat

gled: hawk

gleyt: squint

glowerin: scowling

Gouk, gowk: cuckoo, fool

greet: cry, weep

grice: pig

gully: big knife

gutty: rubber

gweed: good

haddy: haddock

hallow o straw: sheaf

hap and row: cover and wrap around

harns: brains

Harry Wraggs: Partick Thistle

haufers: half shares

heddle: tool used in weaving

herdie: person who herds and protects sheep or cattle

herry: harry, rob

hinkumbooby: silly, stupid person

hirplin: limping, walking unsteadily

hotch: cause to move jerkily

howlet: owl

humphy: having a hump, hunchbacked

hurcheon: hedgehog

hurlit: rode on something with wheels

jaurie: marble

Jenny: country girl, woman

jiggin: dancing

jimp: close-fitting, neat

juck: duck

kailpot: cabbage pot

kaim: comb

kale: kind of cabbage

Katy Beardie: name for a woman with facial hair

keek: peep

keetles: cattle-beasts

kerseckie: overall, pinafore

kick the can: like hide and seek. The seeker also tries to stop the rest getting back to base and 'kicking the can'.

kist: chest, large box

kit: small tub

kittle: tickle

knowe: hillock

kye: cattle

laid: mill-lade, bringing  water to a mill

lanny: cheap powerful wine

lave: rest

laverick, lavrick: lark

law: rounded hill

led me them hame: carried them home for me, transported harvest of any kind from the fields

leefu-lane,my: all by myself

leerie: lamplighter

leese me on: I like, blessings on

leman: sweetheart

licks: physical punishment


lillie, lily: beautiful

lintie: innet

list: desire

loose: louse

loot: let out

loup: leap, jump

low: fire, glow

Luckenbooths: In Edinburgh, covered stalls which could be locked

lum hat: top hat (like chimney)


mavis: songthrush

meal-poke: oatmeal bag

mend a pen: sharpen a quill

midden: dungheap

midgie man: bin-man

minnie: mother

monyfauld: ruminant’s third stomach

mools: the grave

moudiwort: mole

moup: nibble

mutch: headgear for married women

naig: horse

nappie: bumpy

neb: nose, beak

neuk: corner

nib: nose, beak

nieve: fist

okey pokey: icecream

onion bag: football net

oo: wool

ouks: weeks

oxter: armpit

pappie: breast

peedie: little

peelins: potato peelings

peenie: pinny, apron

peerie: little (adj.), spinning top (noun)

pickle: a little

pinky: little finger

plick: pluck

pock: bag, small sack

points: laces for shoes or boots

pouther: powder

powe: head

preen: pin

puddock-stool: toadstool

pyat, pyot: magpie

quattrack .. of: why worry .. about

rackled: rattled

rammy: boisterous row

rickle: loose collection or heap

rift: belch

riftin fu: full to bursting

rodden: rowan

rossen: roasted

row: wrap

rumples: rump, haunches

sark: man’s shirt, woman’s shift

scroggs: brushwood, undergrowth

shin, shoon: shoes

shoo: sew

siccar: safe

skailed: spilled

skelp: slap

smock,smoch: thick fog

sneck: latch of a door

souple, flailsoople: tool for beating out grain

sowens: food made by steeping oat husks and meal and fermenting that liquid.

Spangi, spaingie Spanish

speel: climb

stank: gutter grating

starns: stars

staw: stole

stot: bounce

stoter: smasher, bouncing blow

sugarallie, sugarollie: liquorice

sugarellie hat: top hat

sinsyne: since then

souple Tam: jointed wooden doll

strides: trousers

tanner: sixpence

tartan: (of skin) mottled by sitting too close to the fire

tearie: rage, spree

thrapple: throat

thrifty:  moneybox

thumle: thimble

tift: gust of wind

tine: prong

titlen: meadow pipit

tod: fox

trig: trim

trowies: fairies, mischievous spirits

tyke: dog

wall: well, standpipe

wamie: wee stomach

ware: spend

wat: know

whitterit: weasel or stoat

wummle: auger, gimlet

wyte: blame