Sunday, 11 July 2010

Scots Around Us: Part II

This advertising hoarding was up all around Belfast a year or two back and displays a few quaintly colourful expressions used in the city. Craic is of course a recent Gaelicisation of Scots and Northern English crack, while weeker appears to be the local pronunciation of what the Scottish National Dictionary records as wheecher or wheeker, "anything big or outstanding of its kind, something of top quality or excellence, a thumper, stunner".

Given contemporary developments in the phonology of working-class speakers of Scots-influenced English in Scotland, the Scottish pronunciation is likely to be much closer to that of Belfast in future, if the agent noun manages to survive at all. 

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