Monday, April 15, 2024

Spikkin Scots

The Shetland Dialect map allows you to listen to examples of the Shetland Dialect spoken across the Shetland Isles. The Shetland Isles are the northernmost region of the United Kingdom, Shetland, positioned between Orkney, the Faroe Islands, and Norway. 

Due to the isolated geography of the Shetland Isles the Shetland dialect (also called Shetlandic or auld Shetland) has continued to retain a degree of autonomy from other Scottish dialects. If you click on the green speaker icons on the Shetland Dialect map you can listen to a short sound clip of a Shetlander speaking in their local dialect.

Unfortunately the sound recordings are not accompanied by transcripts. This is a shame.  It would be very useful to be able to see some of these examples of Shetlandic vocabulary and grammatical forms written down. However if you do struggle with any individual words then you can always refer to the Shetland Dialect's Shetland Dictionary, which also includes sound recordings of individual Shetlandic words

The Scottish newspaper the Press and Journal has published a series of articles about the Scots language. This series includes a Spikkin Scots interactive map which features a number of sound recordings of people speaking Scots across the whole of Scotland. 

The newspaper estimates that there are currently around 1.5 million Scots speakers in Scotland. Scots is classed as a vulnerable language by Unesco. 

The Scots language has many dialects. You can explore and listen to these dialects on the Press and Journal's interactive map. The map includes 14 different sound recordings of people speaking Scots in different parts of Scotland (and one Scots speaker in Ulster). 

The map features at least 13 distinct dialects of Scots. Each of the sound recordings provides an example of a person speaking who actually lives and works in the mapped location.

Links to the other articles in the Press and Journal's Scots language series are provided beneath the map, at the end of the accompanying article.

The Scots Syntax Atlas is another interactive map which includes recordings of the Scottish dialects spoken in the different areas of Scotland. The map includes sound recordings of Scottish syntax recorded in all parts of the country, allowing you to explore where and how different types of Scottish syntax are spoken in different areas of Scotland. 

To create the map the researchers visited 145 communities in Scotland interviewing local people and recording their answers. In these interviews the researchers were particularly interested in the syntax of local dialects and in the ways that sentences are constructed in the different areas of Scotland. 

If you click on the markers on the map you can listen to interesting examples of Scottish syntax which were recorded in different parts of the country. You can also discover where these different types of Scottish syntax are spoken by selecting the 'who says what where' button. This option shows you where different types of syntax are spoken in Scotland. The 'stories behind the examples' button provides more detailed grammatical explanations of the recorded examples of Scottish syntax and information on how Scottish syntax differs from  'standard' English.

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