The Doric Dialect

Doric is the regional dialect spoken in the county of Aberdeenshire and the city of Aberdeen. As Scottish regional dialects go, the Doric can be one of the toughest to master.

The name Doric derives from ancient Greece and the dialect of the Dorians. The Dorians spoke in a more rural manner than their Athenian counterparts. The term was first applied to the language of north east Scotland in the early 1700s. Initially it was not confined to any single dialect, however over time the north east dialect began to take sole possession of the name. By the 1800s, journalists were writing articles in on topics of local interest in the Doric, and Doric poetry soon followed.

Eventually the Doric became entrenched in the culture of the north east, to the point where it can be difficult for outsiders to catch up, and the constant use of 'f' in place of 'wh' and 'ee' instead of 'oh' can make things rather confusing to visitors.

Robert Gordon University recently compiled The Doric Dictionary for visiting oil executives and thereby to ease communication in the Energy Capital of Europe.

Some of the best Doric phrases include:

Bosie - Hug or cuddle
Cappie - Ice-cream cone
Clype - To tell tales
Dookers - Swimsuit
Dreich - Overcast and miserable weather
Fan div ye yoke? - When do you start work?
Fan ye aff? - When are you going?
Fit like? - How are you?
Foo mony? - How many?
Foo's yer doos? - How are you?
Fooge - Play truant
Hellach - Noisy, or awkward
Loun - Boy
Pucklie - Small amount
Quine - Girl
Sook - Sycophant
Stappit - Full, well-fed
Scurry - Seagull     



Last update: 6 February 2014