Knowledge of Language

Glaswegian

The Scots dialect spoken in Scotland’s biggest city is called Glaswegian, sometimes going under the aliases ‘The Patter’ or ‘The Banter’. Glasgow Scots is a dialect of some prestige, being featured frequently on television in programmes like Chewin the Fat, Still Game and River City.

Many poets and novelists have chosen to write in Glaswegian, including Anne Donovan, whose novel Buddha Da was shortlisted for the Orange and Whitbread literary prizes.

Buddha Da by Anne Donovan

Ma Da’s a nutter. Radio rental. He’d dae anythin for a laugh so he wid; went doon the shops wi a perra knickers on his heid, tellt the wifie next door we’d won the lottery and were flittin tae Barbados, but that wis daft stuff compared tae whit he’s went and done noo. He’s turnt intae a Buddhist…
Listen to Anne Donovan reading from Buddha Da.

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Glesca voices

Listen to Glaswegian Gary French talking about his experience as a student actor at the Royal Scottish Academy of Music and Drama.


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Hear from Lynne Jarvis, staff member at Ashcraig Secondary School, who used to work at the Barras market.


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Glaswegian Scots

  • Glesca - Glasgow
  • cludgie - toilet
  • gallus - cheeky
  • ginger - fizzy drink
  • lumber - date