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Juuso's Blog: Understanding Scottish Words as an International Student

By Megan 16 Apr 2019

One thing that international students might have problems with (at least at the start of term) is understanding Scottish words and phrases. The first few weeks I spent in Scotland I had to literally keep asking people to repeat what they said. And sometimes I didn’t understand half of the words no matter what! Let’s face it… some of the words are very odd and don’t really make sense at all. But here is a list of the most common (at least in my point of view) words and phrases that people use. 

aye – yes

bawbag – idiot / stupid / annoying

cannae – cannot

cheers – cheers / you’re welcome/ goodbye / thanks

greet – cry

hogmanay – New Year’s Eve

ken – know / know what I mean

mate – friend

maw – mum

mingin – stinking / gross / terrible

naw – no

noo – now

tattie – potato

tea – dinner (can also be tea. I KNOW?! Makes no sense whatsoever)

wee – little / small / tiny

yer – your / you’re

There is a lot more to list but if you know these you can survive! I hope this helps and clears some stuff out!

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