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Spoken and written Shetland dlalect debate

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Does it annoy you when a non-Shetlander uses Shetland dialect words in their everyday conversation?


Does it annoy you when non-Shetlanders even get to the point of adopting a Shetland accent or going the whole hog and speaking in Shetland dialect to the local Shetlanders?


Does it annoy you if a non-Shetlander writes in Shetland dialect on internet sites, such as Facebook or Shetlink?


I am from London. Lived here 15 years.


I do use the odd word like "peerie" when talking to someone in Shetland but adapt back to my English when in, say, London again.


I am just interested in a Shetlander's take on how us "soothmoothers" use their language.


Please, I don't want a fight.

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Nope never. I would think that most folk moving to another area will eventually pick up some of the lingo.


Although I used to have some fun with an English pal o mine, wha could never say "peerie" no matter how hard he tried it just didn't sound right. I think it was because he spoke posh English then over emphasised the word peerie.


When south I tend to put on an"english" slant to my usual shetland dialect, in order to be understood.


Another friend moved to Australia about Six years ago and when we speak on the phone, you would swear she was an Australian. But by he end of the call the Shetland words are coming through.


I like to hear folk using Shetland wirds no matter where they are from. :D

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I usually refer to it as "Sin City" because that's what a neighbour told me it was called when I first moved here! When I asked why, they said to just see the number of drunks appearing in Court on a Monday morning and the press reports.


I is crap with my 'R's so struggle.


My pet hate is when one particular client of mine spells and pronounces Sumburgh as Sumburg, regardless of how many times I advise them of the correct spelling, etc.

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Umm....down this end it is called that, don't know if its everybody or how far north the habit exists, but "da Fareile" has always been in common usage. Probably the only example of its kind, and why it got called in that way, who knows....


If we're talking of pet hates though, there's the relatively recent habit of people starting to use things like Breiwick Bay and Gulberwick Bay - a 'wick' is a bay, so translated they becomes Breibay Bay and Gulberbay Bay - nonsensical or what.

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I don't mind non- shetlanders trying to speak dialect, though recently got very irked by an annoying woman holding forth about how dialect should be used, yet she couldn't even tell her du's from her dee's. I'd say start with individual words, but don't tackle the grammar. Or at least be aware of your limitations, and don't slag off others. The thing is, dialect is so very nuanced and varied (seen on recent threads) that it isn't like trying to speak a language. Wild stabs at English by foreigners are understood and appreciated. But to speak dialect is to get the accent right, the inflection perfect, and appreciate all the local subtleties - and maybe also the humour? So a hard thing to do in such a way that it doesn't jar.

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Well, you learn something new everyday. I had never heard of The Fair Isle until it was said by someone from mainland.


A tricky one - I suppose there is a subtle limit on how far one goes to try and be part of the community before you sound pretentious.


And, you've got to speak it properly or write it properly too from the start. You can't say "I am just learning this dialect, so bear with me while I annihilate your language"!

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I did meet someone years back who spoke with a good shetland accent but had only been here about 5 years - I was very surprised. It's not normal, as it is very hard to do.


There's no right or wrong, but in general if I go to, eg, Dundee, I don't try to speak their accent as they would be puzzled and possibly aggressive.

Place names are sometimes easier to get away with than whole sentences though, and worth trying. Not that the locals ever agree on them anyway...

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