ONCE on a time, as the prelude to old stories used to
run, a pair of human turtles made their appearance before a Glasgow
minister, and desired to be united in the bonds of sacred wedlock.
Finding the preliminaries all satisfactory, the minister proceeded with
the ceremony till he came to that part of it where the question is put
to the bridegroom:
"Are you willing to take this woman to be your lawful
wedded wife?" To this necessary query the man, after some considerable
"No!" said the minister, with a look of surprise;
"for what reason?"
"Just," said the poor, embarrassed simpleton, looking
round for the door, "because I’ve ta’en a scunner (disgust) at her."
On this, the ceremony, to the evident mortification
of the fair one, was broken off, and the parties retired. A few days
after, however, they again presented themselves before his reverence,
and the fastidious bridegroom having declared that he had got over his
objections, the ceremony was again commenced, and proceeded without
interruption until the question was put to the bride:
"Are you willing to take this man to be your lawful
wedded husband?" To which she answered:
"What is the meaning of all this?" said the minister,
evidently displeased at the fickle folly of the pair, and their silly
trifling in a matter of such serious importance.
"Oh, naetbing ava," said the blushing damsel, tossing
her head with an air of resentment, "only, I’ve just ta’en a scunner at
The two again retired to their lonely pillows; and
lonely indeed it would seem they had found them, for the reverend
gentleman, on coming out of his house the following morning, met the
foolish couple once more on their way to solicit his services.
"It’s a’ made up noo," said the smiling fair one.
"Oh yes," said her intended, "it’s a’ settled noo,
and we want ye to marry us as soon as possible."
"I will do no such thing," was the grave and
startling reply of the minister to this impatient request.
"What for?" cried the fickle pair, speaking together
in a tone of mingled surprise and disappointment.
"Oh, naething ave," said his reverence, passing on
his way, "but I’ve just ta’en a scunner at ye baith."