In contemporary written
Scots, the indefinite article is (as in English) a before
consonants, and an (or ane) before vowels.. In modern
spoken dialects, a is sometimes used before both consonants and
Ah saw a elephant at the zoo.
The letter h is normally aspirated in Scots and in Scots-English.
We aye hae a historie lesson at the skuil on
This is used:
Before some words where the
indefinite article would be used in English:
It brocht the tear til
Before some words where it would
be left out in English: the kirk, the tea, the denner, the
aw gaun til the kirk this mornin.
(c) Before the names of
diseases and ailments: the cauld, the byle, the fever, the strunts.
She’s gey hard-up with
Before the names of days or seasons: the Monday, the Spring, the
Simmer, the Back End, the Wunter.
He’s cummin owre ti see us on the Setterday.
Before the names of occupations
or fields of learning: the jynerie, the readin,
the soumin, the rinnin,
a possessive adjective would be used in English:
Did the wyfe no tell ye
ti keep the heid?
In a few adverbial combinations
where it takes the place of English ‘to’:
the morn’s mornin, the forenicht.
meetin is in the Toun Haw the morn’s forenicht.