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Scotch Wit and Humour
Printed in 1898


Scotch Wit and Humor is a fairly representative collection of the type of wit and humor which is at home north of the Tweed—and almost everywhere else—for are not Scotchmen to be found everywhere? To say that wit and humor is not a native of Scotch human nature is to share the responsibility for an inaccuracy the author of which must have been as unobservant as those who repeat it. It is quite true that the humor is not always or generally on the surface—what treasure is?—and it may be true, too, that the thrifty habits of our northern friends, combined with the earnestness produced by their religious history, have brought to the surface the seriousness—amounting sometimes almost to heaviness—which is their most apparent characteristic. But under the surface will be found a rich vein of generosity, and a fund of humor, which soon cure a stranger—if he has eyes to see and is capable of appreciation—of the common error of supposing that Scotchmen are either stingy or stupid.

True, there may be the absence of the brilliancy which characterizes much of the English wit and humor, and of the inexpressible quality which is contained in Hibernian fun; but for point of neatness one may look far before discovering anything to surpass the shrewdness and playfulness to be found in the Scotch race. In fact, if Scotland had no wit and humor she would have been incapable of furnishing a man who employed such methods in construction as were introduced by the engineer of the Forth Bridge.


Electric Scotland Note:  Due to the difficulty of ocr'ing this book we've decided to post it up page by page as image files.  You'll note in the url of the page we've used the naming convention of scotchwitxxx.htm meaning that the xxx stands for a page number and so scotchwit13.htm is the 13th page of the book. This means if you look through the index and see an item you'd be interested in reading (say on page 106) you just need to change the url in your browser to scotchwit106.htm and you'll go directly to that page.  Also, on each page you'll get the links to "Previous Page", "Book Index Page", "Next Page" in the foot of the page letting you move forward or back. The first actual page is...

Page 13

should you wish to read from the first actual page.  And here is one of the wee gems in the book...

The Fly-fisher and the Highland Lassie

An English tourist visited Arran, and being a keen disciple of Isaac Walton, was arranging to have a good day's sport. Being told that the horse-fly would suit his purpose admirably for bait, he addressed himself to Christy, the Highland servant-maid. "I say, my girl, can you get me some horse-flies?"

Christy looked stupid, and he repeated his question. Finding that she did not yet comprehend him, he exclaimed: "Why, girl, did you never see a horse-fly?"

"Naa, sir," said the girl; "but a wanse saw a coo jump over a preshipice."

You can also download the entire book in pdf format...

Scotch wit and humor
Classified under appropriate subject headings, with, in many cases, a reference to a table of authors by Walter Henry Howe (1898) (pdf)

Return to our Online Books Page  |  Return to our Humor Page


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