THERE was a record audience for the two speakers at the
Eskdale & Liddsdale Archaeological Society talk in the Buccleuch Centre.
They were the ever-entertaining Ian Landles ‘frae’ Hawick with A Light Herted Keek at the Hawick Tongue and Professor Alan Riach of the Department of Scottish Literature at the University of Glasgow with Scots in Literature: Language, Dialects and Tones of Voice.
Ian captivated the audience with his quick-fire delivery, which was witty and informative.
He spoke of the influence which the ancient Welsh language had had on the Border tongue and dialect.
It quickly became apparent that Professor Riach was enthralled by Ian’s delivery and performance, as was the audience.
Alan paid tribute to Chris Grieve (Hugh MacDiarmid) and his long-
fought campaign for cultural regeneration.
He quoted from J J Haldane Burges and William Dunbar and referred to Gerda Stevenson’s, The abduction of Mary Queen of Scots, which was written in broad Scots in response to a painting of the same title by Gavin Hamliton.
Perhaps the highlight of his talk was his own translation of the opening of Shakespeare’s Hamlet into Scots, a sample of which he read to the audience.
It was the culmination of a thoroughly enjoyable and stimulating evening.
Ian and Alan will probably see much more of each other in the future, maybe even before Ian returns ‘tae the Muckle Toon’ to deliver part two of A Light Herted Keek.
Who knows, we may even get another dual performance?