A language of United Kingdom


90,000 in United Kingdom (1999 B. Kay). 60,000 in Lallans, 30,000 in Doric. Population total all countries: 100,000. L2 users: 1,500,000 in United Kingdom.


Scotland, Aberdeen to Ayrshire; Northern Ireland. Doric dialect: northeast Scotland; Lallans dialect: southern Scotland lowlands; Ulster in Northern Ireland.

Language Status

5 (Developing).


Doric, Lallans, Ulster. Difficult intelligibility among dialects. Northern Scots on the Scottish Islands is considered by some a different language (Shetlandic or Orcadian). Lallans is main literary dialect. Scots is reportedly most similar to English [eng] and Frisian [fry].


SVO; prepositions; genitives, articles, adjectives, numerals before noun heads; relatives without noun heads; question word initial; 2 prefixes, 1 suffix; word order distinguishes subjects, objects, indirect objects, given and new information, topic and comment; affixes indicate genitive case of noun phrase; passives; comparatives; CVC; nontonal.

Language Use

Home, community. All ages. Also use English [eng].

Language Development
Literacy rate in L2: 97% English. Ulster Scots has a development group. Poetry. Magazines. Dictionary. NT: 1901–1984.

Latin script [Latn].

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