“Do eat something, Mr. Sutherland,” said Margaret.
Hugh looked at her involuntarily. She did not understand his look, and it alarmed her. His countenance was changed.
“What is the matter, dear — Hugh?” she said, rising, and laying her hand on his shoulder.
“Hoots! lassie,” broke in her mother; “are ye makin’ love till a man, a gentleman, afore my verra een?”
“He did it first, mother,” answered Margaret, with a smile.
A pang of hope shot through Hugh’s heart.
“Ow! that’s the gait o’t, is’t? The bairn’s gane dementit! Ye’re no efter merryin’ a gentleman, Maggy? Na, na, lass!”
So saying, the old lady, rather crossly, and very imprudently, left the room to fill the teapot in the kitchen.
“Do you remember this?” said Margaret, — who felt that Hugh must have misunderstood something or other, — taking from her pocket a little book, and from the book a withered flower.
Hugh saw that it was like a primrose, and hoped against hope that it was the one which he had given to her, on the spring morning in the fir-wood. Still, a feeling very different from his might have made her preserve it. He must know all about it.
“Why did you keep that?” he said.
“Because I loved you.”
“Yes. Didn’t you know?”
“Why did you say, then, that you didn’t care if — if — ?”
“Because love is enough, Hugh. — That was why.”
1 ch guttural. The land-rail is a corn-scraich.
2 Goldsmith; twice, in the Citizen of the World.
Note from John Bechard, creator of this Electronic text.
The following is a list of Scottish words which are found in George MacDonald’s “David Elginbrod”. I have compiled this list myself and worked out the definitions from context with the help of Margaret West, from Leven in Fife, Scotland, and also by referring to a word list found in a collection of poems by Robert Burns. There are about 6 words which we could not work out definitions for and would welcome any feedback on those words or any others in the list which may be wrong (my e-mail address is JaBBechard@aol.com). This was never meant to be a comprehensive list of the National Scottish Language, but rather an aid to understanding some of Mr MacDonald’s conversations which are carried out in the Broad Scots. I do apologise for any mistakes or omissions. I aimed for my list to be very comprehensive, and it often repeats the same word in a plural or diminutive form. As well, it includes words that are quite obvious to native English speakers.
There is a web site under construction which will feature the Scottish language; and the National Scottish Dictionary can be consulted if you have access to one.