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Archiver > Scotch-Irish > 1998-02 > 0887056395

From: Iain Sommerville< >
Subject: Sassenach - term of contempt?
Date: Mon, 09 Feb 1998 20:33:15 GMT

Edward Andrews said:

> In circles in which I move, when the word is used it has such
>extremely disparaging connotations that it is rarely used as being
>grossly offensive to our southern neighbours.
> It is usually used with a selection of adjectives.

John Giacoletti, concurring with Edward Andrews, said:

>"sassenach" is now a term of contempt used by
>a Scot to mean an English person.

I see things a little differently. From my perspective (not
definitive, of course), the term is not used a lot. And when it's used
by sane sober Scots (which is most of us, most of the time), it is
nowadays more of a description than an insult.

To be honest, the English use the term more than we do, and they use
it to describe themselves. This usually occurs on festive occasions
such as Hogmanay or Burns Night, when television journalists venture
north from London. They pose for the cameras in Princes Street,
Edinburgh, and cry "Hoots, mon; I'm a Sassenach" to the bemused

Iain Sommerville
Burntisland, Fife, Scotland

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