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Sunday, December 22, 2013
Greyfriar's Bobby - by Eleanor Atkinson
For Christmas, I want to present one of Scotland's most beloved classics, Greyfriar's Bobby. This version is by Eleanor Atkinson, who is a Hoosier from my home state of Indiana. (US Edition) (UK Edition) The novel is from 1912 and has a Christmas tie:
Next Christmas she means to tell the story of Greyfriars Bobby, and how all his little Scotch friends are better-behaving and cleaner and happier because they have that wee dog to love."
Warning, dialect alert! But the dialect is placed in such a way, that the meaning is explained. You can always use your dictionary. Because I am American and I read many books from England, Scotland, and Ireland, I bought the Oxford Dictionary of English and made it my default Kindle dictionary. It is very handy for slang whether I am reading a classic or Maeve Binchy! British readers might want to make the New Oxford American Dictionary their default dictionary.
"The sonsie, wee—why, he's all but starved!"
Pale with pity, Mr. Traill snatched a plate of broth from the hands of a gaping waiter laddie, set it under Bobby's nose, and watched him begin to lap the warm liquid eagerly.
Both dictionaries define "sonsie" as having an "attractive and healthy appearance." The narrator goes on to explain that the dog's appearance is deceptive and his coat hides his true condition.
I want to wish all my faithful readers very happy holidays! I am spending Christmas in Indiana. It is about 30 degrees different from my home in San Antonio, Texas.
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Posted by Marilyn Litt at 1:43 PM