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TITLE
Cromarty Fisher Folk (14 of 20)
EXTERNAL ID
AB_CROMARTYFISHER_AUDIO_14
PLACENAME
Cromarty
OLD COUNTY/PARISH
ROSS: Cromarty
DATE OF RECORDING
2 April 2007
PERIOD
2000s
CREATOR
Bobby Hogg & Gordon Hogg
SOURCE
Am Baile
ASSET ID
1140
KEYWORDS
language
linguistics
audio

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The former royal burgh of Cromarty lies on the northern tip of the Black Isle peninsula, at the mouth of the Cromarty Firth in northeast Scotland. It is home to brothers Bobby and Gordon Hogg, descendants of a long line of local fisher folk. They can trace their ancestry back for centuries in the small coastal port. In the 1861 census there were no less than 96 Hoggs living in the Cromarty district and an entry for the family name in the Old Parish Register dates back as early as 1698.

Bobby and Gordon believe they are the last two fluent speakers of the 'Cromarty fisher dialect', a unique Scots dialect identified in Robert McColl Millar's study of 'Northern and Insular Scots' as 'North Northern A', mainly associated with the fishing communities of the Black Isle (Cromarty and Avoch) and other small towns and villages on the Cromarty Firth. It is said that at one time there were at least two, if not three, dialects in the Cromarty area - fisher, town, and farmer. While several Cromarty residents retain aspects of the fisher vocabulary, when Bobby and Gordon get together they converse fluently in the dialect.

[N.B. Gordon Hogg passed away in 2011, aged 86. Bobby Hogg died a year later, aged 92.]


In this audio extract from March 2007, Bobby and Gordon discuss the work of the fisher women and recall the time when their father gave up the sea.

Bobby: When I was about nine or so an my father left the sea, they got a mo-, previous to that, they got a motor boat, right, so that they could go to sea easier. They didn't know they were killin the women. The women had to keep more lines goin to keep them goin. See what Ah mean?

Gordon: Hard life.

Bobby: It was a hundred percent job, a hundred percent o the time.

Gordon: Aye, that certainly was.

Bobby: That's what it was. Mm-hmm. Slavery. An eventually ye know -

Gordon: The men - they used to carry the men, aye, onto the boats an off the boats. The women had to carry them!

Bobby: Some o these boats were out for twenty-four hours, like. If a man went to sea soakin wet, he might come back wi double pneumonia, like. All sorts o things had to be looked at. Yea. Och, Ah used to see ma Aunt Maggie down diggin the bait.

Gordon: Surely, that's certainly, aye.

Bobby: But ma father, as Ah say, he was a fisherman. He told me, an Ah heard him sayin, not only him, but his crew too, that they shot twelve lines, twelve lines - that's three lines each man, right? - an they took nineteen haddocks aboard -

Gordon: That's all.

Bobby: - out o seventy-two th-, seven thousand, two hundred hooks.

Gordon: That's it.

Interviewer: Dear me. That wasn't a good day.

Bobby: Ye see that finished me wi the sea

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Cromarty Fisher Folk (14 of 20)

ROSS: Cromarty

2000s

language; linguistics; audio

Am Baile

Am Baile: Cromarty Fisher Folk

The former royal burgh of Cromarty lies on the northern tip of the Black Isle peninsula, at the mouth of the Cromarty Firth in northeast Scotland. It is home to brothers Bobby and Gordon Hogg, descendants of a long line of local fisher folk. They can trace their ancestry back for centuries in the small coastal port. In the 1861 census there were no less than 96 Hoggs living in the Cromarty district and an entry for the family name in the Old Parish Register dates back as early as 1698. <br /> <br /> Bobby and Gordon believe they are the last two fluent speakers of the 'Cromarty fisher dialect', a unique Scots dialect identified in Robert McColl Millar's study of 'Northern and Insular Scots' as 'North Northern A', mainly associated with the fishing communities of the Black Isle (Cromarty and Avoch) and other small towns and villages on the Cromarty Firth. It is said that at one time there were at least two, if not three, dialects in the Cromarty area - fisher, town, and farmer. While several Cromarty residents retain aspects of the fisher vocabulary, when Bobby and Gordon get together they converse fluently in the dialect.<br /> <br /> [N.B. Gordon Hogg passed away in 2011, aged 86. Bobby Hogg died a year later, aged 92.]<br /> <br /> <br /> In this audio extract from March 2007, Bobby and Gordon discuss the work of the fisher women and recall the time when their father gave up the sea.<br /> <br /> Bobby: When I was about nine or so an my father left the sea, they got a mo-, previous to that, they got a motor boat, right, so that they could go to sea easier. They didn't know they were killin the women. The women had to keep more lines goin to keep them goin. See what Ah mean? <br /> <br /> Gordon: Hard life.<br /> <br /> Bobby: It was a hundred percent job, a hundred percent o the time.<br /> <br /> Gordon: Aye, that certainly was.<br /> <br /> Bobby: That's what it was. Mm-hmm. Slavery. An eventually ye know - <br /> <br /> Gordon: The men - they used to carry the men, aye, onto the boats an off the boats. The women had to carry them!<br /> <br /> Bobby: Some o these boats were out for twenty-four hours, like. If a man went to sea soakin wet, he might come back wi double pneumonia, like. All sorts o things had to be looked at. Yea. Och, Ah used to see ma Aunt Maggie down diggin the bait. <br /> <br /> Gordon: Surely, that's certainly, aye.<br /> <br /> Bobby: But ma father, as Ah say, he was a fisherman. He told me, an Ah heard him sayin, not only him, but his crew too, that they shot twelve lines, twelve lines - that's three lines each man, right? - an they took nineteen haddocks aboard -<br /> <br /> Gordon: That's all.<br /> <br /> Bobby: - out o seventy-two th-, seven thousand, two hundred hooks. <br /> <br /> Gordon: That's it.<br /> <br /> Interviewer: Dear me. That wasn't a good day.<br /> <br /> Bobby: Ye see that finished me wi the sea