Cookies Policy

This site uses cookies. By continuing to browse the site you are agreeing to our use of cookies.

I accept this policy

Find out more here


Brill’s MyBook program is exclusively available on BrillOnline Books and Journals. Students and scholars affiliated with an institution that has purchased a Brill E-Book on the BrillOnline platform automatically have access to the MyBook option for the title(s) acquired by the Library. Brill MyBook is a print-on-demand paperback copy which is sold at a favorably uniform low price.

Access this chapter

+ Tax (if applicable)

Chapter Summary

This is the introductory chapter of this book, which sets out the circumstances in which the author began in 1963 to do linguistic fieldwork in eastern Sutherland, on the far northeast coast of Highland Scotland, in the three former fishing villages of Brora, Golspie, and Embo. Fisherfolk Gaelic, long sustained by the occupational and social separateness of its speakers, had been losing ground to English as the local fishing industry declined and then disappeared. The focus of the Linguistic Survey's questionnaire was quite narrow: "to gather information on the synchronic reflexes of the Common Gaelic phonological system". The proportions of that variation in a set of villages separated from one another by a maximum distance of 17 road miles surprised the author, even though the very existence of a Gaelic Division of the Linguistic Survey of Scotland testified to the presence of many distinctive regional forms of Scottish Gaelic.

Keywords: eastern Sutherland; English; Fisherfolk Gaelic; fishing villages; linguistic fieldwork; Scottish Gaelic



Can't access your account?
  • Tools

  • Add to Favorites
  • Printable version
  • Email this page
  • Recommend to your library

    You must fill out fields marked with: *

    Librarian details
    Your details
    Why are you recommending this title?
    Select reason:
    Small-Language Fates and Prospects — Recommend this title to your library
  • Export citations
  • Key

  • Full access
  • Open Access
  • Partial/No accessInformation