Your Scottish Slang Scots Word O’ The Day: Crabbit

Sixth in a series
crabbit
(cra·bit) Dialect, chiefly Scot -adj.
1. ill-tempered, grumpy, curt, disagreeable; in a bad mood [esp. in the morning]. (Often used in “Ken this, yer a crabbit get, so ye are“). -n. See crab – one who by their nature or temperament conveys an aura of irritability.

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6 Comments

  1. Crabbit is most certainly NOT slang Scots, which itself is not a dialect of English. Crabbit is a proper Scots language (leid) word. BTW, if writing in Scots there is no apostrophe after o (english ‘of’). The Scots word for ‘of’ is simply ‘o’ e.g. puss like a bag o spanners.
    Whilst I understand the knee-jerk reaction to locate Scots in a humorous setting (a symptom of the cultural cringe), we are long past the day when of Scots language and culture can be disguised as humour.
    You might want to have a look at http://www.dsl.ac.uk/ and http://www.scotslanguage.com/.
    Good luck

  2. Crabbit is most certainly NOT slang Scots, which itself is not a dialect of English. Crabbit is a proper Scots language (leid) word. BTW, if writing in Scots there is no apostrophe after o (english ‘of’). The Scots word for ‘of’ is simply ‘o’ e.g. puss like a bag o spanners.
    Whilst I understand the knee-jerk reaction to locate Scots in a humorous setting (a symptom of the cultural cringe), we are long past the day when ignorance of Scots language and culture can be disguised as humour.
    You might want to have a look at http://www.dsl.ac.uk/ and http://www.scotslanguage.com/.
    Good luck

  3. My Scots Mother, who died 30 years ago, was a frequent user of ‘crabbit’, so much so that it quickly comes to mind when faced with a grumpy old person in the morning who may be off their meds, even though I have never lived in Scotland. As an immigrant in the USA and England, she thought she was just speaking English.

    • She was just speaking English…? My casual use of the phrase “deja vu” in conversation doesn’t mean I’ve stopped speaking English and started speaking French. One doesn’t just swallow a summer. What.
      I’m clearly winding you up and I’m sorry but I am actually Scottish, born and raised in the highlands. Still here. Hi. Crabbit, whatever its origin, is just a regular word in regular use and you can think of it as being just as uninteresting and underwhelming as the word “wee”. [Frelling] Americans are obsessed with your non-heritage and it is so annoying. Do you see me wistfully thinking of “my Viking heritage”? No, cause I’m not insane and stuck in the past. I apparently have Viking ancestors according to those ancestry dna swab scams, but there is not a single drop of their heritage actually in me, anymore than there’s any Scottish in you so just settle down. Good day all 🙂

  4. This word is well known and used pretty often in my old sod, The Finn Valley of East Donegal. Crabbit can sum up a particular character trait, more of a permanent trait than a passing mood. Irritable, snarly, bad tempered, hard to get on with. “He was a crabbit enough kind of a boy”. (“Boy” in this context could mean any age, not age specific”

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