How to tell a true Scotsman

The Stereotypical “True Scotsman”

If you believe all the stories, a true Scotsman is identified by:

a) his ginger hair

b) a modest boast that he wears nothing under his kilt

c) an appetite for deep-fried Mars bars

A neon sign saying Deep Fried Mars Bars

While there is some truth in all of the above, the modern Scotsman tends to only wear his kilt on special occasions, such as weddings and ceilidhs. He is more likely to prefer a panini and latte to a deep-fried Mars bar. Also, he probably doesn’t have ginger hair. Although, 12% of Scots are redheads, compared to the worldwide average of just 2%.

A boy with ginger hair

So how DO you tell a true Scotsman?

We’d say, there are three litmus tests:

1. He likes drinking whisky, our national drink. The term ‘whisky’ derives originally from the Gaelic ‘uisge beatha’, or ‘usquebaugh’, meaning ‘water of life’. (Whisky has been distilled in Scotland for hundreds of years. The earliest reference to a distillery in the Acts of the Scottish Parliament appears to be in 1690, when mention is made of the famous Ferintosh distillery owned by Duncan Forbes of Culloden near Inverness.) He also loves drinking our other national drink, ’Irn Bru’, particularly to recover after drinking lots of whisky! (Iron Bru is a carbonated soft drink, produced by A.G. Barr of Glasgow and outsells Coca Cola in Scotland.)

A good looking young man with a beard drinking whisky

2. He may not wear his kilt every day, but when he does, he wears it properly and with pride. Knee-length kilt, pleats to the back, neatly buckled and complete with sporran, kilt pin, kilt socks and flashes, sgian dubh and brogues. (The kilt dates at least as far back as the 16th century, and is an important part of Scottish culture, but is usually reserved now just for formal events.)

Kilt Hire Inverness

3. He knows that there is, indeed, a Loch Ness Monster!

A fictional picture of the Loch Ness monster in Loch Ness

What do you think?

While we believe this to be the case, we would love to hear your take on a true Scotsman. As well as this we would love to hear any of your stories and experiences of all things Scottish! Check out our FacebookInstagram and Twitter and share all! We look forward to hearing from you!