ABERDEEN-L ArchivesArchiver > ABERDEEN > 2012-02 > 1329832789
From: Gavin Bell <>
Subject: Re: [ABERDEEN] Meaning of "loon"
Date: Tue, 21 Feb 2012 13:59:49 +0000
References: <1E6AA5D2768143FBA28727FC16683BF0@fran> <firstname.lastname@example.org><CAEv-m76iQ3V33oDMw+mhP9Roym8vSwhCVXwFTE=VvOnMQU8o_w@mail.gmail.com>
Tom Graham wrote:
> I don't think there is any pejorative implication what-so-ever in calling
>a boy a loon though an adjective can be attached to convey such a meaning.
>Used on its own there can even be an element of affection implied.
>On 21 February 2012 05:44, Mary Legarth <> wrote:
>>I remember my Aunt referring to "loons," however, I suspected at the time
>>they were people who did not confirm to her very conservative views.
There is a distinction between the usage of "standard" English and the
usage of North-East Scots. In "standard" English, "loon" is now
obsolete, but was formerly used with a derogatory implication. Somewhere
or other Shakespeare has the splendid curse: "The Devil damn thee
black, thou cream-faced loon". In NE Scots*, on the other hand, "loon"
is simply the normal word for a boy or youth, and can, as Tom says,
carry an affectionate tone.
* and only in the North East - Scots from other areas laugh at us for
our use of the word, and its companion "quine".
>>On Behalf Of Fran and Dave
>>Sent: Tuesday, 21 February 2012 5:46 p.m.
>>Subject: [ABERDEEN] Meaning of "loon"
>>In a newspaper article about my great-uncle, he is referred to as an
>>Aberdeenshire "loon". Now in Canada, a loon is a magnificent black and
>>lake bird, but I'm sure there's another meaning in Aberdeen! Can anyone
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