Jedburgh Abbey

Jedburgh Abbey

The English-Scottish frontier is and was the dividing line between two of the most energetic, aggressive, talented and altogether formidable nations in human history. Any number of factors, including geography, race, movement, and the Romans decided where the line should be, and once it was there, on the map, on the countryside, and in men's minds, the stage was set. —-The Steel Bonnets, © George MacDonald Fraser, Alfred A. Knopf, New York, 1972 ISBN: 0-394-47049-4

{The Borders]...Historically and metaphorically it lies on the borders between authentic, written records and legend, in a shadowy realm where anything may have happened. —-PORTRAIT OF THE SCOTT COUNTRY © Marion Lochhead, Robert Hale publishers, London, 1968 ISBN 0709139578 

From the names of the Border hill country—Foulbogskye, Ninestanerig, Muckle Snab, Bloody Bush, Slitrig, Flodden, Blackcleuch, Wolf Rig, Hungry Hill, Crib Law, Foulplay Know, Oh Me Edge, Blackhaggs, and so on; it is obviously not a palm-fringed playground.
— The Steel Bonnets, © George MacDonald Fraser, Alfred A. Knopf, New York, 1972 ISBN: 0-394-47049-4

The very names make poetry. The rivers run pleasantly in sound: Tweed and Till, Teviot and Yarrow, Gala and Eden, Ale and Manor Water, Leader and Ettrick. Town and place-names match them: Abbotsford and Huntly Burn, Chiefswood and Darnick, Traquair, Fairnilee, Yair; Melrose, most mellifluos of town-names, Jedburgh or Jeddart or Jedworth, Kelso, Selkirk; and the hills ring out like a peal of music: Eildon, Dunion, Muirfoot, Rubislaw. —-PORTRAIT OF THE SCOTT COUNTRY, © Marion Lochhead, Robert Hale publishers, London, 1968 ISBN 0709139578  

Even the women were steeped in the blood feuds…One amazon had a monument erected to her memory with the rough verse: “Fair maiden Lilliard lies under this stane, Little was her stature but great was her fame; Upon the English loons, she laid many thumps, And when they cutted off her legs, she fought upon her stumps.” —Romantic Scotland, The Story of the Shires, by D.C. Cuthbertson

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Liddesdale...the cockpit of the Border and the home of its most predatory clans...to get the full flavour, it should be visited in autumn or winter, when its stark bleakness is most apparent. It is empty, drear and hard; there are never many cars on the road, which winds up to Newcastleton and then turns westward into a little glen that manages to tell the traveller more about the dark side of border history in a glance that he can learn by traversing all the rest of the Marches. —-The Steel Bonnets, © George MacDonald Fraser, Alfred A. Knopf, New York, 1972 ISBN: 0-394-47049-4

Galashiels: "...a pretty place it once has been, but a manufactory is established there; and a townish bustle and ugly stone houses are fast taking the place of the brown-roofed thatched cottages of which a great number still remain, partly overshadowed by trees."  —-William Wordsworth

The inhabitants, living in a state partly pastoral and partly warlike, and combining habits of constant depredation with the influence of a rude spirit of chivalry, were often engaged in scenes highly susceptive of poetic ornament. —-Sir Walter Scott, Introduction to The Lay of the Last Minstrel 

...the Borderers...are not, to put it tactfully as possible, the most immediately lovable folk in the United Kingdom. Incomers may find them difficult to know; there is a tendency among them to be suspicious and taciturn, and the harsh border voice, whether the accent is Scots or English, lends itself readily to derision and complaint.On the credit side, there is a Border virtue which in the human scale should outweigh all the rest, and it is simply the ability to endure, unchanging. Perhaps the highest compliment that one can pay to the people of the Anglo-Scottish frontier is to remark that, in spite of everything, they are still here. —-The Steel Bonnets, © George MacDonald Fraser, Alfred A. Knopf, New York, 1972ISBN: 0-394-47049-4

…either the Borders would become desert land, shorn of people and herds, or they would give birth to a race hardy and strong, to whom danger and alarms were mere incidents to be accepted as the normal course of life, and whose predatory instincts would develop as the years passed. The second, as we know, was the result, and to harry and reive was not looked upon as murder and theft, but a perfectly lawful thing, more praiseworthy than otherwise. —Romantic Scotland, The Story of the Shires, by D.C. Cuthbertson

Sometimes Southern Scots has been called the yow and mey dialect because of the different vowel sounds its speakers make in comparison with the other dialects of Scots. Whereas most speakers of Scots would say you, a person from this region would say yow. This also means that speakers of Borders say now and down rather than noo and doun. And whereas one might say pea, people from this region would say pey.  By this classic test, in which words ending in the usual sounds –oo and –ee become -ow and –ey, we discover the more obvious ways in which the speech of this region differs from the rest of Scots.————-https://www.scotslanguage.com/articles/node/id/79/type/referance

There are Standing Stones on Hownam Steeple, known as the Shearers and the Bandsters which, according to Sir George Douglas, may have begun a local legend of judgement upon Sabbath-workers and Sabbath breakers. —-PORTRAIT OF THE SCOTT COUNTRY, © Marion Lochhead, Robert Hale publishers, London, 1968 ISBN 0709139578

...and whoever gained in the end, the Border country suffered fearfully in the process. It was the ring in which the champions met; armies marches and counter-marched and fought and fled across it; it was wasted and burned and despoiled, its people harried and robbed and slaughtered, on both sides, by both sides...they lived on a battlefield that stretched from the Solway to the North Sea. —-The Steel Bonnets, © George MacDonald Fraser, Alfred A. Knopf, New York, 1972ISBN: 0-394-47049-4

If You Go to the Scottish Borders…

Visit the spirits at mystical Roslyn Chapel and Glenkinchie distillery

Jedburgh Accommodations

Selkirk Accommodations

Regional Accomodations

Car Hires/Rentals



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