About the Project

The Leiden University project Language of the Poor in Late Modern Scotland: From the Archive to the Internet is aimed at making historical sociolinguistic data available for different types of research. More particularly, this project concerns the language of Scottish English used by lower-class people in the Late Modern period and the digitization of the available writing of this language. This writing mainly consists of pauper petition letters written to multiple local authorities in Scotland (namely, those of the Tongue, Perth, Glasgow, and Dumfries parishes) in charge of distributing funds to the poor. This has been done through creating the Scottish Pauper Petition corpus (shortened to ScotPP). The corpus has been compiled by transcribing a number of letters from multiple archives (the Highland Archive Service, the Perth & Kinross Archive, the Mitchell Library, and the Ewart Library) and marking the letters for linguistic features that could possibly be useful for future research. The details of the corpus data have been compiled in a manual which can be accessed here. If you wish to use the ScotPP corpus, please contact Dr. Mo Gordon by email at m.s.gordon@hum.leidenuniv.nl.