Frae: R. De Bruce Trotter, Galloway Gossip (1901), pp. 125-126

A USE’T tae ken a wheen o’ their cures, but A canna min’ them noo whun A’m wantin.

There wus yin for curin Warts, A min’.

Ye had tae tak twa black snails (“Slugs,” the English ca’s them), an keep yin o’ them in a box, wi some kail-blades tae eat. Than ye took the ither, an put a threed through’t wi a needle an tie’t it, an had ta hing’t up on a nail in the wa’. Ye rubbit the warts three times a day wi the yin in the box, an as the yin on the wa’ weezen’t up, the warts gradually wore awa.

Anither wey wus tae tak some swine’s bluid, an pit it on the wart twice a day, as lang as the bluid wud keep.

A surer wey wus tae gether some white chucky stanes, an rub every wart wi a different stane, an than mak them up in a neat percel, an cairry them oot the road, an whun ye wur sure naebuddy wus lookin, clod the parcel ower yer left shouther, an no look back.

If ony inquisitive buddy cam alang an liftit the parcel, an open’t it tae see whut wus in’t, the warts left your han’s an gaed tae theirs.

Anither wey wus tae rub them wi fastin-spittle every mornin for nine mornins, an than they gaed awa.

Anither wey wus tae rub them for nine days wi Deil’s-milk, an than they wud come aff.

Deil’s-Milk is the joice o’ the Deil’s-Milk plant, or Dandelion.

They use’t tae gie’t tae folk forbye, tae tak inwardly tae cure the Jaundice. Doctors gies’t for that too.

In some pairts o’ the country they say “Wrats” or “Oorats” or “Rats” instead o’ “Warts.” The Doctors’ name for them’s “erruca vulgaris.” It’s a pity they put Vulgaris tae the name, for it keeps genteel folk fae braggin aboot haein them.



Partial Glossar

Definitions frae DSL (links are tae the relevant entries).

  • Wheen ‘A few, a small number, several.’ [WHEEN]
  • Min’ ‘To remember, recollect, call to mind.’ [MIND]
  • Kail ‘Borecole, esp. the curly variety, Brassica oleracea acephala. Also applied to cabbage.’ [KAIL]
  • Weezen ‘Of any kind of tissue: to shrivel, dry up, shrink, wither.’ [WIZEN]
  • Chucky stane ‘A small pebble; a quartz crystal rounded by attrition on the beach.’ [CHUCKIE-STANE]
  • Clod ‘To throw, “to throw forcibly, most probably as one throws a clod”.’ [CLOD]
  • Buddy ‘A human being, a person.’ [BODY]
  • Fastin-spittle “saliva produced first thing in the morning, before breakfast – has been used to treat a wide variety of diseases for many hundreds of years. Spittle cures are usually considered to be more effective if fasting spittle is used.” Frae the Wikipedia on Fasting spittle, 28/03/21.
  • Forbye ‘Besides, in addition to, as well as.’ [FORBY]