Scottish Winter Words!

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Discover some brilliant winter words used to describe Scottish winter weather..
There are so many word and phrases to describe Scottish weather, especially when it’s cold, damp and wet… what a surprise. We’ve pulled together some of our favourite most commonly used Scottish winter words. Share with us in the social media comments any Scottish words you think people need to hear about!



Means freezing cold and is commonly used across Scotland. Inspired by the chilly Baltic sea and surrounding region.



“It’s blowing a hoolie,” is a phrase that is supposedly derived from the Orkney Scots word ‘hoolan’. Hoolan describes a strong gale wind.



This is just another word for snow.



Means very cold or freezing! This word is very common in Ayrshire, but may also be used elsewhere in Scotland.



Describes a fine rain, a regular of Scotland’s weather pattern. The Scots writer George Campbell Hay employed this word to great effect in the hauntingly beautiful poem ‘A Smoky Smirr o Rain’.



Can be used to describe small drops or flakes of wind-driven rain or snow. Spitters of rain or snow.



Describes an uncomfortably damp, cold and chilly weather!



This is perhaps one of Scottish people’s favourite Scottish winter words. Dreich is commonly used to describe weather that makes outside look grey, dull, gloomy and very uninviting.



Learn even more in our Speaking Scots series >>