Shetland Amenity Trust has teamed up with well known local crofting expert Mary Isbister of the Burland Croft Trail to publish what is described in the introduction as “a peerie book ta help peerie bairns ta learn ta spaek Shetlan.”
The book, called Shetland Wildlife Alphabet, is based on a very successful poster Mary produced last year which married her own illustrations of Shetland flora and fauna with dialect names that span the whole alphabet.
A piece of dialect poetry has been added to each illustration and Mary has worked closely with designer Davy Cooper from the trust to produce a colourful, entertaining and informative publication which also includes a glossary for those less familiar with the dialect. The book is published under the Shetland Heritage Publications label.
Davy and Mary recently got together with children from the Scalloway Nursery to launch the book at Burland. Readings from the book were followed by a scavenger hunt for, amongst other things, jimpy jecks, dunters, tirricks and kockaloories, all of which are illustrated in the volume. The children were then presented with their own copy so they could continue their search at home.
Mr Cooper said: “We are very pleased to be able to extend our range of heritage related publications right down to the youngest level of reader. Mary’s text and illustrations are a delight and the whole book is so bright and cheerful.”
The book is available from Burland Croft Trail, Shetland Museum and Archives and the Shetland Times Bookshop, priced at £5.95.