The Broons


A the end of my recent story “Bag ah Chips” I’d wanted to point out that it felt bit like a slightly-more-vulgar version of The Broons but then realised that might be a cultural reference too far and most readers wouldn’t get it. So instead I’m going to share with the world, who exactly The Broons are because, to be honest, you’re all missing out.

The Broons is a comic strip following the Broons family in Glasgow. It was started in the 1930s and has run ever since – despite a few updates to fashion and the two sons going off to fight in WW2, the series remains fairly caught in the past which gives it a lot of its charm. The strip appears weekly in the Sunday Post but there most people will read in the annual (which I believe now actually comes out every 2nd year, alternating with Oor Wullie), a stalwart of Scottish stockings at Christmas time with its unmissably garish tartan cover.

The dialect is all is very, broad Scots and each strip is always one, long joke, usually based on a misunderstanding but ends with everyone laughing (well, nearly everyone).

The family consists of:

Paw – The grumbling head of the household, Paw is a very traditional, working man (not sure you ever find out his profession) stuck in his ways. He boasts a distinctive walrus moustache and usually wears a flat cap.

Maw – The matriarch and the one really running the show, Maw is a huge, stocky woman with hair tied into a tight bun. Nearly everyone who reads the Broons regularly will know a Maw Broon.

Granpaw – The grandad of the family and basically just Paw but with a longer moustache and more wrinkles.

Hen – The eldest son, lanky and bookish.

Daphne – The eldest daughter, similar build to Maw. Running jokes included the annual, failed diet and having to go on double dates with the far more glamorous Maggie.

Joe – The square-jawed everyman, popular with the ladies and a bit of a boxer.

Maggie – The blonde-bombshell daughter with a long line of suitors.

Horace – The nerdy, bookworm son who usually feels somewhat left out from the rest of the family.
The Twins – The two identical twins, always getting up to mischief. I’m not even sure if they actually have separate names or are just always referred to as “The Twins”.

The Bairn – The youngster of the family and Maw’s favourite, quite of the root cause of most situations (although never intentionally). Like the twins, not sure you ever hear her actual name (“bairn” is an Scots phrase for a young child).

Sadly there’s not a lot of places to read The Broons online but here’s a link a strip on the Wikipedia.

Title image courtesy DC Thomson

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Published in: on November 14, 2011 at 1:32 PM  Comments (7)  

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7 CommentsLeave a comment

  1. Oh wow, that dialect’s hard to figure out. I’m making faces as I’m thinking… I THINK this is what that means LOL

    • Yeah, even I struggle with the Broons’ dialect!

  2. Ha ha! My brother & I get a big kick out of Scots. Because it basically looks like misspelled English. 🙂

    • Ah, some casual racism there – very nice. But seriously, I know what you’re getting at – it’s like a much more colourful version of English. Ken whit ah mean eh?

      • Haerd tae cipher but ken get the gyst iff et. 😉

  3. haw it isnae misspelt english its oor ain language

  4. I Love the Broons ^_^ it always cheers me up, Aye, it’s braw!


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