The Scots take their name from an Irish tribe (called
the Scoti in Latin) who originated in North Antrim and settled in Argyll around 505 AD. From these settlers most of the clans
in Scotland claim descent. The Scoti were involved in many skirmishes over territory down the years until around 843. Then, led
by their king Kenneth MacAlpine, they defeated or assimilated the country's main inhabitants the Picts (also known as Caledonians).
It is believed this was facilitated by marriage links between the two tribes. (Even Irish warriors don't dare to fight with
It was about 950 AD when the Saxons first began
to call the area to the north of them Scotland. Previously this was a name they had given to Ireland, being the original home
of the Scoti.
Over the years the native Gaelic tongue of the Scots
gave way to the Anglo Saxon language of Northern England, made popular by the court of Queen Margaret, Saxon wife of Scottish
king Malcolm III, commonly known as Malcolm Ceanmore. This type of Northern English, with Viking influences, developed into
Scots. So Scots, like English, has its roots in "Old English", the language of the Angles, a Germanic tribe who crossed the
North Sea and became established on the east coast of England. In the 13th to 16th centuries links with France resulted in a number of French words also coming into the Scots language.
"Footer" from "foutre" is a good example.
It is nice to think that maybe, just maybe, the descendants
of some of the Scoti (now rather diluted) came "home" with the plantation of Ulster in the 17th century. Interestingly, most
of Antrim and Down were not part of the official plantation and Scots had already returned to settle there some years beforehand
after bargaining for land from a Gaelic chief. Towards the end of the century, after the official plantation had ended, many
more Scots made the decision to return to Ulster as a result of famine and other unrest in Scotland.