More About...The Flower of Scotland

Words and music by Roy Williamson The Corries (Music) Ltd.

Although many Scots have adopted The Flower of Scotland as the unofficial National Anthem of Scotland, the official National Anthem of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland is God Save the Queen.

The Flower of Scotland commemorates the Battle of Bannockburn (1314) when the Scottish Army under Robert the Bruce (Robert I, King of Scots) defeated Edward II of England. This ended English rule of Scotland for a time. In 1603 Elizabeth I, Queen of England, Wales, Ireland and France died childless, and her second cousin James VI, King of Scots, ascended to the English throne. Thus marriage achieved what force of arms could not.

Here is an authorized Gaelic translation:

THE FLOWER OF SCOTLAND
(translation by John Angus Macleod)

O Fhlu\ir na h-Albann,
cuin a chi\ sinn
an seo\rsa laoich
a sheas gu ba\s 'son
am bileag feo\ir is fraoich,
a sheas an aghaidh
feachd uailleil Iomhair
's a ruaig e dhachaidh
air chaochladh smaoin?

Na cnuic tha lomnochd
's tha duilleach Foghair
mar bhrat air la\r,
am fearann caillte
dan tug na seo\id ud gra\dh,
a sheas an aghaidh
feachd uailleil Iomhair
's a ruaig e dhachaigh
air chaochladh smaoin.

Tha 'n eachdraidh du\inte
ach air di\ochuimhne
chan fheum i bhith,
is faodaidh sinn e\irigh
gu bhith nar Ri\oghachd a-ri\s
a sheas an aghaidh
feachd uailleil Iomhair
's a ruaig e dhachaidh
air chaochladh smaoin.

Story behind the Gaelic translation;

"Aig ce\ilidh ann an Du\n De\agh sheinn Anna NicGillEathain a' Bheurla de seo. Thuirt i rium, ''S bochd nach robh Ga\idhlig air an o\ran.' Fichead mionaid an de\idh sin dh'eirich i is sheinn i na facail seo, a chuir mi ris fhad 's a bha sinn ag o\l cupan ti\!"

"At a ceilidh in Dundee, Anna MacLean sang the English version of this. She said to me 'It's too bad that there isn't a Gaelic version of the song.' Twenty minutes after that she got up and sang these words which I put to the song while we were drinking cups of tea!"

John Angus Macleod, from his book "Na freumhan thug dhomh cothrom fa\s", available from the author:

    John Angus MacLeod
    76 Brisbane Street
    Largs, Scotland, KA30 8QN

Clan Macrae Online