Best viewed in
Internet Explorer

Music (PDF)

Music (BMW)

Back to

Updated 04/25/2013


Brose and Butter
Robert Burns

Brose is a Scots word for a dish of oatmeal mixed with water or milk, and eaten with salt and butter. Unlike porridge, brose is not cooked.  In the sixteenth century, a mixture of oatmeal and water was carried by shepherds; brose resulted from the agitation of the mixture as they climbed the hills. Modern recipes call for boiling water or milk to be mixed into the meal.  Brose could also be made with barley meal, peasemeal, or a mixture of different meals. Other ingredients, such as nettle tops, kale, and swede may be added to the basic brose.

Robert Burns was partial to a bit of a rude sing-song and replaced a lot of his own songs words with words your mother wouldn’t sing, but your granny might.  The poem is code about having sex, for which brose and butter is a code name, as is "supper" and being "at her". Code words are also employed for the male and female sex organs.

Brose and Butter is the “Dinner Call” for the Scot’s Guard.

Poem by Robert Burns

Gie my love brose, brose  
Gie my love brose and butter
Aye gie my love brose
Yestreen he wanted his supper

Jenny was up at the laft  
Johnny would fain ha' been at her
A wind came oot o' the west  
Made all the windows to clatter

Gie my love brose ...
A dow is a dainty dish  
The goose is hollow within
The sight would make you blush

But aw the fun is to finishing  

Gie my love brose ...
My daddie sent me to the mill
To pull my minnie some heather
And drive it intae yur fill
Yur welcome tae the leather

Gie my love brose ...
A mouse is a merry wee beast
The moodiewark wants the een
And oh for a touch o the thing
I had by me yestreen oh

Gie my love brose ...
The lark she lo'es the grass
The hen she lo'es the stibble
And hey for the gardner lad
Tae gully away wi' his dibble

Gie my love brose ...