Scottish National Dictionary (1700–)

Hide Quotations Hide Etymology Cite this entry

ATHOLE BROSE, n. Honey or meal mixed with whisky, used in the Highlands as a cure for a cold. [′ɑθl′bro:z] Sc. 1818 Scott H. Midlothian xlviii.:
His morning draught of Athole brose.
Sc. 1886 R. L. Stevenson Kidnapped xxv.:
A bottle of that drink which they call Athole brose, and which is made of old whiskey, strained honey and sweet cream, slowly beaten together in the right order and proportion.
Sc. 1929 F. M. McNeill The Sc. Kitchen 232:
Athole brose. Heather honey, whisky, cold water.

[There is a tradition that the Earl of Athole in James III.'s time captured the rebellious Earl of Ross by filling with honey and whisky a small well in a rock (in Skye) from which Ross was in the habit of drinking. The mixture has ever since been known as Athole Brose (Ags.2).]

You may wish to vary the format shown below depending on the citation style used.

"Athole brose n.". Dictionary of the Scots Language. 2004. Scottish Language Dictionaries Ltd. Accessed 18 Oct 2021 <>



Try an Advanced Search

Browse SND: