The History of Leith

February 22, 2005

The Origins of Sawney Bean

Anti-Scottish Propaganda 18th century
The Barbarian Scot

The legend of Sawney Bean doesn’t appear before the 18th century and may have orginated out of the anti-Scottish propaganda of the mid 18th century due to anti-Jacobite feeling in England.

The picture above is taken from Michael Lynchs A New History of Scotland and below is written.

To London Sawney came,who from his birth
had dropped his folio gates on mother earth
Shown to a boghouse,gazed with wondering eyes
then down each venthole thrust his brawny thighs
And squeezing cry’d Sawney cried Sawneys a laird I trow
never did he disembaage till now

Some Text