Originally a Greek word meaning 'old, it was first used by the upper classes in the 18th Century to describe Scots - literally 'the old tongue'. To many older people the Doric is still used to describe Scots, but since the early 20 th Century it has increasingly come to mean the North-East dialect of Scots in a specific sense.

Taken from the Aiberdeen Scots Leid Quorum at http://www.abdn.ac.uk/%7esrc045/scots.htm