A Dictionary of the Older Scottish Tongue (up to 1700)

Hide Quotations Hide Etymology Cite this entry

Bony, Bonie, a. Also: bonny, -ie. [e.m.E. bonye (1570), bonny (a 1529), of obscure origin. In early Sc. examples always with single n, but rhyming with mony.]

1. Beautiful, handsome, pretty, nice: a. Of persons. Ane bonie wenche sho was; Prestis of Peblis 820.
He braisit hir bony body sweit; Dunb. xxxii. 8.
Ȝe brek my hart, my bony ane! Ib. lxxv. 35.
In the stabill thai fand the bony barne; Kennedy Pass. Christ 157.
Thay callit my mvder bony Bes; Lynd. Sat. 160 (B).
The ymage of our lady … beirand in her arme the bony ymage of hir sone; Hamilton Cat. 53.
Scho brankit fast and maid hir bony; Bann. MS. 137 a/3.
The Persoun wald nocht haif ane hure, But twa, and thay war bony; G. Ball. 206.
Ane bony boy was soir makand his mone; 1567 Sat. P. iii. 3.
The maist bening and boniest Mirrour of madinis, Margareit; Montg. Maitl. Q. lxiv. 23.
April xv our Quene is delyuerit of a bony barne; Dalr. II. 137/12.
He married his wife … only for his gear, and she took him because he was bony; 1665 Lauder Journal 113.
My wankle [= uncle] tels me my brother is gron the boniest litle man that hi ever did se; 1666 Wemyss Corr. 127.

b. Of things. Also = good, excellent. Vpon ane lytil bony stule Sat Fictus; Prestis of Peblis 743.
Ane ile callit Cransay, … ane boney ile for corne and gerssing; Monro W. Isles 41.
Ane bonie lytil kie, Hang at hir belt; Rolland Seven S. 146/21.
That bony foull of flicht, The nichingaill; Ib. 326/5.
Bot nycht & day mon he nocht tyre That sailis my bony ballinger; a 1568 Sat. P. xlvi. 48.
Zephir … vith bonie bousum blast; J. Stewart 54/49.
A bony ‘No’, with smyling looks agane; Montg. Misc. P. xlii. 1.
The said Agnes preparit ane bony small pictour of ȝallow walx; 1591 Crim. Trials I. 240.
I leif … to my brother, becaus he misteris nocht, … ane bonie bonnet of gold; 1607 Edinb. Test. XLIII. 5.
Thertie yeardis of flowrit tafetie or sume uther bonie sticht stuffe for his doichteris; c 1614 Rep. Hist. MSS. I. 139.
The morne, the towne of Edinburgh moosteris and makis swndrie bonie pastymis; 1633 Maxwell Mem. I. 228.
The man hes a bonny spirit; 1638 Baillie I. 149.

2. Of a space of time: Little, short, moderately long. Usually a bony quhile. I salbe heir within ane bony quhyle; Doug. K. Hart 732.
We sall leir ȝow to dance Within ane bony littill spaice Ane new paven of France; Lynd. Sat. 3651 (B).
It salbe heir within a bony [M. littil] quhyle; Freiris Berw. 330.
Abasd, ane bonie quhyle I baid, And musd; Montg. Ch. & Slae 928.
Within a bonny while … he tuik occasioune … to advyse me; 1596 Highland P. I. 188.
His face first fell to the est, bot within a bonie whyll turned about to the west; Melvill 36.
Thou both bagg and bow a bonie while shalt beare; Craig ii. 26.
Eftir that he haif pawsed a bony quhyle; Bisset I. 288.

3. In ironical use. At the last of mony smallis couth mak This bony pedder a gud fut pak; Prestis of Peblis 187.
Ye've played a bonny sports to your self, by being so loose-tongued; 1685 in Biogr. Presb. I. 76.

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

"Bony adj.". Dictionary of the Scots Language. 2004. Scottish Language Dictionaries Ltd. Accessed 11 Dec 2017 <http://www.dsl.ac.uk/entry/dost/bony>

3396

dost

Try an Advanced Search

Browse DOST:

Browse Up
    Loading...
Browse Down

Share: