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

Hide Quotations Hide Etymology Cite this entry

Wra(i)k, Wre(c)k, n.1 and adj. Also: vrak, urak, wrac, wraak, wrake, vrake, wrack(e, urakke, wraike, wraikk-, wraick, vraik, uraik(k)e, wrayk, wreke, vrek, wreak(e, wryk, wrok(e, wroik, vourak. [ME and e.m.E. wrek (1228), wrak (13th c.), wrek(e, wrack (all Cursor M.), wrake (a1350), wrecke (1455), wreak(e (both Tindale), wraick (c1690), OE wræc, wracu, wrǽc and AF wrec, wrek, MDu., MLG wrak, ON *wrec, *wrek, MDan., MSw. vrak, Norw. rek, rak.]

A. noun. I. 1. Vengeance; persecution; retribution; punishment. An instance of this. (a) I will thole Petir nomare, Bot I sall ger myn angelis tak Of hym reuengeance son and wrak; Leg. S. i 410.
Trawel with dule and wrak He tholyt ofte for Cristis sak; Leg. S. ii 935.
In wrak of hyr fals plicht [the accuser] Deit sodanely in thare sicht; Leg. S. xxx 799.
For he wald nocht Criste forsak, [Dacian] Gert strike his hed of in-to wrak; Leg. S. xxxiii 536.
Vrak; Leg. S. xviii 544.
The wrak that fell vpoun this crwell king; Stewart 3696.
To mak an end of all that stryfe and weir Quhairof king Malcolme wes rycht weill content, … For till be quyte of all thair wrak and wrang, And greit injure hes wrocht on thame so lang; Stewart 38949.
Sum France for aide & sum Ingland inbringis The ane for wrak the tother for defence; 1570 Sat. P. xvii 136.
For the mair revenge and wrak … thow [etc.]; 1597 Misc. Spald. C. I 135.
(b) The clergy … with lythnes [bad] byde goddis wrake; Leg. S. x 445.
The erde steryt … & of mystrowand tuk sic wrake, That of the ton gret part can fal; Leg. S. xlii 262.
Then shuld we not bin poynted at for wrake, scorne and disgrace; Craig i 21.
(c) The vengeance and the wraik, For hir trespas Cupide on hir culd tak; Henr. Test. Cress. 370.
First, … sal ȝe stand in sik state, In wraik of our iniuris and bestis slane; Doug. iii iv 91.
Hevy wraik And sorofull vengeance ȝit sal thé ourtake; Doug. vii ix 117.
Twa vengeabill monstreis … Clepit to surname Dire, wikkit as fyre, That is to say, the goddis wraik or ire; Doug. xii xiii 130.
His son … be wraik of almychty God in the Rede Se … was drownit; Boece 33a.
We desire nowther the goddis nor men to tak ony wraik or punyssement on ȝow; Bell. Livy II 40/14.
Sall we thairfoir be all destroyit at anis Nay, the first wraik sall fall upon ȝour banis; Rolland Seven S. 5327.
(d) Of nakyne personne Ill thow spek Fore that is bot a vyvys vrek; Consail Vys Man 84.
(e) Juno … Not satisfyit of hir ald fury ne wrok [Sm. wroik]; Doug. v xi ll.

2. (A) disastrous happening, (the) downfall, doom or utter ruin (of an individual, etc.). Also pl. See Heres(c)hip n. 5 and Rewine n. 5 (2), 6 b (c) and 7 for further examples. Cf. S(c)hipwrak n. 2. (1) Half his realme to thaim tak, To saf his douchtir fra that wrak; Leg. S. xxxiii 116.
Fyffe wrakys … has oure-tayne … Bretayne; Quhen Peychtys warrayd it … Syne the Romanys [etc.]; Wynt. i 1361.
The wrakys [W. wraikkis] ten in Egipte rasse; Wynt. ii 533 (C).
I knaw ȝe haif innemies … quha will nevir ceise quhill thai have destroyit ȝow … bot and ȝe will vse my counsale I sall fynd the meyne to eschew the haill wrek thairof; 1565 Crim. Trials I i 463.
The greit wrak and skaith that the inhabitantis of … Edinburgh … hes sustenit; 1571 Reg. Privy C. II 93.
The actis maid … for resisting of the continewall wrakkis and heirschippis sustenit be his hienes subiectis throw the invasioun of pirattis; 1587 Acts III 455/2.
Quhat one man doeth ane uther doeth ondou, One consecratis religius workis to gods, Ane other leavs sad wrakis and ruynis … I praise thy book … but am sorie To reid old ruynis in a recent storie; Craig in
Bisset I 23/18.
(2) Mysdeide has nan attende The wykkyt win with braak [B wraak] pas away; Liber Plusc. I 386.
How Judith Holiphernes' heid of straik … and fred hir toun fra wraik [L. vrake]; Doug. Pal. Hon. 1564.
Blak hellis pyt of wraik; Doug. vi ii 118.
Sic diuisioun may nocht lest rycht lang, But weir and wrak and mekle opin wrang; Stewart 807.
To evite uter wrak, quhilk thay purpose to use towartis you; 1569 Cal. Sc. P. II 638.
Quhen houp & hap … bene hiest Then wo & wrack … bene niest; Maitl. Q. 259/2.
Sen farest things to wrak ar maist inclynde; Fowler I 238/14.
Grit wraick, ruyne and distructioun; 1600 Reg. Privy C. VI 160.
[A spirit] sed to the said Walter, ‘Thou art onder wraik; gang to [etc.]’; 1601 Aberd. Eccl. Rec. 184.
Shall wee finde no thing at all, but fundamentall wracke [: abacke]? Craig i 21.
To releive the tennants of Pimount … of all publict burdings be reasoune of wrak; Boyd Fam. P. No. 251a (no date).

b. To ga, put, bring, etc. to (utter) wrak (and ruyn). All ȝeid to wraik, thar war we hail doune bet; Doug. ii vii 110.
Otheris … war put to wraik, and thair strenthis cassin down; Bell. Boece I 227.
Quod he ‘My office I forsaik … For I wald put ane hows to wraik'; Wyf Awcht. 107.
Les this be done, realmes will ga to wrak; 1567 Sat. P. vii 160.
That … thai may be brocht to wttir wrack and ruyn; 1569 Reg. Morton I 49.
His armie was al put to wrake; Dalr. I 158/26.
He is reduced to extreame povertie and wreak; 1615 Conv. Burghs III 11.
Intemp'rance … Thee carying headlongs to eternall wreake; Mure True Crucifixe 2610.

c. (1) Of wrak: To cum, fall upoun or to a person or persons. (2) Of a person: To incur wrak. (3) Of an action: To be a wrak or cause of ruin to persons. (1) The haill wrake fallis vpoun the pure; 1564 Cochran-Patrick Coinage I 92.
Sic wraik sall cum vpon ȝow … That [etc.]; Maitland in Maitl. F. 32/21.
Ane fall and uter wrak to cum upon the said hous; 1577 Old Ross-shire II 2.
Beattrix Douglas … seand nathing bot wraikis to come to hir pretendit husband [etc.]; Pitsc. I 125/13.
(2) Lest thai suld incur dainger and wreck to thair selfs; 1584 Colville Lett. 48.
(3) The cungyeing of the new plaks … wad be an utter wrak to the realme; 1593–4 Edinb. B. Rec. V 107.

d. (To) the wrak of (a person, or persons, property, a country, etc.), the harm, hardship, downfall, fate suffered by a person, etc. Also proverb. (1) It will redound to … the wraik and uvirthrow of ȝour gudis and geiris; c1500 Justiciary Rec. I 155.
His cummer neuer ceist Ay to his wraik and our vtilitie; 1570 Sat. P. xvii 48.
Wraike; Bann. Memor. 258.
Wreck; 1575 Orkney Oppress. 7.
Vraik; 1576 Warrender P. (SHS) I 133.
Vrake; 1578 Black Bk. Taymouth 221.
To the vttir wrak and depaupering of the the innocentis; 1581 Acts III 222/2.
To the wraik and disherishing of him; Declar. Causis 25.
Quhilk directlie tendes to the wrak of all trew relligioun; 1582 Melvill 130.
Ilk ane … hes committit … tressoun … to the greitt wrak of the commone weill; 1583 Digest Justiciary Proc. K 37.
Uraikke … urakke; 1594 Lett. Jas. VI to Eliz. 106.
(b) To his uter wreake and ruine; 1674 Melrose Reg. Rec. II 366.
(2) As ilk ane haid soucht the vrak and lywes of vther; Buch. Indict. 33.
The lady Forbes … beiris the blame of all the wrake of the Forbessis; Bann. Memor. 213.
Vraik; 1570 Warrender P. MS 141.
Dois … the hand of God … Wirking thair wrak for breking his command? 1570 Sat. P. xxiii 114.
Gif I suld deliuer the castell … it wer … his majesties great … hurt and … my wrak; 1577–8 Reg. Morton I 105.
Remember ȝe kepe ȝour honouris wele baytht of toung & hand for gif ȝe do nocht remember wele it salbe ȝour vtter wraik; 1582 Edinb. Test. X 323.
He myndes the harme or wrak of na nobleman; 1583 Reg. Privy C. III 599.
The miserable saccage of Jerusalem, [and] utter wrake and overthrow of the cietie; 1584 Knox III 433.
The quhilk on na vayis scho culd do without hir awne vrak and disavantage; 1585 Perth B. Ct. 8 Oct.
That lower vane quhose bewtye was his wrack; Fowler I 44/199.
Thay … ar movit to seik my wraik and do me the worst thay can; 1592 Warrender P. (SHS) II 178.
Uraike; James VI Basil. Doron 74/13.
My estait endangerit, and my urak socht; 1608 Lett. & St. P. Jas. VI 146.
The erll wold not looke vpoun Robert … saying, he ‘wes the wraick of him and his estate’; 1614 Crim. Trials III 324.
Security is the bane and the wrack of the most part of the world; 1638 Rutherford Lett. (1894) 553.
Wracke; Calderwood IV 410.
(b) Wreak; Montg. Mindes Mel. vi 44.
proverb. Ane can not be exalted without anothers wrake; Maxwall Commonpl. Bk. Prov. No. 78.

II. 3. (The wreckage of) a wrecked ship; specif. as forfeited to the king, etc. See also S(c)hipwrak n. b. A ship forfeited due to being captured or taken as a prize. Si les ditz biens ne apartenissent a nous, ou a autres de notre poair par lai wrek, sicom desus est dit; 1323 Acts I 120/2.
Le wrak cujusdam navis combuste infra portum de Leth et vendite ad usum regis; 1428 Exch. R. IV 439.
Ane brokin schip; … the wrak of hir come in on the cost of Croudane; 1500–1 Aberd. B. Rec. I 428.
The esterling schip … quhilk was on his land as wrak; 1530 Acta Conc. MS XLI 149.
The vourak of the schip; 15… Aberd. B. Rec. (Jam. s.v. Vourak).
Quhair ane man, ane dog or ane cat eschaipis quik out of the schip that sic schip … nor na thing within hir salbe adiudged wraik; Bisset II 213/1.
Inrespect scho is altogidder brockin and becom wrack, both anchouris towis and gudes ar dew the admirallis; 1641 Hibbert P. No. 12.
Much timber, the wrack of ships cast away at sea … is driven ashore; Brand Orkney & Shetl. 25.
b. This is the gudis … cum in ane schip … tane as ane prise … item … ane schip of fyr quhilk wes storit as vraik in hir cumin in the havyn, with hir hale salis … ankeris [etc.] and in the said schip xiiijc sparris [etc.]; 1544 Aberd. B. Rec. I 205.

4. A ship unfit for use or unseaworthy. x li. … awand … for thare half parte of ane schip callit the Trinite of Cowpar to be of nane avale … becaus thare said parte of the said schip wes neuer deliuerit … and … becaus … the said schip wes bot wrak insufficiant; 1490 Acta Conc. I 159/2.
The schip callit the Pelican … lying as ane wrak in Leith; 1607 Edinb. Test. XLIII 197b.
His … shipe … being nowayes fitt for the sea and laid vp as a wrack; 1667 Edinb. Test. LXXII 251b.

5. Shipwreck, the action of the sea in disabling or destroying a vessel or depriving a person of his vessel by such means. Quot. 1683 may belong in 6 below. How Neptune his navy saifit fra wraik; Doug. i iii h. of ch. (Sm.).
Rent me in pecis, and in the fludis swak, Or droun law vnder the large seyis wrak [C. brak]; Doug. iii ix 50 (Ruddim.).
A gret nombre of thair cumpanie was dronit and boith the shippes, the moist pairt of his guidis losed be the wrake of the sey; Leslie 257.
They [sc. the Spaniards] knew nocht of the wrak of the rest but supposed that the rest of the armie was saifflie returned till a day I gat in St. Androis in print the wrak of the Galliates in particular; Melvill 264.
The distres … quhairin the poore straingeris had fallin by the wrak of thair ship; 1623 Edinb. B. Rec. VI 243.
Its probable the gold has been produced … by the wrack of the Spanish Armado; 1683 Cochran-Patrick Coinage II 203.

6. a. Goods, material, the remnants of wrecked ships, etc. recovered from the sea, also as escheat as in 1 above. See also Hafe-wrak n. and Se-wrak n. ? Sometimes applied to seaweed, cf., however, Wair n. (see b and d below). (a) To twa wemen that bur wrak ij dayis ij s.; 1536–7 Ayr B. Acc. 19.
For castyng sand fra the bulwerk & laying of wrak to the samyn iiij s. vj d.; 1537 Ayr Common Good Acc.
The baillies … hes gevin libertie … to Adam Stewert burges of Air & his tenentis … to gadder & leid wrak fra the sie syid; 1597 Prestwick B. Rec. 83.
(b) Tomas George desyris … to be enteryt to the fredome … and to bruyk … mos and wraik; 1544 Prestwick B. Rec. 59.
Wrayk; 1570 Prestwick B. Rec. 72.
Bisset II 213/1 (see 3 above).
The king sall have the wraik or escheit of the sea; Bisset II 213/16.
(c) At they saw the fens maid apoun wryk apoun the said [Jhone Myller?] inwyth the sae mark and thereftyr his serwandis led the said wryk to the place quhare thay layd of befor; 1545 Prestwick B. Rec. 60.
(d) Na man … beyr wrek or leyd wrek out of the se or se sand quhyl the sone rys; 1567 Prestwick B. Rec. 70.
Gif wreck perteines to anie other then the King he sall haue the wreck in the samine maner; Skene Reg. Maj. ii 19.
Accuseit for the stowth of ane scheip skin … being the kingis wrek; 1602 Shetland Sheriff Ct. (ed.) 6.
(e) There being one living beast escaping out of the ship which was broke, and whereof the wrack was craved, and so … the goods of the ship could not be esteem'd a wrack, there being one creature alive; 1622 Durie Decis. 39.
Quhat burges … that sall nocht gather the said wrack or sheir the samyn sall … not mak lytle … hillocks thairof for thair use iff they come first to the wrack; 1660 Rothesay B. Rec. 54.
[He] gott by sea severall saills and strapts be way of wrack; 1662 Reg. Privy C. 3 Ser. I 223.
We know of no … substances cast up by the sea, except wrack of broken ships; Descr. Zetland 43.
(f) John Neil … delated to haue led wrake this day eight dayes in the nyght; 1628 Dundonald Par. Rec. 264.
It was tuo houres in the morning before they went to the sea to gather or handle anie wrake; 1628 Dundonald Par. Rec. 264.
With all … priviledges proffittes and commodities of the mouth of the said watter of Ness … to fishe the said water … togidder withe priviledge … of three kistes, within the said water wrake [1817 wrack] as vse is; 1641 Acts V 540/1.

b. In or with reference to the tenendas clause of a charter: (The right to gather) goods, etc. washed up by the sea. Chiefly in collocation with Wair n. or Waith n.2 b, q.v. for further examples. Also transf. Invenerunt dictum forestarium custodem de wrac et waif infra dictum dominium de Coldingham; 1452 Reg. Great S. 125/1.
Tenendas et habendas omnes … terras … cum wrak waith et wair; 1478 Reg. Episc. Morav. 233.
To desist … fra vptaking the wraik & wair furth off … the saidis landis; 1543 Inverness Sheriff Ct. 15b.
That na vnfreman … gather ather wrek nor wair; 1586 Prestwick B. Rec. 81.
Landis of Seytoun … with wrak and wair flowing fra the sey fluid; c1592 Liber Aberbr. II App. xl/1.
All right and title … to wrak, wair, and admiralitie within the boundis of Eister Grantoun within or without the floode mark; 1625 Reg. Privy C. 2 Ser. I 30.
With furk, fork, sok, sak, thole, thame, vert, vair, wraik, vennysone; 1632 Lanark B. Rec. 327.
With priviledge … of cutting wining transporteing and carying of wrack and wair fra the sea; 1658 Hunter Fam. P. 58.
With the loch and fishings therof, and watter lead of the said loch, with the wrack and wair; 1659 Retours I Inq. Spec. Aberdeen (350).
The lands of Inverallochie … with the fishing … fishing boats the wraik and wair of fishes on the sea shore of said lands; 1697 Antiq. Aberd. & B. IV 135.
He stands infeft … with the privilege of wreck and ware and so has right to debar the defenders from gathering sea-tangle on his ground; 1697 Fountainhall Decis. I 786.
Personis who happins to meddle with wrake or weith casten up be the sea; 16… Peterkin Orkney & Zetl. App. 69.
transf. Bann. MS 113a/12 (see 7 below).

c. Wrek of the sea, the right to take possession of goods, etc. recovered from the sea. Wrek of the sea … signifies … prerogatiue competent to the King, or to onie person to quhome the samin is granted … to … vptake sik gudes & geare as ar schipbroken or fallis to him be escheit of the sea; Skene Verb. S. s.v. Wrek.

d. specif. Applied to seaweed. Perhaps a late borrowing from English, however, some examples in a above may also refer to seaweed. The most ordinary mannour they have for their land … is sea-weed, sea-ware, as they call it; and in bayes after storms when the sea-weed is driven in greater plenty, all the people … divide the wrack according to the proportion of land they have; 1700 Wallace Orkney (1883) 42 n.

7. a. Goods, gear, more generally, chiefly as warldis or war(l)dlie wrak, orig. and chiefly used pejoratively. Cf. warldis gud(is (Warld n. 1 d (2)). b. transf. Worldly pleasure(s). Quot. Winȝet in a may belong here. (1) Quhen wretchis in this warldis wrak [Ch., H. calf] do scraip; Henr. Fab. 1928 (Bann.).
O princis … In wardlie wrak [Arund. wark] plantand ȝour plesans Ryngand in riches; Contempl. Sinn. 530 (Asl.).
Than quho sall wirk for warldis wrak, Quhen flude and fyre sall our it frak; Dunb. (OUP) 183/76.
Sum wernour for this warldis wrak wendis by hys wyt; Doug. viii Prol. 96.
Hauand regarde to the wreke of this warld or lustis of thair bodyis leuis as Epicurianis; Winȝet I 8/19.
God maid Naball … for to de, And him bereft frome all his wardlie wrak; Lauder Minor P. i 584.
My secund brother buyr the pak … Now he hes gold and warldis wrak; Maitl. F. 241/15.
He was voide of all covatyce … And to the love of worldly wrake; 1574 Three Reformers 113.
Giff thair is nathing can satisfie yow … bot my bluid and wardlie wraik [etc.]; 1601 Aberd. Eccl. Rec. 180.
(2) Thocht all the werk [M. wraik] that evir had levand wicht Wer only thyne [etc.]; Dunb. (OUP) 186/33 (B).
Ane wreche sall haif no mair Bot ane schort scheit at heid and feit For all his wrek and wair For all the wrak a wreche can pak … Ȝit deid sall tak him; Bann. MS 113a/12.
b. Ane cart with wemen and bairnis braulie cled sum dansand sum singand [etc.] … quhilk representit the wrak of the warld; 1562 Reeves Sc. Prose bef. 1600 79.

8. Weeds, rubbish of this sort. The couch-grass and other weeds, ordinarily called wrack; Belhaven Rudiments 8.
There are amongst them that will not suffer the wrack to be taken off their land, because, they say, it keeps the corn warm; 16… Macfarlane's Geog. Coll. III 143.
William Neill & Andrew Caldwall beyleis … being convined anent the wrake and bent doe retifie and aprove all former acts anent wrake & bent; 1730 Prestwick B. Rec. 89.

B. attrib. or adj. 1. Doomed, bound to suffer utter ruin. Sum houpe is ȝit that my seruice sall speid Without the quhilk I wait I am bot wraik [: tak, lak, abak, mak]; Maitl. Q. 111/98.

2. a. Of a ship: Wrecked, available as salvage. Cf. A II 3 above. b. Of a ship: Unseaworthy, unable to put to sea. c. Wrak gudis, goods available as salvage. See also Waith adj. for further examples. d. Damaged; useless; of no value. Also ellipt. a. The wrack ships … of the Spanish Armado; 1641 Argyle Inventory in Orig. Par. II i 326.
b. Ane quartare of ane auld wrak schip; 1606 Edinb. Test. XLI 341b.
To remove … his awld wrak schip furth of the … harbery of Leyth; 1614 Edinb. B. Rec. VI 116.
The loss of our men at Kilsyth made the twa part of the small drave boats, quhilk should have gone to the drave, ly wrak at the full sea; 1645 Pittenweem Ann. 55.
Four bush boats lyeing wrack at the full sea; 1692 Conv. Burghs IV 639.
c. With power to him … to … uptak … wrak and waith guidis of the saidis landis; 1575–6 Reg. Privy S. VII 75/1.
Steillairis and mellaris with the wrek guidis thairof; 1602 Shetland Sheriff Ct. (ed.) 45.
Gilbert Olasone bailyie … with power … to … secure all wrack and waith goods; 1671 Soc. Ant. XXVI 194.
d. The wrak hering and insufficient to haue na merk; 1609 Conv. Burghs II 284.
To repair the ruined wrake place of the shoir at Leith … to take doun the same to the ground [etc.]; 1649 Edinb. B. Rec. VIII 184.
ellipt. That thai … devyde the guid and sufficient fische fra the wrak and evill; 1584 Edinb. B. Rec. IV 343.

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

"Wra(i)k n.1". Dictionary of the Scots Language. 2004. Scottish Language Dictionaries Ltd. Accessed 17 Oct 2017 <http://www.dsl.ac.uk/entry/dost/wraik_n_1>



Try an Advanced Search

Browse DOST:

Browse Up
Browse Down