Scottish National Dictionary (1700–)
BEET, BEAT, v.2 and n.3 [bit Sc.; bet Fif. (coast)]
1. v. Pa.t., pa.p., bet. [bet, bèt]
(1) To mend, repair, esp. nets.
Sc. 1887 Jam.6 Add.:
He was quietly beetin his net on the green. Ork. 1929 Marw.:
Beet, to repair a boat, to tar and paint it. w.Dmf. 1889 J. Shaw in Dmf. and Gall. Antiq. Soc. 148:
In Tynron beeting a dyke means mending it.
(2) To help (1825 Jam.2), to comfort.
Sc. 1728 Ramsay Poems II. 185:
This Man may beet the Poet bare and clung, That rarely has a Shilling in his Spung. Rxb. 1826 A. Scott Poems 83:
An' at the muse, dear lassie, yet I've taen nae dorts, nor sullen pet, I own my needs, she's often bet.
(3) To supply something wanting — e.g. replace lost hooks on a fishing-line.
Sc. 1823 Blackw. Mag. XIII. 314:
If twa or three hunder pounds can beet a mister for you in a strait, ye sanna want it. Ork. 1929 Marw.:
To fasten a bit of snoodline on to a hook to facilitate the fixing upon a line. Bnff. 1930 2 :
Beet the line. To overhaul a line for the purpose of replacing lost tippens or hooks. “Beet th' line, Jonnie, till I rin ower to Findlay's for some new hyooks.” e.Abd. 1881 J. W. Ritchie Geordie Tough's Squeel (1931) 5:
Tae makin' sneeds an' keepin' coonts, An' splicin' lines an' beetin' wints. Bwk. 1917 J. W. Downie in Kelso Chron. (1 June):
The husband “beats the wants” (replaces lost hooks). Rxb. 1923 Watson W.-B. 52:
Beet. To make up deficiencies of (yarn) in the warp by knotting in a piece.
(4) To kindle or add fuel to a fire (lit. and fig.). Transferred to a person, hence to warm, to warm up; perhaps, in quot. 2, there may be a confusion with Beek, v.1
Sc. 1721 Ramsay Poems 273:
Now the Sun's gane out o' Sight, Beet the Ingle, and snuff the Light. m.Lth. 1816 J. Aikman Poems 227:
She brought a stool, gar't him sit near, An' beet himsel aside the flame. Peb. 1805 J. Nicol Poems I. 25:
But beet the fire! — we'll mak a shift The infant year to welcome. Rnf. 1835 R. Tannahill Poems and Songs (1876) 131:
Her sapless fingers scarce can nip The wither'd twigs tae beet her fire. s.Sc. 1847 H. S. Riddell Poems 351:
Forbye, I hae the kiln to beet, Wi' fuel late and early.
Abd. 1768 A. Ross Helenore 10:
But with mair wyles an' can [skill] they bet the flame. Ags. 1820 A. Balfour Contemplation, etc. 276:
She ne'er forgot, that Love requires Mair skill to beet, than light, his fires. Edb. 1838 W. McDowall Poems 198:
Haith, love I fear will soon grow cauld, If there's nocht to beet the lowe. Ayr. 1786 Burns Cotter's Saturday Night xiii.:
Or noble Elgin beets the heaven-ward flame. Kcb. 1814 W. Nicholson Poems (1897) 138:
Hope beets the youthfu' lover's flame Enjoyment gars us falter.
Phr. beet to, keep increasing the speed.
Ayr. 1787 Burns Letter to W. Nicol (ed. Ferguson 1931) 94:
When ance her ringbanes and spavies . . . are fairly soupl'd, she beets to, beets to, and ay the hindmost hour the tightest.
(5) Comb.: beet master, a person or thing helpful in an emergency, hence a stop-gap. See Mister.
Sc. 1816 Scott O. Mortality xl.:
Next she enlarged on the advantage of saving old clothes to be what she called “beet masters to the new.”
2. n. A needful thing, a want; gen. in pl.
Sc. 1829 R. Chambers (ed.) Sc. Songs II. 588:
Sell hawkie, minnie, And buy the beets to me.
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"Beet v.2, n.3". Dictionary of the Scots Language. 2004. Scottish Language Dictionaries Ltd. Accessed 20 Mar 2018 <http://www.dsl.ac.uk/entry/snd/beet_v2_n3>
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