Scottish National Dictionary (1700–)

Hide Quotations Hide Etymology Cite this entry

BUMMELEERIE, BUM-THE-LEERIE-BUM , BUMBELEERY-BIZZ, n. [′bʌm(b)ɪ′li:ri, ′bʌmðə′li:ri]

1. A stupid fellow. Lnk. 1893  J. Crawford Sc. Verses and Sangs 88:
Great bummeleeries folk ca' men' Wha hae less gumption than a hen.

2. “A refrain; a boy's song” (Bch. 1928 (per Abd.15), bum-the-leerie-bum).

3. “A cry used by children, when they see cows startling, in order to excite them to run about with greater violence. Bizz is an imitation of the sound of the gadfly” (Lth. 1825 Jam.2, bumbeleery-bizz). Known also to Bnff.2 1937.

[From Bum, v.1, and Leerie(-la), the crow of a cock. Cf. also Leerie-leerie-licht-the-lamps.]

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

"Bummeleerie n.". Dictionary of the Scots Language. 2004. Scottish Language Dictionaries Ltd. Accessed 16 Feb 2019 <>



Try an Advanced Search

Browse SND:

Browse Up
Browse Down