Scottish National Dictionary (1700–)
CHAW, Cha', v.1 and n.1 Cf. Chow, v., n.1 [tʃɑ: Sc., but m.Sc. + tʃ:, s.Sc. tʃɒ:]
1. To chew. Known to Bnff.2, Abd. correspondents, Ags.2, Fif.1 (1939). Now vulgar and colloq. in Eng.
Mry. 1873 J. Brown Round Table Club 66:
Gin yer feet slip on that weet, slithery rock, ye winna chaw mair cheese. Rnf. 1788 E. Picken Poems, etc. 97:
On nonsense now may chaw their cude. Uls. 1904 J. W. Byers in Victoria Coll. Mag. 41:
A woman no one can trust, and who is always at some mischief, is compared to a troublesome cow: “If she doesn't kick she will chaw claes.”
Hence chaw-bait, “the nickname given to fishermen of Rosehearty village by their coast neighbours” (Abd.16 1939).
2. “To provoke, to vex” (Sc. 1808 Jam.); to make jealous. Known to Ags.2, Fif.10, Arg.1, Lnk.3 and Kcb. correspondents (1939). Most commonly used as ppl.adj. chawed, chawt, chawn, vexed, chagrined; jealous.
Bch. 1928 (per Abd.15):
I wis some sair chawn ower't. m.Sc. 1922 “O. Douglas” Ann and her Mother xxiv.:
Some folk ye wad think tak' a fair delight in tellin' ye things that chaw ye, they juist canna help bein' nesty. Slg. 1935 W. D. Cocker Further Poems 22:
Noo a's in order Ye've chawed the deil: ye're safe an' soun' Ower heaven's border. Edb. 1821 W. Liddle Poems 90:
And syne speer'd at me what is't, And that might chaw'd ye. Arg. 1932 1 :
I wuz that chawed when he let the hoose ower ma heid efter promisin' tae let me hae't for anither year. Gsw. 1832–1846 J. D. Carrick in Whistle-Binkie (1st Series) 123:
Deacon Roset when he saw't, He left the room he was sae chawt. w.Dmf. 1915 J. L. Waugh Betty Grier 150:
I'm gettin' fair angry at the new yin hangin' oot so prominently an' skinklin' as if to chaw the ithers.
3. Phrs.: †(1) to cha' fause, “to suffer” (Abd. 1790 A. Shirrefs Poems, Gl.); (2) to chaw one's words, “to speak indistinctly” (Sc. 1905 E.D.D. Suppl.; Bnff.2, Abd.2, Abd.9 1939).
(1) Abd. 1768 A. Ross Helenore 29:
Gin he is gane, as doubtless but he has, He'll shortly mak us ane an' a' cha' fause.
1. Something chewed in the mouth, i.e. a quid of tobacco. Known to Bnff.2, Abd. correspondents, Ags.2, Fif.1, Edb.1, Lnk.3 (1939). Now vulgar or dial. in Eng.
Mearns 1844 W. Jamie Muse of the Mearns 58:
Noo, turn the chaw into your cheek, And, Charlie, tent me weel. Ags. 1939 17 :
See a chaw fae ye! Uls. c.1920 J. Logan Ulster in the X-Rays (2nd ed.) vi.:
A “chew” of tobacco becomes “chow,” or “chaw.”
2. A disappointment, a snub; “a stinging rejoinder or retort” (Abd.7 1925). Known to Bnff.2, Abd.2, Fif.10 (1939).
Bnff. 1916 6 :
The candidate gied the cheeky heckler a nesty chaw. Ags. 1930 “A. Kennedy” Orra Boughs i.:
With no life beyond this a man would never have the chaw of knowing his own mortality. Ayr. 1900 G. Douglas House with Green Shutters (1901) xvi.:
“Chaw” . . . a bitter and envious disappointment which shows itself in face and eyes.
3. Phrs.: (1) chaw throu', a toilsome attempt (Bnff.2, Abd.19 1939); (2) to play a chaw on (a person), to humiliate a person by causing him envy and disappointment.
(1) Abd. 1931 A. M. Williams Bundle of Yarns 37:
Sensing that I was in difficulties over a problem, he came behind me, and seeing the slate . . . covered with a long drawn-out attempt at a solution, he said, “Mercy me! Mr Double V, fatna lang chaw throu's thes?” (2) Ayr. 1900 G. Douglas House with Green Shutters (1901) xvi.:
Boys were always coming back to . . . “play a chaw” on young Gourlay by boasting their knowledge of the world, winking at each other the while to observe his grinning anger.
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"Chaw v.1, n.1". Dictionary of the Scots Language. 2004. Scottish Language Dictionaries Ltd. Accessed 23 Jun 2018 <http://www.dsl.ac.uk/entry/snd/chaw_v1_n1>
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