Scottish National Dictionary (1700–)

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CURRACH, CURRAGH, Currok, Curroch, Currough, Corr-, Currick, Courach, n.1 A coracle, a small wickerwork boat covered with hides; “a skiff or small boat, formerly used by the inhabitants of S[cotland]” (Sc. 1808 Jam., currach, currok, currough). Also used attrib. Arch. and hist. Sc. 1729  T. Innes Critical Essay II. 660:
The corroughs made use of as yet in some places of Scotland, which can contain conveniently but two men at once.
Sc. 1819  J. Rennie St Patrick I. xv.:
Our bit curragh's no that rackle sin it got a stane on Monanday was aught nights.
Inv. 1795  Stat. Acc.1 XIII. 134:
A man, sitting in what was called a Currach, made of hide, in the shape, and about the size of a small brewing-kettle, broader above than below, with ribs or hoops of wood in the inside, and a cross-stick for the man to sit on. . . . These currachs were so light, that the men carried them on their backs home from Speymouth.
Mry. 1705  W. Cramond Court Bks. Regality of Grant (1897) 19:
Fined ¥50 for abusing of the laird of Grant's curroch fishing upon Spey.
Mry. 1775  L. Shaw Hist. Prov. Mry. 164:
Let me add, as now become a Rarity, the Courach. . . . It is in shape oval, near three feet broad, and four long.
Bnff. 1926  W. Gill in Bnffsh. Jnl. (18 May) 8:
The currick in the sworles rose, An' swayed fae side to side.
Ayr. 1822  H. Ainslie Pilgrimage, etc. 137:
The river taking a sudden bend, broadened and deepened into a wheel, on the breast of which a salmon cobble, or currach swam.

Hence curracher, a man who sat in a currach and guided floating timbers down the Spey. Sc. 1701  J. Grant Seafield Corresp. (S.H.S. 1912) 329:
And the currachers pains for transporting them to the bote off Bog.

[O.Sc. has currach, curroche, corroch, id., from 1488, currok, from 1507 (D.O.S.T.); n.Mid.Eng. currok, c.1450 (N.E.D.); Gael. curach, a boat, coracle.]

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"Currach n.1". Dictionary of the Scots Language. 2004. Scottish Language Dictionaries Ltd. Accessed 15 Dec 2018 <>



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