Scottish National Dictionary (1700–)

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CUSHAT, Cushet, Cusha, n. Also reduced forms cushie, cooshie, cushey. Also used attrib. [′kʌʃə(t), ′kʌʃi, ′kuʃi]

1. The ring-dove or wood-pigeon, Columba palumbus (Mry. 1844 G. Gordon Fauna of Mry. in Zoologist (Feb.), cushat; Rxb. 1923 Watson W.-B., cusha, cushie). Known to Bnff.2 and Abd.9 (cushie), Ags.2 1941; Per. 1915 Wilson L. Strathearn 241; Fif.10 (cushie), Slg.3 (cushie, cushet), Edb.1, Arg.1, Kcb.9 1941. Sc. 1810  Scott L. of the Lake (1821) iii. ii.:
In answer coo'd the cushat dove Her notes of peace, and rest, and love.
Ags. 1820  A. Balfour Poems 324:
The cushat nae langer is heard to complain.
Edb. 1864  A. Logan Auld Reekie Musings 80:
The cushet loves the woody dell.
Ayr. 1790  Burns Elegy on Capt. Matthew Henderson (Cent. ed.) iv.:
Mourn, ilka grove the cushat kens!

2. Comb.: cushie-doo (dou, dow, dove), cooshie-, cushey-, cusha-, (1) = 1. above; also used attrib. Gen. (exc. I.) Sc.; (2) used as a term of affection (Bnff.2 1941). (1) Abd. 1932  D. Campbell Bamboozled 71:
Sids doon thrippence, an' yersel' cooin' like a cooshie-doo; it blecks a'.
Bwk. c.1887  R. M. Calder in Minstrelsy of the Merse (ed. Crockett 1893) 259:
. . . the young cusha doo that had ventured Oot the nest afore it could flee.
wm.Sc. 1835–37  Laird of Logan II. 132:
Up the stair we scrambled like twa cats after a cushey-dou or a mealy mouse.
Kcb. 1895  S. R. Crockett Men of the Moss-Hags iii.:
A voice that was as soft as that of a cushie dove.
w.Dmf. 1917  J. L. Waugh Cute McCheyne 126:
I wad judge she's past the cooin', cushie-doo stage, an' will sensibly consider this chance o' a guid doon-settin'.
(2) Lnk. 1881  A. Wardrop J. Mathison's Courtship, etc. 12:
O' Kirsty, jist say that you'll be mine, my bonnie hen, my darlin' lamb, my ain wee cushie doo!

[O.Sc. has cuschet(t), cowschot, cushat, etc., id., from c.1450 (D.O.S.T.); O.E. cūscote; Mid.Eng. cou-schote, -scot. Of obscure origin; prob. imit. of the bird's call. The placename Couschotelaw (Cushat Law, Nhb.) occurs c.1200 (D.O.S.T.).]

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"Cushat n.". Dictionary of the Scots Language. 2004. Scottish Language Dictionaries Ltd. Accessed 16 Dec 2018 <>



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