Scottish National Dictionary (1700–)
DEID, Deed, Dede, adj. and n. [did Sc., but em.Sc., Wgt. ded]
I. adj. Sc. forms and usages of Eng. dead.
1. In games: (1) of a golf-ball lying so near the hole that the putt is a “dead” certainty (Sc. 1887 Jam.6); Gen.Sc.; (2) of quoits, bowls, etc., of opponents lying equidistant from the tee (Ib.; Abd.9, Slg.3 1940); hence as quasi-n. in phr. it's deids (see quot.).
(1) Sc. 1847 R. Chambers Poet. Rem. (1883) 61:
And when, these perils past, thou seemest dead, And hope'st a half — O woe, the ball goes crooked. (2) Sc. 1887 Jam.6, Add.:
It's deids, i.e., it is a case of deids or nothing for either side . . . called out by the leading players when two opposing quoits, bowls, etc., are found to be equidistant from the tee.
2. Phrs.: (1) the deed dark, a fisherman's term for a period of about six days at new moon when the moon is practically invisible; (2) to be like a deid dog, to be out of sorts (Bnff.2 1940; Abd.4 1929; Abd.9 1940).
(1) Arg. 1931 1 :
The moon's at the deed dark an' the burnin' in the watter'll be good.
†3. Used substantivally in pl.: barren subsoil thrown up during digging operations. Found also in Eng. dial.
Peb. 1802 C. Findlater Agric. Peb. 131:
The side of the ditch next the planting to be faced up with the sod raised in forming the ditch and what is taken out of the ditch (vernacularly the deeds) thrown behind this facing to support it.
‡1. Death (Bch. 1910 (per Abd.11); s.Ayr. 1950 (per wm.Sc.1); Rxb. 1923 Watson W.-B., 1927 E. C. Smith Braid Haaick 10, deed). Hence adv. a-dead, to death.
Sc. 1728 Ramsay Poems II. 92:
For if it get o'er meikle Head, 'Tis fair to gallop ane to dead. Abd. 1746 W. Forbes Dominie Depos'd i. xxi.:
[They] leave the priest-craft shot a-dead For procreation. Abd. 1768 A. Ross Helenore 82:
Nae help there was, but there lay down my head, Aneth a tree, an' wait for welcome dead. Bch. 1874 W. Scott Dowie Nicht 37:
A'm feart he gets his deed o' caul. Ags. 1790 D. Morison Poems 121:
Alas! she'll be my dead, Unless ye cuddem and advise the lass. Edb. 1773 R. Fergusson Poems (1925) 49:
My travellers are fley'd to deid Wi' creels wanchancy, heap'd wi' bread. Lnk. 1868 J. Hamilton Poems 92:
She fear'd the sweet leddy wad come by her deid. s.Sc. 1885 W. Scrope Salmon Fishing 245:
Aweel, aweel, that may be; but as sure as deid, I aince saw her in her ain proper shape.
Phrs.: (1) the deid (dede) o' the (y)ear, “midwinter, when there is no vegetation” (Sc. 1825 Jam.2, — dede —; Abd.4 1929; Abd.16 1940); (2) to take one's dead end, to die of laughter (Uls. 1880 W. H. Patterson Gl. Ant. and Dwn.); cf. end s.v. Aynd.
(1) Abd. 1920 A. Robb MS.:
I wis to gang hame and help my fadder thro' the deid o' the year.
2. (1) The cause of (someone's) death (Rxb. 1923 Watson W.-B.).
Sc. 1701–31 R. Wodrow Analecta (Maitland Club 1842) II. 138:
He eat his dinner very heartily, and seeing the cheese, he said, “Give me a peice cheese, for it will not be my dead now.” Sc. 1802–3 Minstr. Sc. Border (ed. Scott) I. 201:
My noble mind their wrath disdains, He was my father's deid. Abd. 1865 G. Macdonald Alec Forbes I. xiv.:
They say he's lickit the dominie and 'maist been the deid o' him. Ags. 1892 A. Reid Howetoon ii.:
Eh, laddie, laddie, I doot ye'll be the deid o' me yet. Rnf. 1807 R. Tannahill Poems 147:
Dear Lassie turn — 'twill be your dead! The dreary waste lies far an' wide. Dmf. 1897 T. Murray Frae the Heather (1898) 116:
For this I feel wad be my dead If aught should break the spell.
(2) Followed by o': the cause of (some misdeed or fault); the culprit (Rxb. 1923 Watson W.-B.). Known to Abd.9 1940.
Abd. 1916 G. Abel Wylins 43:
He lun'ert Will, the deed o' a', But Willie only leuch. Rxb. 1927 E. C. Smith Braid Haaick 10:
This expression is applied even to inanimate “culprits,” as: A lookeet aabits for't, bit A fand eet i the hinder-end. The press was the deed o'd.
III. Combs. (of n. or adj.: cf. similar Combs. s.v. Death): †1. dead-ail, a mortal illness; cf. 20; 2. dead (deid) bell, (1) the passing-bell; obs. exc. poet.; found also in e.Yks. dial.; (2) a sudden sensation of deafness accompanied by a ringing in the ears, said to foretell a death (Sh.11 1949; wm.Sc. 1879 J. Napier Folk-Lore 57); also in pl.; 3. deid box, (1) (see quot.); (2) a coffin (Cai.7 1940; Fif., Rnf. 1949 (per Abd.27)); 4. dead (dede)-can(d)le (see first quot.); cf. Cannle, n., 3; pl.: = 25 (Bnff.2 1930; Abd.19 1940); 5. deid (dead, dede)-chack (check, jack, shaek), †(1) “the dinner prepared for the magistrates of a burgh after a public execution” (Sc. 1825 Jam.2, dede-; Edb. 1821 Edb. Mag. (Feb.) 102, -check); (2) “food often desired by the dying shortly before death” (Rxb. 1923 Watson W.-B.); cf. Chack, n.3; †(3) the ticking sound made by the death-watch beetle, regarded as a foreboding of death (Sc. 1808 Jam.; Ork. 1920 J. Firth Reminisc. (1922) 82, -jack; Bwk. c.1830 T. Wilkie in Proc. Bwk. Nat. Club (1916) 60); cf. Chack, v.2 (2); †6. deid (dead) chap, an unexplained knocking sound supposed to be a premonition of death (Sc. 1808 Jam.); 7. deid-chaumer, death-chamber; 8. deid check, see 5 (1); 9. deid (dead)-claes (clothes, cloaths), a shroud (Abd.27 1935; Ags.17, Fif.10 1940); †10. deid-clap, = 5 (3) (Rxb. 1923 Watson W.-B.); †11. dead-days, “those days the corpse of a person remains before it is buried; no ploughing, nor opening the earth in any shape, is allowed to go forward, when such is the case in a farm” (Gall. 1824 MacTaggart Gallov. Encycl. 164); 12. dead-deal, the board on which a corpse is stretched (Fif.10 1940); †13. dead-dole, a dole distributed on the occasion of a funeral; also in n.Yks. dial.; 14. dead-drap, deid-, dede-, (1) “a drop of water falling intermittently and heavily on a floor, viewed by the superstitious as a premonition of death” (Sc. 1825 Jam.2, dede-; Abd.4 1929); (2) a death-dive (in acrobatics, etc.); †15. dead-dress, = 9; 16. dead-fire, St Elmo's fire, superstitiously regarded as an omen of death; †17. dead flannels, = 9; 18. dead-hole, a grave (Sc. 1818 Sawers Dict. Sc. Lang.); also deidie- (Abd. 1949 (per Abd.27)); 19. deid-hoose, dead-house, (1) a mortuary (Abd.19, Fif.10 1940; Rxb. 1923 Watson W.-B.); also in n.Eng. dial.; (2) a grave (Sc. 1818 Sawers Dict. Sc. Lang.); 20. dead-ill, deedle, a mortal illness or injury; cf. 1; 21. dead jack, see 5 (3); 22. deid-kist, dead-, a coffin (Ayr.4 1928; Kcb.3 1929, dead-; Rxb. 1923 Watson W.-B., obsol.); †23. dead-knack, “a loud stroke as of a switch, upon the door or bed, the cause of which is unknown; supposed by the common people to announce the death of some relation of the person who hears it” (Sc. 1825 Jam.2); also in n.Eng. dial.; 24. dead knowledge, “deceitfulness; cunning” (Uls. 1880 W. H. Patterson Gl. Ant. and Dwn.); 25. deid (dede)-licht, dead-lights, “the name given by the peasantry to the luminous appearance which is sometimes observed over putrescent animal bodies, and which arises probably from the disengagement of phosphorated hydrogen gas” (Sc. 1825 Jam.2, dede-; Abd.9 1940), regarded as an omen of death; cf. 4; †26. dead linens, deed-linnings, grave-clothes; 27. deid-lump, a boil (Mearns 3 c.1916; Ags.1 1934); 28. dead news, news of a death; see Ork. quot. under 2 (2) below; 29. dead nick, = 23; †30. dede (dead)-nip, “a blue mark in the body, not produced by a blow, contusion or any known cause, ascribed by the vulgar to necromancy; hence sometimes called a witch's nip” (Sc. 1808 Jam.); also in n.Eng. dial.; cf. Deid-man, 12; also in phr. to gie one the dede-nip (see second quot.); ‡31. deid-palsy, apoplexy (Rxb. 1923 Watson W.-B.); obs. in Eng. since 18th cent.; 32. deid-rap, = 6 (Rxb. 1923 Watson W.-B.); 33. dead riggs, a field of the dead, a battlefield; 34. deid-room, dead-, the room reserved for the laying-out of a dead body; the best bedroom; 35. deid-ruckle, the death-rattle (Lth., Rxb. 1825 Jam.2; Rxb. 1923 Watson W.-B., deid-, dede-, ‡dead-); 36. deid sark, = 9 (Sh.11 1949); 37. deadset, the fixed stare of death: 38. dead shaek, see 5 (3); 39. deid-spale, candlegrease on a guttered candle which has assumed a shroud-like shape and is supposed to presage the death of the person in whose direction it forms; cf. Eng. dial. windingsheet (Sc. 1825 Jam.2, dede-; Bwk. c.1830 T. Wilkie in Proc. Bwk. Nat. Club (1916) 81, dead-; Rxb. 1923 Watson W.-B., deid-, ‡dead-); †40. deid-stane, a tombstone; 41. deid-thraw, deed-, dead-, (1) death-throe (Cai.7 (obsol.), Abd.9, Kcb.10 1940); in Sh. used only of birds (Sh.10 1947, deadtraa); also in n.Eng. dial.; (2) fig. in phr. i(n) (the) deid-thraw, at —, in a transitionary or indeterminate state: (a) between hot and cold (Bnff.2 1940; Abd.6 1913; Ags.17 1940), frost and thaw; (b) between one condition, action or result and another; undecided, perplexed (Abd.16 1940); in confusion; (c) between seasons or stages of growth: “at the passage from winter to spring or from boyhood to manhood” (Cai.9 1946, -thraa); (d) between freshness and putrefaction, e.g. of fish (Cai. 1905 E.D.D. Suppl.); 42. deid-tick, = 43 (Rxb. 1923 Watson W.-B.); 43. deid (dead)-watch, the death-watch beetle; also the ticking sound made by the beetle (Ib., obsol.); 44. dead water (see second quot.); 45. deid wraith, a ghost.
1. Ayr. 1838 Galt in Tait's Mag. (Jan.) 39:
It was not long after this that my benefactor, the good leddy of the Broomlands, was seized with her dead-ail, and, after a sore time o't, was taken off the earth. 2. (1) Sc. 1834 H. Miller Scenes and Leg. (1850) 434:
A belfrey of hewn stone, in which the dead bell is still suspended. Bnff. 1763 J. F. S. Gordon Chrons. of Keith (1880) 424:
The Hand or “deid bell” which cost the Kirk Session ¥4, 16s., and 12s. for Carriage from Aberdeen is kept within the Kirk. Ags. 1932 A. Gray Arrows 55:
O dearest lad, ae boon I crave, That you'll gie me convoy to the grave, When the janglin' deid-bells jow and ring. Fif. 1757 E. Henderson Ann. Dunfermline (1879) 471:
The dues for the dead bell shall in time coming be one shilling Sterline for an old person, and Eight pence Ster. for a young person. Slk. 1813 Hogg Queen's Wake 168:
Quhan mes for Kilmeny's soul had beine sung, Quhan the bedis-man had prayit, and the deide-bell rung. (2) Sh. 1937 J. Nicolson Restin' Chair Yarns 82:
“I fear I'm goin' ta hear some ill-news, da dead bell is strucken me deaf.” In the right ear it meant a relation. The left betokened some “fremd boddy.” Ork. 1920 J. Firth Reminisc. (1922) 83:
A feeling of itch in the nose always called forth the remark, “We'll sune be hearing dead news,” and the same belief was held regarding a ringing in the ears or “dead bells” as the term ran. Ayr. 1889 H. Johnston Glenbuckie 255:
The dead-bells tinkling in the ear, the glimpse of a passing wraith . . . all came within the range of her personal knowledge. Slk. 1807 Hogg Mountain Bard 17:
O lady, 'tis dark, an' I heard the dead bell, And darena gae yonder for gowd nor fee. 3. (1) Fif. 1845 Stat. Acc.2 IX. 739:
Friendly Societies. — A most useful institution of this description is “the dead-box,” out of which the contributors receive a sum at the death of any member of their families to defray funeral expenses. (2) n.Sc. a.1908 T. W. Ogilvie Poems (1911) 4:
In a deid box below Lies Saunders Munro. 4. n.Sc. 1825 Jam.2:
Dede-candle. A preternatural light, like that of a candle, seen under night by the superstitious, and viewed as the presage of the death of some one. It is said to be sometimes seen for a moment only, either within doors, or in the open air; and, at other times, to move slowly, from the habitation of the person doomed to death, to the church-yard where he is to be interred. (See also W. Gregor Folk-Lore N.-E. Scot. (1881) 204.) ne.Sc. 1888 D. Grant Keckleton 31:
The whole talk at present is o' this epidemic, an' o' forewarnin's an' dead-can'les an' the like in connection wi't. 5. (1) Edb. 1825 R. Chambers Trad. of Edb. (1847) 107:
The Deid-Chack — that is, a refreshment or dinner, of which those dignitaries [the magistrates] always partook after having attended an execution. (3) Sc. 1698 R. Wodrow Early Letters (S.H.S. 1937) 3:
Quhat is the opinion . . . upon the thing we call heer the dead chack. Sh. 1899 J. Spence Folk-Lore 163:
A dropping sound [was called] a “dead shaek.” 6. Ayr. 1887 J. Service Dr Duguid 78:
Jock o' the Scales and his near-begaun wife glowered as they had heard the deid chap. 7. Abd. 1875 G. Macdonald Malcolm I. ii.:
I wad as sune lat a cat intill the deid-chaumer to gang loupin' ower the corp. 9. Sc. 1766 Scots Mag. (Dec.) 625:
He inspected the body of the late Northfield, at the desire of the present Northfield, who threw off or laid aside the deadcloaths from the upper part of the body. Ork. 1880 Dennison Sketch-Bk. 37:
On de tap o ivery pillar steud ane or twa, sometimes tree or fower, speerits o the dead, flachterin i their deid claes. Ags. 1884 Brechin Advertiser (11 March) 3/4:
In olden times in Scotland the first care of the young married wife when housekeeping began . . . was to provide death linen, or the “dead claes” for herself and her husband. [“The custom is not quite obs. yet” (Sc. 1900 A.W. in E.D.D.).] Slg. 1726 Burgh Rec. Slg. (1889) 187:
Whatever crape the said Anna Rennie shall stand in need of for making dead cloaths she shall buy the same from the merchants within this burgh. Edb. 1825 R. Chambers Trad. of Edb. (1847) 20:
An elderly female told a friend of mine that she remembered . . . being sent to Ramsay Garden to assist in making dead-clothes for the poet. Ayr. 1821 Galt Ann. Parish xxiv.:
Meg went about from house to house, begging dead-clothes. 12. Sc. 1819 Scott Bride of Lamm. xxiii.:
Hand of woman, or of man either, will never straught him — dead-deal will never be laid to his back. Edb. 1773 R. Fergusson Poems (1925) 78:
Or whan the dead-deal, (awful shape!) Makes frighted mankind girn and gape. 13. Sc. 1819 Scott Bride of Lamm. xxxiv.:
I like to pack the dead-dole in my lap, and rin ower my auld rhyme. 14. (1) ne.Sc. 1874 W. Gregor Echo Olden Time 132:
A similar omen was the dead-drap. Its sound resembled that of a continued drop of water falling slowly and regularly from a height, but it was leaden and hollow. (2) Arg. 1907 N. Munro Daft Days xxxiv.:
“Bud Dyce,” said he, “is never likely to be round this way in a caravan to do the deid-drap three times every night for frontseats sixpence.” 15. Sc. 1854 H. Miller Schools and Schoolm. (1858) xix.:
On reaching home, I found my mother, late as the hour was, still up, and engaged in making a dead-dress for the body. 16. Ib. i.:
A blue light from above glimmered on the deck. We looked up, and saw a dead-fire sticking to the cross-trees. “It's all over with us now, master,” said I. 17. Gsw. 1799 J. Strang Gsw. Clubs (1856) 186:
Miss Christian Brown, at her shop west side of Hutcheson Street, carries on the business of making dead flannels, and getting up burial crapes. 19. (1) Edb. 1833 Edb. Review (July) 348:
The keeper of the dead-house or Morgue of Drontheim, and . . . the State executioner. (2) Fif. 1812 W. Ranken Poems 30:
A Gothic structure strang, Wha's lane yard had been the dead-house O' the parish lang and lang. Lnk. 1844 J. Lemon St Mungo 50:
Leukin at the bedral howk Dead houses dark and deep. 20. Abd. 1867 W. Anderson Rhymes 67:
Their kye took the dead-ill, the spavin their horse, Their gimmer was smored i' the snaw. Abd. 1929 4 :
“Daffin afore ma deid'l.” Said by an old person when merry. Rnf. 1852 (2nd ed.) J. Fraser Poetic Chimes 28:
Is our maister no coming awa' frae thae gipsy lassies yet? They will cost him his deedle, I doot. Ayr. 1823 Galt R. Gilhaize III. v.:
For the leddy was seized with her dead-ill, and departed this life in the course of three days. 22. Sh. 1899 Sh. News (29 April):
Da black brüte turnin' him apo' da keel o' his back, wi' his wings in til his sides — fir da ert laek a deid kist. wm.Sc. 1835–37 Laird of Logan II. 302:
But how are we to get up wi' the deid-kist or down wi' the corp? 23. m.Lth. 1793 G. Robertson Agric. m.Lth. 27:
The dead-knack is now heard only by a few old women, who get very little credit from the discovery. 25. Sc. 1885 E. J. Guthrie Old Sc. Customs 162:
There was also an omen of blue dead lights which were supposed to be seen before death. n.Sc. 1916 M. Maclean Roving Celt 38:
There was dool in the deid-licht's lowe yestreen, An' the omen spak' tae my hert o' strife, For it bodes nae guid, I ween. Ayr. 1787 Burns Letters (ed. Ferguson) No. 125:
Spunkies, kelpies, elf-candles, dead-lights, wraiths, apparitions. Slk. 1823 Hogg in Blackwood's Mag. (March) 318:
It was suggested to the old man, that there were always dead lights hovered over a corpse by night, if the body was left exposed to the air. 26. Sc. 1701–31 R. Wodrow Analecta (Maitland Club 1842) I. 116:
The body being laid upon the bed, and dressed up in deed-linnings. Sc. 1834 H. Miller Scenes and Leg. (1850) vi.:
Shrouds and dead linens. 29. Edb. 1822 R. Wilson Poems 2:
Nae maggot can in timmer click, But what's a dowie cauld dead nick. 30. Cld. 1825 Jam.2:
The dead-nip is viewed by the vulgar, in Clydesdale at least, as a prognostic of death. Ib.:
To gie one the dede-nip, suddenly and effectually to check one. 31. Sc. 1816 Scott Antiquary ix.:
He was never just himsel after it, and he was strucken wi' the dead palsy that very day four years. 32. Rxb. 1925 E. C. Smith Mang Howes 14:
Did the deed-raap soond throwe its gampy ends, A wunder, i the nicht efter guid King Alisaunder's waddeen-foy? 33. Sh. 1932 J. M. E. Saxby Trad. Lore 184:
Dead riggs were battlefields, and were never cultivated. 34. Sc. 1818 Scott H. Midlothian viii.:
The best bedroom, used only upon occasions of death and marriage, and called, from the former of these occupations, the Dead-Room. Edb. 1825 R. Chambers Trad. of Edb. (1847) 27:
One chamber was recognised as the Deid-room; that is, the room where individuals of the queen's establishment were kept between their death and burial. 35. Rxb. 1925 E. C. Smith Mang Howes 5:
Whan naigs an troopers — the deed-ruckle glutherin i ther weizants — war cowpeet inti ilka seike. 36. Ork. c.1893 W. R. Mackintosh Peatfires 70:
Before the fight came off, Kirbister asked his aunt to make him his dead sark, as he was afraid he would be killed. 37. Ayr. 1822 H. Ainslie Pilgrimage, etc. 81:
The deadset o' a shining e'e That darkens the weary warl' on thee. 40. Sc. 1846 J. Grant Romance of War II. ix.:
The muckle deid-stane o' the lairds o' Glencorse. Abd. 1863 G. Macdonald D. Elginbrod i. xiii.:
This epitaph . . . he had left . . . in's will to be pitten upo' the deid-stane, nae doot. 41. (1) Sc. 1818 S. E. Ferrier Marriage II. xi.:
I hae heard o' mony things, but a bairn kirsened whan its grandfaither was i' the deed-thraw, I ne'er heard tell o' before. Abd. c.1750 R. Forbes Jnl. from London (1755) 32:
Syne the auld wife complain'd sae upon her banes, that you wou'd hae thought she had been in the dead-thraw. Fif. 1864 W. D. Latto T. Bodkin xxxiv.:
They . . . seized me by the heels, an' hauled me oot, juist as I wis gettin' into the dead thraws. Rnf. 1871 D. Gilmour “Pen” Folk (1873) 10:
He was in the dead-thraws or I left — the turn o' the nicht'll bring a change. (2) (a) Sc. 1808 Jam.:
Meat is said to be in the dead-thraw, when it is neither cold nor hot. Abd. 1915 H. Beaton Back o' Benachie 126:
If the weather was frosty . . . feet and hands were in the “deid thraw” or “dauvert,” so that when the washers reached home and put them in warm water, they “dirl't” and “stoon't” like to sicken them. Slk. 1822 Hogg Perils of Man III. vii.:
It was one of those sort of winter days that often occur in January, when the weather is what the shepherds call “in the deadthraw,” that is, in a struggle between frost and thaw. (b) Sc. 1808 Jam.:
Any thing is said to be “left in the deadthraw,” when left unfinished. Sc. 1824 Scott Redgauntlet xx.:
Think of his having left my cause in the dead-thraw between the tyneing and the winning. Abd. 1871 W. Alexander Johnny Gibb xl.:
Samie's wife was fell sweir to fash wi' the kyeukin' o't. Jist fan they war i' the deid thraw aboot it the tither day, I chanc't to luik in. Abd. 1882 T. Mair John o' Arnha's Latter-Day Exploits 55:
And i' the deid-thraw o' the wark He climbed the bluff aboon. Ayr. 1882 H. Ainslie Pilgrimage, etc. 58:
He had, however, commenced when awake, a sonnet to the tea-kettle, which he continued to prosecute when in the “dead thraw,” between sleeping and waking. Ayr. 1887 J. Service Dr Duguid 227:
The boiler-hoose is a' lyin' reel rall, — I couldna steer my fit in't when I was oot the noo for trash juist lyin' in deadthraw. (c) Bch. 1945 F. M. Garry in Scots Mag. (Feb.) 378:
The day's deen. The year's at the deid-thraw. 43. Rnf.  E. Picken Poems (1813) I. 121:
I gaed to bed, but swat wi' fright, I heard the dead watch a' the night. Kcb. 1806 J. Train Poet. Reveries 94:
An' when she heard the Dead-watch tick, She raving wild did say, “I am thy murderer my child.” 44. ne.Sc. c.1875 in Abd. Jnl. N. and Q. (1909) II. 192:
We'll gie 'er a draucht o' the dead water. Ye'll tak' a three girdit cog, an' ging for water i' the gloamin' oot aneath far the leevan an' the dead cross. ne.Sc. 1929 J. M. McPherson Primitive Beliefs 254:
The belief in the virtue of the “dead water” persisted amongst the intelligent members of the community till the last quarter of the nineteenth century. . . . It must be taken from a stream over which the dead are carried to the churchyard and the living pass to their daily duty. 45. m.Sc. 1927 J. Buchan Witch Wood 229:
I wish it mayna be your deid wraith.
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