Scottish National Dictionary (1700–)

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DOOK, Douk, v.1, n.1 Sc. forms of Eng. duck, (to) plunge, dip. Also duk(k) (Jak.), †douck (Lnk. c.1779 D. Graham Writings (1883) II. 137), †dowk. The following usages are peculiar to Sc. [duk]

I. v.

1. (1) intr. and tr. To bathe. Gen.Sc.; also in n.Eng. dial.; (2) tr. To baptize initiates into a Baptist church (Ags.2, Slg.3 1940); hence dookit body, a member of a Baptist church (Ags.2 1940); dookit folk, the Baptists. (1) Sc. 1803  Edb. Mag. (Aug.) 160:
The cries were only occasioned by his Lady and the maids ducking.
Abd. 1923  J. R. Imray Village Roupie 33:
In simmer days we ees't tae dook In Ugie's caller bree.
Knr. 1891  “H. Haliburton” Ochil Idylls 64:
. . . dip in Devon, whaur a wiel Invites to dook!
Edb. 1828  D. M. Moir Mansie Wauch (1839) v.:
And my hair was . . . as wet as if I had been douking in the Esk.
Rxb. 1921  Kelso Chron. (7 Oct.) 4/1:
The boys, when big enough, were taken in by the parent to be “dooked.”
(2) Abd. 1928 15 , obsol.:
Ay, he's een o' the dookit-folk, wis dookit in Gowans' dam.

Hence (a) dooker, a bather; a Baptist (Ags.2, Slg.3 1940); (b) dookie, a Baptist; (c) douking, bathing, gen. with def. art. (a) Abd. 1871  W. Alexander Johnny Gibb v.:
His guardian was admitted . . . to be himself “a hardy dooker.”
Fif. 1912–19  Rymour Club Misc. II. 115:
[The Leven road] . . . very different from what it is noo-a-days, wi' rows o' hooses o' genteelity wi' an e'e on the annual dooker, and curtains in every window.
(b) em.Sc. 1895  (a) “I. Maclaren” Auld Langsyne 318:
“They ca'd him a dookie . . . what wud he be, Jamie?” “Parteeklar Baptist,” replied that oracle.
(c) Sc. [1816]  Scott Antiquary (1818) xv.:
“He's in a high fever wi' pu'ing the laird and Sir Arthur out o' the sea.” . . . “What gar'd them gang to the douking in a night like yestreen?”
Sc. 1826  Wilson Noctes Amb. (1855) I. 165:
He durstna gang into the dookin aboon his doup, for fear o' drownin.
wm.Sc. 1835–37  Laird of Logan I. 155:
Willie . . . arrived at Largs, where he soon succeeded in taking “a bit sma' room for the douking.”

2. intr. Of the day, the sun: to go down, to decline, to draw to a close. Often with doon. Also fig. Rnf. 1815  W. Finlayson Rhymes 135:
The murkie Sun scarce waded thro' the mist Till he was doukin, ere the traveller wist.
Ayr. 1887  J. Service Dr Duguid 168:
I experienced . . . a regret that my day had dookit doon, and was near to the darkening.
  Ib. 107:
When the day has, dookin', gloamed, And nicht comes owre the parks.

3. (1) To soak, drench; (2) to dip (a pen into ink). (1) Dmb. 1777  Weekly Mag. (20 Feb.) 273:
Nae doubt fu' aften hae ye kent the Knows Wi' gowans spring, whan douk't by nightly dew.
Rxb. 1821  A. Scott Poems 51:
D'ye mind when we were dukit wi' the flood?
(2) Lnk. 1808  W. Watson Poems Intro. 9–10:
It's cost me nae that little fyke Musin' about it, but an' ben, Whiten an' douken at a pen.

4. To sneak (Cai.8 1934). Cf. Jouk, v., 5.

5. Phr.: to get one's dookins, to get a ducking. Rxb. 1918  Jedb. Gazette (22 Feb.) 3/4:
Whae kens, perchance yon smuggler lad May get his dookins in the waiter.

II. n.

1. A bathe. Gen.Sc. Also in n.Eng. dial. Abd. 1900  A. Paterson in Bnffsh. Jnl. (18 Sept.) 3:
When any one had occasion to visit Macduff during the summer months, he not merely had a “dook” . . . but frequently brought back with him one or more bottles of sea-water.
Abd. 1931  A. M. Williams Bundle of Yarns 15:
It was not unusual, on a fine summer day, to find a certain hatter's shop closed in the forenoon, and a paper on the door with the intimation, “Doon for a dook, back at twelve.”
Fif. 1939  St Andrews Cit. (10 June) 2/5:
The 7.45 swim in the morning has certainly caught on. . . . I have still to sample this early morning “dook.”
Kcb. 1894  S. R. Crockett Lilac Sunbonnet xi.:
It's surely fashionable kind o' sea-bathin' to tak' a dook in the stable-trough.
Dmf. 1863  R. Quinn Heather Lintie 226:
This dook is nocht ava tae me, Sin I can strip.

2. A drenching, a soaking (Bnff.2, Abd.2, Abd.9 1940). m.Lth. 1786  G. Robertson Har'st Rig (1801) lxxxi.:
But Highlanders ne'er mind a douk, “For they're nae sawt.”
Knr. 1832  L. Barclay Poems 46:
Braw sarsnet gowns, how will they look, Gin lasses through them get a dook.
Ayr. 1879  R. Adamson Lays 80:
Somehoo I'd in my neive a crust That was gey hard to chow, An' as her kail-pot was at hand I gied ['t] a dook to thow.

3. Any liquid into which something is dipped; the amount of liquid absorbed in the process, e.g. (1) the quantity of ink taken up by the pen (Upper Lnk. 1825 Jam.2, douk); (2) in pl.: the fat of fried bacon or meat into which slices of bread are dipped (Lnl. 1916 T.S.D.C. II.; Ayr.9 1949); (3) in comb. soor (sour) dook, butter-milk (Lth. 1825 Jam.2); sour milk. Gen.Sc. Also fig. of a sour, humourless person. Often attrib., e.g. in phr. soor-dook soger, a nickname given to the Lothian militia, sometimes contr. to soor dook. (3) Sc. 1896  A. Cheviot Proverbs 49:
As weel try to sup soor dook (milk) wi' an elshin.
Sh. 1877  G. Stewart Fireside Tales 100:
Auld sober sense, an' prim soor dook Micht ca' da day a füle day.
m.Sc. 1944  R. J. B. Sellar in Scots Mag. (Nov.) 122:
To heck with the soor-dook faces of those who didn't approve.
Fif. 1894  J. W. M'Laren Tibbie and Tam 15:
An auld leddy . . . haunded us an aicht-ounce bap and a bowl o' soor dook!
Edb. c.1848  Lord Kingsburgh Life Jottings (1915) 195:
The crowd looking on shouted with glee, crying “Bravo! weel din, soor dook!”
Edb. 1909  Colville 132:
The Edinburgh schoolboy, recognising in the Militia the ploughmen that brought the milk to town, derisively christened them “soor-dook sogers.”
Hdg. 1848  [A. Somerville] Autobiog. Working Man 151:
Oatmeal porridge of small measure and strength in the mornings, with “sour dook,” a kind of rank butter-milk peculiar to Edinburgh.
Gsw. 1927  Scots Mag. (June) 176:
Turnip face! . . . Soor-dook Sandy!
Kcb. 1893  S. R. Crockett Stickit Minister 166:
They're but cauld kail an' soor dook beside the burgers o' the Auld Grey Toon!

4. Adv. in phr. to play dook, to duck down (Fif.10 1940). Gsw. 1877  A. G. Murdoch Laird's Lykewake, etc. 19:
But as the eerie licht I neared, It aye play'd dook, an' disappeared.

[O.Sc. has douk, dowk, to dive under water, to plunge (a person, etc.) under water, c.1470–80; Mid.Eng. d(o)uke, cogn. with Mid. Du., M.L.Ger. dūken, M.H.Ger. tuchen; O.E. *dūcan.]

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"Dook v.1, n.1". Dictionary of the Scots Language. 2004. Scottish Language Dictionaries Ltd. Accessed 21 Feb 2019 <>



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