Scottish National Dictionary (1700–)

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DRITE, v., n. Also dreit, dryte, drate, dreet, drit, †dret. Also in n.Cy. and Nhb. dial. [drəit Sc., but Cai., ne.Sc., Kcd. + dret; drɪt I.Sc., but Sh. + drəit]

1. v. To void excrement (Sh. 1866 Edm. Gl., dreit; 1914 Angus Gl., drit). Gen.Sc. Pa.t. drate, dret (obs. exc. Sh.), pa.p. dreitten, dritten, †drate; ppl.adjs. (1) dritten, drett, dirtied, defiled (Sh. 1866 Edm. Gl., drett); of persons: very contemptible; unpleasant in manner; of things: very obnoxious (Sh. 1914 Angus Gl.); (2) dreetin', used of one who prophesies “dirty” weather (Rxb. 1923 Watson W.-B.). Sc. 1721  J. Kelly Proverbs 375:
You dream'd that you dret under you, and when you rose it was true. An Answer to them that say, Guess what I dream'd.
Sc. 1737  Ramsay Sc. Proverbs (1776) 85:
Ye're a good Hald to the House, ye can drite in your Loof and mool't to the Birds.
Sh. 1948  New Shetlander (Oct.–Nov.) 22:
He comes drevlin in, very kinda dritten laek.
Abd. 1928 4 :
“Ye dinna ken gin ye wud drate or spue.” Said to one who has no stability of mind. “Up or the drake drate.” Said when early out of bed.
Kcb. 1789  D. Davidson Seasons 7:
Ere . . . the ducks had drate, Upo' the hallan-stane.
Rxb. 1923  Watson W.-B.:
“The deil's dritin' folk,” — said when many people arrive unexpectedly at a house etc.

2. n. Dirt, excrement (Sc. a.1873 F. Grose Gl., MS. Add., dret; Sh. 1908 Jak. (1928), drit; Bnff.2, Abd.2, Edb.1 1940; Mearns6 1949); “usually now as a word of abuse” (Marw.). Ork. 1929  Marw.:
You drit of a thing!

[O.Sc. has dryte, drite, to void excrement, a.1508, dryt, dirt, a.1400; O.E. drītan, v., drit, n.; Mid.Eng. drite, v., drit, n. The I.Sc. form prob. comes direct from Norw. dial. drita, O.N. dríta, v., drit, dirt of birds. Cf. Dirt.]

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"Drite v., n.". Dictionary of the Scots Language. 2004. Scottish Language Dictionaries Ltd. Accessed 19 Dec 2018 <>



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