Scottish National Dictionary (1700–)

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DUSTY, adj. Sc. usages. Also ne.Sc. disty (Bnff.2, Abd. correspondents 1940).

1. In combs.: (1) dusty foot, an itinerant pedlar [found in O.Sc. from early 15th cent.]; (2) dusty(-ie)-melder (me(i)ller), disty-, the last milling of a season's crop (Sc. 1825 Jam.2, dustie-melder; Abd. 1790 A. Shirrefs Poems, Gl., distymeiller; Abd. 1920 A. Robb MS. i.); also used fig. (a) in phr. †to make one's —, to be all over with one; (b) = the last child born in a family (Sc. 1911 S.D.D.); (3) dusty miller, (a) a name given to the primula, P. auricula, from the white powdery appearance of the flowers and leaves (Cai. 1900 E.D.D.; Abd.7 1925, disty mullert; Lth., Rnf. 1825 Jam.2); in general Sc. usage; also in n.Eng. dial.; (b) a species of bumble-bee, which, when seized, deposits on the hand a light dust (Abd.9, Kcb.1 1941; Ags.17 1950; Rxb. 1923 Watson W.-B.; Rxb.5 1941); also in Nhb. dial.; (c) a species of large night-moth (Rnf. 1948). (1) Sc. 1890  Bell Dict. Law Scot. 348:
According to Lord Kames, courts of Pie-Powder are so called, because fairs are generally composed of pedlars or wayfaring persons, who in France bear the name of Pied-Poudreux, and in Scotland of Dusty-Foot.
Sc. 1939  F. Drake-Carnell It's an old Sc. Custom 206:
Old Aikey, as the story goes, was a pedlar, or Dusty Foot as these gentlemen of the road are still called in places in Scotland.
Lth. 1925  C. P. Slater Marget Pow 47:
There stood a weary dusy-foot, with a pale douce-like face, and he begged for a bit of bread.
(2) (a) Abd. c.1750  R. Forbes Jnl. From London (1755) 30:
I began to think be this time that my disty-meiller wis near made, an' wad hae gien twice forty pennies to had the gowan oner my feet again.
(b) Abd. 1901  Sc. N. & Q. (2nd Series) II. 142:
Dusty-melder . . . is also used to denote the [youngest] member of a large family, facetiously called “the poke-shakings.”
(3) (a) Ayr. 1870  J. K. Hunter Life Studies 155:
Sweetmary, tanzy, the dusty miller, mint, daisies, and roses.

2. Used substantivally as a familiar name for a miller (Lnk.11 1941; Gall. 1824 MacTaggart Gallov. Encycl. 190). Abd. 1933  J. H. Smythe Blethers 43:
Fan “Disty” set oot for his hame in Torphins, . . . He mappit his coorse throu' the heather an' whins.

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"Dusty adj.". Dictionary of the Scots Language. 2004. Scottish Language Dictionaries Ltd. Accessed 11 Dec 2017 <http://www.dsl.ac.uk/entry/snd/dusty>

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