Scottish National Dictionary (1700–)
GAVEL, n.1 Also gavil(l), ga(i)vle; gaevel, -il, gevel (I.Sc.), geevil (Cai.7), -le, †gavell, †gaval, †gavile, †gevil, †gyvel; also, esp. in ne.Sc., ga'el, ga'le, gell, gyle, geyl, ¶gehl, †gailt, ¶giyl (w.Dmf. 1899 Country Schoolmaster (Wallace) 348). See P.L.D. § 70.1. Sc. forms and usages of Eng. gable. [Sc. ′gevəl, but Ork. + gjevl, ne. and sn.Sc. + gel, gɛl, Cai. + ′givəl, ‡Fif., Dmf., Gall. + gəil; Rs. ′gəivəl]
1. (1) As in Eng., the triangular upper part of the end-wall of a building; the end-wall itself. Gen.Sc. Freq. used attrib. Also in n.Eng. dial.
Abd. 1739 in Caled. Mag. (1788) 500:
And o'er fell he, maist like to greet, Just at the westmost gaill O' th' Kirk that day. Ork. 1766 P. Fea MS. Diary (29 Oct.):
Loading Clay for the Gavels of the House. Slk. 1820 Hogg Winter Ev. Tales II. 292:
I saw the deil i' the shape o' the auld laird . . . standin' on the gavel wa' wi' a great burnin' kipple in his hand. Sc. 1827 W. Motherwell Minstrelsy (1873) Intro. lxiii.:
My meikle tae is my gavil post, My nose is my roof-tree. Dmb. 1846 W. Cross Disruption xi.:
Rubble wark is what they use for gavles. Fif. 1864 W. D. Latto T. Bodkin vii.:
My mither had agreed wi' him to place the cruzie in the gavel winnock to guide him through the mire. [Ib. xxvii., geyl.] Ags. 1892 Brechin Advertiser (7 June) 3:
They kent fu' weel that he cud pu' The ga'el out o' their kirk. Gall. 1901 Trotter Gall. Gossip 346:
Mr Gibson wus preachin at the roadside again a hoose geyl. [Ib. 464, gyle.] Sh. 1916 J. Burgess Rasmie's Smaa Murr Aapril 25:
Da pör man's draain-room is at da gaevel o da hoose. Bnff. 1933 M. Symon Deveron Days 35:
An' throu' the wee gell winnock aye Fu' bonnie mornin' broke.
(2) One of the side ropes of a herring net (Ork. 1929 Marw.; ne.Sc., Fif. 1954). Cf. 3. (3) below.
Abd. 1951 Buchan Observer (11 Dec.):
The wife's sittin' mennin' wi' Mary oor quine, . . . A net that's gey picky an' greedy for twine An' they're nae gettin' nearer the gaivle ava.
(3) One of the ends of a rectangular cornstack (Uls.4 1954).
2. Fig. uses: (1) the buttocks (Bnff. 1866 Gregor D. Bnff. 58, gaivle; Bnff.7 1927); (2) the pudendum (Sc. 18th c. Merry Muses (1911) 55, 94; Ayr. 1786 Burns Ib. 132).
3. Phr. & Combs.: (1) gavel-en(d), (a) the end-wall of a building, the gable-end. Gen.Sc.; (b) = 2. (1) above (Gregor); †(2) ga'le-room, a room in the gable of a house; (3) gehl-rope, “the rope that runs along the [side] ends of a herring-net”(Bnff. 1866 Gregor D. Bnff. 61); cf. 1. (2) above; (4) to be like the gavel(-end) o' a hoose, to be of very stout and broad proportions (Abd.27, Kcb.10 1954, -end).
(1) (a) Abd. 1766 Abd. Journal (28 July):
On Thursday afternoon, the gavel end of a house in the Gallowgate, adjoining to which a house was building, gave way and fell down. Edb. 1795 H. Macneill Scotland's Scaith 12:
Up the gavel end thick spreading Crap the clasping ivy green. Lnk. 1873 J. Hamilton Poems & Ballads 64:
Ae nicht, when stan'in at the door, I saw him comin' roun' The gavel-en'. Fif. 1893 G. Setoun Barncraig i.:
There was a seat set on logs against the “geevle-en'” of Eben Reid's house. Ags. 1896 Barrie Margaret Ogilvy ii.:
I cannot picture the place without seeing her, as a little girl, come to the door of a certain house and beat her bass against the gav'le-end. Abd. 1931 D. Campbell Uncle Andie 36:
Whisht! here comes a fit roun' the gale-en'. (2) Abd. 1868 G. Macdonald R. Falconer x.:
They did not even look into the ga'le-room, not doubting that the dignity of the best bedroom was in no danger of being violated even by Robert. (4) Abd. 1920 27 :
What a size that deem's growin'; she's like the gale o' a hoose.
You may wish to vary the format shown below depending on the citation style used.
"Gavel n.1". Dictionary of the Scots Language. 2004. Scottish Language Dictionaries Ltd. Accessed 19 Mar 2018 <http://www.dsl.ac.uk/entry/snd/gavel_n1>
Try an Advanced Search