Scottish National Dictionary (1700–)

Hide Quotations Hide Etymology Cite this entry

GLUNSH, GLUNCH, v.1, n.1 Also glunsch, †gluntch, ¶glaunch (Slg. 1885 A. Murray Poems 7). Also in Nhb. & Cum. dial. [glʌnʃ]

I. v. 1. To look sour or sullen (Fif. 1825 Jam.); to grumble, snap (at); to frown, scowl, knit (the brows) (Sh.10 rare, Cai., Per., Bwk., Dmf., Kcb. 1954), “to hang the lower lip and appear about to cry” (Kcb.4 1900). Freq. conjoined with gloom or similar verbs. Sc. 1721  Ramsay Poems (S.T.S.) I. 214:
But when ane's of his Merit conscious, He's in the wrang, when prais'd, that glunshes.
Ayr. 1786  Burns Earnest Cry & Prayer v.:
Does ony great man glunch an' gloom? Speak out an' never fash your thumb.
Edb. 1791  J. Learmont Poems 55:
But may some foul fiend ding them o'er, Whaever gars thee glunch or glow'r.
Gsw. 1877  A. G. Murdoch Laird's Lykewake 79:
Sma' heed I gi'e to ither folks, e'en let them glunch or gloom.
m.Sc. 1917  J. Buchan Poems 30:
I got gloomin' and glunchin' and paiks, And nae bite frae the press or the pan.
Rxb. 1925  E. C. Smith Mang Howes 17:
An there the perr [of hills] stand, . . . leike as they war glunshin an shuirrin doon at aabodie that wad middle thum.
Sc. 1931  I. Burnett The Ravens 245:
“You're aye glooming and glunsching,” said the boy impatiently.
Kcd. 1933  “L. G. Gibbon” Cloud Howe ii. 105:
Bruce glunched up, dour, Be quiet, you old fool.

Hence glunchingly, adv., surlily. Lnk. 1916  G. Muir Cld. Minstrelsy 3:
But glunchingly they on their neighbours gloom; They canna join the social cheerfu' mirth.

2. Of a dog: to snarl (Rxb. 1923 Watson W.-B.). Dmb. 1923  K. R. Archer Jock Tamson's Bairns 48:
Awa' an' dinna bother folk, An' dinna staun' there glunchin'.

II. n. 1. A sour look (Ayr.4 1928; Bwk. 1942 Wettstein), a frown; a sullen fit (Rxb. 1825 Jam., 1923 Watson W.-B.; Sh.10 rare, wm.Sc.1 1954); “a surly answer” (Watson; Slk. 1916 T.S.D.C. II.; Bwk. 1942 Wettstein). Also fig. Ayr. 1786  Burns Scotch Drink xvii.:
Wha twists his gruntle wi' a glunch O' sour disdain.
Fif. 1827  W. Tennant Papistry Storm'd 91:
A gloomie gluntch shot he.
Lth. 1885  “J. Strathesk” Blinkbonny 36:
An' how we fear'd at writin' hour His glunches an' his glooms.
Edb. 1917  T. W. Paterson Wyse-Sayin's xxxi. 25:
She's weel set-up, sonsie, an' shair o' hersel, An' lauchs at the glunch o' the time comin on.

2. “A snap . . ., as by a dog” (Rxb. 1923 Watson W.-B., obsol.).

III. adj. Sulky, sour, bad-tempered (Lth., s.Sc. 1825 Jam.; Abd. 1916 per Mry.2). Also glunchy, glunshy, id. (Rxb. 1923 Watson W.-B.; Dmf. 1954). Sc. 1816  Scott Antiquary ix.:
But what's the use o' looking sae glum and glunch about a pickle banes?
Sc. 1818  Scott Letters (Cent. ed.) V. 100:
Old Erick, who by dint of looking glum and glunch and speaking little may perchance be imposing.
Sc. 1847  R. Chambers Pop. Rhymes 225:
To tell the even-down truth, the lady could not spin a bit. This made her husband glunchy with her.

[Cf. Eng. glum, and Glump, Glumph, Glumse, Glumsh, above.]

You may wish to vary the format shown below depending on the citation style used.

"Glunsh v.1, n.1". Dictionary of the Scots Language. 2004. Scottish Language Dictionaries Ltd. Accessed 19 Feb 2019 <>



Try an Advanced Search

Browse SND:

Browse Up
Browse Down