Scottish National Dictionary (1700–)

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IN, prep., adv., v., n. Also i [ɪ], prep., ih (Ork. 1909 Old-Lore Misc. II. i. 29), in unstressed position before consonants; inn, ¶ind,v. The form i[i:] also occas. represents i (th)e (Dmf. 1831 R. Shennan Tales 76, Knr. 1891 H. Haliburton Ochil Idylls 102, Gall. 1897 Trans. Dmf. & Gall. Antiq. Soc. 11), see Ee, 'E, def. art. and P.L.D. § 96.6. In the appears as i da, idda (Sh. 1836 Gentleman's Mag. VI. 589, 1932 J. Saxby Trad. Lore 57), itha (Abd. 1915 H. Beaton Benachie 181).

I. prep. Sc. usages, where mod. Eng. uses a different preposition:

A. 1. Gen. with verbs of motion: into (I. and ne.Sc., Peb., Uls. 1958). Now obs. or dial. in Eng. Sc. 1742  Scots Mag. (March) 141:
I come in the judges hands to suffer death.
Ayr. 1786  Burns Death and Dr Hornbook xiv:
Deil mak his King's-hood in a spleuchan!
Sc. 1881  A. Mackie Scotticisms 15:
What's this you've taken in your head? Who put that in your head?
Sh. 1922  J. Inkster Mansie's Röd 161:
A lok o' sweeties 'at ane o' da boys shot i' my nev whin dey wir hüvin dem in poks i' da lasses' laps.

2. Usu. after verbs of motion: along (a road), by way of, towards the speaker or some point of reference (Cai., ne.Sc., Ags., Fif. 1958). The in is always stressed. Kcd. 1844  W. Jamie Muse 48:
Gudeman, cam ye in the Mearns' Howe?
Ags. 1896  A. Blair Rantin Robin 58:
Tak a drap warm tea . . . an' that'll help ye in the road again.
Abd. 1898  J. R. Imray Sandy Todd 68:
Afore I manage tae get trachled in the side o' the hull.
Ags. 1919 6 :
I was gaein in the road. He bides in the road.
Abd. 1954 27 :
He was takin in the wid wi a gun aneath's oxter.

3. Of place, position: on, upon, along (Sh., ‡Bnff., Ags., m.Lth., Lnk., Uls. 1958). Now obs. in Eng.; of something suspended: on, down from. Sc. 1722  R. Wodrow Sufferings iii. v. § iv.:
Marian Harvey was taken up in the Road, when going to some Sermon or other.
Sc. 1754  Trial of Clerk & Macdonald (B.C.) 27:
He had been murdered in that hill the year before.
Lnk. a.1779  D. Graham Writings (1883) II. 101:
The wicked wife and her twa sons was upon me in all quarters, the wife hung in my hair.
Sc. 1816  Scott O. Mortality xxiii.:
A bit ring he had hinging in a black ribbon doun on his breast.
Ayr. 1822  Galt Sir A. Wylie xvii.:
It's the part o' honesty to let you ken the road ye're in.
Per. 1883  R. Cleland Inchbracken xviii.:
I'll gie ye a gouff i' the lug'll gar't stound the next half-hour.
Sc. 1887  Jam.:
A house in fire.
Sh. 1892  G. Stewart Fireside Tales 253:
His lang tail wabblin' an' wirlin' dis wy an' dat wy laek a conger-eel in a cavil.
Abd. 1958  :
To come in a bodie's lug, in the side o somebodie's heid — to box one's ear, to slap someone's face.

4. Of time: during, in the course of, on, at (Sh. 1914 Angus Gl.). Obsol. in Eng. Sc. 1721  J. Kelly Proverbs 373:
You will not sell your Hen in a rainy Day.
m.Lth. 1844  J. Ballantine Miller ii.:
In a cauld day, gin she had the kail-pat on, I aye got a bowlfu'.
Ork. 1880  Dennison Sketch-Bk. 77:
I seurly t'ought that i' the time.

5. Where Eng. uses of: freq. in phr. good in, good of, kind of. In some cases in may replace an i, representing a variant spelling of a short unstressed o(f) [ə, ɪ]. See O, prep. Sc. 1763  Boswell Johnson (1791) I. 222:
It is very good in you . . . (I replied) to allow me to be with you thus.
Sc. 1826  Wilson Noctes Amb. (1855) I. 196:
It's verra gude in you, Mr North, to make sic an ingenious defence for the scoonrel.
Rnf. 1839  Private MS. per
It was very good in him to speak particularly about Sabbath day books.
Sc. 1859  C. S. Graham Mystifications 52:
Our laird is the likest to Monkbarns i' the twa.
Sh. 1958  Shetland News (30 Dec.) 4:
He'd a “graet notion in yun Saant Paal.”

6. Instrumentally: with. Now obs. in Eng. Per. 1727  Trans. Gael. Soc. Inv. XXI. 145:
Patrick Mershall is provided in ane room by Cultowhey.
Sc. 1782  J. Sinclair Ob. Sc. Dial. 25:
To be provided in a living, or office.
Sc. 1824  Scott St Ronan's W. xviii.:
I will serve you in ten thousand at the same rate.
Abd. 1851  W. Anderson Rhymes 149:
Their een were tied up in a napkin.

B. In idiomatic phrs. and usages:

1. In expressions of monetary assessment, of a debt, penalty or the like, esp. after fined, liable, etc.: to the amount or extent of. Gen.Sc., now mostly legal. Bte. 1702  Rothesay T.C. Rec. (1935) II. 545:
Those who keipes them over year who are imediatly to put out herds and keip them from skaith otherwayes lyable in the fine.
Sc. 1711  J. Gibson Hist. Gsw. (1777) 328:
Any person, chosen to be a counsellor, refusing or neglecting to accept, as said is, shall . . . be fined and amerciated in the sum of twenty pounds Sterling.
Edb. 1796  Scots Mag. (Sept.) 647:
Mary Johnston, alias Robertson, residing in the Abbeyhill, was convicted in the penalty of ¥30 Sterling.
Sc. 1807  Farmer's Mag. (May) 188:
The Lords find . . . the suspenders liable in the expense of extract, but in no other expense.
ne.Sc. 1930  J. Ord Bothy Songs 10:
Two men, who were convicted of poaching, were each fined in forty shillings with expenses in addition.
Sc. 1956  Scotsman (6 Feb.) 5:
D. was granted bail in the sum of ¥75.

2. Used before farm names in the designation of farmers who were inferior tenants holding land on short leases, in distinction to of, which was applied to landowners and tacksmen (see quots.). Rxb. 1703  Stitchill Ct. Bk. (S.H.S.) 149:
At the instance of John Lamb Tennent in Maidenhall against Thomas Galbreath in Stitchill.
Ayr. 1704  Arch. & Hist. Coll. Ayr. & Wgt. IV. 202:
In presence of Sir Alexander Cuninghame of Corshill, sitting in judgment in ane lawfullie fenced court, . . . for takeing and receaving the oaths and depositiones of John Picken in Kirkford, Archibald Murchland in Litle Corshill, Robert Reid in Walkmiln of Langshaw, James Wyllie in Kilbryd, etc.
Abd. 1766  W. Cramond Ch. Aberdour (1896) 49:
State of the Poors' Money: Promissory note from Alexander Gordon Esq. of Aberdour for ¥666 13s. 4d. . . . To Andrew Forrest in Auchintum his funerals ¥6. To William Whyte in Aberdour hes coffin ¥2 8s.
Inv. 1770  I. F. Grant Old Highl. Farm (1924) 167:
Thomas Roy in Dolbrady.
Ayr. 1786  Mauchline Session Rec. (18 June):
I am with child, and Robert Burns in Mossgiel is the father.
Sc. 1822  Jamie Telfer in
Child Ballads No. 190 A. ix.:
It's I, Jamie Telfer i the Fair Dodhead.

3. Engaged in, occupied with. Sc. 1776  D. Herd Sc. Songs II. 159:
My hand is in my hussy'f skap.
Sh. 1897  Shetland News (13 Nov.):
My haands is i' da supper.

4. Phrs.: (1) in a bit, now and then, occasionally, from time to time; (2) in a compliment, — gift, — present, as a gift or compliment, by way of a present. Gen.Sc.; (3) in a mistake, in error, by mistake. Gen.Sc. Now obs. in Eng.; (4) in coorse, (a) of course (Cai., m.Lth., Kcb., Uls. 1958). Common in Eng. dial. See also Coorse, n.; (b) in due course, in course of time (n.Sc., Per., Ayr. 1958); (5) in hands wi, see Hand, n., 7.; (6) in (i)t, there, present, available [in Highl. Sc. a translation of Gael. ann, id.]. Hence no aa in it, “not all there”, simple-minded, touched in the head (Uls. 1958); (7) in life, alive (Ork., Abd., Ags., m.Lth., Bwk., wm.Sc. 1958); (8) in remark, remarkable (Sh. 1958). Cf. obs. Eng. of remark, id. (1) Ayr. 1923  Wilson Dial. Burns 97:
The maister wis no sweir tae gie them a week's holidays in a bit.
(2) Sc. 1746  Lyon in Mourning (S.H.S.) II. 8:
She was to give these few shirts in a present to Donald Roy MacDonald.
Ayr. 1789  Burns Chron. (1952) 38:
Twenty more being the half of Forty Copies said to be given in presents.
Sc. 1827  C. I. Johnstone Eliz. de Bruce III. v.:
My twa Elzivers . . . sent me hame i' the pock in a compliment.
Lth. 1856  M. Oliphant Lilliesleaf xxxi.:
Maggie had gotten a new story-book in a present.
Ags. 1947  J. B. Salmond Toby Jug i.:
He [a Toby jug] was given “in a present” as they say in Angus, to William Deuchar's bride.
(3) Ayr. 1822  Galt Sir A. Wylie xiv.:
Andrew . . . turned back to reason with her, and said, “Honest woman, ye're in a mistake.”
Sc. 1882  A. Mackie Scotticisms 15:
He did it in a mistake.
(4) (a) Ags. 1889  Barrie W. in Thrums vii.:
In coorse she's grand by the like of me.
(b) Abd. 1877  W. Alexander Rural Life 99:
Some one put to him the question, “Foo 'll ye win through the Glens in sic a nicht?” The proprietor of the Caravan showed his mettle in the reply, “I'll gae throu in coorse.” And the saying became crystallised into a local “bye word” — “I'll dee't in coorse; as Carrie gaed throu the Glens.”
Ayr. 1895  H. Ochiltree Redburn v.:
It wad pay in coorse. Drainin' aye pays.
Abd. 1923  R. L. Cassie Heid or Hert v.:
“Ye'll be gey tiret efter a' yer wark in this heat,” said Allan in coorse.
(6) Rs. 1814  E. Bond Letters II. 45:
This contraction is much used at Fortrose; for instance, when the wind blows bleak — It's a cold night that's in't, and it's a rough sea that's in't.
Sth. 1881  C. Macdonald Stratheden 114:
Some munnistarrs is too short wi' their sairmans in the day that's int.
Arg. 1936  L. McInnes Dial. S. Kintyre 20:
There's nae fresh butter in it the day. Wasn't there the wild wind in it last nicht? That's the only bit o' plain cake that's in it. There's some waarmth in it the day.
Arg. 1947 1 :
Ye can see by the lassie's face that she's no aa in't. He acts that strange that ye would think whiles he's no aa in't.
(7) Sc. 1818  Scott H. Midlothian xxii.:
If . . . she could not alternatively shew by proof that the infant had died a natural death, or produce it still in life, she must . . . be held to have murthered it.
Kcd. 1844  W. Jamie Muse 98:
I was o'er at my uncle's wife, Wha's nae thocht lang to be in life.
m.Sc. 1927  J. Buchan Witch Wood xvi.:
I counsel ye in all friendliness to let the minister do his best to keep her in life.
(8) Sh. 1901  Shetland News (10 Aug.):
If he comes nae gales dis'll be a year in remark fir crops.

II. adv. 1. Used ellipt., like Doon, Out, Up, and other advs., with the omission of certain verbs: (1) of motion: to come or go in, to enter. Common in ballad style. Gen.Sc. Now only poet. or dial. in Eng. Wgt. 1709  Session Rec. Kirkinner MS. (20 March):
The Session understanding that he was waiting on he was desired in.
Sc. 1806  R. Jamieson Ballads I. 74:
He is in to her brother, As fast as gang cou'd he.
m.Sc. 1927  J. Buchan Witch Wood xxi.:
“Are ye for in?” “I'm for in,” said Reiverslaw grimly.

Hence phrs. to cry in, jow in, ring in, want in, etc., for which see under the various verbs.

(2) Of putting, pushing, etc., followed by wi(th): to put, push, shove in. Freq. in imper. = get in!, as in colloq. Eng. Gen.Sc. Per. 1883  R. Cleland Inchbracken 65:
He juist in wi' her an' sticket the door.
  Ib. 268:
“In wi' ye!” Thus exhorted, the daughter lay down in the bed.

2. Of a gathering, meeting, or the like: assembled, going on, in session. Gen.Sc. Edb. 1812  P. Forbes Poems 95:
On Saturday, nae school being in.
Lnk. 1895  W. Fraser Whaups of Durley iii.:
We would be stopped by a shout, “The schule's in.”
Ags. 1921  V. Jacob Bonnie Joann 29:
Sawbath cam' roond; the kirk was in.

3. Of land: under crop, ploughed and sown (Dmf. 1921 T.S.D.C. III.; Uls.3 1930; Cai., Kcb. 1958). Dmb. 1794  D. Ure Agric. Dmb. 50:
Tenants are bound to keep their lands three years in and six years out, i.e. to take three white crops in succession, and then leave the exhausted soil to recruit itself.
Sc. 18th c.  H. G. Graham Soc. Life Scot. (1899) I. 155:
If land be three years out and three years in, T'will keep in good heart till the deil grow blin!

4. With verbs of speaking: under one's breath, in a whisper, sotto voce, gen. to oneself and with some word denoting quietly, softly, esp. laich (I.Sc., n. and m.Sc. 1958). Cf. loud out, and Laich. Ayr. 1786  Burns Halloween viii.:
This is Jock, an' this is me, She says in to hersel.
Ayr. 1788  Corr. between Burns & Clarinda (1843) 226:
I drank your health . . . as the lasses do at Hallowe'en, “in to mysel.”
Crm. 1854  H. Miller Schools xviii.:
Singing in into himself,” as the children used to say, in a low unvaried under-tone, somewhat resembling the humming of a bee.
Abd. 1886  Bon-Accord (2 Oct.) 7:
John said something “quiet in to himsel'.”
Ags. 1894  J. B. Salmond My Man Sandy (1899) vii.:
“Dinna mistak' yersel',” says Bandy in laich.
Lnk. 1923  G. Blake Mince Collop Close 218:
Lorna muttered in to herself, “Old pig!”
Abd. 1925  Scots Mag. (March) 471:
“That'll sattle his impident inqueesitiveness,” says I, in-laich.

5. Alert, attentive to what is said, following the import of a thing (ne.Sc., Ags., m.Lth., Kcb. 1958). Nae or no in, abstracted, absent-minded, day-dreaming, in a reverie (Sh., ne. and m.Sc. 1958). Ayr. 1889  H. Johnston Glenbuckie xiii.:
Jean used to say to her brother sometimes when watching the large dreamy eyes . . . “She's no in.”
Abd. 1955  :
Are ye in? frequently implies jocularly “Do you understand what I am inferring? Can you take a hint?”

6. In debt, freq. with wi, of the creditor (ne.Sc., Ags., m.Lth., Gall. 1958). Ags. 1830  Perthshire Advert. (11 Feb.):
“What are we in?” is a phrase commonly used in Coupar Angus when the party wish to know the amount of their tavern bill.
Fif. 1909  R. Holman Char. Studies 21:
Was she in wi' ye much?
Abd. 1956  :
He was in twa thousan poun wi the banker.

7. Golf: over the last nine holes of an eighteen-hole course, which in most golf courses are turned inwards towards the point of starting, on the return journey. Gen.Sc. Cf. Out. Fif. 1861  Edb. Ev. Courant (5 Oct.):
Park went out in 44, and Strath in 45 strokes. The scores were not kept coming in, but the play was good.
Sc. 1959  Scotsman (8 May) 16:
His figures in were: — 3 5 2 4 4 4 3 4 3–32.

8. In reference to (1) the Jacobite Rising of 1745: loyal to the Hanoverian Government, not in arms against King George; (2) the Disruption of 1843: remaining in the Established Church. Cf. Out. (1) Fif. 1895  S. Tytler Macdonald Lass xi.:
Young Raasay, who had stayed “in” with King George . . . and young Raasay's brother . . . were at the inn.
(2) Lnk. 1892  Scots Mag. (June) 27:
Dr Meek remained “in” at the Disruption.

9. Combs.: (1) before preps. as in aboot, in ahint, in aifter, in amang, in anunder, in at, in atween, in has little more than intensive force. Common in Sh. See arts. under the second element; (2) (a) in-aboot-comer, a newcomer, interloper (Abd.21 1930); (b) in-atween-maid, a between-maid (Abd., Per. 1952); (c) in-below-the-bedfu(-fih), a large assortment of things such as are freq. stored out of the way below a bed (Rxb. 1923 Watson W.-B., 1927 E. C. Smith Braid Haaick 12, Rxb.4 1958). For inbye, in o, inower, in throwe, see Inby, In O, Inower. Inthrow.

III. v. 1. To bring the harvest in from the field to the stackyard (Sc. 1808 Jam.: Dmf. 1817 W. Caesar Poems 76; Cai., wm.Sc., Dmf., s.Sc. 1958). Freq. in vbl.n. inning (Ib.), inding (Dmf. 1825 Jam.). Also in Eng. dial. and fig. = profit. Phr. an innin day, a dry breezy day, suited for gathering in crops (Sc. a.1838 Jam. MSS. X. 153). Sc. 1701  G. Turnbull Diary (S.H.S.) 406:
This week our harvest was fully ended, and all the corns inned.
Sc. 1724  R. Wodrow Analecta (M.C.) III. 163:
The rain came on just when generally the corns and vittail were for inning.
Ork. 1766  P. Fea MS. Diary (2 Oct.):
Began to inn the Otts of How.
Clc. 1814  P. Graham Agric. Knr. & Clc. 406:
The great advantage of inning grain so much earlier after cut down in the field.
Sc. 1849  A. Bell Melodies 68:
When I took to the quill, an' the profits o' lear, I sairly miscountit the innin' o't.
Ayr. 1866  Trans. Highl. Soc. 60:
The Dunbar farmers were busy “inning”, when their brethren on the west coast were just beginning to cut.
Rxb. 1914  Kelso Chron. (6 Feb.):
The turnips, or the barley strae Ready tae in.

IV. n. 1. An entrance, a way in; an invitation or permission to enter (ne.Sc. 1958). Abd. 1882  W. Alexander My Ain Folk 209:
Nae an in cud we win for near an oor, till we got an aul' ledder an put it up to the en' o' the hoose.
Abd. 1959  :
“Did the Laird lat ye in?” “Never an in did I get.”

2. In children's games: one of the side which is in possession of the goal or home, or whose turn it is to play, gen. in pl. (Gall. 1810 R. H. Cromek Remains 252–4; Ork., em.Sc.(a) 1958); the members of the winning side (Rxb.4 1946). Rxb. 1825  Jam. s.v. Hy spy:
The station which in England is called Home is here the Den, and those who keep it, or are the seekers, are called the Ins. . . . The business of the Ins is . . . to lay hold of the Outs before they can reach the Den. The captive then becomes one of the Ins.
w.Sc. 1862  J. F. Campbell Pop. Tales IV. 37:
The circle within which the “ins” stand at the game of rounders.

[O.Sc. in, v., to harvest, from 1476.]

In prep., adv., v., n.

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"In prep., adv., v., n.". Dictionary of the Scots Language. 2004. Scottish Language Dictionaries Ltd. Accessed 11 Dec 2017 <>



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