Scottish National Dictionary (1700–)

Hide Quotations Hide Etymology Cite this entry

LEERIE-LA, n., v. Also leeri-, -law, -laa; leirie-haw; and reduced form leerie.

I. n. 1. The call of the cock, a cock-crow, cock-a-doodle-doo! Lnk. 1816  G. Muir Cld. Minstrelsy 2:
Scarce had Aurora glinted in the east, Or morning watch had sounded Leerie-la.
Fif. 1845  T. C. Latto Minister's Kail-yard 27:
The cock was heard in hen-house flaffin, An' crawin' glad his “leerie la!”

2. The cock, chanticleer (wm.Sc. 1868 Laird of Logan App. 507, leirie-haw). Also in reduced form leerie. Fif. 1812  W. Ranken Poems 93:
In stable, in byre, an' by ilka stack steading, The soft paths of pleasure which late they did tread in, When governed and guarded by brave Leerilaw.
Lth. 1813  G. Bruce Poems 164:
Ae morn, at leerie's early craw.
Ags. 1843  Whistle-Binkie V. 85:
There's the hen wi' her teuckies thrang scraping their meat, Wi' her cluckety-cluck, and their wee wheetle-wheet! And bauld leerielaw would leave naething to you.

3. Also in deriv. leerielarach: din and strife, tumult, wrangling. Ags. 1879  Arbroath Guide (12 Apr.) 3:
For fear o' Maggie Meffan's ghaist, that kickit up sic a horrible leerie.
Abd. 1931  Abd. Press & Jnl. (19 Feb.):
For monie a lang they've deen their pairt In Scotland's leerielarach.

II. v. To cry like the cock, to crow (Ags., Fif. 1960). Sc. 1928  J. Wilson Hamespun 18:
This waukrif scamp, when licht appears, First starts his eldritch crawin', Syne patient waits until he hears His rival leerie-laain'.

[Imit. Cf. Cockieieerie.]

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

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



Try an Advanced Search

Browse SND:

Browse Up
Browse Down