Scottish National Dictionary (1700–)

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RAMSHACKLE, adj., n., v. Also ramshackle; ¶ramsheekle. Sc. forms and usages. [rɑm′ʃɑkl]

I. adj. 1. Of persons: unkempt, untidy, rough (Ork., Bnff., Ags. 1967). Abd. 1882  W. Forsyth Writings 24:
Ye foul ramshachle huddiedrocht.
Lnk. 1922  T. S. Cairncross Scot at Hame 56:
He was jauped and gey ram-shackle, And his breeks hung gey far doun.

2. Difficult to utter or repeat (Rxb. 1923 Watson W.-B.).

II. n. A thoughtless fellow (w.Sc. 1825 Jam.). Sc. 1823  J. G. Lockhart Reg. Dalton ii. i.:
This will learn ye, again, ye young ramshackle!
  Ib. viii. iv.:
“A strange blunder, surely in the lawyer.” “An ignorant ramshackle, no question.”

III. v. To throw into confusion, to reduce to a state of disorder, to wreck. Ppl.adj. ramshackled, ramshachled (Fif. 1825 Jam.), deformed. s.Sc. 1837  Crawfurd MSS. XI. 304:
Thae lassies loot oot the kye to shallivogue a bit, an the swine was in an ramsheekled aw the cribs.
Ayr. 1890  J. Service Notandums 80:
Here comes lang, lingle-backit, ramshackled Bob Dragon.

Ramshackle adj., n., v.

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



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