Scottish National Dictionary (1700–)

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SCAILIE, n. Also scal(e)y, scal(z)ie, sca(i)lyie, skail(z)ie, -llie, -y, skel(l)-ie, -(e)y; skila; sk(e)illie, skilie, -y-, skyl(l)ie; skeelie; scallie, scaulie, skawlie, skaalie, skal(l)ie, skalee. [′skele, ‡′skelji; em. and s.Sc. ′skili; ne.Sc. + ′skəili, ′skɑle]

1. The material slate, slate for roofing, blue slate (Sc. 1808 Jam.); as a collective sing.: slates. Also attrib. (Uls. 1953 Traynor). Comb. skaillie-bro(a)d, -burd, a slate for writing on (Rs. 1768 Pitcalnie MSS. Acet., skelly broad; Sc. 1825 Jam.), skaillie-pen, slate-pencil (Sc. 1808 Jam.; †Rxb. 1923 Watson W.-B.). Sc. 1700  Edb. Gazette (1–4 April):
Blew Sclate, or Scaley of several sizes.
Slg. 1703  Burgh Rec. Slg. (1889) 100:
8000 scailyie to the tolbooth.
Sc. 1707  G. Miege State N. Britain ii. i. 7:
Slates of a gray colour, ordinarily made use of for covering houses, and those of a blue colour, which they call Skelley.
Kcd. 1722  Elphinstone Bk. (Fraser 1897) II. 275:
A skallie table, with tressts and four sconces.
Inv. 1726  Steuart Letter Bk. (S.H.S.) 257:
The Earle of Cathness waints a parcell of Isdalle scalie sclate, which are certainly the finest in Britain.
Abd. 1745  Powis Papers (S.C.) 288:
To a new Mullet [read muller] for a Skailiebroad . . . . . . .3s.
Fif. 1751  E. Henderson Dunfermline (1879) 457:
To thatch the foreside of the Tolbooth with Scailzie.
Ayr. 1764  Session Papers, Petition Earl of Eglinton (13 July) 6:
Finding no Coal but a black skailly Substance good for nothing.
Per. 1765  Session Papers, Drummond v. Hay-Drummond (1 Aug. 1769) 21:
Stone-work, skylie-slated roof, doors.
Gsw. 1797  A. Brown Hist. Gsw. II. 364:
Marble stone, skallie or slate.

2. Slate-pencil (Per. 1889 Ellis E.E.P. V. 753, Slg. 1910 Scotsman (12 Sept.), Rxb. 1923 Watson W.-B., skeelie; ne., em. Sc.(a), Lnk., Slk. 1969). Comb. quarry-skeelie, “slate-pencil of softish stone found in quarries, cliffs, etc.” (Watson). Abd. 1832  W. Scott Poems 47:
I had to lay my sclett an' scallie bye.
Ags. 1879  J. F. Geddes New Jerusalem 100:
His skeely and his measurin' line.
Lth. 1885  J. Strathesk More Bits 42:
To sharpen their slate-pencil, or “skeelie”.
Rxb. 1925  E. C. Smith Mang Howes 4:
A skartin skeelie on a skuil sklate.
Abd. 1946  J. C. Milne Orra Loon 22:
Chawin' at his skalie, Mummlin' ower a sum.
Ags. 1964  D. Phillips Hud Yer Tongue 34:
That's skilie, hen; slate pincil — ye yase it whin ye gae t' skail.

[O.Sc. scailȝee, slate, 1496, Mid. Du. schaelie, id., ad. O. Fr. escaille, shell, scale of a fish, lamina.]

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"Scailie n.". Dictionary of the Scots Language. 2004. Scottish Language Dictionaries Ltd. Accessed 15 Dec 2017 <http://www.dsl.ac.uk/entry/snd/scailie>

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