Scottish National Dictionary (1700–)

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SKEW, n.1, v.1 Also skeu, skue, scew, scue, †sckiew, †sque. [skju]

I. n. A stone forming part of the coping of the sloping part of a gable on which the roof rests, the coping itself (Sc. 1808 Jam.). Gen.Sc., obs. in Eng.; a stone slate used in the valley of a roof (Sc. 1952 Builder (20 June) 943). Ayr. 1734  Ayr Presb. Reg. MS. (3 July):
Casting and pointing the West Gavil and South side waird and skiews upon the East end.
Rxb. 1735  Trans. Hawick Arch. Soc. (1926) 40:
Mending the sclate roof and pointing the rigging-stone and scues of the said Kirk.
Sc. 1741  Session Papers, Donaldson v. Home (25 June) 26:
4 Foot of droved Sque, restricted to 9d. . . . 3s. 0d.
Kcb. 1789  D. Davidson Seasons 43:
High on the sklentin skew or thatched eave.
Lnk. 1807  Session Papers, Waddell v. Waddell (16 Feb. 1809) 104:
A hole between the sarking and the skew.
Abd. 1865  R. Dinnie Birse 16:
The angles of the ridge and skews were neatly rounded with the thatch.
Ayr. 1928  J. S. Gall Muses 19:
Frae the grun tae the skew.
Fif. 1938  St Andrews Cit. (3 Sept.) 3:
A cement flashing at the skews.
Uls. 1951  E. E. Evans Mourne Country 185:
The thatch was secured in Irish style, with a plentiful plastering of clay on the eaves (easens) and gable ends (skews).

Combs.: 1. club skew, the lowest stone in a gable-coping, the springer or kneeler which supports the coping (Sc. 1952 Builder (20 June) 943); 2. side-skew, a lead flashing or gutter at a skew (Fif. 1955); 3. skew-corbel, = 1. (Sc. 1850 J. Ogilvie Imp. Dict.). Gen.Sc.; 4. skew putt, id. (Ib.). Gen.Sc. Also attrib.; 5. skew-stone, id. (Kcb. 1970); 6. skew-tabling, the flat stones forming the gable-coping; 7. summer sque, see Simmer, n.2, 2. 4. Sc. 1875  A. Jervise Epitaphs I. 187:
The date of 1637 is upon a skewput stone.
Abd. 1908  Abd. Jnl. N. & Q. I. 187:
On the two south skew-put stones are sculptures of a human face, much weathered.
Sc. 1970  Abd. Press & Jnl. (4 July):
The initials of the owner and his wife are sometimes to be found on the skewputt.
5. Sc. 1833  J. C. Loudon Cottage Architecture § 947:
The skew-stones (the coping-stones of the gables, called barge-stones in England).
Abd. 1923  W. D. Simpson Cas. Kildrummy 263:
The gable has curved skewstones, both of which exhibit lettering.
6. Bnff. 1804  Session Papers, Petition J. Duff (24 May 1805) App. 8:
The chimney tops are ruinous, as also a part of the skew-tabling.
Abd. 1835  Hatton Estate MSS.:
Repairing skue-tabling and raggles — 10s. 6d.

II. v. To build a skew; “to cover the gables of a thatched roof with sods” (s.Sc. 1808 Jam.; ‡Rxb. 1923 Watson W.-B.). Ppl.adj. skewed, having a skew or gable-coping. Ayr. 1703  Ayr Presb. Reg. MS. (3 Nov.):
For repairing, skewing the west gavell.
Gsw. 1721  Burgh Rec. Gsw. (1909) 116:
To skew a foot off each of the nuicks of said gavills.
Abd. 1923  W. D. Simpson Cas. Kildrummy 88:
The gabler is flat-skewed.

[O.Sc. skew, = I., 1531, Mid.Eng. scu(w)e, id., O.Fr. escu, Lat. scutum, a shield.]

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"Skew n.1, v.1". Dictionary of the Scots Language. 2004. Scottish Language Dictionaries Ltd. Accessed 17 Oct 2018 <>



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