Scottish National Dictionary (1700–)

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SKRAUCH, v., n. Also scrauch, scraugh, skraugh, scraach, skrach, skracke, and ¶scrough (s.Sc. 1879 W. Henderson Folk-Lore 255); erron. scrag (Clc. 1882 J. Walker Poems 91); and variants scraff(en). Deriv. ¶skrakle. [skrx, skrɑ:x]

I. v. To utter a shrill cry, to scream, shriek, shout (s.Sc. 1825 Jam.; Fif., Lth. 1926 Wilson Cent. Scot. 263; n. and s.Sc. 1970). Ppl.adj. scrauchin, skrakling, shrill, high-pitched. Slk. 1818  Hogg B. of Bodsbeck xii.:
Some fock may scraugh themsels herse.
Sc. 1819  Scott Leg. Montrose v.:
Come, gentlemen, don't let the tappit-hen scraugh to be emptied.
s.Sc. 1824  J. Telfer Ballads 69:
Their skrakling tongues were heard aneath, Like wyld geese in their flyghte.
Sc. 1829  E. Logan Restalrig iii., xiii.:
The bairn scraffening and skirling in her arms. . . . The screeching and scraffing o' the woman in white, and her bairn.
Ayr. 1892  J.C.C.B. A. Boyd's Cracks 10:
Like a goose scrauching in a fox's grip.
Ags. 1897  F. Mackenzie Northern Pine xviii.:
I carena though I never hear your scraughin' voice again.
Bnff. 1924  Swatches o' Hamespun 19:
There wis as muckle scraachin an' kecklin ye'd 'a thocht a' the hallach quines i' the destrick hid been aboot.
s.Sc. 1962  Southern Annual 18:
The scrauchin' an' the wailin' o' something that wasna exactly folk wi' claes on.

II. n. 1. A shriek, screech, a shrill or harsh discordant sound (s.Sc. 1825 Jam.; Fif., Lth. 1926 Wilson Cent. Scot. 263; Ork., n., em. and s.Sc. 1970). Sc. 1819  Scott Bride of Lamm. xxiv.:
The scraugh of a clockin'-hen.
Sc. 1826  Wilson Noctes Amb. (1855) I. 198:
The old woman o'er the way To our cheer a scraugh gave back.
s.Sc. 1863  Border Mag. (Aug.) 117:
Last, Red-cowl gave a lauch, . . . 'Twas mair like a hoarse, hoarse scrauch.
Lth. 1884  Trans. Edb. Naturalists' Club 204:
This note, which is nothing more nor less than what would be termed in Lowland Scotch a “skraugh,” is his utmost effort at a love-song.
Ork. 1904  W. T. Dennison Sketches 6:
De wives wid raise a terrible skrach.

2. The corn-crake, Crex crex (Mry. 1844 Zoologist II. 513, skracke). See also Corn, n.1, 6. (14).

[Imit. Cf. Skraich, Skreich.]

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"Skrauch v., n.". Dictionary of the Scots Language. 2004. Scottish Language Dictionaries Ltd. Accessed 12 Dec 2018 <>



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