Scottish National Dictionary (1700–)

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SLOUSTER, v., n. Also slooster, sluister, slooshter, slowster; slewsther, sloosther (Uls.), shluster. [′sluster; Ags., Fif., s.Sc. †′slʌu-]

I. v. 1. To dabble in water or mud, to work untidily or messily, freq. with awa (Fif. 1825 Jam., slouster; Dmf. a.1838 Jam. MSS. X. 293, sluister; Uls. 1904 Uls. Jnl. Archaeol. 129; Ags., Fif., Uls. 1970). Vbl.n., ppl.adj. slousterin. Dmf. a.1820  Border Mag. (Oct. 1896) 169:
Ye slowsterin' slink.
Uls. 1953  Traynor:
What slousterin' are you at?

2. To swallow noisily and ungracefully, to gulp, slobber (Per. 1906 E.D.D. Suppl., shluster; Fif., Lnk. 1970).

3. To kiss in a sloppy way, to beslobber with kissing (Uls. 1930). Uls. 1840  W. Carleton Shane Fadh's Wedding:
All kinds of slewsthering — men kissing men — women kissing women.

II. n. 1. Anything wet or messy. Adj. sluistry, wet, splashy; specif. a sloppy preparation of food or drink, a messy unpalatable concoction. (Slk. 1825 Jam., slouster). Uls. 1804  J. Orr Poems (1935) 38:
Wha'er cam' in prescribed some sluister An' I must drink it.
Gsw. 1868  J. Young Poems 83:
Showers o' sluistry sleet.

2. A rather wet or sloppy kiss (Uls. 1930). Uls. 1840  W. Carleton Traits Peasantry 15:
Give me a slewsther, agrah, a sweet one!

3. A careless, messy person, an inefficient worker, a sloven (Slk. 1825 Jam.; Uls. 1953 Traynor, slouster; Fif., Ayr. 1970).

4. A flatterer, sycophant, wheedler (Uls.3 1947). Cf. Cumsloosh. Uls. 1912  Northern Whig (14 June):
One of these was “slewshter” . . . It was generally addressed by a fond father to his little daughter who was trying to kiss a penny or some trifling benefit out of the old man.

[Orig. phs. chiefly imit. with influence from Slaister, Sloosh, Slush.]

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"Slouster v., n.". Dictionary of the Scots Language. 2004. Scottish Language Dictionaries Ltd. Accessed 15 Feb 2019 <>



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