Scottish National Dictionary (1700–)

Hide Quotations Hide Etymology Cite this entry

WHEEPLE, v., n.1 Also whipple; wheeble; wheeffle; redupl. form wheeple-whap(p)le; and with variant freq. ending wheeper (Abd., Ags. 1974), cf. Wheeber. [ʍipl]

I. v. 1. intr. (1) To whistle shrilly or with a long drawn-out note, of a bird such as the curlew or plover, or transf. of the wind (Gall. 1824 MacTaggart Gallov. Encycl. 473; Lnk., Rxb. 1825 Jam.; Ags., Per., wm.Sc. 1974), to chirp, cheep (Rxb. 1923 Watson W.-B.). Agent n. wheepler, the redshank, Tringa totanus (Lnk., Ayr. 1974), vbl.n. wheeplin. Slk. 1818  Hogg B. of Bodsbeck II. 323:
Like Redwings wheepling in the mist.
s.Sc. 1843  Whistle-Binkie (1890) II. 231:
List the sandy lav'rock's ca', Lood wheeplin' out his strain.
Lnk. 1919  G. Rae Clyde and Tweed 91:
'Mong gowden whuns the wheeplin' linties big.
Sc. 1933  W. Soutar Seeds in Wind 10:
Cauld, cauld the wheeplin wind.
Ags. 1948  Forfar Dispatch (1 April):
Harkenin tee wheeplin ee merlie a' at ane and the same time.

(2) Of persons: to whistle (Fif., Lth. 1926 Wilson Cent. Scot. 249), esp. in a tuneless or ineffectual manner (Sc. 1808 Jam.; Uls. 1953 Traynor; ne.Sc., Ags. 1974); to blow on a whistle, to tootle. Also contemptuously of a church organ. Agent n. wheepler, a poor whistler (Uls. 1924 Northern Whig (8 Jan.)). Per. a.1837  R. Nicoll Poems (1877) 187:
We've a' been heathens — now we pray, And sing and wheeple.
Fif. 1864  W. D. Latto T. Bodkin vi.:
His constant habit o' wheeplin' awa till himsel'.
Ayr. 1887  J. Service Dr Duguid 245:
Alang the drowsy bent cam the wheepling o' a whaup.
Abd. 1909  C. Murray Hamewith 5:
He wheepled on't at mornin'.
Uls. 1931  Northern Whig (11 Dec.) 13:
“It's easy wheeplin whun yir on the tap o' the dyke” means “It is easy being joyful when you are prosperous and successful.”
Gsw. 1936  G. Blake David & Joanna ii.:
The wheepling notes of the organ.
Abd. 1959  People's Jnl. (15 Aug.):
Ah thocht Ah'd tint the airt o' wheeplin' lang syne.
Edb. 1973  J. K. Annand Twice for Joy 35:
Wheeplin on the whustle Tootlin on the flute.

2. tr. To whistle (a tune) (Ayr. 1901 G. Douglas Green Shutters x.; ne.Sc., Ags. 1974). Lnk. 1902  A. Wardrop Hamely Sk. 120:
Tae wheeple-whapple a' yon peerless skynotes o' the laverock.
Dmf. 1914  J. L. Waugh Cracks wi' R. Doo 116:
Wheeplin, “Tramp, tramp, tramp, the boys are marchin'.”
Lnk. 1919  G. Rae Clyde and Tweed 5:
I have heard the linties wheeplin' oot their praise.

3. To whine, whimper (Rxb. 1923 Watson W.-B.; Ags. 1974). Ags. 1848  Feast Liter. Crumbs (1891) 34:
Nae whingin', cringin', wheeplin' whaper.
Ags. 1880  J. Watt Poet Sk. 52:
She wheepled a wee, like a whaup in rough weather.

II. n. 1. The shrill call or whistle of a bird, esp. the curlew (Sc. 1815 Scott Letters (Cent. Ed.) XII. 153, wheeble; Slk. 1964 Southern Reporter (7 May) 11, whipple; Ork., ne.Sc., Fif., Lth., Ayr. 1974). Also attrib. wm.Sc. 1795  Stat. Acc.1 VII. 601:
I wad na' gi'e the wheeple of a whaup for a the nightingales that ever sang.
Kcb. 1815  J. Gerrond Works 112:
Ye wheeple-whaple shore traversers, Go rin and squeal upon the marches.
Slk. 1899  C. M. Thomson Drummeldale 170:
The plaintive wheeple of a belated whaup.
Ags. 1945  Scots Mag. (April) 43:
The wheeple o' a whaup fae the Mossy-muir.
Bnff. 1955  Banffshire Jnl. (20 Sept.):
The robin's heich, thin wheeple o' a sang.

2. A tuneless, unmusical whistling or playing on a whistle, an ineffectual attempt at whistling (Sc. 1888 C. Mackay Dict. Lowl. Sc. 273; Uls. 1953 Traynor); “a shrill intermitting note, with little variation in tone” (Sc. 1808 Jam., wheeple, wheeffle). Dmf. 1873  A. Anderson Song of Labour 102:
For frae mornin' till nicht it's a wheeple an' skirl, Till my lugs at sic music dae naething but dirl.

3. A shrill complaint, whine, squeal or the like. Lnk. 1922  T. S. Cairncross Scot at Hame 7:
I've swung In public penance, nor gi'ed tongue To girn or wheeple.

[Freq. form of Wheep, with onomat. variants.]

You may wish to vary the format shown below depending on the citation style used.

"Wheeple v., n.1". Dictionary of the Scots Language. 2004. Scottish Language Dictionaries Ltd. Accessed 17 Oct 2017 <http://www.dsl.ac.uk/entry/snd/wheeple_v_n1>

26391

snd

Try an Advanced Search

Browse SND:

Browse Up
    Loading...
Browse Down

Share: