A Dictionary of the Older Scottish Tongue (up to 1700)

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Lift, v. Also: lifte, lifft, lyft, lyfft, luft, luift, left. P.t. and p.p. liftit, lyftyt, etc. Also (Douglas) infin. lifting, lyften, -yng, p.t. lift, lyft. [ME. (? orig. north. and north midl.) lift(e, lyft (Cursor M., Rolle), (midl. and south.) lefte(n (14–15th c.), p.t. lift (Cursor M.), lifte, lyft(e, (midl. and south.) left(e, and lifted (Cursor M.), p.p. lift(e, lyfte (14–15th c.), and liftid (Rolle), ON. lypta (Sw. lyfta, Da. løpte). Cf. also Lif v.2] Senses 4–7 are chiefly or only Sc.

1. tr. To lift or raise, in the usual physical sense. Also with adv. complements, esp. up. Thai lyftyt vpe the mantil-lape & fand the child at the pape; Leg. S. xvi. 677.
With angelis … Vpe in the ayre scho lyftyt was; Ib. 801.
Hyr body to rays thai had na mycht Na lyfft hyr anys owt off that plas Quhare scho that tyme lyand was; Wynt. vii. 3121.
Than nane but hurt mycht lyfft his hand; Ib. viii. 6247.
He liftit his hand-axe hie; Alex. ii. 1889.
He that may nocht lift ane birding, and first eikis als melkle and trastis to lift bath … may be jugit to ws gret foly; Irland Asl. MS. I. 63/18.
He dois as dotit dog that … liftis his leg apon loft, thoght he nought list pische; Dunb. Tua Mar. W. 187.
To four werkmen … lyftand the skaffalting on fute … to the wyndois upputting; 1532 M. Works Acc. (ed.) I. 82.
Thay luift thair goune abone thair schan[k]; Maitl. F. clxxviii. 129.
That prince on croce thay lyftit on hicht; G. Ball. 44.
To the wark men for helpin to lift the greit ledder in ovir and out ovir the vyne iyle; 1597 Edinb. D. Guild Acc. MS. 646.
He cawsit his man to lift off the lentell; Hist. Jas. VI 75.
I lift this stoup in the name of the Father [etc.] … to do guid for thair helth for quhom it is liftit; 1607 Rogers Social Life III. 298.

b. In passive, To be raised or borne up, to rise. The frost … is liftyt abune the aire … be fors of cald; Hay I. 8/30.

2. In certain phrases, chiefly biblical: To lift, or lift up, a. one's eyes (also, one's eye) or visage, = to look up. (1) Thane lyftyt he his ene to hewin, And one Crist callyt; Leg. S. i. 89.
Anchises baith hys eyn twa Gan lyftyng [Sm. lifting, R. lyften] vp and toward hewyn behald; Doug. vi. xi. 97.
The childe … lyftit vp his ene into the sky; Rolland Seven S. 434.
He liftit vp his ee, In her windo this lady can he se; Ib. 6949.
(2) To heuin he liftit vp his visage, Cryand to God [etc.]; Lynd. Meldrum 1271.

b. one's hand, fist, or arms (to strike another). (1) He liftit his hand & stud na aw And to the ymag he gaf a blaw; Seven S. 1635.
Geif ony sarvand sell happen to left wp hes hand to stryk hes master; 1568 Edinb. Skinners in
Bk. Old Edinb. Club VI. 59.
(2) Gif wythin gyrth … ony man … lyftis his neff to stryk an othir; Acts I. 8/2.
(3) They that lifted and heased their arms the night before and provoked God as it were to the singular combat … have their hands to seek; Bruce Serm. 309.

c. one's hands (to heaven, in supplication). Liftand thi handis & thi eyne to hevyne; Irland Asl. MS. I. 24/21.
Anchises … blyth and glaid Lyft [v.rr. Lift] eyn and handis to hevyn; Doug. ii. xi. 16.
Moyses liftit wp his handis to the hewin; Abell 44 b.

d. fig. To lift up one's heid, the head: To raise one's head (in defiance, against another); to regain confidence or boldness, be emboldened. And thay quhilk at thé haif mortall feid Contrair thy mycht hes liftit up thair heid; G. Ball. 104.
Now profanity and dissoluteness lift up the head … and keep the crown of the causey; 1661 Wodrow Hist. (1828) I. 254.

3. In immaterial or fig. sense: To raise, elevate, exalt or elate. Also, to lift up. Ane merwalus sueitnes … that liftis thé aboue all waurldly thingis; Irland Mir. I. 45/30.
Ib. 80/33.
The hevinly licht of the godheid lyftyt the wnderstanding … of man to knaw … God; Ib. 61/13.
Carectare … that liftis thame … aboue the laif of the pepil; Ib. MS. fol. 289.
Fasting … liftis the mynd … fra fals and werldly thingis; Id. Asl. MS. I. 39/28.
While the flesche … is liftit vp in prosperitie and at euerie moment is … reddy to offend the maiestie of God; 1560 Conf. Faith in
Acts II. 529/2.
Liftand vp thair myndis to God; 1581 Cath. Tr. (S.T.S.) 127/6.

4. To take up: to collect or to uplift (rents or dues, fines, tithes, moneys on deposit, etc.). Also to lift up. In the earlier occurrences, usually coupled with rais. (1) That ȝe nothir in tym cumin … lift na rais amersiament na unlaw for the causis forsaid; 1448 Reg. Episc. Brechin I. 114.
Ane annuall rent of four merkis … to be lyftit and rasyt yerely of his landis of the Hiltoun; 1481 Antiq. Aberd. & B. III. 462.
Our full powar … trespassouris to pwnys amerchiamentis to lift and rais; 1492 Breadalbane Doc. No. 26.
The berar deit last westit … of xl merkis vsuall mone of Scotland yerly to be liftit and rasit of the gret customes of … Montrose; 1535 Crawford Mun. Invent. 16 Oct. I. 68.
The malys … salbe rasauyt luftyt and ouptane frelie be the commound procuratour; 1537 Reg. Episc. Aberd. I. 413.
Vnlawis eschetis and amerciamentis of courtis to lyft, rays, uptak and inbryng to the propir vse … of the said erle; c 1549 Ib. II. 308.
The fyve hundreth merkis quhilk hes beine already liftit of taxt to the support of the heavin wark; 1593 Reg. Privy C. V. 63.
That all thir foirsaidis penalteis be liftit [ed. listit] and tane vp fra the offendaris; 1598–9 Montgomery Mem. 241.
Unlawes, amerchiaments and escheittis of the said courtis to ask lift and reise; 1626 Aberd. Council Lett. I. 254.
That no girdelmaker sal makr [etc.] … under the paine of sax pund and that to be precislie liftet without farder delay; 1639 Culross II. 158.
This band being maid, and the moneyis liftit, the samen deliuerit to Mr. Robert Farquhar; Spalding II. 375.
It should be lawful to a compriser … to lift, or not lift, what duties he pleased; 1661 Decis. Lords G. .
To give bond for a certain sume of mony for what Argyle had lifted [infra what mony the Earle Argyle had borrowed]; c 1685 Melville Chart. 184.
Whither they would keep in Cassills hand that money belonging to the poore of this paroch, or lift the same; 1691 Cramond Kirk S. III. 3 Dec.
(2) My veray procuratowr … to ask and requir and lyft vp the sammyn dettis, the denyaris to summond and follow; 1513 Stirlings of Keir 299.
He shall lift up the small teynds of Nether Cramond gifted by John Lord Balmerinoch to the schoolmaster; 1673 Cramond Kirk S. II. 15 June.

b. In commissions of procuratory or the like, in the formula instrumentis (Instrument n. 5 c) to (tak), (ask), lift (= obtain, take) and rais. The said James … in the said mater protestacionis till mak, instrumentis and documentis till ask lyft and rase; 1492 Highland P. II. 193.
And heirapone instrumentis and documents to tak, lift and rais; 1547 Liber Coll. Glasg. 138.
Acts instruments and documents ane or mae theirupon to take ask lift and raise as neid beis; 1688 Irvine Deeds 8 June.

5. To raise or levy (troops). Also to lift up, and absol. For likely additional examples, see List v.3 (1) That the King bestow sylwer to lift [sic in MS., ed. list] ane thousand licht horsmen in waiges; 1570 Warrender P. MS. AI. 131 b (= S.H.S., I. 84).
[The Scottish company of men-at-arms shall be] lyftit [again]; 1574–5 Cal. Sc. P. V. 109.
The Justice Clerk … hes liftit ane cumpanie of suldartis … to pas our to Orknay; 1587 Waus Corr. 412.
The payment quhairof being daylie luiked for and certane of the horsemen and futmen in that houp lyftit [sic in MS., ed. lystit]; 1592–3 Reg. Privy C. V. 56.
To lift out of his boundes tuo hundreth men; 1615 Denmylne MSS. (Nat.
Lib.) XIV. xxx (= Highland P. III. 250). For lifting … men; Ib.
Sua that no man can be lifted there; Ib.
1646 Baillie II. 347.
To the effect the 4th man micht be lifted; Spalding II. 281.
To effect men micht be moir eselie raisit and lifted; Ib. 290.
(2) They have thoght good that the twelf hunder men appoynted for them be lifted up with diligence; 1643 Edinb. B. Rec. VIII. 34.
(3) absol. [The barons are ready to give their substance and lives to expel] thir straingers [and are ready] to lift [on 48 hours' warning. We have ordered the captains] to lyst (sic in pr.) [1000 foot and 200 hors]; 1559 Arran &
Lord James in Cal. Sc. P. I. 274.

6. To take up and remove, to move or take away. In defalt of oxin to lift the artalȝe; 1545 Dumfries & Galloway Soc. 3 Ser. XXXVI. 116.
Dionethie haueng receiued a gret and wonnderful wound, he is lyfted be his awne and is karied into Cumbirland; Dalr. I. 206/15.
If it be fund that they have lifted any laire stanes in the kirk or churchyaird; 1633 Elgin Rec. II. 225.
The counsell … ordains Thomas Merser, present master of impost and shor, to caus lift the said crook; 1657 Aberd. B. Rec. IV. 167.

b. Of the corpse at a funeral: In passive, To be picked up by the bearers before being carried to the grave. Thairefter hir corpis wes transportit … to the cheppell on the Castle hill, and vpone the 28th of Junii … scho wes lifted; Spalding I. 90.
The baillies … allowes to be exactit be the bedell for … gaing out with the bell quhen the corpes is liftit; 1655 Lanark B. Rec. 156.
The Earle of Northesk's corps wer landed and liffting and the cannons shutting; 1676 Dunkeld Presb. II. 18.

c. To carry or convey. God then Sen I and thow wer liftit in my den; (Henr.) Bann. MS. 312 a/161.

d. To carry away (produce, from the field). We thairfor … agrie that thei whilkis hes the said landis sall not preis to lift up the saidis fruitis and especiallie the cornes, but sall leive the same stakkit in heip vpon the feildis … vntuiched; 1572 Bann. Memor. 245.

e. To remove a lamb from its mother. Lyk as they obleissis them … not to lifte the lambis quhill the fourteine of May; 1650 Boyd Fam. P. No. 196.
That the said lambes sall not be liftit from ther mothir befor the fourtein day of May yeirlie; 1655 Ib. No. 216.

f. To seize or confiscate (distrained goods). As for the staying of the officier to poind or lift any goods; 1620 Aberd. Council Lett. I. 181.

g. To drive away (cattle) as forage or plunder. Thair cam ane company of Hielanderis and liftit out of Frendrachtis ground ane number of goodis; Spalding I. 46.

7. To move or strike one's camp (also, one's army), to move one's house, and absol., to decamp, to remove. (1) They liftit thair campis and come to Camrone; Pitsc. II. 165/16.
On Wednisday trumpettis soundis … , liftis thair army and beginis to marche south agane; Spalding I. 202.
Quhairvpone he liftis his camp; Ib. II. 404.
(2) In the meintyme … the marquess in heiche melanchollie liftit his hous, and flittit haistillie to Strathbogie; Spalding I. 91.
The Bischop of Ross wyf liftis hir houss, haill famelie, goodis and geir, fra Chanonrie of Ross, and be sea saillis to hir husband; Ib. 225.
(3) Our Generall mynds to lift speedilie from Newcastle, and draw nearer to Yorlke; 1640 Baillie I. 263.

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"Lift v.". Dictionary of the Scots Language. 2004. Scottish Language Dictionaries Ltd. Accessed 11 Apr 2021 <https://www.dsl.ac.uk/entry/dost/lift_v>

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