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

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First published 1971 (DOST Vol. IV).

Message, n. Also: mesag, messag, -aige, -eg, (messuage), massaige. [ME. and e.m.E. message (c 1290), massage (Wyclif), F. message.]

1. A message; also, communication by messenger or envoy.(1) a1400 Leg. S. xxxvi. 359.
Quhen Crist the messag herde To the messangeris He ansuert [etc.]
c1420 Wynt. v. 4291.
The hawtane message till hym send
Ib. ii. 1376. Ib. 1408. Ib. vi. 1300 (W). 1456 Hay I. 138/23.
The King of Spaigne … sends, but ony message or request fra the King of Fraunce, a grete ost
a1500 Henr. Orph. 76 (Asl.).
The mychti quene … Ane message send vnto this prince … Requyrand him to wed hir
Id. III. 146/13. a1500 Gol. & Gaw. 395.
Schir Gawyne … Melis of the message to Schir Golagrus
1494 Loutfut MS. 9 a. a1500 Lanc. 2911.
c1520-c1535 Nisbet I. 2.
Euangelion … is alsmekill to say in Inglis as a gude message
1531 Bell. Boece I. 79. 1543 Reg. Morton II. 291.
Be deid manising and messagis berand bosting wordis
15.. Clar. i. 343. 1560 Rolland Seven S. 239.
Ane message sone was sent Vnder his seill and als his awin hand writ
1570 Leslie 74.
Thair come ane hearald furth of France fra the King … with glaide messuages to him
a1578 Pitsc. I. 19/15.
Lat … evirie man eftir his power send secreit messagis to his freindis
Ib. 43/15.
Through the frequentt message baitht command and gangand betuix the governour and chancelar
Ib. 195/22.(2) 1398–9 Acts I. 211/2.
It is ordanyt that thar sall be message send … to resave the Kyngis ath
c1400 Troy-bk. ii. 1502. c1420 Wynt. ii. 1372.
Message he send in hy Tyll thame than duelland in Sythy
Ib. vi. 1715.
Than send he message off trette Till Schyr Edmwnd
1456 Hay I. 193/13. a1538 Abell 38 b.
With secret message thai send to the Scottis … inducent thame to cum hame
(3) a1400 Leg. S. xvi. 902.
To Sancte Maxymyne Thu schaw myn message, or thou fyne
c1420 Wynt. vii. 1768. a1500 Gol. & Gaw. 401. 1531 Bell. Boece I. 86.
Of thair massaige send to the Scottis
1560 Rolland Seven S. 248. 1566 St. A. Kirk S. 289.
He wes messinger send be the Lord Lyndesay, did his messeg articulat
a1578 Pitsc. I. 193/27.
Quhen they hard this secreit message of prince Harie and his counsall
(4) c1400 Troy-bk. i. 172.
Bot my message notht-than all plane As me was biddyn, so I said
Ib. 40. Ib. 97. c1460 Alex. (Taym.) 1067. 1490 Irland Mir. I. 138/35.
Quhen the angell … had schawin to hire his message
1622-6 Bisset II. 357/3.
Teiched … of His messaige beand send frome the Father
(5) a1578 Pitsc. I. 40/32.
Beliueing no falshoode to mischance him efterwart in respect of his hartlie messaige that come to him fre the maistratis

b. The business entrusted to a messenger, envoy or embassage; a mission or commission. c1420 Wynt. viii. 40.
Famous persownys Come chargyd in Scotland wyth message To tret … a maryage
1513 Doug. xiii. vi. 57.
Peax thai besocht as cheif of thar message

c. To do, ga, gang, ma, mak (a) message, to carry out an errand, deliver a message.(1) c1420 Wynt. viii. 1634 (W).
Se the wes lakkit of lourdnes, His message did he neuertheles
?1438 Alex. i. 861.
This message do for ȝow I will
Ib. 551. Ib. 713.(2) ?1438 Alex. i. 343.
Gang this message
Ib. 493. 1535 Stewart 46174.
Or ȝit dedeyne sic message for till go
(3) ?1438 Alex. i. 329.
Na, I will nocht sik message ma
Ib. 384.
For vs the message man ȝe mak And say [etc.]
Ib. 410. c1460 Thewis Gud Women 188. c1475 Wall. ix. 795.
Message to mak our pouer for to get
a1500 Lanc. 2985.
He thinkith hyme dispisit Of the mesag that we gart to hyme mak
a1500 Seven S. 633.
Ane staitly message than maid was On fra the king till Ypocras

2. A person or party of persons conveying a message; an envoy or embassage. Also fig.Also plur. in coll. sense.(To go, send, speak etc.) in(to) (one's) message, = as (one's) envoy(s) or embassage. To ga in(to) (also apone) the (this) message, = to deliver the (this) message. To be this message at (another), = to deliver this message to (him).(1) 1398–9 Acts I. 211/2.
A grete message sal be send in France, the qwhilkis message sal be chosyn be the commissaris beforsaid
c1460 Alex. (Taym.) 2261, 2.
He the message cald Sayand message quhow durst ȝe be sa bald [etc.]
c1475 Wall. viii. 541.
Wallace has herd the message say thair will
Ib. 1153.
Lat I the Queyn to message redy dycht
1490 Irland Mir. I. 127/15.
This message and ambaxat was richt noble
1558-66 Knox II. 358.
Sche glowmed boyth at the messenger (MS. (1566) message) and at the requeast
a1578 Pitsc. I. 193/22.
This message past quyetlie to the Lord Stanlie
fig. c1600 Montg. Suppl. viii. 1.
As eis ar message to the hairt
(2) a1400 Leg. S. xl. 292.
plur. As he the messagis this herd say
1398 Slater Early Sc. Texts No. 38. c1420 Wynt. vi. 1711 (C).
Than sende he messagis to the kynge
1456 Hay II. 163/8.(3) c1420 Wynt. ii. 1122.
And this. thai said, wes in thare intent That thame in message thiddyre sent
?1438 Alex. i. 791.
I intromettit me neuer are In message for to do nor say
1456 Hay I. 116/23.
Quhen ony is send in message to the inymyes
a1500 Henr. III. 146/7. 1570 Cal. Sc. P. III. 479.
For I have daylie acces to him and … committit in messaige of thingis occurring
a1597-1617 Hist. Jas. VI (1804) 66.
Thomas Lord Boyd come from England in message to the regent from the captive Queene
a1578 Pitsc. I. 247/21.
This nobill bischope passit in message to the king of France
(4) a 1550 Misc. Spald. C. II. xxix.
Venus in hir mesag Hermes sped
(5) ?1438 Alex. i. 461.
Into this message mon ȝe ga On Bausand
Ib. 748. a1500 Lanc. 2919.
O maden haith thei tone, Discret, apone this mesag for till gone
(6) a1500 Rauf C. 905.
Fra the Chane of Tartarie At him this message wald I be To tell him [etc.]

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"Message n.". Dictionary of the Scots Language. 2004. Scottish Language Dictionaries Ltd. Accessed 28 Sep 2022 <>



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