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

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First published 1986 (DOST Vol. VI).
This entry has not been updated since then but may contain minor corrections and revisions.

Prik, Prick, adj.2 [North. e.m.E. prykesange (1503), e.m.E. prick- (1518), pryk-, priksong(e etc.; Prik v. 4 a.] a. Priksang, (1) notated vocal music, opposed to extemporised or memorised; (2) ‘a written descant or accompanying melody to a ‘plain-song’ or simple theme’ (OED); cf. Prikkit ppl. adj. c; also b. prik-singing (and cf. also Prekit ppl. adj.), the performance of vocal music in which the simple theme is accompanied by a descant. c. Prick-note, ? a musical note with a ‘prick’ or mark ‘of augmentation’ (1597: see Prick sb. 3 b in OED) to indicate the prolongation of the note for an additional half of its value. —a. 1501 Doug. Pal. Hon. 500.
In modulatioun hard I play and sing Faburdoun, priksang, discant, countering
1508 Cart. S. Nich. Aberd. II 347 (see Plain-sang n.). 1590 Burel Queen's Entry 118.
Fabourdoun fell with decadence, With priksang, and the singing plane
b. 1505 Comm. Univ. IV (Aberd.) App. 137.
Volumus et ordinamus, quod sint in dicto Collegio octo praebendarii … in canto Gregoriano, rebus factis, videlicet, priksinging, figuratione, faburdon, … periti et instructi
1537 Reg. Episc. Aberd. I 413.
The foirsaid sex bernis … sall syng the said anteme … in plaine singynge one ilk feriall day and in prik singynge one ilk haly day
c. 16.. Wode's Psalter (ed.) 277.
Hold out your prick notts, Come of with your quick nots

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"Prik adj.2". Dictionary of the Scots Language. 2004. Scottish Language Dictionaries Ltd. Accessed 16 Jun 2024 <>



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