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

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First published 2001 (DOST Vol. IX).
This entry has not been updated since then but may contain minor corrections and revisions.

Silver, Siller, n. Also: -ir(e, -yr, -ere, -eir, -err, -ier, sillver, sil(l)wer, sylvar, -er, -ir, -yr(e, -re, sylwar, -er, syllver, -wer, (slyver), selver, -wer, sellvar, -war, selder, sil(l)ar, sillir, silder, sylar, sylloer, selleir, seillr. [ME and e.m.E. sylure (1154), siluer (c1200); selfre (c1175), se(o)luer (13th c.); syller (1575), OE siolfor, seolfor, MDu. silver, ON silfr.]Freq. in collocation with Gold n., q.v. for further examples.

I. 1. Silver, the precious metal, also, as a natural resource; silver-ore.There is some overlap with sense 5. c1420 Wynt. i 572.
Thai twa ilys … Off silvyr ar habowndand
1424 Acts II 5/2.
Gif ony myne of golde or siluer be fundyn … and … thre halfpennys of siluer may be fynit owt of the punde of leide [etc.]
c1450-2 Howlat 788 (A).
He couth … Mak … siluer of sand
a1500 Colk. Sow iii 14.
Gold siluer mettell and alkyn vre
1531 Bell. Boece I xi.
The finest gold or silver … May nocht be wrocht … But flammis
a1568 Scott in Bann. MS 213b/30.
As bricht bene birneist bras As siluer
a1568 Scott in Bann. MS 236a/35.
It is na gravit hairt in stone In siluer gold nor evir bone
1572 Sempill in Sat. P. xxx 164.
Siluer fyne mon to the furnes glyde, To get the dros deuydit
1587 Carmichael Etym. 16 (see Roust n.2 1). 1609 Hilderstoun Silver Mines I 171.
Candle to the mr. fynner that nycht he fyned the siluer
1645–6 J. Hope Diary (1958) 162.
Leidoare … affirmed to hold 12 lottes of silver in 72 lib. weight
fig. c1552 Lynd. Mon. 4226.
Gone is the syluer warld of Persianis: The copper warld of Grekis now is thrall … Now is the warld of irne myxit with clay

2. The metal as used in the manufacture of a wide variety of articles. Also, brokin silver, scrap silver. b. As used in the manufacture of cloth, etc.; silver thread. c. Clathe of silver, see Clath(e n. 3 b. d. Buke or quare of silvir, a packet or sheet of silver-foil or silver-leaf for use in silvering, etc.For many further examples, see the Indexes to the volumes of Treas. Acc.See also Pece n. 18, Pirnit p.p. and ppl. adj. (n.) and the individual dictionary entries for many other articles made of silver.(1) 1456 Hay I 56/3.
Sen thai had nane armyng, na irne to mak it of, thay had gold and silver
c1475 Wall. iv 96.
Spoilȝeid thai the harnais … Off siluer and gold
1506 Treas. Acc. III 80.
xviij unce silvir to be ane chalice
1509 Edinb. Hammermen (ed.) 46.
Silver to the crowats
1540 Treas. Acc. VII 326.
vj unces quarter unce silver to be ane clamschell to kepe the kingis grace halk mete in
1578 Edinb. Test. VI 232.
Ane blak cop with siluer about the lip
(2) 1375 Barb. xx 304.
Cas of siluir fyne
a1400 Leg. S. xxiii 412.
Selis … of siluir fine
c1420 Wynt. v 716.
Till the hors … Off sylvyr schone he gert be made
c1420 Wynt. ix 603.
Ewaris off sylvyr brycht
1421 Douglas Chart. 57.
Spunys of siluer … crowetis of syluyr … saltfattis of syluer
1450 Aberd. B. Rec. I 19.
The eucariste of siluer quhilk Theman goldsmyth had in making
a1500 Henr. Test. Cress. 419.
Cowpis all of gold and siluer schene
1489–90 Acta Conc. I 131/2.
The belt of siluer
c1500 Coll. St. Salvator 159.
Ane gret ymage of syluyr of our Saluiour
1503 Treas. Acc. II 203.
For tua joyntouris of silvir maid for ane bridill
1513 Doug. ix vi 119.
Cowpys and goblettis … Of massy syluyr
1549 Compl. 145/13.
The pepil var as reddy to drynk vattir in ther bonet or … in ane tasse of siluyr
(b) c1570 Maxwell Mem. II 139.
Ane nedill of selleir our gilt
(3) 1513 Doug. vii x 77.
Leg harnes … With latit sowpill siluer [Sm. syluer] weill annelit
1542 Acts & Decr. I 141.
Ane blawing horne tippit with siluer
1583 Edinb. Test. XIII 43b.
Ane blak cop lippit with siluer
(b) 1553 Carte Northberwic 68.
Ane cowp of masar tre futit vytht seluer and circulit about the lippis vytht siluer
(4) 1550 Crawford Mun. Invent. I 89 (20 Dec.).
Ane relikkarie of Sanct Dorothea set in siluer
a1700 Soc. Ant. XXVII 497.
An stene set in selver
(5) 1432 Ayr B. Ct. 12 May.
Sax pesis of a bruche & of othir brokyn siluer
1501 Treas. Acc. II 65.
Brokin silvir … for the making of Sanct Ninianes arme
1527 Cart. S. Nich. Aberd. II 359.
xv vnce of brokin siluer … to mak ane chaleis
1620 Edinb. Test. L 282.
Ellevin vnce … of brokin silwer and aucht penny peisis price of all sevinteine pundis
b. (1) ?1438 Alex. ii 3688.
Carpettis of silk and siluer schene
a1500 Rauf C. 677.
Dosouris … Circulit with siluer
a1540 Freiris Berw. 145 (B).
Hir kirtill wes of silk and silwer fyne
1564–5 Treas. Acc. XI 347.
Silver to ane goune
1568 Inv. Q. Mary ci n. 1.
Veluat … with pasmentis of gold and siluir, and freinyeit with gold and siluir
1578 Inv. Wardrobe 229.
Slevis embroderit with perll and silvir
1587 Edinb. Test. XVIII 54.
Four craipis of siluer for gentill wemen huidis
1590 Treas. Acc. MS 224b.
Twa dosan burdeclaythis … knoppit and fassit with gold and slyuer
(b) 1610 Hist. Kinloss A. xi.
Ane … couschein … freinged with siller and blak silk
(2) 1503 Treas. Acc. II 290.
For tua hankis silver to the said broudstar
1538 Treas. Acc. VI 399.
Quarter hank sewing silver
1562 Treas. Acc. XI 204.
Sewing threid of silver
1582 Treas. Acc. MS 87b.
Thre hankis … of siluer tobe huipis to the clock
c. 1542 Inv. Wardrobe 93.
Hois … hippit with claith of silver
1578 Inv. Wardrobe 211.
Claith of silver for tapestrie
d. 1501 Treas. Acc. II 64.
iiij quare of ane buke of silvir, viij s.
1507 Treas. Acc. III 388.
ij quaris silvir
1538 Treas. Acc. VI 428.
The said coit broderit weyand jcxxxix unces togidder with the ourcome extending to iiij unce ½ unce of silver with x unce and ane quarter unce of book of silver

3. coll. Silver vessels or plate.The last two examples may belong to sense 5.See also Charge n. 1 for two further examples.(a) 1513 Doug. iii vi 214.
Our karvellis howys ladis … he With huge charge of syluer in quantite, With caldronys and othir seir veschell
1546 Reg. Privy C. I 47.
All the money, jowellis, evidentis, silver, veschell, cleithing, abulyeamentis and all uthair insycht gudis and geir
(b) 1501–2 Edinb. Hammermen 38.
For clething & keping of our silar at the wechin of the kirk & couering with clathis

4. In collocation with terms indicating great wealth, chiefly, gold, as a type of riches, wealth or possessions.(1) 1375 Barb. v 394.
The gudis … thaim thocht thai mycht haiff away … namly … Siluer, tresour, [etc.]
c1420 Wynt. v 3181.
Swa prydyt hym … For hys gret sylvyr and ryches
a1500 Seven S. 1619.
Ane emprioure Riche and covatus our mesoure Of gold & siluer
a1500 Bk. Chess 735.
Sall no thing help thaim gold na siluer fyne Bot … all sall be myne
1549 Compl. 109/9.
To venques them vitht gold and syluyr rathere nor vitht forse
a1580 in Bann. Trans. 486.
Geir … sic as writtis, gold, silver, or golding worke
a1578 Pitsc. I 201/24.
[He] pat his whole pose of gold and sillwer in the said castell
a1578 Pitsc. I 254/15.
It sall nether be sillwer nor gould, landrent nor richeis that sall stand betuix him and me
1596 Dalr. I 114/25.
The welth of our king may be weil compaired with the puissance of golde and siluir
(2) a1400 Leg. S. vi 218.
The kinge gyf hym … Siluere and gold plentuisly
c1400 Troy-bk. ii 644.
The syluer and the gold … they ta
?1438 Alex. ii 633.
Riches, siluer, gold sa rede

5. Silver bullion, the precious metal seen as having a specific monetary value in relation to its weight and fineness; also as a material from which coins were made. Also, silver coin or plate viewed in relation to its value as a raw material.(1) 1398–9 Liber Melros II 488.
Foure skore and ten pond of gude mone and lele of Scotland in silver or in golde
c1400 Troy-bk. ii 311 (see Mark n.2 1). 1460 Hay Alex. 2602.
Of cunȝeit go[l]d thai send ane thousand stane … Ten thousand of siluer
1508–9 Reg. Privy S. I 280/1.
That … thai continew in the forgeing of bullion bayth gold and silver cunȝeit and uncunȝeit and uther layit money
1538 Reg. Privy S. II 401/1.
Maister changeour of the cunȝe gold and silver
1554 Treas. Acc. X 237.
Aucht unce of silver, to mak ane assay of silver and layit money
1554 Edinb. B. Rec. II 203.
Ten dosone clayth passand custome sall bring hame ane vnce siluer
1555 Acts II 499/1.
Thair is greit fraude … done … be goldsmythis that makis siluer and gold of na certane fynes
1555 Acts II 499/1.
That na goldsmyth mak … siluer vnder the iust fynance of elleuin penny fyne
1579 Acts III 150/1.
The vnce of vtter fyne siluer to be bocht for xxxvj s.
1597 Skene Verb. S. (1599) s.v. Bullion.
Bvllion … signifies uncunȝied silver or gold quhairof silver or gold is, or may be, cunȝied or striken
1634 Cochran-Patrick Coinage II 102.
The Inglish standard of siluer is 11 vnces
1636 Cochran-Patrick Coinage II 106.
The ordinary wecht of siluer is comptit in this sort, viz. thair is xxiiij graines in a deneir and xxiiij deneirs in a vnce and xvj vnce in a pund and xvj pund in a staine and a mark is viij vnce or half pund
1682 Cochran-Patrick Coinage II 196.
Vtter fyne silver … is twentie two graines above the standart
(b) 1595 Skipper's Acc. (Morton) 70a.
Reseuet … vii stane 2 pound half of seluer
(2) 1579 Acts III 150/2.
To inbring to our souerane lordis counȝehous … all sortis of gould and siluer ayther in plate werk or cunȝie vpoun the prices aboue specifijt

b. Brint (burnt) silver, refined silver. = Brint ppl. adj. 2. 1507 Treas. Acc. IV 85.
To the quinta essencia ij unce brint silvir … xxviiij s.
1508 Treas. Acc. IV 135.
To Matho Auchlek goldsmyth for … brint silvir
1597 Skene Verb. S. (1599) s.v. Bullion.
Ane ABC of the bullion set downe be the Lordes of Checker … The last of drinking beare ij ounce burnt silver

c. Paris silver, (see also Paris (2)), silver parisien. 1489 Acts II 221/2.
The … cunȝeour sall … pay for the vnce of brynt siluer xj s. vj d. and for Paris siluer & siluer of the new werk of Bruges siclik
1554 Edinb. B. Rec. II 204.
The vnce of siluer of fines of Pareis siluer
1580 Acts III 191/1.
That ilk vnce of siluer Parisien in cunȝeit money be set furth for fourty foure schillingis

6. (Silver) coin; cash; money in general; a sum of money.With def. art.: The sum involved in a particular transaction, etc.With possess. adj.: (A sum of) money belonging to a person, a person's wealth.Cunȝeit silver. Cf. 5; small silver, see Smal(l adj. and n. 6 b.(1) c1420 Wynt. viii 2872.
He … Send twelff pennys wyth hym … And bade hym … say That that sylvyre … He had borowyd fra hym
1459 Peebles B. Rec. I 134.
The balye chargit the forsad Adam to … pruf his pament or than to content in the forsad Patton of the siluer that he is planttis of
1473 Treas. Acc. I 31.
Summa of the siluer [£10 13 s. 4 d.]
1499–1500 Acta Conc. II 355.
The thrid part of the silver that pertenit til hir or micht pertene til hir be the redempcione of the landis of Innerpeffer
1574–5 Haddington Treas. Acc. 3.
At the lard of Bas about the sylver he suld pay the towne
?1575 Waus Corr. 105.
I haue send the said sylluer, quhilk I am put to the horne for, to relax and consing
1579–80 Conv. Burghs I 94.
For letheran polkis to put the syluer in
1589 Prot. Bk. J. Inglis 28 Oct.
James Abircrummy … nwmerit & tauld the said xiiixx merkis mony … conforme to the tenour of the said reuertione, quhilk syluer the said Allexr refusit
1596 James VI in Facs. Nat. MSS III lxxiii.
As to the impossibilitie of furneishing ȝone siluer to the ylis I can not take it for ane ansoure that … sa small a soume can not be gottin
(b) 1571 Strathendrick 158.
The haill compte of the sylloer debursit for my cleithing
(c) 1640–1 Kirkcudbr. Min. Bk. 1.
Horss … to be apprysed be the Committie according to thair worthe, and the siller peyit thairon, aither in monie or security
fig. 1686 G. Stuart Joco-Ser. Disc. 61.
What siller's yon to pay the cost?
(2) 14.. Burgh Laws c. 22 (B).
The lennar tak his syluyr
a1500 Bernardus 272.
Thyne siluer and thine arch euacuate
1561 Strathendrick 158 n.
Followis the compt of the debursing of my syllwer
c1580 Douglas Corr. 237.
I am warnit be my uncle to resaue my siluer at Mertismes nixtocom
1587–8 Aberd. Council Lett. I 32.
His haill geir and silver spulȝeit fra him extending to fyve hunder markis of silver
1588 Aberd. Council Lett. I 47.
Williame Makartnay … fra quhome I have ressavit your silver
1597 Logie Par. Hist. I 50.
He can not depurse nane of his siluir for the serving of the said kirk
1665 Gunn Cross Kirk, Peebles 191.
He was come over to brag them with his old siluer that his father had conquished with his joukrie
(b) 1651 Dundee Ct. Martial Rec. in Misc. Hist. Soc. III 15.
[They] were met … by 2 troopers, one of which … said ‘haye give mee your siller’
proverb. a1628 Carmichael Prov. No. 1472.
The clink of my silver may staik for the smel of your rost
fig. 1637 Rutherford Lett. (1894) 499.
My silver is not good and current with Christ
(3) c1420 Bute MS fol. 156.
To by the … land wyth sylvir lent til him
1459 Peebles B. Rec. I 134.
Adam … deniit that he aws hym ony syluer
1474 Treas. Acc. I 54.
For borowyt siluire to thare expensis
c1500-c1512 Dunb. (OUP) 69/1.
Sanct Salvatour send silver sorrow
1540 Lynd. Sat. 2240.
Hes thou na vther siluer bot ane groat?
1554 Corr. M. Lorraine 385.
I … findis me … superspendit be interesse of schifting silver
1563-1570 Buch. Wr. 6.
Expensis of the College of Humanite: … ane quartar of mouton or equiualent in sylver
1563-1570 Buch. Wr. 7.
Of sylver, lxxxxj pundis v s.
1570 Warrender P. (SHS) I 84.
Sylver to lift [pr. list] ane thowsand licht horsmen
1576 Orkney Oppress. 71.
He was indigent of silver
1584-9 Maxwall Commonpl. Bk. 1a.
I tak 12 ds. & 12 folke … mak ewin folk & ewin silwer
1596 Dalr. II 248/5.
Thay sayled … to Scotland, ladne with syluer throuch and throuch [L. pecuniosissimi]
1599 Chron. Perth 66.
Absenting himself from the hearing of the word and telling of silver at home
1602 Elphinstone Chart. 165.
To pay silvir for the victuall I sould haif giuein him fearneyeir
1602 Shetland Sheriff Ct. MS 22b.
Decernit to pay ij merkis silwer
1614 Fraserburgh Kirk S. 43b (20 Dec.).
Adam Burnet was convict of sklandering … and ane penaltie of silwer taine of him thairfoir
1641 Acts V (1817) 396/2.
Paying … with his majesties coyne or with anie sylver that is within the cuntrey
?1665 M. Bruce Six Dreadful Alarms 12.
There is meikle doing among many folk, that Ille no give meikle silver for
1694 Hay Fleming Six Saints II 29.
[It was not then] … Where will we get silver? [but,] Where will we get meal for silver?
(b) 1594 Highland P. I 186.
Glenurchye promisit to furnish siller becaus he was better bodin
1597 Glasgow Burgesses 25.
Fines … for advanceing syleur befor the termes of payement contenit in the rentall
(c) c1600 Dundee Shipping P. 67.
Sua haid ye of frei silder 26 dokats
(d) 1543 Corr. M. Lorraine 34.
Thai and I … hes brocht sellvar and artellyery
(4) 1580 Acts III 191/1.
That all the seuerall sortis of lay and vther cunȝeit siluer … be brocht in to the … cunȝehous

b. Monetary payment or reward for a service performed or an object acquired; also, wages. Also, for silver.(1) 1456 Hay I 127/7.
That I aw to help him, but silver
1501 Treas. Acc. II 89.
Payit … for … the masonis silvir … xxxj li. xvij s. vj d.
1599–1600 Glasgow Weavers 49.
That nane of thair craft tak fra ony calane of quhome thai have work ony kynd of silveir before the hand
1659 Johnston Diary III 160.
The sojours everywheir was lyk to mutiny for want of sylver
(2) a1568 Sempill in Sat. P. xlviii 14.
I will nocht dennyit till nane that will by it; For silver nane salbe said nay
c1570 Maxwell Mem. II 138.
Is to ane pyk tuith, I … nader … culd fynd ane to by for selleir
1596 Dalr. I 288/22.
Donald, for syluer, sum had hyret to commit this murther

c. The money part of a payment (for rent, fees, etc.) where part of the payment is in kind, etc.; also, in exceptional circumstances, replacing the traditional system of payment.(1) c1500 Goudie Shetl. Antiq. 173.
In Dealle ij s. vadmell x skynis and silver
1563 Reg. Cupar A. II 278.
The hail charge of siluer and victualis conuerted in siluer extendis to vjclxvj lib. iiij s. viij d. ¾ d.
1563 Dumfries B. Ct. fol. 196.
Chargeit to pay & deliuer the said siluer & beir … on the rud day
1587 Acts III 456/2.
Thair is nather siluer nor victuell of his rent to be ressauit … afoir Mertimes
1680 Kirkcudbr. B. Rec. MS 3 March.
To pay to … thair lait servitrix twelf shilling of silver fie, fyftein shilling for thrie ellis of round lynning [etc.] … and all for halfe ane ȝeres fie quherfoir shoe served
(2) 1484–5 Acta Conc. I *105/2.
That scho set the said landis to the said Thomas for siluer & na ferme
1584 St. A. Baxter Bks. 36.
That na service man of that craft … haiff ony dauch or maill for thair service … bot onlie siluer

d. Blac, blak silver, ? debased coin. 1483 Acta Conc. II cxxx.
viij Henre nobles quhilk the said Issabell … laid in wed to him for xxiiij li. of blac silver
1649 Sc. N. & Q. III 122.
If I get not that silver … quhilk is restand … it shall be black silver to her being asked how she could make it blak silver … gave no answer

e. In collocation with gold: Appar. = silver coin or, perhaps, belonging to 4 or 5 above. 1567 G. Ball. 195.
Preistis, keip no gold, Siluer nor cunȝe in ȝour purs
1587 Acts III 456/2.
That all pecuniall panes of offendouris salbe takin vp in gold and siluer at the availl of the money quhen the actis wer maid or ellis augmentit in the money now current

f. Revenue, funds. 1505–6 Treas. Acc. III 183.
To pas in … Dunbertane [etc.] … with lettrez for silvir
1548 Treas. Acc. IX 180.
To Williame Hardy, send to Perth to crave in sylver
1567 Peebles B. Rec. I 306.
The poir werkmen selwer quhilk the men of war is auhten
1605 Irons Leith II 62.
Accusit … for saying, ‘The devil tak the pures silvier’
1617 M. Works Acc. (ed.) II 33.
To Johne Steuart for running with a letter fra Dumbartane to Edinburgh for silver to the thesaurer and maister wark
1689 Cramond Kirk S. III 6 Dec. (marg.).
Silver for the poore out of mortcloaths & anwelrents

g. To mak silwer of, to realise (goods, etc.) as cash. (Cf. Penny n. 4.) 1616 Edinb. Test. XLIX 52.
My spous to sell my haill abulȝementis … and mak silwer thairof

h. Rady, redy silver, see Raddy adj. and adv. 7 b, Reddy adj. and adv. 8.

i. (The) commoun silver, funds belonging to the community.1577 Prot. Bk. J. Scott 35 (see Commoun adj. 1 b). 1605–19 Paisley B. Rec. 133.
The annuallis callit pittancis … of auld given to the Prior and Convent of Pasley callit the commoun silver

7. Variously const. in senses 5 and 6 above. a. With the names of various coins. Also, pecys of syluyr, see also Pece n. 20.(1) 1389 Wemyss Chart. 25.
Aucht penys of syluer of vsuale money
1416 Charter (Reg. H.) No. 247a.
Fourty syllingis of syluer
1488 Acts II 208/2.
And a penny of siluer to be equale in finace to the auld Inglis grote
1504 Rec. Earld. Orkney 76.
viij s. of sylver pament for houshald gere
1525 Wigtown B. Ct. II 168b.
Fra him of vi crounis of siluere the price of ane lym of beif
1544 Prot. Bk. Sir J. Cristisone 88.
vij s. of siluerr
1675 Cochran-Patrick Coinage II 167.
Another penny of silver of the value of fourty penies to be coyned
(b) 1472 Lindores A. 166.
To pay iiij s. off sylar
(2) 1472 Douglas Chart. 57.
We … has takin forsably … out of his kyst … twelfe pecys of syluyr [etc.]

b. With denominations of money of account. Also, a sowme (sowmis) of silver.(1) 1375 Barb. xx 54.
[Twenty] thowsand pund … Off siluer in-to gud monay
1391 MacRae Early Sc. Texts No. 3.
For xxxii mark off syluer
1484–5 Acta Conc. I *108/2.
A last of gude salmont or xxvj li. of siluer for the price therof
1507 Reg. Dunferm. 361.
At ilk ane of ther terms v merkis of siluer
(b) 1692 Pitcairne Assembly ii i 25.
I paid fifty pound of good siller for him
(2) 1413 Antiq. Aberd. & B. III 364.
Til haff saulde … all my landis … for a sowme of sylure
1424 Antiq. Aberd. & B. III 96.
A sowme of siluyr the qwhilk the said Sym to me hase fullily payit
1429 Reg. Episc. Brechin. I 42.
In witnes heireof I offyr … a certane sowme of syluir
a1500 Henr. Fab. 1247 (Bann.).
The wolf chairgeit the scheip … The sowme of siluer or the breid, to pay
1491 Dunferm. B. Rec. I 34.
Certain sowmys of siluyr auch til the said Wil Layng
1588 Reg. Privy C. IV 310.
The advanceing and lenning to his Majestie of ony sowmes of silver
(b) 1612 Inverurie 172.
Of the soumes of silar and victual respectively

8. With a large variety of attributives expressing money payments of various sorts: Commutation of taxes in kind, payments for services, gratuities, fees, revenue, etc. of the kind specified by the attributive. Also attrib. with money.For examples see principally the particular attributive including Almous n.1 3, Basin-silver n., Binding vbl. n., Bondage n. 2 b., Bred n.1 1 b, Bridil-silver n., Buking vbl. n., Bulȝeon n. attrib., Burges n. 3, Buriall n.3, Colt n.1 b, Cott-silver n., Cunȝe n. 6, Dok-silver n., Drink-silver n., Entré silver n., Entres silver n., Erd-silver n., Fredom(e n. 5., Gageing vbl. n., Gild n.1 3, Grassum n. 1 b, Habit n. 1 c, Haly blud(e n. 3, Hand n. 16 b, Havin silver n., Huke-silver n., Key n.1 1 c, Land n.1 6 b, Lesch(e n. 1, Letter n. 9 b, Levy n. 1 c, Malt silvir n., Mart n.1 4 c, Met n. 2, Mettag(e n. 1 c, Miln n. 1 c (5), Net n. 1 e, Obit n. 3 c, Pete n.1 3 (8), Pittance-silver n., Pleuch-silver n., Prentis n. 1 b (2), Quhit(e) silver n., Scat(t n. 5, S(c)ho n. 1 f, S(c)hor(e n.2 3 a, Sele n.2 1 b, Sentence n. 3 g, Signet n.1 b, Souldiour n. 1 (9), Spade-silver n., Stallang(e n., Tallo(u)n n.2 c (4), Taxatio(u)n n. 1 e, Wed n. 4, Waring vbl. n. 2 c, Wyn(e n. 3 e. 1489 Edinb. B. Rec. I 57.
Payment … of thar prentis siluer at thair entre
1503 Lanark B. Rec. 13.
Compt … of John Mowat rentmaister … for lit silver, vj s. viij d.
1505 Prestwick B. Rec. 38.
viij s. of the petmos siluir
1510 Anal. Scot. II 190.
The spoilȝeing fra thame of the forsaidis ankorage syluir
1511–12 Selkirk B. Ct. (ed.) 15.
Al burges silwer and the commoun guidis of this said towne and the bred silver
1542 Dunferm. B. Rec. I 228.
Burges silliris
1553 Dundee B. Ct. II fol. 271 (22 Nov.).
The frachtismen bayth of this towne & Cowpir promissit xij gis. vlemis of conduct siluir furthward of the sek & twa s. Scottis of ilk twn hameward
1559 Sutherland Charters in Orig. Par. II ii 613.
Hwik siluer
1562–3 Kirkcaldy B. Rec. 65.
Anent his fredom siluer [he] has put him in the … townschippis will
1566–7 Reg. Privy S. V ii 317/1.
Lie daill silver
1572 Reg. Privy S. VI 315/1.
Irne silver [and] mart silver [of the lands of Ardfinlaw]
1586 Perth B. Ct. 17 Sept.
Ane mekill pott … of bres … pondit fra him for his bybill siluer
1587 Kirkcudbr. B. Rec. I 217.
The vther ten merks at Lambes to be peyit of the girs siluer
1602 Dundee Shipping P. 73.
Coll selder
1628 Dunferm. Hammermen MS p. 10.
1636 Laurie Hist. Free Masonry (App. iv) 447.
Fourtie schillingis money by and attoure the buiking silvir of the said prenteis
1641-8 Skipper's Acc. (Smettone) 4b.
Drink seillr
1678 Kirkintilloch B. Ct. 100.
Ane decreit wes past at Johne Balloch meillman instance against severall persones for meill silver
attrib. 1501–2 Acta Conc. III 155.
Asking of thaim ij d. of harm silver money that thai pait of befor

9. a. A tincture in heraldry. b. A pigment. c. A hue. Also attrib.a. c1420 Wynt. iv 321.
The kyng of Lidis bare Off gowlys in to sylver brycht Thre creyhsceandis in his armys
c1450-2 Howlat 345 (A).
Twa keyis our croce of siluer … In a feild of asure
c1450-2 Howlat 352 (A).
In a feild of siluer … he beris Ane egill … displait
a1500 Gol. & Gaw. 20.
Baneris … of siluer and sabill … Of siluer and saphir
1494 Loutfut MS 147b.
Siluer & goulis
b. 1488 Treas. Acc. I 163.
For golde aysure siluer and colouris
c. 1549 Compl. 37/18.
The pretty fische … vitht there rede vermeil fynnis ande there skalis lyik the brycht siluyr
attrib. c1420 Wynt. viii 1492.
Scho gert set … All the cowrssys … In to sylver brycht weschelle

10. ? A gambling game of some sort, or ? = for money. 1555–6 Lauder's Prot. Bk. Burgh of North Berwick (Reg. H.) 136b (15 Feb.).
John Spens sall nocht play noder at dice nor chartes nor ches nor tabillis nor silver … in mowis nor ernist

11. ? Something silver in colour. 1633 Orkney Witch Trial in Reg. Privy C. 2 Ser. V 546.
The said Catrein bad the said Margret get thrie sundrie sortis off sillueris and put them within ane siwe and sift them over the bak off the horse quhilk wes seik

II. attrib. (passing into adj.) and comb.

12. a. Made of silver.(1) 1426 Soc. Ant. II 387 (see Chalice n. (b)). 1456 Misc. Bann. C. III 100.
I lef my sylvar collar to Sir Gilbert the Haye
1491 Treas. Acc. I 168.
The cunȝeing of … brokin siluer vesschell
1496–7 Acta Conc. II 46.
Ane blew silver belt of the wecht of viij uncis
1506 Orkney & Shetl. Rec. I 248 (see Butto(u)n n. 1). c1500-c1512 Dunb. (OUP) 124/23.
Foulis … In sylver caiges
1513 Doug. i ix 108 (see Plate n.1 8). 1524 Edinb. Hammermen MS 114.
1527 Aberd. B. Rec. I 117.
The Egiptiens tuk … tua siluer spounis
1531 Bell. Boece (M) II 382.
Mony goldin and siluer iowellis
1567 Inv. Q. Mary App. cxlix.
Twa sylver chandeloris gylt
a1585 Polwart Flyt. 728 (T).
Syn thow succeid to weir the siluer scho
1609 Wemyss of Bogie MSS.
Ane silver salt fat
1610 Crim. Trials III 100 (see Plate n.1 9). 1616 Kirkcudbr. B. Rec. II 190.
The siluer gun ȝeirlie too be schot at the first Monday of May
1618 Edinb. Test. L 164b (see Clinkard n. 1). 1640 Black Bk. Taymouth 347.
Tua lang schankit siluer cuppes for acavite
1647 Musselburgh 136.
Robert Dobie … wan the sylver arrow
1669 Kirkcudbr. Sheriff Ct. Deeds I 162.
Ane silver cupp … for ane horse cours
1683 Edinb. B. Rec. XI 65.
A pice of silver plat to the vallow of twenty-fyve pounds sterling
1693 Whitelaw Sc. Arms Makers 230.
Ane silver hilt to ane sword
(b) 1457 Peebles B. Rec. I 119.
A sillar belt, a sillar spon
1562 Will A. Betoun 225.
Ane treying cope of ane siller futt
1635 Kirkcudbr. B. Rec. II 521 (see Nok, var. of Knok n.1).(c) 1602 Dundee Shipping P. 73.
Ane selder quhissell
(2) 1562 Dumfries B. Ct. fol. 120.
Tua siluer groitts
1579 Goudie Shetl. Antiq. 148.
Silver dolouris
1580 Acts III 191/1.
Siluer cunȝie
1615 Orkney & Shetl. Ct. Bks. 101.
Four auld silver dollouris

b. Consisting of silver in various forms, specif., silver buke, folȝe, silver leaf or leaf silver. (Cf. 2 d.)(1) 1488 Treas. Acc. I 86.
Twa braid pecis of brynt siluer bullioun
1562 Inverness Rec. I 80.
Ane thousand markis sylwar vncunyeit monie
(2) 1496 Treas. Acc. I 294.
For iij quaris of a siluir buke to the … banar
1497 Halyb. 117.
3 grottkyn of syluer folȝe
(3) 1524 Acta Conc. Publ. Aff. 200.
[Bothwell, provost of Edinburgh, to] keip still in his handis the silver weddis [pertaining to the Queen]

c. Made of, or containing, silver thread. 1565 Treas. Acc. XI 439.
jcxlvij elnis of silver tock
1636 Sutherland Bk. II 168 (see Lace n. 4).

d. Producing silver. c1615 Chron. Kings 174.
The siluer mynd of Binnie

e. Appar., for use in the processing of silver (coin). Cf. Irne n. 2 d. 1489–90 Acta Conc. I 131/1.
Gudis of areschip … a siluer sele a bag with siluer irnis [etc.]

13. Of payments, rents, duties, etc.: Made or levied in money.1504 Rec. Earld. Orkney 76 (see 7 a (1) above). 1562 Reg. Cupar A. I 353.
Siluer males of the landis of Couper … ijc vlib vijs
1565 Montgomery Mem. 200.
The said infeftment, assignatioun, and siluer feall … to expyir
1579 Reg. Privy C. III 143.
To pay to thame the … sylvir prices and maillis of the samyn
1583 Reg. Privy C. III 606.
And out of the silver thrid of the said bischoprie of Dumblane xvi li. xiii s. iiii d. money
1584 (1585) Reg. Great S. 264/2.
59 lib. 12 sol. 9½ den. lie scat silver et silverland maillis
1596 Melvill 332.
Setting … lyff-rents successive for peyment of small silver-dewtie
1597 Skene Verb. S. s.v. Firmarivs.
Firma signifies the dutie quhilk the tennent paies to the landis-lord, quhidder it be siluer-maill, victuall, or vther duetie
1598 Paisley B. Rec. 217.
Teinds, siluir teind, victuall teynd
1598 Edinb. Test. XXXI 383b.
For his siluer maill of the mylne
1608 Breadalbane Lett. 24 March.
To pay some victuall dewtie and some silver maill … out of the landis of Monȝie
1627 Orkney Rentals iii 49.
Greinwall jx d. land fewit be William Sinclair for ane silver dewtie, conforme to the rentall
1630 M. P. Brown Suppl. Decis. I 178.
The retour containeth a liquid silver-duty
1645 Galloway P. 26 July.
The first peyment … to be … £120 of silver rent
1647 Burnett Fam. P.
Teine silver & teine victual proportionablie as the rest of the ground payes with aught pounds munie forsaid of silver duitie yearlie
c1650 Spalding I 317.
To pay the tent penny of there rentis, victuall rent, silver rent, or anuelrent
1673 Kirkcudbr. Sheriff Ct. Processes No. 177.
Six pund for silver fies … pertaining to the said Jannat and that as for the last halfe yeirs fie dew be him to hir as being my fied servand
1680 Kirkcudbr. Test. (Reg. H.) 27 Oct.
Summa of silver dett £14
1687 Argaty Baron Ct. 5 Nov.
Threttie fyve merkes Scots, pairtly resting be him of bygone dewty … and partly for his sylver cropt at Martimas nixt cropt 1687

b. Sylver brydell, = Penny-brydal(l n. 1624 Cramond Presb. Fordyce 8.
Anent the abuses at silver brydells, no minister is to giff the benefit of mariage to any persons till they consigne ane pand worthe ten poundes
1653 Cramond Ch. Grange 15.
Silver brydells in taverne houses

14. Having the colour or lustre of silver, silvery.(1) 14… Reg. Episc. Aberd. I 245.
And syn strekand vp til a blindfurde beneth the siluerfurde
1579 Kilrenny Old Parish Records (Reg. H.) 30 Aug.
John Willsone in the siller dyk [sc. Cellardyke] of his wyf … ane dochter callit [blank]
1658–1700 Greyfriars Interments 39.
Balfour, Robert, indweller (at the Silir Waill)
(2) c1450-2 Howlat 410 (A).
Ane … bure in till asure … Siluer sternis
1501 Doug. Pal. Hon. 27.
On the laurers siluer droppis lyis
c1500-c1512 Dunb. G. Targe 14 (M).
The perlie droppis schuk in to silver schouris
c1500-c1512 Dunb. G. Targe 26. 1513 Doug. viii xi 33.
The siluyr ganer, flyghterand
1513 Doug. xii Prol. 131. 1531 Bell. Boece I v.
Quhen silvir Diane … Fra dirk eclips wes past
c1590 J. Stewart 137 § 6.
The christall skyis … sched in siluer slops
1611-57 Mure Early Misc. P. xi 17.
Silwer trickling teares

15. In comb. with adjectives and participles, denoting a. The metal itself. (See also Parcell-gilt adj.) b. Its colour or lustre. c. Silver-seik, without money, penniless.a. a1400 Leg. S. xxvii 1569.
A costly kirk … Of siluer weile gilt
1478–9 Acta Conc. I 26/2.
A stope of siluer gilt
1563 Acts II 538/1.
Fals cuinȝie of gold or siluer layit money
1573 Reg. Privy C. II 318 (see Layit ppl. adj.1). 1643 Edinb. Test. LX 236b.
Forkes and knyfes silver heftit
b. 1513 Doug. xii Prol. 55.
Syluer scalyt fyschis
1600 Treas. Acc. MS 67b.
Siluer hewit satyn
a1605 Montg. Misc. P. xxxv 26.
Lyk golden threeds Hir siluer shyning brees
c. a1500 Henr. Fab. 2036.
Sen I am stewart, I wald we had sum stuff, And ȝe ar siluer-seik, I wait richt weill

16. In comb. with a. Agent nouns. b. Wecht, the weight used for silver.a. 1585–6 Edinb. Test. Index I 132.
John Hill, silver-changer
1664 Gen. Reg. Hornings 31 Oct.
Fadmando Jacksone silver veiver
b. 1596 Conv. Burghs I 482.
The wecht of all forane wayris to be correspondent to the siller wecht, quhilk is saxtene vnce for the pund

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"Silver n.". Dictionary of the Scots Language. 2004. Scottish Language Dictionaries Ltd. Accessed 21 Jul 2024 <>



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