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

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First published 2002 (DOST Vol. XI).

Vantage, Wantag(e, n. Also: vantaig, wanttage, vayntage. [ME and e.m.E. vantage (Cursor M.), vauntage (Wyclif), AF vantage, OF avantage, cf. Advantage n.]

1. Superiority, tactical advantage, esp. in a battle or contest. b. Of vantage, of superior quality or status, of superiority. 1375 Barb. viii 150 heading (C).
Heire King R. providis for wantag in the place quhar thai suld fecht
1460 Hay Alex. 1567.
His helm was teit ouir mekill to the syde till haue mair sicht; the oppin weill he spyde—It is vantage, war nocht the perrell gret
1595 Cal. Sc. P. XII 103.
[He] will make his vantage by skirmishing and onsetting where vantage may be had
1596 Dalr. I 215/23.
Oft thay meit: oft thay parte with lytle vantage
b. 1460 Hay Alex. 1009.
The king … tald his chalmerlane Gart get him clething … Syne gart enarme him for haid of vantage Fyve hunder pairis tursit by careage
1460 Hay Alex. 1822.
Thay said it standis maist at his awin curage: Sen he haid wonning ane battall of vantage
1460 Hay Alex. 3384.
Thai war sa few and sa hardy Skant ane thousand chaist all thare cumpaney Bot thai had hors and armoure of vantage

2. Chiefly, in a battle situation: An advantage, a position of superiority; a set of circumstances in one's favour; an opportunity to gain superiority. Also to be at, win (a, one's) vantage of (a person), to be in a position of superiority, gain an advantage over (someone).(1) c1420 Wynt. viii 2576.
Standand agayne oure fays … gyve we se may thare wysage, But dowt, we sall hawe a wantage
1533 Boece 221a.
He gouernit Albion xvii ȝeris with ane vantage and speciall prerogative quhilk nane vthir legate had
1535 Stewart 19503.
He thame teichit … Onto the sone … to turne thair bak, Than all the vantage that tha mich[t] to tak, And kest the sone in the Romanes sicht
1560 Rolland Seven S. 9545.
Alexander at last ane wantage saw. On Gwydois nek ane nakit place he spyis, Quhair at gude speid he stryks twyse or thryis
a1578 Pitsc. I 97/14.
The Anguische men … haueing sa great ane wanttage they come more fercelie wpoun them
a1578 Pitsc. II 39/23.
They had baitht the sone and the wind quhilk was ane great wantage to thame for it blew the smuik and reik of thair poulder wpoun thair marrowis … [etc.]
(2) 1559 M. Napier Mem. J. Napier 67.
Do that is in you to appoynt us gif the samin may be; failȝeand thairof, lat him be at his vayntage of me
a1568 Bann. MS 256a/2.
Thair is nocht ane winche that I se Sall win ane wantage of me

3. Profit (of a commodity, etc.), financial gain. Also without article.(1) ?1438 Alex. i 714.
Gif thow will do this message, Thow sall haue vnto thy vantage Ane hundreth pund of gold
c1475 Wall. ix 827.
Wallace said, ‘Nay, thai wordys are in wayn; We will nocht leyff that may be our wantage; The wod till ws is worth a ȝeris wage'
a1605 Montg. Ch. & Slae 1293 (Wr.).
For all the vantage and the winning Good buyers gets at the beginning
(2) 1552 Glasgow Test. 82 (see Waring vbl. n.). 1551 Hamilton Cat. 96.
Do gud and len, lukand for na vantage thairof agane
1559–60 Ayr B. Acc. 30.
The vantage of ropit salt and wyne thre score li. xvj li. xvj s.
1602 Kirkcudbr. B. Rec. I 417.
viiij s. ix d. for half of the vantage of ane kow quhilk ves bocht betuix thame
1648 Kirkcudbr. B. Rec. II 825.
The sowme of fourtie pundis of the vantage of certane skinnes
(3) 1602 Kirkcudbr. B. Rec. I 432.
To pay to him xx s. … for vantage of tua peckis flour he bocht for xxx s. the peck
1603 Shetland Sheriff Ct. MS 91b.
The haile browstaris and wentaris of ale … have sauld … the baik ane pennie at vantage [ed. a vantage] over thair bying
1635 Monteith Stewartry Ct. 29 Oct.
Thai may have ane kow for ane merk of siluer of vantage to the seller vpoun his aith

b. attrib. With boll, braid, man, pertaining to something additional or free, e.g., to the loaf which makes up a baker's dozen. 1583 St. A. Baxter Bks. 35.
It is statut & ordinat that na freman and specialie vantage men to baik nane of thair braid callit braid nekit or snekit lewes vndir the pane of xl s.
1585 Burntisland B. Ct. 23 Oct.
That no les weill lawinit weilbakine quhyt braid be sauld … be oncoutht baxteris … that thair be no wantage braid sauld heirin be fremene nor onfremene [etc.]
c1620 Liber Dryburgh 385.
Lord of Traquair for his teind sheaves of Rutherfoord estimat in his absens to be worth of frie rent yearlie (tak dewtie and vantage bollis reckned and converted in money) fyve hundreth threttie thrie pundis vj s. viij d. Taxt to [etc.]

4. Benefit, gain in general. Also, once, pl. ?1438 Alex. ii 6073.
Bot ane vantage thay haue, I wis, And ane treasure that ryall is, Of amouris and of ladyes dere That ar of beuty fare and clere
1460 Hay Alex. 3630.
Now ar thow lyk to tyne al thai vantage Off his honoure, wourschipe, and wassalage
c1475 Wall. ix 915.
This wantage was, the Scottis thaim dantyt swa, Nayn Inglisman durst fra his feris ga
c1500 Rec. Earld. Orkney 75.
The said Mawus tilbe at his wantage till gadder the watter till the hycht of the hill in his awin fredome
c1500 Barounis Lawis 4b.
Neuir the les it is our all quhar now sufferit for wyning & wantage of the lordis that the courtis aw [Skene Reg. Maj. i 102b, Nevertheles it is over all quhere now suffered for winning and vantage of the lords court that [etc.]]
c1520-c1535 Nisbet Prol. Rom. 317/35.
For luf of rewarde, wantage, ande waynne glore
1570-3 Bann. Trans. 46.
Gif hir death could doe me eather wantage or pleasour
1584 Grant Chart. 158.
This [letter] finding ȝow all veillit, I dowt nocht bot thai sall haif the les vantaig quhat ever thai meyn to interprys
a1651 Calderwood VII 602.
Finding noe vantage otherwise to be had of his behaviour or his words, he [etc.]
pl. c1610 Melville Mem. 192.
Others had particulairs against the Hammiltons, and supponit to get them wraked, therby to won vantages be fisching in dromly watters

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"Vantage n.". Dictionary of the Scots Language. 2004. Scottish Language Dictionaries Ltd. Accessed 27 Sep 2022 <>



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