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

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First published 2002 (DOST Vol. XII).
This entry has not been updated since then but may contain minor corrections and revisions.

(Wattiry,) Wat(t)(e)ry, adj. Also: wattirrie, wattri-, vattery, waterie, vaterie, watrie, watrye, uatry, -ie. [ME and e.m.E. wateri (a1225), watery (Piers Plowman), watry (Trevisa), watiry (c1407), watt(e)ry (both c1440).]

1. Full of water. b. Well watered or irrigated.Also in place-names. c1230 Liber Dryburgh 116 (cf. Wat(t)ir n. 15 b, c1230 Liber Dryburgh 115).
Usque ad antiquam fossam … que antiquitus vocabatur Wattridike
1405 Reg. Paisley 378.
In vico qui dicitur la Watryraw
1513 Doug. ii x 83.
The clowd of dyrknes … That on ȝour mortell eyn … Lyke to ane watry [Sm. wattery] slowch standis dym about
1513 Doug. v i 17.
A watry clowd [Sm. wattry] … down a tempest sent
b. c1520-c1535 Nisbet Ep. Ald Test. xxvii 11.
Thou salbe as a watry gardynne
1596 Dalr. I 7/9.
Heir … sall ȝe se braid planes, thair wattirrie dales: heir a dry knowe or a thin forrest, thair a thick wodd

2. Pertaining to water or the sea. b. Consisting of water. 1513 Doug. v xiii 125.
Neptunus … kan … Hys horssis ȝok to draw his cart or chair … And lichtly our the fludis croppis frakkis Hys watry chair
b. c1552 Lynd. Mon. 6307.
Dame Synthea, I … In tyll hir wattry regioun tyll ascend … vp frome the orient
c1590 Fowler I 89/86.
He … Searcheth all the bankis The bayes, the brayes, the brookes, the floods, the deip and watrie stankis
1596 Dalr. I 32/26.
With fludes flowing round about and wattirrie wais evin sa of the sey
1604 James VI Tobacco 91/26.
Meteors which being bred of nothing else but of the vapours … sucked vp by the sunne out of the earth, the sea, and waters yet are the same smoakie vapours turned and transformed into raynes snawes deawes hoare frostes and such like waterie meteors as by the contrarie the raynie cloudes are often transformed … in … winds

3. a. Of the colour of water, ? pale or colourless. Only comb.with Cullourit ppl. adj.1 and Hewit adj.1 b. b. Of the consistency of water. c. Of a sign or portent, esp. a sign of the Zodiac: Of the nature of water viewed as one of the elements, cold, phlegmatic. d. ? Sounding like water.a. 1513 Doug. xii Prol. 110.
Sum hevynly culloryt … Sum watry hewit as the haw wally see
1568 Skeyne Descr. Pest 13.
Vrine … first vaterie colourit thairefter of bilious colour
b. 1580-92 James VI Lusus Reg. 46.
It is the colde & uatrie fleume
c. a1500 Lanc. 519.
Thar is no thing sal sucour nor reskew Your wordly honore nedis most adew But throuch the watrye lyone & ek fyne On throuch the liche & ek the wattir syne And throuch the conseill of the flour, God wot What this shude men
c1600 Medical Recipes 88.
Cancer is ane signe … flewmatik and vattery
d. 1581-1623 James VI Poems II 50/9.
Praise God … Uith uatry quhissiles schill

4. Of the eyes: Suffused with tears. 1611-57 Mure Dido & Æneas i 425.
With wounded heart and watrie eyes

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"Wattiry adj.". Dictionary of the Scots Language. 2004. Scottish Language Dictionaries Ltd. Accessed 12 Apr 2024 <>



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