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

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First published 1951 (DOST Vol. II).
This entry has not been updated since then but may contain minor corrections and revisions.

Franche, Franch, adj. and n. Also: Fraunche, Fransche, Fransh(e, Frain(s)che, Fraynche. [ME. frensch(e, frensc, OE. frencisc. The vowel of the Sc. forms agrees with Du. Fransch, Dan. and Sw. Fransk, mod. Icel. Franskur.]

1. adj. French, in various contexts.(1) c1420 Wynt. viii. 6649.
Set that the Inglis ma ware then Than ware the Franche
1456 Hay I. 135/27.
The Franche knycht takis in grete curage to pas to the bataill
Ib. 235/7.
Be the way thare metis thame a Franche capitane
1495 Treas Acc. I. 227.
Bocht to the King fra the Franche cutler, ij baslaris
1504 Ib. II. 423.
Maister Johne, the Franch medicinar, new maid Abbot of Tungland
1513 Doug. i. Prol. 269.
Vndir cullour of sum strange Franch wycht
1532 Treas. Acc. VI. 73.
Deliverit to the franche armourar … vj quarteris crammasy satyng
a1570-86 Maitl. F. xvi. 71.
Scottis or Franche quhat man that ever he be
(b) c1420 Wynt. iv. 2044 (C).
Bathe Duche and Fransche naciounys
1491 Treas. Acc. I. 179.
To bring the arres claythis … to Lythgow again the cuming of the Fransche harrold
1565–6 Melville Corr. 5.
We haue writtin … to the Fransche ambassatour
1623 Melrose P. 503.
The Franshe king
(c) 1589 Edinb. B. Rec. V. 7.
Ane Fraynche cordiner, quha wes tayne … amangst the Spayngyerts
1599 Ib. 255.
His Mai[es]teis bankett to be maid to the Fraynche imbassodour
(2) 1456 Hay I. 45/26.
The quhilk is alsmekle to say in Franche tong [etc.]
c1420 Wynt. viii. 1626 (W).
Thus he said in Franche leid
1556 Edinb. B. Rec. II. 241.
The sowme of ten merkis payit … to the maister of the Franche scule
(3) 1473 Treas. Acc. I. 13.
iiij elne of Franche blak for a syde govne to the king
Ib. 41.
ij½ elne of Franche broune to couir my Lordis creddill
1506 Ib. III. 275.
v … elne Frauch lynnyn
1512 Ib. iv. 205.
Thrie dussone of Franche crapis
1536 Edinb. B. Rec. ii. 71.
Als weill Frainche clayth, Flanders clayth, as Scottis clayth
1561 Ib. III. 121.
Als mekle Franche blak as wilbe euery ane of thame aue coit
1566 Treas. Acc. MS. 53.
Thre elnis of Franche freis
1580 Edinb. Test. IX. 52 a.
iij elnis of … Fransche gray cloiking claith
(4) 1537 Treas. Acc. VI. 336.
Ane franche sadill furnyst with girthis [etc.]
1546 Acta Conc. & Sess. MS. XXII. 126 b.
Twa franche hwdis of welwott
1603 Montgomery Mem. 351.
For ane Franch vyr to myhed
(5) 1467 Acts II. 88/2.
The Franche crowne … and the ridar
1468 12th Rep. Hist. MSS. App. viii. 143.
The franche crowne of gold [to pass] for allewing schillingis
1483 Acta Aud. 112/1.
xlv franch crovnis & demyis, the price of the pece xiiij s.
1502 Treas. Acc. II. 77.
To the Kingis offerand, thre Franch crounes
1510 Reg. Privy S. I. 327/20.
The gift of xx franch crounis of gold ȝerelie

b. Gaulish. 1513 Doug. viii. xi. 36.
Thar mycht thou se the Franch army alhaill Haist … to the capitoll

2. n. a. The French language. 1400 Facs. Nat. MSS. II. 44.
Englis … ys mare clere to myne vnderstandyng than Latyne or Fraunche
?1438 Alex. Col. 7.
My will was gude, To follow that in franche I fand writtin
c1420 Wynt. viii. 1661 (C).
In Franche qwhein he this had said thar, In Franche he said ȝhit forthirmare
1513 Doug. i. Prol. 116.
So me behufyt … Sum bastard Latyn, Franch or Inglys oys, Quhar scant was Scottis
1522 Rep. Mar & Kellie MSS. 11.
The Lord Erskin … sall be his scoule master … and instruct him … to speke Latin and Fransh
1622-6 Bisset II. 201/16.
These lawes war … translated out of Franche into Duche

b. pl. The Gauls. 1533 Boece ix. viii. 304 b.
Rome … was takin … be the Franchis of Sans in begynnyng of thare nacion

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"Franche adj., n.". Dictionary of the Scots Language. 2004. Scottish Language Dictionaries Ltd. Accessed 23 Jun 2024 <>



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