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

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First published 1963 (DOST Vol. III).
This entry has not been updated since then but may contain minor corrections and revisions.

Lowpar, -er, Louper, n. Also: louppar, looper. [Lowp v.: cf. ON. hlaupari vagabond, and, charger (horse), and late north. ME. loper leaper, dancer (Cath. Angl.).] a. A wanderer, vagabond. (So also in the later dial.) Cf. also Land-lopper and Land-lowper. b. Dyke loupar, one who enters by climbing a boundary wall and not by the gate: fig., one who gets in ‘by the back door’ or whose appointment to a position is clandestine or irregular. (In other uses in mod. Sc. and north. Eng. dial.). c. Ladder louper, one who jumps from the gallows ladder, a gallows bird: cf. Ledder n.1 b. d. In Orkney, ferry looper: cf. mod. Orkn. dial. ferry-louper, -looper, -lupper, an incomer to Orkney from Scotland, i.e. by the Pentland Ferry, an outsider, stranger. — 1530 Lynd. Test. Pap. 992.
Sic pacient prelatis enterit be the porte, … Now dyke lowparis dois in the kirk resort Be symonie and supplycatioun Off prencis
a1570-86 Maitl. F. cxxi. 2.
A woman lowper [B. lowpar, R. louppar] landles … Sall never … do weill
? 1655 Fugitive Poetry II. xxviii. 2/28.
Clan Merloch picker ladder loupers
1661 S. Ronaldshay 37.
[She called the minister and his wife] thieffes and vagabonds and runnegatis and ferry loopers

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"Lowpar n.". Dictionary of the Scots Language. 2004. Scottish Language Dictionaries Ltd. Accessed 12 Jul 2024 <>



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