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

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First published 1971 (DOST Vol. IV).
This entry has not been updated but may contain minor corrections and revisions.

Magnific, a. Also: -fik(e, -fick, -fict, -fi(c)que, magnefeik. [e.m.E. magnyfyque, magnifike (1490), F. magnifigue, L. magnific -us.]

1. Of buildings, artifacts and the like: Sumptuously constructed or adorned, magnificent, splendid. 1562-3 Winȝet I. 5/7.
Ȝour liberalitie to the pure, ȝour magnific collegeis of godly learnit in ȝour cumpanie
1570 Leslie 37. 1573-1600 Burne Cath. Tr. 138/28.
To buyld maist sumptuous and magnifict kirkis
1596 Dalr. I. 15/32. Ib. 28/22.
A magnifik and a riche monaster … quhilke with a verie magnifike wal … was walled round about
Ib. 103/25.
Commoune lugengs, nathir verie magnifike bot few
1613 Maxwell Mem. II. 71. 1614 Lett. & State P. Jas. VI 219.
Ane brodered poolke for carieing the greate seale … werie magnific and honest
1622-6 Bisset II. 189/27. 1665 Lauder Jrnl. 64. 1667 Ib. 179.

2. Of proceedings or writings: Splendid, stately, imposing, magnificent, grand. 1562-3 Winȝet I. 113/6.
We reid nocht only of oure Saluiouris maist honorable and magnifik buriing, bot also of St. Johne the Baptist
Ib. 129/15.
The magnifik ordour and multitude of sindry ministeris in the temple of God appointit be Dauid
1570 Leslie 265.
Thair was … gret magnifique solempniteis used in the kirke
c1590 Fowler II. 171/35.
In magnifique banketting, reuelling & daily hunting with great honour
1600-1610 Melvill 279. Ib. 748.
The Erle of Dumbar come doun with a magnific commissioune of livetennantrie
1622-6 Bisset II. 180/27. c1650 Spalding I. 90. 1665 Reg. Privy C. 3 Ser. II. 61.

3. Of persons and their conditions: Noble, exalted. 1570 Leslie 269.
A prince of hiech and magnificque curage
c1615 Chron. Kings 143.
He schew his magnefeik spreitt to the end
1639 Baillie I. 237.
I hope you ar not … by … affaires put … out of remimberance … of your magnifik office of clerkship and advocation to all ministers

4. Munificent, royally lavish. c1590 Fowler II. 195/8.
The King … was sollicite and carefull of honourable and magnifike rewardes to be bestowed on … them
a1597-1617 Hist. Jas. VI 179.
Bacchus with his magnifik liberalitie and plentie, distributing of his liquor

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"Magnific adj.". Dictionary of the Scots Language. 2004. Scottish Language Dictionaries Ltd. Accessed 2 Oct 2023 <>



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