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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 since then but may contain minor corrections and revisions.

Mark-, Merkland, n.2 [Mark n.2 4 b.]

An Orkney and Shetland land-measure.See H. Marwick in Orkney Antiq. Soc. XIII. 18–19 and 21, Id. Orkney Farm-Names (1952) 200 f. and 1329 Rec. Earld. Orkney 12(= Diplomatarium Norvegicum II. i. (1851) No. 170).In Orkney, fractions of a markland are reckoned in shillings and pence, taking the mark as = 13s. 4d.: see F. W. L. Thomas What is a Pennyland ? in Soc. Ant. XVIII. 273.In Shetland the markland amounted to 8 ures or urislands or one eighteenth of a last (Last n.1 4).? Orig. land valued at a purchase price or capital value of one mark of pure silver. In Orkney (and ? orig. in Shetland) restricted to use in assessing the purchase price or rate of rent to be charged, scat being levied on the separate urisland-pennyland valuation, but in Shetland used as a general purpose land-measure.(1) 1505 Rec. Earld. Orkney 204.
The quhilk twa merk land … we have … sauld … for … foure pund Scottis payment
1545–6 Ib. 229, 1551 Ib. 245, 1553 Ib. 106. 1555 Ib. 255.
Twa mark land five schillingis les, callit Sandis
1557 Orkney & Shetl. Rec. I. 263.
To pay … foir ilk merk land ilk yeir ane leische pund butter at Alhallomes
1583–4 Rec. Earld. Orkney 156. 1593 Prot. Bk. T. Auchinlek 31 b.
He coissit ane merk land in the vtter toun of Stromnes … for the said half merk in Leua
(2) 15.. Orkney & Shetl. Rec. I. 59.
This letter in Northin js ane charter mad be Olave Mawinsson of xxij merk land of Houle j Onst to Sir Dauid Sinclare and his aris
c 1524 Rec. Earld. Orkney 421. 1572 Orkney & Shetl. Rec. 179.]
[Triginta nouem marcatas cum sex lie vris terrarum jacentium in … Nesting et Lunasting
1574 Ib. 195.
All and haill ane markland, sax penneis the mark, lyand in Hammer
1592 (1610) Reg. Great S. 117/2.
All and haill my 3 merkland of Howerstay, my half merkland of Kirkbuster, my 6 merk and 2 uyerris land of Kildabuster [etc.] … and my 33 merkland of Aith, … all lyand within the ile of Brasay
1602 Shetland Sheriff Ct. (ed.) 38.
Annent the richt and tytill of sax merk land uthell lyand in … Gruting, sax penneis the merk
1605 Reg. Great S. 607/2. 1612 Orkney & Shetl. Ct. Bk. 10 Aug.
To merch and meith ane twa merk land out of that last of the lands of Buay quhair the said Elizabethis landis lay of befoir
1627 Rep. Parishes 227.
Dowary rentallit a 9 merk land payis yeirlie in grassoums (as all the landis of the pareis do ilk merk thairof 8 s.) inde 3 lib. 12 s. [etc.]
1639 Sc. Hist. Rev. XXI. 130.

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"Merkland n.2". Dictionary of the Scots Language. 2004. Scottish Language Dictionaries Ltd. Accessed 16 Jun 2024 <>



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