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

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First published 2001 (DOST Vol. X).
This entry has not been updated since then but may contain minor corrections and revisions.

Thro(u)ch, Through(e, Throw(e, Thorow(e, prep. Also: throuche, throwch(e, throwgh(e, thro(u)cht, throwcht, throught, threwch, thrwch, throuthe, thruch(t, thrugh(t, thruth(t, throche, throgh(e, throiche, throicht, throchge, thro(u)g, throu, throue, threu, threw, thru, thrw, thro, troch(t, trouch, trew, troithe, trhow, thorowch, thorycht, thorrow, thoro, thurrow. [ME and e.m.E. þrough, thorugh (both 1297), þruh (?a1300), thru, throu (both 14th c.), þro, throgh, thrugh (all c1400), trogh(t (both 1425), throughe (Caxton), OE ðurh, þurh.]Cf. also Doun-throw, prep., Ourthrow prep., Out-throuch prep., Out-throw prep.

1. So as to traverse (a place) from one side or end to the other. Also in fig. context.For further examples of throw the toun, see Scurge v. 1 b.There is some overlap with sense 2.(a) 1375 Barb. xi 370.
The Inglis-men gif that thai wald Throw the park to the castell hald
a1400 Leg. S. xiii 169.
Thai drew hyme newly thru the towne
c1420 Wynt. viii 6118 (W).
And syne throu Nyddisdaill can thai faire Hamewartis to thar avne cuntre
14.. Acts I 364/2.
Giff ony be tane with the laff of a halpenny in burgh he aw throu the tovn to be dungyn
1466 Reg. Dunferm. 356.
I sall nocht … gyff leiffe na tollerance to na man … to draw na drauchtis of wateris throw my landis
c1475 Wall. i 286.
Besyd Landoris the ferrye our thai past Syn throw the Ochtell sped thaim wondyr fast
a1508 Kennedy Flyt. 473.
Throu Ingland, thef, and tak thé to thy fute
c1500-c1512 Dunb. (OUP) 166/4.
As throw the mercat he past
1531 Bell. Boece I xix.
Fra Spanye [they] come throw the Franche and Almane seis but ony impediment to the saide ile
c1540 Lynd. Syde Taillis 176.
That duddrounis & duntibouris throu the dubbis traillis
a1561 Q. Kennedy Breif Tract. (ed.) 130/23.
As vas his power to pase throw the multitude of the Jowis invisible
1572-5 Diurn. Occurr. 6.
The same day Monsieur de Planis … past af Scotland throw Ingland to France
1685 Sinclair Satan's Inv. World 255.
The devil harle your soul through hell
(b) c1420 Wynt. i 148.
All Ethiop it rynnys a-bowt, And throucht all Egypt rynnys out
c1420 Wynt. vii 153.
Bot throwch the kynryk all he rade
c1420 Wynt. vii 2528.
The wayis befor hym stoppyd wes Be gret buschementys off Inglis men; Ay throwch thame yhit gat he then
c1420 Wynt. viii 1029.
Throwch all Lwndyn he bad hyr ryde
1537–8 M. Works Acc. (ed.) I 222.
For … clengand of … the conduitis within the place throch the lairdneris to the closattis
1553 Dundee B. Ct. II 228 (19 May).
1554 Liber Dryburgh 290.
Twa akiris of ferme landis lyand rynrig throcht the feld
a1595 Cullen Chron. Aberd. 61.
I leid thayme saifly throicht the se, And fray his oist did defend
1624 Misc. Abbotsf. C. 144.
Ȝe cuming to the said Thomas' hous, keipit not the hie gait but went in throught the cornes
1657 Balfour Ann. II 121.
Throuthe the same [sc. gallery] passed alonge all the ceremonies of marriage, as followethe
(c) 1590-1 R. Bruce Serm. 66.
The band of blood, running thorowe ea race
1611-57 Mure True Crucifixe To the Reader.
If it seeme to thee I haue extended the worke to more than a competent length, some few moments shall serue thee to runne thorow the margents
1665–7 Lauder Jrnl. 36.
On the top of this stone I monted, and metted it thorow the diametrum and found it 24 foot
(d) 1544 Corr. M. Lorraine 72.
1655 Dumfries Council Min. MS 22 Oct.
Robert Stewart to go trhow the quarteris and get a list of the soldiers horse

b. Const. doun and/or up. 1388–9 MacRae Early Sc. Texts No. 2.
Fra the Tulyne Bogill vp throcht the [blank] to the cors stanis
c1400 Troy-bk. ii 82 (D).
Thruth all the rewes wpe & downe
1456 Hay II 158/20.
As the hete naturale of the man gais throu all his body up and doun and chaufis his body and membris
c1500-c1512 Dunb. G. Targe 28.
Doune throu the ryce a ryvir ran wyth stremys
1528 Lynd. Dreme 513.
Than montit we … Up throw the heuin callit christallyne
1587-99 Hume 37/117.
Th'appointed place, Of Christs descense, downe throw the firmament

c. So as to undergo (a process). 14.. Acts I 49/2.
Thruch na batal sal he pas na to wattir na ȝit to yrn bot hastily he sal be hangyt
1635 Dickson Wr. 134.
A sheaf of corn … when it is thrashen, is letten through the wind; and thy enemies shall be carried away as chaff that is carried out of the gate with the wind
1641 Cochran-Patrick Coinage I xxxi.
They would putt 1000 stane [of copper] throw the yrons in the yeire
1663 Reg. Privy C. 3 Ser. I 451.
The tuo merk peices … and half merk peices … to passe in lignetts thorow a milne

2. So as to move or be directed within the limits of, over, along (a place, the sea) (but not from side to side).Some examples may belong in 1. c1400 Troy-bk. i 263.
The stryndes in dyuerse places were Rynnand throw gravaile quhyt & clene
c1400 Troy-bk. ii 1547 (C).
He has … so long past Thrught the wyld sees wauerandly
1446 Reg. Episc. Aberd. I 245.
A lonyng lyand throw the mur betwix twa ald stane dykes
a1500 Seven S. 369.
He gart four tormentouris him leid Vnto the gallous to be deid And as he passit throw the streit [etc.]
a1500 Seven S. 2569.
As thair schip the se throu past
1505 Treas. Acc. III 168.
To the fowlar to pas in throw Fiff with his nettis and to remane thare on fowlis taking, be the kingis command
1508–9 Stirling Chart. 74.
The wrangwis and maisterfull biggin and recentlie insetting of certane cruffis in and throw the watter of Forth
1608 Inverurie B. Ct. 26 April.
The said Adame obleisis him to keip girs & corne & follow the guidis sufficientlie troithe the fauldis
1700 Cramond Kirk S. IV 15 March.
They went throw the floore wrestleing, and then Edward did goe between them & redd thaim

b. Throw & throwth, repeatedly to and fro through, hither and thither through. 1494 Deidis of Armorie 43.
Delphyn … is the maist swift thing that is in the sey for it trepassis throw & throwch the sey as it war fleand

3. So as to penetrate or pierce (through from side to side). Also in fig. context.The quot. Carmichael Prov. No. 941 is obscure and may belong to another sense. ?1438 Alex. i 924.
The duke … Him baklingis throw the body bare, And laid him deid
c1420 Wynt. iii 105.
The nayle … Dryfand down rycht throucht his hewyde
c1420 Wynt. viii 4879.
Willame off Spens percit … throw thre fawld off awbyrchowne And the actowne throw the thryd ply
c1475 Wall. ix 1436.
Baith brawn and bayn the burly blaid throcht schar
a1500 Quare Jel. 67.
The scharp deth mote perce me throuch the hert
c1500-c1512 Dunb. (OUP) 28/81.
1531 Bell. Boece (M) I 224.
[He] draif him throw the body with ane iedward staff
1537 Lynd. Depl. Magd. 17.
[Death] cruellie did pers hir throuch the hart
1548–9 Corr. M. Lorraine 287.
a1550 Goldin Latany 188.
For the suerd of dolour that past thorow thy moderis saule
1565 Inverness Rec. I 128.
He suld put ane quhinyear trocht bayth thair cheikkis
1575 Edinb. B. Rec. IV 39.
That thay incontinent remufe thame selffis of this toun … vnder the pane of … burnyng throuch the lug
a1628 Carmichael Prov. No. 941.
It is a sober kyndnes will not gang thro a glufe

b. Throuch and throuch, repeatedly through. a1500 Lanc. 1092.
The red knycht … Goith to o knycht … The wich he persit throuch & throuch the hart

c. specif. With reference to a body of fighting men. c1450-2 Howlat 498 (A).
He … Braid throw the battalis in bront, and bur thaim backwart
a1500 Rauf C. 657.
He thristit in throw thame thraly with threttis
c1475 Wall. x 296.
Schyr, ye wyrk amys, To brek aray; ȝon men quyt throcht thaim is

d. So as to penetrate and protrude from. a1500 Henr. Fab. 1708.
Quhen columbie vp keikis throw the clay
c1500-c1512 Dunb. Flyt. 104.
Thy bawis hingis throw thy breik
a1570-86 Maitl. F. 437/16.
The grene girs growis our streithis throcht
1593 Acts IV 48/2.
The said pece haueand on the ane syde twa sceptouris cros with ane thrissill growand vp throuch thame with this circumscriptioun

4. Of looking or seeing: So as to penetrate or traverse (a thing, place, space) with the gaze. c1450-2 Howlat 49 (A).
I sawe ane howlat in haist vnder ane holyne Lukand the laike throwe And saw his awne schadowe
a1500 Gol. & Gaw. 75.
He saw throu ane entre Charcole in ane chymne
c1500-c1512 Dunb. Tua Mar. W. 434.
As the new mone … So keik I through my clokis
1598 James VI Basil. Doron 41/6.
Ye can not in tyme of the shoure see throuch the cloude

5. Over the whole extent of, in every one of, throughout. Freq. const. all. 1397 Acts I 208/1.
The grete & horrible, destruccions … that ar sa commonly done throch al the kynrike
?1438 Alex. ii 6753.
Syne gart thay cry throw the hoste … The trewis to Monunday at nicht
?14.. Ship Laws c. 6 (B).
Thus endys syndry chapetrys of tollys themys lawys and customys to be gyfyn thrw syndry hafnys of Scotland
1456 Acts II 46/1.
To the entent that the demyis that ar kepit in hande suld cum out and haif cours throu the realme [etc.]
c1475 Wall. viii 1348.
Than Scotland throuch he demayned him sell
1550 Crim. Trials I i 354.
1552 Conv. Burghs I 3.
To woit about throw that haill nowmer and se, and he that gettis monyest wottis to be chosin and sworn incontinent
1561 Inverness Rec. I 65.
It … was opynlie spokin trocht the towne
1562-3 Winȝet I 21/10.
The feirfull plaige that come on thay people … thunderis swa throw al our sensis … that [etc.]
1570 Leslie 155.
1578 Misc. Spald. C. II 47.
c1590 Fowler I 9/7.
Cries, sound throgh earth her name
1604 Dundonald Par. Rec. 55.
He … had ane dirling thruch all his boddie as it had bein the gut
1615 Fraserburgh Kirk S. 23 May.
In respect … the sklander of his adulterie is veray offensiw in the nychtbour parochis he sould prosecut the rest of the cours of his repentance throw the nychtbour kirkis
1631 Fraserburgh Kirk S. II 27 April.
1632 Culross I 174.
Ordained James Peacock to pass throw the rest of the parochiners
1644 Inverness Rec. II 186.
1656 Kirkcudbr. Sheriff Ct. Deeds I 8.
[The said Robert Gordown] is to have the on sheafe off corne and beir throwgh the half of the said towne now presentlie possest be the said Robert Gordowne
1664 Wemyss in Sc. Diaries 128.
1669 Kirkcudbr. Sheriff Ct. Deeds I 256.
[John Greirsone promises] to hird and keip her [sc. Margaret Neilsone] halff dewtifully and heonestly with and among his owin halff and to maw win and stack the hay and byre and fother her ky throw and among his owin
1687 Rothesay Par. Rec. 69.

b. Here and there in, in every part of. a1568 Scott vi 40.
Suld I presome this sedull schaw … pleis hir proudens to imprentit Scho may persaue sum Inglis throw it

6. During, for, throughout the course of (a specified period of time). 14.. Burgh Laws c. 36 (A).
Na burges sal lene to balȝe of castell thru assise of law of burgh bot the valur of xl d. of his gudis & that thru the space of xl dais
14.. Acts I 28/2.
The burges that is apon lande is nocht haldyn to cum til ony mutis thruch the yhere bot thir thre hevyd mutis
1561 Q. Kennedy Compendious Ressonyng (ed.) 176/14.
The evangell to be red in the mess throucht all the haill ȝeir
1594 Acts IV 71/2.
[A house] throw lang tyme decayed
c1650 Spalding II 154.
A cold drowth throw all Junij
1667 Nimmo Narr. 3.
I will desire to bliss him thorrow time & eternatie

7. From beginning to end of; along the whole course of (an affair, etc.) towards completion. 1660 Honours Scotl. 124.
I shall heast thorow businesse as soon as I can
1664 Cramond Kirk S. II 28 Dec.
William Weems … petitioned the session that he might be dismist, because he could not possiblye win againe throw the throng and multitude of his masters business
1695 12th Rep. Hist. MSS. App. viii 49.
I hope in God we shall come well thurrow all

8. By (means of), with the help or by the agency of.For throw aventure, cas, see Aventure n. 2 c, and Cas(e n.1 2. 1375 Barb. i 112.
Ȝe mycht se he suld occupy Throw slycht that he ne mycht throw maistri
1375 Barb. i 137.
c1379 Cal. Charters Suppl. (Reg. H.).
Be it kennyt till al me[n] throch this presens me [etc.]
a1400 Leg. S. ii 153.
And of this warld the figur hale Quhen [He] sall deme, vndo He sall Throw fyre
a1400 Leg. S. vi 447.
Threv his prayer sa wrocht he, That, thocht scho blynd ves, [he] gert hir se
a1400 Leg. S. x 52.
a1400 Leg. S. xiii Prol. 49.
1389 Wemyss Chart. 24.
The forsayde tha landys fornemmyt troch hym gyffyn into the fwrme and the condicyonys forsayde
1397 Slater Early Sc. Texts No. 34.
Robert throv the grace of God kyng of Scottys
c1400 Troy-bk. ii 64 (C).
1405 Antiq. Aberd. & B. III 200.
Al charteris … to the saide landis … that may be gottin thrw the saide erle
c1420 Wynt. viii 10.
Thai … ordanyd wardanys twys thre, Quham throwch the land suld kepyd be
c1420 Wynt. ii 538.
c1420 Wynt. v 4651.
14.. Burgh Laws c. 97 (A).
Gif the dettur has na borows & the dettur will pruff his dett or throu witnes or throu graunt of him that aucht that dett
1424 Acts II 5/1.
a1500 Henr. Test. Cress. 328.
1513 Doug. Comm. i Prol. 97.
Innatyve … inborn or that quhilk cumis till ony person be thar natural inclinatioun of kynd throw thar forbearis
c1520-c1535 Nisbet III 198.
Throuche [P. thoruȝ]
1560 Cal. Sc. P. I 336.
[In a tower of the palace, where a barrel of powder was hid, it] fyrit throw ane of thair luntis
a1568 Scott iii 36.
1580 Facs. Nat. MSS III lxx.
We are not moved for any worldly respect, but are perswaded onely in our conscience throught the knawledge and loue of Godis true religion
1596 Dalr. I 194/10.
a1605 Montg. Misc. P. xlv 6.
Thrugh fortun frail
1669 Meikle Old Session Bk. 11.
This day the minister shew to the session that his inabilitie throwghe the lords providence was no small affliction to him since he was not able to dischairge his ministeriall dutie

b. To take (someone) throw hand, ? to take in hand, deal with. 1695 Nat. Reg. Archives (Scotl.) Rep. (Ewart Lib., Dumfries) 38.
That false villan … was to have given in a bill against you in Parliament. But I took him throw hand and I judge he has delayed

9. Because of, on account of, in consequence of. 1375 Barb. i 177.
Quhether it wes throuch wrang or rycht God wat it that is maist off mycht
1375 Barb. iv 283 (C).
The kyng, throu his cheuelry, Wes laid at erd and lamyt bath
a1400 Leg. S. Prol. 7.
1381 Douglas Chart. 29.
1389 Wemyss Chart. 23.
Doncane, nocht trocht dwt, na awe led, bot frely and wyd gude wyl, has gyfyn [etc.]
?14.. Ship Laws c. 27 (B).
It befallys oft that the mayster of a schyp behufys for to hew his maste thrw ivil wedyr
c1400 Troy-bk. i 115.
c1400 Troy-bk. i 89.
1431 Reg. Great S. 44/2.
Gif it hapnys … that the said Kyrktoun cummys nocht to sa mekyll throuch distroblance
c1450-2 Howlat 2 (A).
In the myddis of May at morne as I ment Throwe myrth markit on mold till a grene meid
a1500 Henr. Fab. 40.
Gif ȝe find ocht that throw my negligence Be deminute
c1515 Asl. MS I 161/21.
The Red Se is nocht red on kynd bot throucht baffing & wesching on red cragis & stanis
?a1500 Steel Roy Robert 8.
1502 Douglas Bequest (10 Sept.).
1513 Lett. James IV 306.
[The king and queen are both sorry for the death of Henry's admiral] threu acquaintance we had of his fader
c1545 St. A. Univ. Rec. xxi.
1558 Inverness Sheriff Ct. 61.
[They] slew and distroyit xxiiij new calwit ky, trocht the quhilk the calwis thair of deyt
1570–1 Canongate Ct. Bk. 324.
1571 Inverness Rec. I 210.
Trocht his remanyng fra the said mercat I sustenit greyt skayth
1577–8 Kirkcudbr. B. Rec. I 57.
1590 Welwod 55.
1596 Dalr. I 64/18.
1621 Dunkeld Presb. II 22.
[No exercise this day, because Mr Robert Murray, who was appointed to exercise,] was langsome in coming through darkness of the day
1630 Misc. Hist. Soc. II 257.
I heve beine … infirm throg aig

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"Throch prep.". Dictionary of the Scots Language. 2004. Scottish Language Dictionaries Ltd. Accessed 16 Jun 2024 <>



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