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

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First published 2002 (DOST Vol. XII).
This entry has not been updated since then but may contain minor corrections and revisions.

Weg(g)e, Wedge, Wa(d)ge, Waige, n. Also: wedg, vedge, wagge, vage, vyge. Pl. also weggis, veggis, vedgis, waggis, wadgis, vagis, uadges, waigis, waidges, wyges, wyddis, wedgies. [ME and e.m.E. wedge (a1250), weeg (c1380), wegge (Chaucer), vegge (Prompt. Parv.); pl. also wegges (1357), weggis (c1450), wedgies (1555), OE węg, MLG wegge, MDu. wegge, wigge, ON veggr.]

1. A wedge of metal or wood used a. To tighten or secure a mechanism or structure. b. To open up a fissure, split stone or wood, etc. Also attrib.c. To make fine adjustments to weights. d. fig.or in fig. context.a., b. c1515 Asl. MS I 269/24.
He was slane … with a gwn that brak … and the wege stert out & slew him
1513 Doug. vi iii 48.
With weggeis [Sm. wegis] schydit gan the byrkis sovnd
1513–14 Dunferm. B. Rec. I 191.
Tva pikkis, ane mell, twa weggis
1529–30 M. Works Acc. (ed.) I 27.
1529–30 M. Works Acc. (ed.) I 28.
For ix veggis rowing ix d.
1531 Bell. Boece II 436.
[He] pullit out ane wege [M. waige] and incontinent the cart fell doun
1531–2 M. Works Acc. (ed.) I 72.
Weggis for fesnyng of caissis in the said windois
1613–14 Aberd. Shore Wk. Acc. 81.
For making the knaphalt in weggis to the bulwark … and incawing of thame
(b) 1545 Treas. Acc. VIII 389.
Gret band clekis, wedgis, and schone for the extreis
1546 Treas. Acc. VIII 454.
Foure stane of irne to be wedgis and other necessaris for the querrell … steill to lay certane of the pikkis and wedgis
1569 Prot. Bk. Gilbert Grote 74.
1570 Leslie 31.
It chansit a wedge or slyce to flee fra ane of the gunnes quhairwith the King was slaine
1641 Dumfries Treas. Acc. 7a.
1665–7 Lauder Jrnl. 70.
Betuixt the leg and the timber they caw in … wedges … which … crusheth the leg
1672 Sinclair Hydrostaticks 187.
There are some [metals] that are full of … spaces … [useful] … in making them yeeld more easily to the force of wedge and leaver
(c) 1529 M. Works Acc. (ed.) I 6.
1531 M. Works Acc. (ed.) I 59.
vi new vagis wrocht of the auld brokin pykkis
1539 Treas. Acc. VII 342.
Steill … to temper the pikkis and wadgis witht
1540 Treas. Acc. VII 351.
Spanȝe irne … to mak … waggis … to the munitioun
1540 Treas. Acc. VII 355.
viij dosane irne wadgis … twa treis to be trene waggis
1542 Treas. Acc. VIII 135.
For dichting … of xlij irne hagbusches witht thair chalmeris … for ijc waggeis for the chalmeris
1566 Inv. Wardrobe 166.
Ane moyane of found mountit … with stoikkis quheillis and aixtre garnesit with iron having ane wadge
1598 Crim. Trials II 46.
Thay … dang wadgeis in the said boir about hir said fingaris
c1615 Chron. Kings 77.
Ane wage of ane cannone
1634–5 Aberd. Shore Wk. Acc. 202.
2700 aikin waggis to the bulwark
1645 Aberd. B. Rec. IV 47.
Tua great wages of tree
1678 Fawside Coal Compt 31.
1698 Foulis Acc. Bk. 234.
90 picks at 4 d. the piece and 57 wadges rowing at 6 d. the peice
16… Information of Coalheugh at Campbell in Argyll Mun. (Estates & Forfeitures) MS.
The out reach of money forr the windowse wadges is verrie expensive
(d) 1556 Edinb. B. Rec. II 326.
Irne waigis
1565 Reg. Privy C. I 403.
Waigeis … to the said artailyearie
1614 M. Works Acc. (ed.) I 344.
Four waidges weyand ten pund
1617 M. Works Acc. (ed.) II 24.
For rowing four quarrell waiges, ii s. viii d.
1671 Dunferm. Coal Acc. lb.
Item to the 5 workmen to compleit the waidges
(e) 1556 Crail B. Ct. MS 14 Dec.
Ane yrne mayll of xix li. veyht … wyth ane vyge
1622 Edinb. Test. LI 151.
Tua irne tree wyddis
1643–4 Aberd. Shore Wk. Acc. 285.
100 Norway knapel to be wyges to the bulwark
1643–4 Aberd. Shore Wk. Acc. 284.
For 200 skows to be wyges
attrib. 1680 Fawside Coal Compt 64.
For uadges makeing & a sholl mending
1684 Fawside Coal Compt 138.
To the smith for picks & uadges layeing
c. 1558–9 Edinb. Old Acc. I 279.
To the pyonars that … trouit the wechtis … to Johnne Ahannay for vj lib. wecht of small irne wedges to call in the bred wechtis
d. c1590 Fowler I 50/88.
Whiche onlye is the salve that may in contrare lowe be found And all suche malice to efface thair is no better thing Euen as a wadge ane other doith and nail and naill furth bring
1594 Colville Lett. 119.
Thair can not be suche a vage to ryis him by, as a vage of his awin wood
1600-1610 Melvill 72.
Then God plucked out from amangs the Jesuits a wadge of thair awin timber, wherwith to rent and cross thair deceaits
c1616 Hume Orthog. 13.
Now I am cum to a knot that I have noe wedg to cleave
1623–4 Mar & Kellie MSS Suppl. 191.
Your sone Heary … is willfull, wherein he showes himselfe to be a wadge of the rycht tree, that is of your selfe
1644 Soc. Ant. IV 98.
It was a strong wadge, to cleave much crooked weid spilt against his mother

2. An ingot (of gold). 1651 Montgomery Mem. II 314.
Quhat is in the litill coffer … fayne mounters litill and moukill, a brod iouel with dayamonds … soum gold. Item a wege of gold … soum wtheir gold wipis
1629 Boyd Last B. 187.
These … in whose coffers are wadges of gold [etc.]

3. A quantity (of butter, also ? cheese). 1542 Acts & Decr. I 141a.
Ane wage of butter contenand vi stane
a1628 Carmichael Prov. No. 862 (see Wed n. 2).

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"Wege n.". Dictionary of the Scots Language. 2004. Scottish Language Dictionaries Ltd. Accessed 23 Apr 2024 <>



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