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

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First published 1990 (DOST Vol. VII).
This entry has not been updated since then but may contain minor corrections and revisions.

Rid-hand, n. and adj. Also: ridd-, ryd-, redd-. Var. of Red(e)-hand n. and adj.

A. noun. = Red(e)-hand A. 1584 Gowrie P. 38.
When he is with ridhand of the cryme
1609 Skene Reg. Maj. ii 37.
Gif he be taken with rid hand

B. adj. = Red(e)-hand B 2.Steeling rid-hand, caught in the act of theft.(1) 1555 Stirling B. Rec. I 64.
Tane ryd hand with the said cammes
a1568 Sempill Sat. P. xlvii 70.
Thay war nocht theivis, nor ȝit condempt in dett, Nor ridhand tane
1601 Crim. Trials II 376. 1623 Peebles Gleanings 5. 1633 Orkney Bp. Ct. 90b.
They took and apprehendit thame with the saidis thrie sheip rid hand
1699 Argyll Justic. Rec. I 181.
He hath been quilty of … murder … and he being secured rid hand [etc.]
fig. 1640 Baillie I 242.
Our oppressors who, before all the world, are taken ridd-hand with the vylest errors
(b) 1696 Argyll Justic. Rec. I 157.
Redd hand
1700 Ib. 192.
With which theft he was also taken redd hand
(2) 1584 Cal. Sc. P. VII 104.
For a thief stelling rid hand and actu ipso may be taken without sommondes

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"Rid-hand n., adj.". Dictionary of the Scots Language. 2004. Scottish Language Dictionaries Ltd. Accessed 18 Apr 2024 <>



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