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Scottish National Dictionary (1700–)

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First published 1934 (SND Vol. I). Includes material from the 1976 supplement.

ALAGRUGOUS, ALLA-, ALLAGROOIS, ALLAGRUGAS, adj., n[ɑlɛ′gru:gɪ̢s (based on Ellis)]

I. adj. Grim; ghastly; sour; woebegone. Bnff.(D) 1924 “Knoweheid” in Swatches o' Hamespun 16:
She's an allagroois-lookin deem at best, bit she'd fleg the deil himsel the day.
Abd.(D) c.1750 R. Forbes Journal from London (1767) 13:
She look'd sae alagrugous that a bodie wou'd nae car'd to meddle wi' her.
Abd.(D) c.1780 in Ellis E.E.P. (1889) V. 775 (21):
A'm seer they baith bee[t] to be dirlin, kas fin the glyde raise, he hed an alagrugous look. [Transliterated from Ellis's version. Translated by Innes, ib.: “I am sure they both must have been pained to quivering, because when the actionless fellow rose, he had a sour woe-begone look.”]
Ags. 1816 G. Beattie John o' Arnha' (1826) 59:
An allagrugous, gruesome spectre.

II. n. An uncouth oafish fellow. Per. 1881 D. MacAra Crieff 163:
"Lat's see a haud o't, Tibbie," says the muckle allagrugas.

[Etym. uncertain. See Grugous. Jam. says (1808): “In the West of S[cotland] malagrugous [q.v.] is used in the same sense.”]

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"Alagrugous adj., n.". Dictionary of the Scots Language. 2004. Scottish Language Dictionaries Ltd. Accessed 6 Oct 2022 <>



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