Show Search Results Show Browse

Scottish National Dictionary (1700–)

Hide Quotations Hide Etymology

Abbreviations Cite this entry

About this entry:
First published 1934 (SND Vol. I). Includes material from the 1976 supplement.
This entry has not been updated since then but may contain minor corrections and revisions.

AWAL(D), AWAT, Aewall, Award, Awell, Aywit, n., also used attrib. See Aval(d), n. 2[′ɑ:wəl(d), ′ɑ:wəlt Sc.; ′e:wəl Donside, Deeside, Clydesdale; ′e:wɪt Mearns; ′ɑ:wɑt e.Ags.]

1. Of the infield, in the old system of tillage: the second crop of oats after bere. Also in another rotation: the second crop of oats from lea (to be followed by bere). Also combs., as awal bear root; awal-infield (see quots.).Abd. c.1760 Minutes of Farm. Club in Trans. Highl. and Agric. Soc. XIV. (1902) 81:
His intown is divided into 3 parts; 1/3 for bear, 1/3 called bear-root, and 1/3 awald.
Abd. 1877 W. Alexander North. Rural Life in 18th cent. 27:
It was when it came to the awal, or second crop after bear, that the contest between the crop and the weeds for possession of the ground became most serious.
Bch. 1735 in Gen. View Agric. Bnff. (1812) App. 37:
[The three parts of the infield:] bear-land, bear-root, and awal bear-root.
Ib. 47:
Awal-infield, or second crop after bear.

2. Of the outfield: the second crop of oats after grass. Also, the ground ploughed for this crop. Also combs., as awall aits, awald crap, awat crop (see quots.).Sc. 1743 Maxwell Sel. Trans. Soc. Improvers 214:
There are four Breaks of the Outfield in Tillage. The first out of ley . . . The second, what they call Awald, where the produce will not excced two Bolls, or two Bolls and a half, an acre.
Mearns 1914 T.S.D.C. I. 15:
Aywit, second of two crops of corn, and hence inferior.
Ags. 1808 Jam.:
Awat. Ground ploughed after the first crop from lea. The crop produced is called the Awat-crop.
Ags. 1932 (per Ags.1):
Awat about Montrose, but perhaps award in some parts.
Ayr. 1825 Jam.2:
Awald-crap. The second crop after lea. [In the same sense Jam.2 gives aewall for Clydesdale, avil Gall., awat, more commonly award, Ags., yavil Mry.]
Gall. 1893 A. Agnew Hereditary Sheriffs II. 184:
The "awell crop" is still a living phrase in Galloway, meaning the second crop from grass.

3. In a similar but more gen. sense. (See quot.)Bwk. 1809 Gen. View Agric. Bwk. 204:
Such successive crops of white corn [with no intervening fallow or green crop] are very emphatically termed, in the provincial dialect, award, or awkward crops.

4. “A term applied to a field lying the second year without being ploughed; lea of the second year, that has not been sowed with artificial grasses,” Jam.2 for Lth. This definition is a possible extension of the more common meaning (as above), but Jam. adduces no evidence.

[The Avald and Awald series are both prob. from “O.N. af = from + velta, to turn, modified by contact with Sc. and Eng. awkward and O.North. awæl(t)an, to roll.” O.N. af would become, by regular change (through av, au), ā in Mod.Sc. Avald adj.1 and Awald adj.1 both mean upturned: Avald n.2, adj.2 and Awald n. are both used to describe “a second grain crop on the same soil.” The original idea in both series is that of turning over (1) of a body from its former position and (2) of soil from its former condition. In the cognate Scand. languages we find a similar diverging development of meaning: (1) O.N. af-velta = fallen on the back and unable to rise (Zoëga); Norse avvelta, lying with feet in air; (2) Norse velta, turned-over soil; Sw. dial. vallta, to plough; Fær. velta, to dig with a spade; “Västergötland (Sw.) ātervälta, a clover-field ploughed the second time, when the original sward is turned up anew” (H.G.). With the last cf. Mod.Sh. dial. attavelt (pop. etym. attafield), a field in a second year of cultivation after fallow, from O.N. aptr = after, and velta, soil turned over and prepared anew (Jak.). The pa.t. awælte (Lindisfarne Matth. xxvii. 60), awælede (Rushworth ib.), to roll, it has been suggested, may have given rise to Avald adj.1 and Awald adj.1 but the change of stress in the modern words from the stem syllable to a meaningless prefix is a difficulty. The e.Yks. rig-welted = overturned (of sheep) (Cowling The Dialect of Hackness § 198) is probably a survivor of the O.N. word with aphæresis of a. Award, awart are prob. due to contamination with awkward, which in N.Eng. and some parts of Scotland has the double meanings of Awald adj. and Awald n. For the loss of r in the second syllable in aywit and awat cf. forrit and forrat for O.E. foreweard. Awald, awat, avauld, avall, avat have been found in O.Sc. records (Protocol Books and Testaments). See D.O.S.T. Awald, where the earliest date is 1538, but the quots. refer only to the cultivation of land.]

You may wish to vary the format shown below depending on the citation style used.

"Awal n.2". Dictionary of the Scots Language. 2004. Scottish Language Dictionaries Ltd. Accessed 23 May 2024 <>



Hide Advanced Search

Browse SND: