Scottish National Dictionary (1700–)

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COWER, COUR, COWR, Caur, Ca'ower, v., intr. and tr. [′kʌuər, ′kɑ′ʌuər, ′ku:ər]

1. intr. To recover, get well (Abd.4 1930, ko-ower). Also used with up (Abd. 1929 J. Alexander Mains and Hilly 116). Known to Bnff.2, Abd.2, Abd.9 (cour, cowr) 1940. Ork. 1908  J. T. S. Leask in Old-Lore Misc. I. viii. 323:
Willick's hoose waas seevan mile awa, sae da neebar deudna see Sibbie fill Tiesday whin sheu couldna bit spier gin Willick was coweran.
Abd. after 1768  A. Ross Fortunate Shepherd (S.H.S. 1938) 175:
The lady kind some halesome things apply'd, So that untill he caur'd, wi' her he stay'd.
Abd. 1895  G. Williams Scarbraes 48:
“Guid save's, 'oman,” he exclaimed, “ye're nae weel. I wis' ye may cour.”

2. tr. To get over, to recover from (Bnff.2, Abd.2 1940). Abd.19 says: “commonly used with it as obj.” Also used with up. Bnff. 1856  J. Collie Poems 73:
Hoo they gat hame I canna tell, I scarce ken hoo I wan mysel'; But noo I'm here an' soun' an' hale, An' fairly coured the spree, O.
Abd. 1928  Abd. Weekly Jnl. (9 Aug.) 6/3:
I cam' awa' doon tae see foo ye hid cowert up yer veesit tae the show, Mains.
Bch. 1930  P. Giles in Abd. Univ. Review (March) 105:
Bit A never ca'owert that accident richtly, an' A've aye been some dweeble-like amo' the legs sin' seen.
Edb. 1772  R. Fergusson Poems (1925) 5:
Cauld winter's bleakest blasts we'll eithly cour, Our eldin's driven, an' our har'st is owr.

[Eng. dial. (Cum., Yks., Der.) has cover, to recover (E.D.D.). O.Sc. cover, cower, to recover from illness, 1375 (D.O.S.T.); Mid.Eng. (a)cover, cogn. with O.Fr. covrer, from Lat. (re)-cuperare.]

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"Cower v.". Dictionary of the Scots Language. 2004. Scottish Language Dictionaries Ltd. Accessed 25 May 2019 <>



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