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Scottish National Dictionary (1700–)

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About this entry:
First published 1952 (SND Vol. III). Includes material from the 1976 supplement.
This entry has not been updated since then but may contain minor corrections and revisions.

DAG, Dagg, Daag, n.1, v.

I. n.

1. A thin, drizzling rain (Sc. 1808 Jam.; Sh. 1899 J. Spence Folk-Lore 239, daag, 1908 Jak. (1928), dagg; Ork. 1929 Marw., dagg; Rxb. 1923 Watson W.-B.); moisture (Marw.). Also found in Eng. (n.Cy., Nrf.) dial. (E.D.D.).Ork. 1929 Marw.:
It's a filty dagg o' weet noo.
Dmf. 1829 Carlyle Letters (Norton) I. 202:
Not the storms and the tempests of Night, but the dags and the drizzles of Day.

2. A thick heavy fog or mist (w., s.Sc. 1808 Jam.; Rxb. 1923 Watson W.-B.).

3. A heavy shower (of rain) (Cai.7 1939; Mry.1 1925; Bnff. 1866 Gregor D. Bnff. 36; Bnff.2, Abd.2 1939; Ayr. 1825 Jam.2; Kcb. 1794–1868 Curriehill).Mry.(D) 1897 J. Mackinnon Braefoot Sk. v.:
The rain had “dung on” in terrific “dags” from some time before I had wakened until about 6.30 p.m.
Abd.(D) 1915 H. Beaton Back o' Benachie 97:
It's weel we're a' in the hoose, for here's a dag o' a thunner shooer.
Arg.1 1930:
There's dags o' shooers gaan roon' the day.

4. Hence daggy, daggie, drizzling, moist, misty (Abd.2 1939; Rxb. 1923 Watson W.-B.). Slg.3 1939 says: “almost obs. in Edb.”Sc. 1825 Jam.2:
A daggie day, a day characterised by slight rain.
Edb. 1856 J. Ballantine Poems 22:
The barefitted bairnies, hardy an' wee, Tot ower the causey, sae slippy an' daggy.
Lnk. 1922 T. S. Cairncross Scot at Hame 43:
The wather's aft gey drumly, Daggy days and mochy nichts.

II. v. To rain gently, to drizzle (Sc. 1808 Jam.; Bwk. 1942 Wettstein; Rxb. 1923 Watson W.-B.). Also found in Eng. dial. (E.D.D.). Ags. 1896 A. Blair Rantin Robin 96:
It was daggin on a sma rain.

[O.N. *dagg-, orig. stem of dǫgg, dew, dǫggva, to bedew; Norw. dogg, dew, a soft, fine rain; cogn. with O.E. déaw, dew.]

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"Dag n.1, v.". Dictionary of the Scots Language. 2004. Scottish Language Dictionaries Ltd. Accessed 25 Apr 2024 <>



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