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Scottish National Dictionary (1700–)

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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.

DOODLE, DOUDLE, Dowdle, Doodil, v. and n. [′dudəl Sc., but Rxb. ′dʌud-]

1. v. To dandle (a child) (Kcb.1 1940; Rxb. 1923 Watson W.-B., dowdle); to lull (a child) to sleep.Sc. 1769 D. Herd Sc. Songs (1776) II. 203:
I have an auld wife to my mither, Will doudle it [baby] on her knee.
Sc. 1819 Edb. Mag. (June) 526:
An' he was tane to Craignethan's hall, An' doudlit on his knee.
Ags. a.1879 Forfar Poets (Fenton) 129:
Shogin' on the bourtree buss, An' doodilt at the cat.
Edb. 1843 J. Ballantine Gaberlunzie's Wallet 207–8:
His greatest joy was to see her . . . doodling me on her knee.
Ayr. 1787 Burns Bonie Dundee (Cent. ed.) i.:
Aft has he doudl'd me up on his knee.
Dmf. 1899 J. Shaw in Country Schoolmaster (ed. Wallace) 369:
Doodling sleepless weans.

2. n. Something dandled: (1) a (spoiled) pet; (2) a small bundle (Bnff.2 Abd.2 1940). Dim. doodlie.(1) Ags.17 1940:
“Yer makkin a doodle o' that bairn”: said to a mother who was dandling her infant.
Edb. 1876 J. Smith Archie and Bess 64:
Mother Jeanie (lifting up a braw fat sonsy bairn frae his cradlie-ba' . . .) . . . a sweet barley-sugar doodle o' delight.
(2) Abd.15 1928:
Wi' a wee doodlie in her oxter.

[Prob., like Diddle, v.1, and Doddle, v., of onomat. origin.]

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"Doodle v., n.". Dictionary of the Scots Language. 2004. Scottish Language Dictionaries Ltd. Accessed 20 Jun 2024 <>



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