Scottish National Dictionary (1700–)

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DORB, n.1, v. Also darb.

1. n.

(1) A peck; a prod (Bnff.2 1940, dorb). Abd.13 1914:
The calf gid me an afa dorb wi' 's heed the day.
Abd.5 c.1916:
The hen gae me a nesty dorb on the back of the han'.

(2) “A variety of the game of marbles in which the marbles are placed hard up against a wall. The pitcher is flung hard towards the wall and if it is caught on the rebound, the player gets another shot” (Abd.5 c.1916, darb). Cf. Dabbie.

2. v. To peck, to grub (Bnff.2 1940). Vbl.n. dorbin. Bnff. 1927 E. S. Rae Hansel Fae Hame 53:
An' when your [seagull's] lang day's dorbin's deen Hie for — tho' weary be your teen — Your lang lum-hame in Aiberdeen.
Abd. 1920 G. P. Dunbar Peat Reek 34:
An' noo they [crows] 're sclamerin' in the air, Or dorbin' at the neeps.

[Origin imit.: a variant of Dob, v.1, n.1, Dab, v.1, n.1 Cf. met. variant Drob, id.]

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"Dorb n.1, v.". Dictionary of the Scots Language. 2004. Scottish Language Dictionaries Ltd. Accessed 23 Sep 2021 <>



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