Scottish National Dictionary (1700–)

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FLICHT, n.2, v.2 [Sc. flɪt. Bwk. flɛt]

I. n. A flake, a small speck, of soot, dust, snow or the like, a mote in the eye (Rxb. 1825 Jam., 1923 Watson W.-B.; Bwk. 1952); anything small, e.g. an insect. Cf. Eng. dial. flight, a light fall of snow. Lnk. 1877 W. McHutchison Poems 87:
But you, ye flicht [a flea], Afore we get yae button loose Ye're out o' sicht.
Lnk. 1881 D. Thomson Musings 28:
Bitter frosty win's did blaw, Mix'd here an' there wi' flichts o' snaw.

II. v. To fall in flakes, as snow. Only in vbl.n. flichan, -en, -in, flighen (Lth., Dmf. 1825 Jam.), flechan; flechin (Sc. 1825 Jam.), floichen, -an, †fleghing, a flake of snow, any small light particle or speck, as of meal, fluff, soot, chaff (Fif., Bwk., Kcb., Dmf. 1951), or flax tow (Ags. 1825 Jam., fleghing); anything very small, an atom (Dmf. 1825 Jam.); a small, light person (Gall. 1824 MacTaggart Gallov. Encycl. 206; Kcb.9 1937). Hence ppl.adj. flichtened, flecked, sprinkled. Ayr. 1821 Scots Mag. (April) 352:
What's the reason that the beucks whilk hae Scotch charicters are sae muckle tane tent o', whan them that hae nane fa' unsocht for like a floichen o' snaw on a red het aizle.
Per. 1872 Per. Constitutional (1 April):
It flew up the lum just like a flichan o' pob.
Ayr. 1879 J. White Jottings 263:
Owre weel does he ken the flechans o' meal, That a lassie maun use for her coggie.
Dmf. 1891 Trans. Dmf. and Gall. Antiq. Soc. 83:
A “flichen” on the grate or the tongs falling foretells the coming of visitors.
Per. 1893 Harp of Per. (ed. Ford) 385:
The frost is nippin' shairp and keen, The hill-taps a' are flichten'd grey.
Kcb. 1905 Gallovidian VII. No. 25. 28:
There were flichins o' snaw settling doon gey uneasily on Jamie's big braid hat.
Sc. 1935 W. Soutar Poems in Scots 32:
As yont the hill the floichans flew Mair snell the yammerin' blufferts blew.

[Mid.Eng. flyghte, a flake, of snow, phs. from *O.E.fliht (cogn. with Flaucht, n.1, v.1, q.v.), but prob. confused with Mid. and Mod.Eng. flight, from fly.]

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"Flicht n.2, v.2". Dictionary of the Scots Language. 2004. Scottish Language Dictionaries Ltd. Accessed 28 Nov 2021 <>



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