Scottish National Dictionary (1700–)

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GET, v. Sc. forms and usages of Eng. get:

A. Forms:

1. Pr.t.: get; †gett (Edb. 1772 R. Fergusson Poems (1925) 68); †geat (Sc. 1704 Seafield Corresp. (S.H.S.) 370); gait (Peb. 1884 J. Grosart Poems 56; Cai. 1907 D. B. Nicolson in County of Cai. 73); geit (Hdg. 1896 J. Lumsden Battle of Dunbar 19); git (s.Sc. 1807 J. Stagg Poems 17; Cai. 1872 M. Maclennan Peasant Life 24; Dmf. 1912 J. L. Waugh Robbie Doo i.); gjit (Sh. 1951 New Shetlander No. 27. 34); geet (Lth. 1920 A. Dodds Songs of the Fields 3; Rxb. 1925 E. C. Smith Mang Howes 13). [Sc. gɛt, but Sh. + gjɪt, Cai., em.Sc., sm.Sc. + gɪt, em.Sc. (b), s.Sc. + git]

2. Pa.t.: got; ‡gat. Also gote (Cai. 1907 D. B. Nicolson in County of Cai. 73), goat (Cai.3 1940), ¶goot (Slk. 1892 W. M. Adamson B. Blether's Corresp. 36), .†gate (Edb. 1720 A. Pennecuik Helicon 83). The forms gat and gate are found in n.Eng. dial. [Sc. gɔt, got, ‡gat]

3. Pa.p.: gotten, -in, ¶-on (Rnf. 1873 D. Gilmour Pen' Folk 37); †gat; †geatten (D.S.C.S. 205), †gatten (Gsw. 1868 J. Young Poems 67). The Gen.Sc. form gotten is now obs. in St. Eng. but is still retained in Eng. dial. and is in common liter. use in U.S.A. [′gɔt(ə)n, ′got(ə)n]

B. The word is more commonly used in Sc. and with wider application than in Eng. The following are specif. Sc. usages:

1. To be struck (ne.Sc., Arg.3 1954), ellipt. for “to get a blow”. n.Sc. 1825 Jam.:
“I got wi' a stane upo' the lug,” I was struck with a stone upon the ear. “To get upo' the fingers,” etc.
Abd. 1851 W. Anderson Rhymes 183:
We ruggit the duddies — tormentin' the bodies — Till some o's wad gat i' the lug wi' a steen.

2. To be called, to be addressed as, ellipt. for “to get the name of”. Gen.Sc. Also in Yks. dial. Sc. 1754 J. Mill Diary (S.H.S.) 15:
She wanted to be a Lady, and get Madam at any rate.
Uls. 1880 W. H. Patterson Gl.:
His name is Mulgrew, but he gets Timony.
Arg. 1936 L. McInnes Dial. S. Kintyre 19:
Even efter her marriage, she nuvver got anything else but Jennie Bride.
Sc. 1937 St Leonard's Sch. Gaz. (Nov.) 262:
Aye, aye, Mackenzie's ma name, but I aye get Jock frae her.

3. With it: “to be deceived, to be taken in” (n.Sc. 1825 Jam.).

4. To get (something or somebody) by looking, to find. Gen.Sc. Gall. 1747 Sess. Bk. Minnigaff (1939) 665:
The officer reported that he did not get George M'Micken at home, he being gone to England with cattle.
Sc. 1887 A. S. Swan Gates of Eden xiv.:
Ye'll get the key in my breek pooch.
Sc. 1953 Scots Mag. (March) 477:
One often hears an expression such as “I got the book” in the sense of “I found the book.”

5. (1) absol. To be allowed, to manage (gen. to go somewhere). Gen.(exc. I.)Sc. Common in n.Eng. dial. Fif. 1894 J. W. M'Laren Tibbie & Tam 56:
She's some things to dae whilk canna be put aff, sae it'll be ten afore she'll be able to get.
Kcb. 1895 Crockett Moss-Hags xxxi.:
I should not get to stay in Galloway gif I went not to their kirk.
Ayr.1 1910:
“Will I can get?” was the common expression for “May I go?” [wm.Sc.1: “Will I get getting?”, id. See (2).]
Dmf. 1912 J. L. Waugh Robbie Doo xi.:
The morn's the Thornhill fair, and the weans want to gang; but I juist tell't them they wadna get a fit.
Gsw. 1939 “J. Bridie” One Way of Living iii.:
Please, Sir, kinaget downstairs?

(2) Followed by gerund or pa.p.: to be allowed, to be able (to do), to find an opportunity for (doing something). Gen.Sc. (exc. Sh.). Sc. 1727 R. Wodrow Corresp. (1843) III. 298:
Probably I'll scarce get writing, the Assembly will sit so late.
Gall. 1731 Session Bk. Penninghame (1933) II. 168:
The members cannot get met on a week day for throng of business.
Sc. a.1776 D. Herd Sc. Songs II. 165:
I could na get sleeping yestreen for weeping.
Sc. 1809 J. Carr Caled. Sk. 212:
They also say, “It rains so hard to-day, that I fear I shall not get walked.”
s.Sc. 1857–9 Trans. Highl. Soc. 186:
The lamb is consequently kept upon its legs, is fatigued, and exposed to the blast; while during the night it gets lain in quiet.
Rxb. 1925 E. C. Smith Mang Howes 14:
Snodgin on, A wad aye geet seen the better aboot iz.
Lnk. 1928 G. Blake Paper Money viii. (2):
Do you mean to say . . . that I'm no' to get giving you any wedding-present at all?
Abd. 1953 Huntly Express (24 July):
I got wachled hame some wey or anither.

6. To marry, ellipt. for “to get, procure for a husband”. Gen.Sc. Also in Lan. dial. Ayr. 1789 Burns Tam Glen v.:
But if it's ordain'd I maun take him, O' wha will I get but Tam Glen?
Ags. 1889 Barrie W. in Thrums iii.:
“She was mairit . . . no lang syne”. . . . “And who did Tibbie get?” I asked; for in Thrums they say, “Wha did she get?” and “Wha did he tak?”
Fif. 1952 B. Holman Diamond Panes 61:
Losh, Wull never proposed tae me. I kent fine efter the Forrester's Ball that I was gettin' him and he was as sha ir that he was getting' me.

7. absol. A term in churning, see quot. (Bnff.7 1927). Gall. 1824 MacTaggart Gallov. Encycl. 427:
Red-hot irons are sometimes thrown into a churn, so that it may get, or that the cream therein may become butter.

8. Followed by advs. or preps.: (1) get awa(y), to die (Bnff., Abd., Slg., m.Lth., Bwk., Dmb., Wgt., Kcb., Rxb. 1954); also in e.Dur. dial.; (2) get by, (a) to get past, to suceeed in passing; Gen.Sc.; (b) to avoid, dispense with (Sh.10, Abd. 1954); (c) to carry through, complete (a task) (Abd. 1954); (3) get forth, to succeed in going onwards, to progress (on a journey) (Wgt.4, Rxb.4 1954); obs. in Eng. since early 17th c.; (4) get into, (a) to succeed in opening (something); Gen.Sc.; (b) to become familiar with, practised in (a new technique) (Abd., wm.Sc. 1954), ellipt. for “to get into the way of”; (5) get on (someone or something), (a) to seize suddenly or violently; (b) to attack violently with words (Cai. 1907 D. B. Nicolson in County of Cai. 73), to upbraid; (6) get on tae, til (somebody), = (5) (b) (Sh., n.Sc., Slg., m.Lth., wm.Sc., Kcb., Uls. 1954); also in s.Not. dial.; (7) get out, to give full vent to, to finish off (Sh.10, Abd., m.Lth.1 1954); (8) get out wi', to utter suddenly or forcibly; Gen.Sc.; (9) get ower, (a) to get the upper hand of. Gen.Sc.; “to get the better of in a bargain or argument” (Sc. 1900 E.D.D.); also in Eng. dial.; (b) to last out, subsist (for a certain period) (ne.Sc. 1954); (10) get roon', to accomplish, master; Gen.Sc.; (11) get through, to escape or recover from (Sh., ne.Sc., Ayr., Wgt., Rxb. 1954). (1) Dmf. 1877 R. W. Thom Jock o' the Knowe 9:
The Laird, puir body, had gotten awa.
Rxb. 1917 Kelso Chron. (31 Aug.) 4:
“Auld Tam's gotten away!”; “Ay, he's deid, lad”.
(2) (a) Abd.27 1920:
Will ye get by, wi' a' that trock lyin' aboot?
(b) Sc. 1818 Scott Rob Roy xxvii.:
Say nae word, gude or bad, that ye can weel get by.
(c) s.Sc. 1847 H. S. Riddell Poems 9:
The tea meanwhile was gotten bye, And a' things done right dousely.
(3) Edb. 1801 H. Macneill Poet. Wks. I. 52:
Sometimes briskly, sometimes flaggin, Sometimes helpit, Will got forth.
(4) (a) Sc. 1881 A. Mackie Scotticisms 37:
I can't get into my box.
Arg. 1936 L. McInnes Dial. S. Kintyre 19:
That drawer's awfu' stiff: I can't get into it.
(5) (a) Cai. 1907 D. B. Nicolson in County of Cai. 73:
“He gote on 'e horse”, he seized the horse.
(6) Sc. 1951 Scotsman (21 March) 5:
He “got on to” Mr M'Grath about the way he had treated Kay Matheson when he was up North.
(7) Ags. 1790 D. Morison Poems 113:
We'll meet behind yon corn stack An' there unseen get out our crack.
Abd.27 1920:
Wyte till I've gotten out ma brakfast. It was the only wey he could get out his spite.
(8) Edb. 1870 J. Lauder Warblings 27:
I got out wi' a'e great roar.
(9) (a) Ags. 1889 Barrie W. in Thrums vii.:
If she thinks she's to get ower me like that, she taks me for a bigger fule than I tak her for.
Abd.27 1920:
The class has gotten clean ower the maister.
(b) Ayr. 1834 Galt Howdie, etc. (1923) 249:
She was obligated to borrow a handful of meal and a reisted herring to get over the Sabbath day.
(10) Kcb. 1890 A. J. Armstrong Musings 219:
There's naething she canna get roon' on a farm, E'en to followin' the ploo' an' the harrow.
(11) Sc. 1721 Ramsay Poems (S.T.S.) I. 102:
Men landed from Abroad, from Camps and Seas; Others got through some dangerous Disease.

9. Phrases: ¶(1) to get gae, to get free, to escape; (2) to get (one's) hands on (someone), to get hold of (in order to strike); Gen.Sc.; (3) to get in ahin' (someone), see Ahint, 4. (2); (4) to get (it) ower the fingers, to be scolded, reprimanded; Gen.Sc.; cf. B. 1.; (5) to get up in(to) years, to grow old; Gen.Sc.; cf. Eng. to get on —; (6) to get well up, to rise in position, to succeed in life; Gen.Sc. (1) Sc. p.1746 Jacobite Minstr. (1829) 293:
Hell's black bitch mastiff lapt the broo, And slipt her collar and gat gae.
(2) Ayr. 1792 Burns Kellyburn Braes ix.:
Whae'er she gat hands on cam ne'er her nae mair.
Abd.27 1920:
Gin I get my hands on ye, ye vratch, I'll gie ye't.
(4) Sc. 1923 D. Wilson Carlyle till Marriage x.:
He went so far as to “get over the fingers sorely” from her for intimating that perhaps she was not so deeply in love with the other man as she supposed.
(5) Sc. 1849 M. Oliphant M. Maitland vi.:
When folk get up into years, and grow in a manner hardened to the adversities of the world.
Gsw. 1850 R. Stewart Musings 99:
Ye ken she's getting up in years, The wrinkles on her brow appears.
Sh. 1886 J. Burgess Sk. and Poems 12:
To wonder how he would manage for stowage when Liza got up in years.
Sc. 1896 “L. Keith” Indian Uncle i.:
Whiles when fowk get up in years —
(6) Edb. 1811 H. Macneill Bygane Times 44:
Upon my word you've got well up.

[O.Sc. has get, a.1350, gete, with lengthened vowel, a.1400. For the construction with the pa.p. under 5. (2), cf. O.N. geta + pa.p. in the same sense.]

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"Get v.". Dictionary of the Scots Language. 2004. Scottish Language Dictionaries Ltd. Accessed 25 Jun 2021 <>



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