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Scottish National Dictionary (1700–)

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First published 1956 (SND Vol. IV).

GIBBAG, n. “A roll of flax prepared for spinning” (Cai. 1907 D. B. Nicolson in County of Cai. 73). The hand-spinning of flax ceased in Cai. early in the 19th c. so that the word survives only in the proverbial sayings below. Gael.Cai. 1907 D. B. Nicolson in County of Cai. 73:
“As white as a gibbag”, said of the head of an elderly person.
Cai. 1916 J. Mowat Cai. Proverbs 4:
“As bare as a gibbag” means something exceedingly bare.

[Gael. gibeag, giobag. a bundle, bunch, particularly of flax.]

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"Gibbag n.". Dictionary of the Scots Language. 2004. Scottish Language Dictionaries Ltd. Accessed 6 Oct 2022 <>



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