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Scottish National Dictionary (1700–)

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First published 1956 (SND Vol. IV). Includes material from the 1976 and 2005 supplements.
This entry has not been updated since then but may contain minor corrections and revisions.

GOD, n. Also Goad (Sc. 1896 Stevenson Weir of Hermiston ii.), Gode. Sc. forms of Eng. God.Cai. 1939 Neil Gunn Wild Geese Overhead (1991) 291:
"Oh, you know him?" said Jake, taking Will's measure. "Hmff! Gode!" his tone implied that there wasn't much to know,...
Ork. 1952 R. T. Johnston Stenwick Days (1984) 1:
"For goad's seck, lass, mak' up thee mind whar's coortin' thee, for a'm seek o' seein' yin two fellas in here for supper night efter night, an' if thoo kinno pick wen a'll keek the both o' them oot."
wm.Sc. 1979 Robin Jenkins Fergus Lamont 3:
'When he's no' pleased,' Jim Blanie had once whispered, 'your grandfather looks like Goad.'
wm.Sc. 1989 William McIlvanney Walking Wounded 133:
'My Goad. You've wanted yer hands on that money since Ah won it. ... '
m.Sc. 1990 Douglas Lipton in Hamish Whyte and Janice Galloway New Writing Scotland 8: The Day I Met the Queen Mother 62:
Gode, it's pure starvation up here. Ah'm aff.
wm.Sc. 1991 James Russell Grant in Tom Hubbard The New Makars 55:
Gode deid oan Friday quick oan the Sabbath
Christ sclimmin Heaven better than ony flier
Sc. usages: 1. In obs. phrs. and combs.: (1) God-bairn gift, a present made to a god-child [in O.Sc. from early 16th c.]; (2) godfast, strict and consistent in religious observance and belief (Ayr. a.1838 Jam. MSS. XII. 98); (3) God's bird, a name given to the skylark; also to the robin as in some Eng. dials.; (4) God's body in phr. a good God's body, a silly but good-natured man (Sc. 1710 T. Ruddiman Gl. to Douglas Aeneis s.v. goddis apis; (5) God('s)-send, a wreck or any other profitable object driven ashore by the waves (Sh., Ork. 1866 Edm. Gl.); found in Ken. and I.W. dial.; see also guidsend s.v. Guid, n., 5. (2) (e) (ii); (6) godspenny, a small coin paid on striking a bargain, earnest-money, Arles; common in n.Eng. dial.(1) Rnf. 1710 Descr. Sheriffdom Lnk. & Rnf. (M.C.) 87:
Commonly said to have been ane god bairn gift.
(3) Lth. 1844 Zoologist II. 558:
The robin and the wren Are God's bird and hen.
Mry. 1889 J. Watson Wild Birds 31:
The skylark is sometimes called “God's bird,” and it was considered a heinous sin to rob its nest.
(5) Ork. 1701 J. Brand Descr. Ork. 37:
The more ignorant People construct this as a favourable Providence to them, therefore they call these wracks, God's send, tho not so favourable to the poor Mariners and others who suffer thereby.
Wgt. 1765 Scots Mag. (Nov.) 614:
On the 30th the vessel was drove on shore in the parish of Mochrum; where it was no sooner known, that a God's send (as they call it) had come in there, than men, women, and children, flocked to the shore, with what vessels they found readiest.
Sh. 1822 Scott Pirate vii.:
It's seldom sic rich Godsends come on our coast.
Sh. 1822 S. Hibbert Descr. Sh. 455:
The Shetlander . . . enumerates under the blasphemous title of the “God-sends”, a wreck, a drove of whales, and a boat-fare.
(6) Ayr. 1887 J. Service Dr Duguid 78:
“We'll wat thoombs on that bargain!” and he birled his godspenny on the table.

2. In excls. or mild oaths: (1) Godalmidgens, Gollymidgins, corrupted or softened forms of God Almighty; (2) God's cause, = for God's sake.(1) Ags. 1894 J. B. Salmond My Man Sandy (1899) vii.:
“O, golly midgins!” says ane o' Dauvid's lassies, wi' her hands up, an' her moo an' her een wide open.
Ags. 1929 Scots Mag. (May) 135:
“Godalmidgens!” he exclaimed, “You're no' young Murdoch?”
(2) Ags. 1903 T. Fyfe Leg. Lintrathen vii.:
Rin, Forie — God's cause, Forie, rin.

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"God n.". Dictionary of the Scots Language. 2004. Scottish Language Dictionaries Ltd. Accessed 16 Apr 2024 <>



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