Scottish National Dictionary (1700–)

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GRUSE, v., n. Also groose, grooze, gru(i)z(e), grewse, grouze; growse, growze. [Sc. gru:z; wm. and s.Sc. grʌuz]

I. v. To shiver, to shudder with fear, horror, cold, sickness, etc. (Lth. 1808 Jam., groose; Rxb. 1825 Id., 1923 Watson W.-B.; Bwk. 1892 Bwk. Naturalists' Club 164; Lth., Bwk., Slk. 1955). Gen. found as vbl.n. (Ayr. 1954, growsin; Rxb. 1954 Hawick News (18 June); e.Lth. 1955). Also in Eng. dial. Sc. 1806  Scott Letters (Cent. ed.) I. 339:
I declare this story [of a murder] makes me growze whenever I think of it.
Rxb. 1824  Trans. Hawick Arch. Soc. (1922) 36:
I'm beverin and growzin wi' terror and cauld, But I'm doubtish I soon will be hetter.
Sc. 1868  G. Webster Strathbrachan 502:
Preserve us, Dundauvie; ye gar a body growze.
Ayr. a.1878  H. Ainslie Pilgrimage (1892) 218:
Aft wi' thuds, hae gart me growse, Thou [night wind] hast shook me frae a drowse.
Sc. 1884–85  Royal Caled. Curling Club Ann. 334:
An auld man sat ayont the fire A' grewsin' wi' the cauld.
Lth. 1885  “J. Strathesk” Blinkbonny 92:
He . . . made a hasty retreat, felt sick, or “a' groosin',” as he called it.
Sc. 1897  “L. Keith” Bonnie Lady vi.:
A chill, a gruzin'; nothing more. It will pass.
Fif. 1904  Caled. Med. Jnl. V. 185:
Nor if she [a woman recovering from childbirth] take a “grewsin” must she touch her mammae, or a “beelin' briest” will be her sure reward.

II. n. A shiver, a fit of shivering, either from cold or horror (Rxb. 1923 Watson W.-B.; m.Lth., Bwk., Rxb. 1955). Sc. 1825  Scott Letters (1894) II. 345:
25 Aug.: I own one felt a little gruse at a pass called Shanes Inn . . . where they cut an unfortunate Inspector of the Mail Coaches . . . to pieces with scythes.
Bnff. 1876  S. Smiles Naturalist i.:
He was hot and cold alternately. When he got up in the afternoon he was in a “gruize.”
Per. 1911  A.D. Stewart Heather and Peat ix.:
When I had gotten ower lookin' at the picter, I got an awfu' grooze, and my hair raise straucht up.

Hence groosie, adj., shivery (Fif. 1909 Colville 292; Rxb. 1923 Watson W.-B., groosy, -zy, gruizy; m.Lth., Bwk., Slk. 1955).

[Deriv. of Grue, q.v., the -s prob. arising from the impers. constr. it grews me found in O.Sc.]

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"Gruse v., n.". Dictionary of the Scots Language. 2004. Scottish Language Dictionaries Ltd. Accessed 16 Jun 2019 <>



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