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Scottish National Dictionary (1700–)

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First published 1960 (SND Vol. V).
This entry has not been updated since then but may contain minor corrections and revisions.

HEADUM AND CORSUM, adj. & n.phr. Also headim and corsim, head him and cross him.

I. adj.phr. In confusion, “used of objects which lie transversely, some with their heads the one way, others with their heads the other” (Dmf. 1825 Jam.).Dmf. 1808 Jam.:
Topsy-turvy. To lie headum and corsum, to lie with the head where the heels should be.

II. n.phr. A game with pins (see Gall. quot.). Cf. Headicks and Pinticks, heids and thraws s.v. Heid, n., 1. Phrs. (11).Gall. 1824 MacTaggart Gallov. Encycl. 257:
A game with pins. Pins are hid with fingers in the palms of the hands; the same number is laid alongside them, and either headim or corsim called out by those who do so; when the fingers are lifted, if the heads of the pins hid, and those beside them, be lying one way, when the crier cried headim, then that player wins; but if corsim, the one who hid the pins wins.
s.Sc. 1837 Wilson's Tales of the Borders III. 327:
Nanny and I have set us down on the greensward . . . played at chucks, “head him and cross him,” or some such amusement.

[Heid, Corse with suff. -Um.]

Headum And Corsum adj., n. phr.

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"Headum And Corsum adj., n. phr.". Dictionary of the Scots Language. 2004. Scottish Language Dictionaries Ltd. Accessed 24 May 2024 <>



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