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Scottish National Dictionary (1700–)

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First published 1960 (SND Vol. V). Includes material from the 1976 supplement.
This entry has not been updated but may contain minor corrections and revisions.

HITCH, v., n. Also hich (Abd. 1826 D. Anderson Poems 59). Sc. usages:

I. v. intr. To hobble, to walk with a limp; to hop (Dmf.3 c.1920; m.Lth. 1957). Also used fig.Sc. 1821 Blackwood's Mag. (May) 159:
Hitching slowly, but quite resolutely, out at the church-door.
ne.Sc. 1836 J. Grant Tales (1869) 151:
I saw ye hitchin and hirplin, as tho' ye had been a cripple.
Sc. a.1844 Wilson's Tales of the Borders (1858) XV. 116:
I . . . hitched away towards the tap o' the Briock.
Hdg. 1885 J. Lumsden Rhymes & Sk. 241:
For, strange to say, Old Madam, the World, goes jowling and hitching along in her old way.
Kcd. 1908 D. Grant Lays 114:
Owre the hill he hitch't an' hirplet.

II. n. 1. A limp in walking (Rxb. 1923 Watson W.-B.). Obs. in Eng. since 1750.

2. The little hop made in playing hop-scotch (Abd., m.Lth. 1957). Hence deriv. hitchy in combs. hitchy-bay, hitchy-hobbles (Abd. 1910–57 M. M. Stewart), the game of hop-scotch. Cf. n.Eng. hitchey-beds, Suf. hitch-hob, id.Slk. 1875 Border Treasury (1 May) 459:
In the next street where some other little girls were playing at “hitchy-bay”.

Phr. hitch and kick, a feat in a jumping competition (see quot.) (Ayr. 1975). Rxb. 1842 W. Howitt Visits to Remark. Places II. 567:
The Hitch-and-Kick. A pole was . . . set down . . . having a large ring . . . upon this ring was laid a sort of . . . tambourine. . . . The thing required of the contenders was to take a short run, give a little hop, or what they call a hitch, then spring up, and with the same foot from which they spring kick off the tambourine, alight again on the same foot, and give another little hop or hitch.

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"Hitch v., n.". Dictionary of the Scots Language. 2004. Scottish Language Dictionaries Ltd. Accessed 29 Mar 2023 <>



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