Scottish National Dictionary (1700–)

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JOINER, n. Also jiner, jyner; chiner (Cai. 1955 Edb. John o' Groat Lit. Soc.). [′dʒəinər; I.Sc., Cai. ′tʃ-. See Join.]

1. A woodworker in gen., not restricted as in Eng. to one who does lighter or more ornamental work than a carpenter, which word is not native to Sc. usage. Joiner itself has supplanted the earlier Wricht, q.v., from the early 19th c. Sc. 1814 J. Sinclair Agric. Scot. App. 290:
Joiners, called also Wrights or House-Carpenters.
Sc. 1881 A. Mackie Scotticisms 41:
Joiner is commonly used in Edinburgh where “carpenter” would be used in London; but over shops we sometimes see the notice “house carpenter”.
Ags. 1887 A. D. Willock Rosetty Ends 3:
Gettin' the joiner to mak' the buird.
Lnk. 1923 G. Rae 'Mang Lowland Hills 19:
I begged a jiner body to sort a barrey wheel.

Hence (1) joiner-word, the pass-word of a carpenters' society; (2) joinery, a joiner's workshop (Abd., Ags., Fif. 1959). (1) ne.Sc. 1884 D. Grant Lays 62:
But these are secrets o' the trade, An' need the joiner-word.
(2) Fif. 1901 Gsw. Herald (7 Jan.) 4:
Steam joinery, sawmill, cabinet, and box-making and turning works.
Dmf. 1917 J. L. Waugh Cute McCheyne 66:
There was a terr'le collieshangie in the joinery office.

2. In pl.: the plant horsetail, Equisetum (Kcb. 1959). Cf. Joint, 2.

[For change of vowel see P.L.D. § 46.]

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"Joiner n.". Dictionary of the Scots Language. 2004. Scottish Language Dictionaries Ltd. Accessed 19 Oct 2021 <>



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