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Scottish National Dictionary (1700–)

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First published 1960 (SND Vol. V).

KAUCH, n. Also kaught, caught; kiaugh, kiauch, kya(u)ch(t), kiach(t), kyaugh(t); caigh, ke(a)ch, keagh; quacht (Dmf. 1912 J. L. Waugh Robbie Doo 76). Care, worry, uneasiness of mind, bustle, anxious exertion (Gall. 1824 MacTaggart Gallov. Encycl. 7; Dmf. 1825 Jam.; Kcb. 1898 A. J. Armstrong Levellers 220, kyacht; Dmf. 1899 Country Schoolmaster (Wallace) 350, Kcb., Dmf. 1959), freq. in phrs. kauch and care, id., in a kauch, troublesome, full of worry or care. Adj. kiachsome (Kcb. a.1902 Gallovidian (1913) 109, Kcb. 1959). [kjɑ:x]Ayr. 1786 Burns Cotter's Sat. Night iii.:
The lisping infant, prattling on his knee, Does a' his weary kiaugh and care beguile.
Sc. 1794 J. Grahame Poems 97:
Write me how mony ye're to bring Your caigh and care ahint you fling.
Gall. 1824 MacTaggart Gallov. Encycl. 289:
To be in a kauch, to be in an extreme flutter, not knowing which way to turn; over head and ears in business.
Dmf. 1830 W. Bennet Traits Sc. Life III. 156:
Mony a sair kaught Grizzy an' the weans an' me had wi't.
Gsw. 1872 J. Young Lochlomond Side 33:
In sic an unca kech we are To see a sicht surpassing far Ocht that has yet made glad our eyes.
Kcb. 1896 A. J. Armstrong Cobbler o' Kirkiebrae 124:
Three weans wad eat ane oot o' hoose an' ha'. It's a guid thing for Peter that he has gotten rid o' sic a kiacht.
Sc.(E) 1913 H. P. Cameron Imit. Christ ii. v. 6:
Ye'se mak grit fordal, gin ye waird yersel lowse frae a' temporal kiaugh.
Dmf. 1949:
I had an awfy kyaucht wi' the bairns, takin them on holiday.

[Orig. uncertain. Phs. Gael., Ir. cath [kah], battle, struggle, trouble, vbl.n. cathachd, fighting, struggling.]

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"Kauch n.". Dictionary of the Scots Language. 2004. Scottish Language Dictionaries Ltd. Accessed 17 Aug 2022 <>



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