Scottish National Dictionary (1700–)

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KYTE, n., v. Also k(e)ite. [kəit]

I. n. The stomach, belly. Gen.(exc. I.)Sc. Also in n.Eng. dial. Dim. kytochie, -ock(ie). Sc. c.1690 Jacob. Relics (Hogg) I. 24:
Wi' his back boonermost, An' his kyte downermost.
Sc. 1728 Ramsay Poems (S.T.S.) II. 150:
Like our Mill Knaves that lift the Laiding, Whase Kytes can streek out like raw Plaiding.
Edb. 1773 Fergusson Poems (S.T.S.) II. 215:
Sick-like some weary wight will fill His kyte wi' drogs frae doctor's bill.
Ayr. 1786 Burns To a Haggis iv.:
Till a' their weel-swall'd kytes belyve Are bent like drums.
Sc. 1820 Scott Monastery xxxiii.:
To dress dainties at dinner-time for his ain kyte.
Ags. 1860 A. Whamond J. Tacket xvii.:
D—l birst yer hungry kites.
Kcb. 1901 R. Trotter Gall. Gossip 201:
Sorra may care an my kytock be fu.
Rxb. 1925 E. C. Smith Mang Howes 13:
In A gaed ti fill ma empy keite, for my certies! A was howe!

Hence derivs. and phrs.: †1. kyte-clung, having the belly shrunk from hunger (Sc. 1825 Jam.); †2. kyted, adj., collected in the belly; 3. kytefu(l), a bellyful; 4. kytie, adj., corpulent, having a large belly, esp. as a result of good living (Lth., Lnk., Cld. 1825 Jam.; n.Sc., Ags., Fif., Kcb. 1960); 5. up in the kyte, pregnant (Edb. 1960). 1. Bch. 1804 W. Tarras Poems 107:
Douce wife, quoth I, what means the fizz, . . . Anent a kyte-clung poet?
Abd. 1875 G. Macdonald Malcolm I. i.:
To even my bonny Grizel to sic a lang, kyte-clung chiel as yon.
Lnk. 1888 J. Nicholson Tibbie's Garland 185:
An' yet, for a', I'm lean's a rake, Kyte-clung as ony reestit herrin'.
2. Gall. 1824 MacTaggart Gallov. Encycl. 189:
He thought he'd an experiment Try then . . . to ken if he was able, Gin kyted air was inflammable.
3. Per. 1821 T. Atkinson Three Nights 39:
I've room for as muckle again yet, an maun hae my kitefu' at a kirn.
Ayr. 1823 Galt Entail i.:
Heh, sirs, what a kyteful o' pride's yon'er!
Wgt. 1883 D. McWhirter Musings 133:
Now chitter, chirp, nor rage ye mair, But tak' a hearty kytefu' there.
4. Ags. 1853 W. Blair Aberbrothock 60:
A wee, fat, kytie body, as braid's lang, they ca'd Clark Dooglass.

II. v. Of the stomach: to cause to swell, to distend, to fill up. Sc. 1881 T. Newbigging Poems 33:
Smiling as the halesome food Kites her wee bit baggie, O.

[O.Sc. kyte, belly, c.1560, keited, having a (big) belly, 1645. Orig. somewhat uncertain, but cf. Mid.Du. kuyt, küte, kiete, a fleshy part of the body, esp. the thigh, M.L.Ger. kūt, id., entrails.]

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"Kyte n., v.". Dictionary of the Scots Language. 2004. Scottish Language Dictionaries Ltd. Accessed 26 Sep 2021 <>



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