Scottish National Dictionary (1700–)

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LAUCH, v., n.1 Sc. forms and usages of Eng. laugh. For I.Sc. forms see Laich, v.

I. v. A. Forms. Pr.t.: lauch (Gen.Sc.); lach; laach (Sh. 1952 Robertson and Graham Sh. Dial. 33); liach (Ork. 1909 Old-Lore Misc. II. i. 30); ¶leugh (Lnk. 1890 H. Muir Rutherglen 12). [l(:)x, lɑ(:)x; s.Sc. + ‡lɑxʍ. See P.L.D. § 111.] Pa.t. strong: leuch (Per. 1915 Wilson L. Strathearn 255; Fif., Lth. 1926 Wilson Cent. Scot. 252; ne.Sc., Ags. 1960), leugh; lewch (Bnff. 1893 W. Gregor Dunbar's Works (S.T.S.) III. 98); lough (Sc. a.1805 in Child Ballads (1956) V. 254), leough (Ork. 1909 Old-Lore Misc. II. i. 30), lyooch (Edb. 1873 D.S.C.S. 119; Sh. 1952 Robertson and Graham Sh. Dial. 33); weak: laucht (Gen.Sc.), lauchet, lauched; lachit (Abd. 1931 J. H. Hall Holy Man 82); mixed form leuched (Gsw. 1868 J. Young Poems 30; Dmf.3 c.1920; Sc. 1926 E. M. Brougham News out of Scotland 248). [str. løx, lɪ, le, l(j)ux(ʍ) wk. lxt, lɑxt] Pa.p. strong: lauchen (Ags. 1894 J. B. Salmond My Man Sandy (1899) iii.; ne. Sc. 1960); laughin (Abd. 1754 R. Forbes Jnl. from London 26), leuchen (Sc. 1812 The Scotchman 13; Rxb. 1876 D.S.C.S. 205; Per. 1916 Wilson L. Strathearn 215; Fif. 1926 Wilson Cent. Scot. 252); leuchin (Cld. 1825 Jam.); leuchen (Slk. 1817 Hogg Shep. Cal. (1874) i.); laachen (Sh. 1952 Robertson and Graham Sh. Dial. 33); weak: laucht (Gen.Sc.), lauched (Bwk. 1942 Wettstein; Rxb. 1942 Zai); laacht (Sh. 1952 Robertson and Graham Sh. Dial. 33); mixed forms leucht (Fif. 1926 Wilson Cent. Scot. 252), leuched, leugh't (Lnk. 1890 H. Muir Rutherglen 56); leuch (Gsw. 1881 J. Young Selections 147). [str. lxn, lɑxn, løxn; wk. lxt, lɑxt, luxt]

B. Usages: 1. intr. as in Eng. Hence derivs. lauchable, laucher, ¶leughingly (Lnk. 1890 H. Muir Rutherglen 14), lauchify, to make fun of, la(u)chter; and combs. laughing-duck, the sheldrake, Tadorna tadorna, from its call (Dmf. 1922 Trans. Dmf. & Gall. Antiq. Soc. (1921–2) 105); lauchin-fu, at the laughing or merry stage of intoxication; lauchin rain, see 1881 quot. (Ags. 1960). Proverbial phr. to come or gae lauchin hame, of something which has been borrowed: to be returned to the lender with a gift as a recompense (I.Sc., Abd. 1960). Sc. 1736 Ramsay Proverbs (1776) 9:
A borrowed len shou'd gae laughing hame.
Sc. 1828 Wilson Noctes Amb. (1863) II. 85:
Oh, but their heads are wake, wake — before the fire has got sun-bricht, they are lauchin-fou.
Rnf. 1835 D. Webster Rhymes 167:
I wadna … laughify your orthography, In case your Highland heart gets huffy.
ne.Sc. 1881 W. Gregor Folk-Lore 154:
When rain comes from the south-west with a somewhat clear horizon, with the appearance that the rain would cease in a short time it is called “a lauchin rain,” and is believed to last for some time.
Uls.4 1960:
A lauchin rain that makes fools vain.

2. tr. To laugh at, to ridicule. Obs. in Eng. since 16th c. Nonce. e.Lth. 1885 J. Lumsden Rural Rhymes 57:
We'll laugh the Russ an' Yankee.

II. n. As in Eng. Also erron. leuch (Sc. 1923 Sc. Univ. Verses 18), leugh (Lnk. 1890 H. Muir Rutherglen 11).

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"Lauch v., n.1". Dictionary of the Scots Language. 2004. Scottish Language Dictionaries Ltd. Accessed 28 Feb 2020 <>



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