Scottish National Dictionary (1700–)
LEAM, n., v.1 Also leem, leme, leim. [lim]
I. n. 1. A gleam, ray or flash of light, a bright glow (Sc. 1710 T. Ruddiman Gl. to Douglas Aeneis; Bnff., Abd., Ags., Kcb. 1960). Also fig. Now mostly poet. Also in n.Eng. dial.
Dmf. 1808 R. Cromek Remains 239:
A leem o' light was dancing owre them, mair bonnie than moonshine. Slk. 1813 Hogg Queen's Wake (1874) 32:
When the ingle lowed wi' an eiry leme. Bwk. 1862 J. G. Smith Old Churchyard 78:
Her e'en were the leme o' the bricht risin' day. Abd. 1868 W. Shelley Wayside Flowers 56:
The glowin' leme o' soul resolve. Rnf. 1870 J. Nicholson Idylls 39:
Like the leme o' the lichtnin', the glance o' her ee' Sent stounds o' delight through ilk fibre o' me. Kcb. 1896 Crockett Grey Man i.:
Soon all the courtyard was aglow with the red, unsteady leme which the skies gave back. Abd. 1924 Scots Mag. (June) 171:
It's the Back o' Hairst upon Ythanside, And the leme o' the rowan's deid. Sc. 1930 Glasgow Herald (4 Feb.) 8:
Following a dream, A visionary leme.
2. The slightest vestige of a thing, used of wind in quot.
No a leam o wind — not a breath of wind.
II. v. To gleam, shine, glitter, flash, blaze (Sc. 1710 T. Ruddiman Gl. to Douglas Aeneis, 1825 Jam.). Poet.
Abd. 1768 A. Ross Helenore (S.T.S.) 58:
Now by this time the sun begins to leam, And litt the hill-heads wi' his morning beam. Sc. a.1803 Proud Lady Margaret in Child Ballads No. 47 A. vii.:
“O wherein leems the gold?” she said, “Or wherein leems the twine?” Crm. 1829 H. Miller Poems 80:
An' brightly leims the gouden sky, That skirts the mountain blue. Abd. 1865 G. Macdonald Alec Forbes xxxii.:
It's a mercy to think 'at there's no lemin' and lowin' future in store for hit, puir mappy! Ayr. 1892 H. Ainslie Pilgrimage 188:
Bobs for the lugs, an' finger rings, Wi' leeming pearlings, strings on strings. Sc. 1907 D. MacAlister Echoes (1923) 125:
Greet ye nae mair, o een sae blue, Wi' love like starnies leamin'. Sc. 1928 T. T. Alexander Psalms xliii.:
O, let Thy licht leme and Thy truth, To airt me straucht to Thee.
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"Leam n., v.1". Dictionary of the Scots Language. 2004. Scottish Language Dictionaries Ltd. Accessed 19 Oct 2021 <https://www.dsl.ac.uk/entry/snd/leam_n_v1>
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