Show Search Results Show Browse

Scottish National Dictionary (1700–)

Hide Quotations Hide Etymology

Abbreviations Cite this entry

About this entry:
First published 1965 (SND Vol. VI). Includes material from the 1976 and 2005 supplements.
This entry has not been updated since then but may contain minor corrections and revisions.

LUVE, v., n. Also luive (Edb. 1791 J. Learmont Poems 23), loove (Ayr. 1792 Burns In Simmer v.; Knr. 1917 J. L. Robertson Petition to Deil 9); and, with vocalisation of v, lue (Sc. 1724 W. Hamilton Poems (1850) 9), lu-, loe (Peb. 1805 J. Nicol Poems I. 32), loo (Sc. 1718 Ramsay Poems (S.T.S.) I. 69), looe (Edb. 1773 Fergusson Poems (S.T.S.) II. 110), lo (m.Lth. 1882 Mod. Sc. Poets (Edwards) IV. 323), †lou, †loie, †loye (Sc. c.1805 in Child Ballads (1956) V. 272, 277); lae-; †lee (ne.Sc. 1806 The Bonny Birdy in Child Ballads No. 82 iv.). Sc. forms of Eng. love. [lø:(v), le:, lu:. See etym. note.]

I. v. 1. As in Eng. Pa.t. lu(v)ed, luid. Now only liter., the word having long been displaced in colloq. use by Like, q.v.Sc. 1724 Ramsay Ever Green II. 193:
For I luid naithing in all my Lyfe, I dare well say it but Honesty.
Abd. 1759 F. Douglas Rural Love 17:
I loo a lad, and he loes me.
Sc. 1776 D. Herd Sc. Songs I. 311:
Robin is my only joe, Robin has the art to loo', So to his suit I mean to bow Because I ken he looes me.
Per. c.1800 Lady Nairne Will ye no come back again i.:
Better lo'ed ye canna be, Will ye no come back again?
Sc. 1816 Scott O. Mortality xxix.:
Ye'll think o' puir Cuddie sometimes, an honest lad that lo'es ye, Jenny.
m.Sc. 1917 J. Buchan Poems 41:
My denty doo Has sell't hersel' for gowd and silken braws That weemen loe.
m.Sc. 1979 Ian Bowman in Joy Hendry Chapman 23-4 (1985) 40:
O mony hae pri'ed a kiss o ma mou
an ane that pri'ed me has cost me sair,
for he was the ane I was fain to lo'e;
but I sall see him nevermair.
m.Sc. 1982 Douglas Fraser in Hamish Brown Poems of the Scottish Hills 9:
I lue them weel aneuch,
But mair still the bare hills
m.Sc. 1988 William Neill Making Tracks 50:
But no the face. Twesna the man I kent,
weel loed bi bairns an dugs, an auld yins tae.
Ma tears cam no for this but the mindit man.
Abd. 1996 Sheena Blackhall Wittgenstein's Web 17:
I telt him I loued baith o them an wushed they widna miscaa ain anither becos it gart me grue inside.
Abd. 1998 Sheena Blackhall The Bonsai Grower 81:
A wearisome warssle it wis anna, fur a hett-bluided lass tae pit by the rigg o ilkie nicht wi a shargeret auld bodach fa snored and snochered an dwaumed awa, aa the oors sud be keepit fur luvin.

Obs. pa.p. lovit(e), well-beloved, in arch. use in legal documents, esp. in a Letter, q.v., as a form of address by the Sovereign or in his name to one of his subjects; “it was formerly a word of style descriptive of the pursuer in a Court of Session summons” (Sc. 1946 A. D. Gibb Legal Terms 53).Sc. 1707 Acts Parl. Scot. XI. App. 121:
It is showen to us by our Lovit John Davie.
Sc. 1792 W. Ross Practice Law Scot. I. 284:
The King of England says to our beloved, or well beloved. The King of France, à nos amés, or à nos bien amés. And the King of Scotland, to our lovites.
Sc. 1841 Session Papers, Magistrates Abd. v. Fraser (25 March) 1:
Victoria, etc., — Our Lovites, Thomas Blaikie, plumber in Aberdeen, present Provost of the Royal Burgh of Aberdeen; Patrick Simpson, manufacturer in Aberdeen, Leslie Clark, merchant there.
Sc. 1937 Green's Encycl. Legal Styles V. 330:
Whereas it is humbly shewn to us by our lovite A.B. complainer.

Derivs.: (1) lo'able, lovable; (2) luely, lovely, used adv. in quot.; (3) luver, loveyer, lovier, lover. The last form is now only dial. in Eng. Combs. (i) lovers' links, wall-pennywort, Cotyledon umbilicus (Rxb. 1825 Jam., 1923 Watson W.-B.); (ii) lovers' loan(ing), a lovers' walk or lane. See Loan, Loaning; (iii) lover's loup, (the site of) a suicidal leap over a precipice taken by a despairing lover. See Lowp, n.; (iv) lover's wanton, the spotted orchis, Orchis maculata. Also in corrupt form louper winton, the early purple orchis, Orchis mascula (Abd. 1919 T.S.D.C.); (4) lu(ve)some, loe-, lae-, lovable, lovely, delightful. Now only dial. in Eng. Hence loesumness, loveliness, beauty;lo'esomely. (1) Abd. 1897 G. Macdonald Salted with Fire xxi.:
She was a dacent, mensefu, richt lo'able cratur.
(2) Sc. 1935 W. Soutar Poems 42:
O luely, luely, cam she in And luely she lay doun.
(3) Sc. 1824 S. Ferrier Inheritance xviii.:
Weel, Miss Bell, what have you made of your nawbob — your swain — your loveyer — your what-do-ye-call-him?
m.Sc. 1864 J. C. Shairp Kilmahoe 172:
Now the birks to dust may rot, Names o' luvers be forgot.
Arg. 1898 N. Munro J. Splendid xiv.:
“M'Iver!” I cried. “He's an old hand at the business.” . . . “Not — not at the trade of lovier?” she asked.
(iii) Sc. 1721 Ramsay Poems (S.T.S.) I. 145:
Yonder's a Craig, since ye have tint a' Hope, Gae till't ye'r ways, and take the Lover's Loup.
Dmf. 1808 J. Mayne Siller Gun 60:
Yonder the lads and lasses group, To see the luckless Lover's loup.
(iv) Abd. 1886 B. and H. 316:
Lover's Wanton. The tubers of Orchis maculata. Rustics believe that if you take the proper half of the root of an orchis and get any one of the opposite sex to eat it, it will produce a powerful affection for you, while the other half will produce as strong an aversion.
(4) Abd. 1746 W. Forbes Dominie Depos'd (1765) 38:
Poor Meg lay still And look'd as loosome as a Saint.
Wgt. 1804 R. Couper Poems II. 208:
The looesome Helen there he met Sae fair, sae young, and gay.
Ags. 1866 C. Sievwright Sough o' Shuttle 76:
Sic' callans, though lo'esomely-spoken, Are apples o' Sodom within.
Sc. 1871 P. H. Waddell Psalms xxix. 2:
Lout ye till the Lord i' the lo'esomness o' haliheid!
Ags. 1880 J. F. Watt Sketches 93:
Their queen, wha is loosome as loosome can be.
Ags. 1897 in A. Reid Bards 156:
The laesome lan' that we'll see some day When we lea' this cauldrife nook.
Edb. 1915 T. W. Paterson Auld Saws 45:
It's loesome-like to see it jinkin, Joukin ilka airt.

2. Impers. use in phr. well loes me o', I delight in, am pleased with, hurrah for —!, an erroneous confusion with leeze me (see Lief).Edb. 1773 Fergusson Poems (S.T.S.) II. 208:
Weel lo'es me o' you, Business, now.

II. n. As in Eng. Dim. lovie, a sweetheart, lover; a hug, caress, as a child's word (ne.Sc., Ags., Per., Edb., Dmb., Ayr., Kcb. 1961).Sc. 1726 Ramsay T.-T. Misc. (1876) I. 161:
Todlen hame, todlen hame, Cou'dna my loove come todlen hame?
Ayr. 1793 Burns Letters (Ferguson) No. 592:
Mair for taiken, a fine chiel, a hand-wail'd friend and crony o' my ain, gat o'er the lugs in loove.
Sc. 1827 Bonnie Annie in Child Ballads No. 24 A. viii.:
Ye'll tak me in your arms twa, lo, lift me cannie.
m.Sc. 1917 J. Buchan Poems 52:
The sma' things that oor mortal luve Maun aye haud dear.
ne.Sc. 1930 Bothy Songs (Ord) 348:
Had they gien my lovie man for man, or yet a man for three, . . . He wudna hae lien so low th' day at the foot o' yon arn tree.
Sc. 1979 Sydney Goodsir Smith in Joy Hendry Chapman 23-4 (1985) 34:
but sune
Reluctant dawn lift up her face
And bring my luve til me again.

Phrs. and combs.: 1. (for) love (and) favour (and affection), a phr. used in legal documents relating to gifts and donations; 2. love-after-supper, a card-game once popular in Gall. (Gall. 1824 MacTaggart Gallov. Encycl. 458); 3. love-bairn, a love-child, one born out of wedlock (Sc. 1902 E.D.D.; Ork., wm.Sc. 1961). Also in n.Eng. dial.; 4. luve-blink, an amorous glance, “the glad eye”; 5. love-clap, to embrace, hug; 6. love-darg, a piece of work or service done gratuitously out of friendliness as by one neighbour to help another (Sc. 1825 Jam.; Per. 1915 Wilson L. Strathearn 257; ne. and em.Sc., Ayr. 1961). See Darg, n.1; 7. love-deyted, crazed with love. See Doit, v.; 8. love-dotterel, love in dotage, “which old unmarried men and women are seized with” (s.Sc. 1825 Jam.). See Dotterel; 9. love-glint, = 4.; 10. love links, yellow stonecrop, Sedum reflexum (Dmf. 1896 Garden Work cxiv. 112). Cf. lovers' links above; 11. love-lowe, the flame or ardour of love; 12. love-lozenger, a conversation-lozenge (ne.Sc., Fif., Lnl. 1961); ¶13. love-spink, a wild flower. ? Cf. 10.; 14. love-stoond, the throb or pain of (disappointed) love; 15. love-tochered, having a dowry of love, endowed with love. See Tocher; 16. love-tryste, a love assignment. Hence love-tryster; ¶17. luve-wud, crazed with love. Cf. 7.Sc. 1722 W. Forbes Institute I. ii. 112:
The Reason moving to grant a Charter, is either Love and Favour, which is called a lucrative Cause.
Sc. 1751 Elchies Decisions II. 106:
The Captain disponed the tenement and burgh-lands for love and favour to his second son.
Sc. 1838 W. Bell Dict. Law Scot. 218:
Where the deed is granted without value and from mere love and favour to the grantee the consideration is termed gratuitous.
4. Lnk. 1890 J. Coghill Poems 148:
Mark the luve-blink in her e'e.
Ayr. 1927 J. Carruthers A Man Beset i. § 3:
“I canna thole women.” . . . James laughed . . . “Wait till ane o' them gies ye the love-blink”.
5. ne.Sc. 1828 P. Buchan Ballads I. 32:
They hadna kissed nor love clapped As lovers do when they meet.
6. Ags. 1761 Session Papers, Petition P. Yeaman (28 July) 13:
He and others went, and some did not; which made the deponent believe it was a love-dargue.
Ags. 1831 Perthshire Advert. (27 Jan.):
This is no time for dallying, we have only a love dairg before our hands till kail time.
Kcd. 1899 A. C. Cameron Fettercairn 266:
When a house, byre or barn required repair or renewal, the neighbours gathered and gave a “love darg” (friendly turn) to complete the work.
Abd. 1960 Huntly Express (27 May):
Mr Smith seems to have been a popular type and instead of offering him a present or standing him a complimentary dinner, the farmers decided to treat him to a love darg.
7. Abd. 1920 G. P. Dunbar Peat Reek 21:
An' on the hinmost single nicht o' some love-deyted chiel.
9. Per. 1889 T. Edwards Strathearn Lyrics 15:
I'm juist as fain to see the love-glints o' my queen.
11. Dmf. 1878 R. W. Thom Jock o' Knowe 77:
A dorty village quean To whom your love-lowe was the glow.
12. Sc. 1925 Scots Mag. (Jan.) 278:
I aften ferlie, Saunders, whitfor thae sweetie-makkers dinna prent their love-lozenger lingo i' the braid auld Scots Doric.
13. Gall. 1889 Bards (Harper) 60:
Sweet lovespink blooms on Douglas Ha'.
14. Ags. 1886 A. D. Willock Rosetty Ends 146:
She had to a' appearance got ower her love-stoond.
15. Lnk. 1919 G. Rae Clyde and Tweed 91:
Far abune the dew-filled daisied rig, Like blessin' on the same, . . . Love-tochered frae the hills.
16. Dmf. 1820 Blackwood's Mag. (July) 374:
The decaying tree that has sheltered beneath its green boughs the love-trystes of many generations.
Dmf. 1826 A. Cunningham Paul Jones II. iv.:
By a form of the most perfect beauty and sweetness I was made a love-tryster in this wild glen. I met her under a holly-tree.
17. e.Lth. 1905 J. Lumsden Croonings 109:
They fell to syne, they luve-wud lords.

[O.Sc. lufe, luff, 1375, love, 1450, O.E. lufu, love, lufian, to love. The reg. development in Sc. through North. Mid.Eng. lōve(n) is [lø:(v), ne.Sc. li:(v). See O, letter.], attested by J. Elphinston Propriety (1787) II. 200 (“u French”), W. Aiton Agric. Ayr. (1811) 688 (“Greek upsilon”), J. A. H. Murray D.S.C.S. (1873) 147 and the spelling lee, but the mod. unrounded forms of these [lɪv, lev] have been wholly replaced by Eng. [lʌv]. The 18th c. spelling with oo adopted by Ramsay and others has misled singers and reciters into the now common pronunciation [lu:], the word having dropped out of colloq. use.]

You may wish to vary the format shown below depending on the citation style used.

"Luve v., n.". Dictionary of the Scots Language. 2004. Scottish Language Dictionaries Ltd. Accessed 16 Jun 2024 <>



Hide Advanced Search

Browse SND: