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Scottish National Dictionary (1700–)

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First published 1965 (SND Vol. VI).

NA, conj. Also ne.

1. Than (ne.Sc., Ags., Clc. 1963). Used after a comparative. Cf. Nor, 1.Abd. 1754 R. Forbes Ajax 16:
He flegged starker fouk na' you.
Rnf. 1788 E. Picken Poems 64:
They toolzy'd mair na tongue can tell.
Lnk. 1808 W. Watson Poems 34:
A' thing gade righter na common.
Ayr. 1847 R. Chambers Pop. Rhymes 183:
[She] saw mae ferlies na fyfteen.
Ags. 1899 Barrie W. in Thrums ii.:
The big ane's bigger na usual.
Abd. 1955 W. P. Milne Eppie Elrick v.:
There 'e sat an' suppit an' suppit an' better na suppit.

2. In imprecatory phrs. deil na, may, devil tak . . . if; na micht, may . . . not. Cf. Nor, conj., 3.Ayr. 1786 Burns Earnest Cry xvii.:
Deil na they never mair do guid, Play'd her that pliskie!
Ork. 1884 R. M. Fergusson Rambles 162:
Na micht I trive, Maigie; but I see a braw new hoos.

[In O.Sc. = 1., from 14th c. Orig. uncertain, but the usages are parallel to those of Nor, q.v., and the word may therefore be an unstressed form of Nor, with possible formal influence from, or confusion with, the arch. Eng. neg. na, ne.]

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"Na conj.". Dictionary of the Scots Language. 2004. Scottish Language Dictionaries Ltd. Accessed 3 Oct 2022 <>



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