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Scottish National Dictionary (1700–)

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First published 1968 (SND Vol. VII). Includes material from the 2005 supplement.
This entry has not been updated but may contain minor corrections and revisions.

ROUND, adj., adv., prep., n. Also roon(d), roun(e). Sc. forms and usages. [run(d). See P.L.D. § 64.]

I. adj. 1. As in Eng. Sc. combs. and phrs.: ‡(1) roun' croon, a type of woman's bonnet having a round crown (Ork. 1968); (2) round-eared mutch, a close-fitting cap worn by women, having round flaps over the ears. See Mutch; (3) roun' han', a practical joke, a metaphor from card-playing; (4) round heid, (i) a sea-taboo word for a seal (Sh. 1958); (ii) a round-bottomed golf iron used for bunker play; (5) roun'-meal, a coarsely-ground oatmeal where the grains are large and rounded (Bnff., Abd. 1968); (6) round-ree, a convenient space at a pit bottom where workers stacked their hewn coal until they had accumulated a suitable quantity for carrying to the surface (Sc. 1886 J. Barrowman Mining Terms 56). See Ree, n.1, 1.; (7) roun saut, coarse-grained or rock salt (Abd. 1968); (8) round shilders, a sea-taboo name for potatoes (Sh. 1814 Irvine MSS.). See Shither, Childer,; (9) roun' soun', used emphatically, = complete, whole (sm.Sc. 1968). Also in phr. round-sound-honesty, the seed pods of the honesty, Lunaria biennis (s.Sc. 1896 Garden Wk. cxiv. 111); trustworthy, reliable (Kcb. 1968); (10) roundtail, a sea-trout, Salmo trutta, at a certain stage of development (see quot.).(1) Abd. 1842 Blackwood's Mag. (March) 298:
About Peterhead the fisher-lasses sport “the roun' croon,” with lace edges or bords.
(2) Ayr. 1821 Galt Annals ix.:
They hided their heads in round-eared bees-cap mutches.
Edb. 1828 D. M. Moir Mansie Wauch xix.:
Folks, in round-eared mutches.
(3) Abd. 1871 W. Alexander Johnny Gibb xxxiii.:
Mony a roun' han' did the jauds play 'im — he's a saft gype.
(4) (ii) Fif. 1857 H. B. Farnie Golfer's Manual 34:
Some bunker irons of the old make are round bottomed; the idea being that they could thus cut better into a small cup or rut; . . . we shall show in our Chapter on Style how the ordinary level bottomed iron may be used to eject a ball from a rut or deep cut, with quite as much precision as the antiquated “round-head.”
(5) Sc. 1844 H. Stephens Bk. Farm II. 365:
The round meal makes the best porridge.
Abd. 1954 Huntly Express (1 Oct.):
This kind of oatmeal is, or perhaps I should say was, the siftings, from the round oatmeal (the roun'-meal trade which was once a popular brand, but not now so much sought after).
(9) Dmf. 1817 W. Caesar Poems 101:
But by ten yards o'cambric claith An' that's a roun, soun Irish aith.
Kcb. 1897 A. J. Armstrong R. Rankine 55:
A roun' soun' dizzen white figures a' sittin' roun' a table.
(10) Dmf. 1836 W. Yarrell Brit. Fishes II. 32:
The posterior edge [of the tail] becomes convex; which has caused this fish [bull-trout] to be designated in the Annan by the name of Round tail when old, and Sea-Trout when young.

2. Sizeable, big. Compar. rooner.Sc. 1723 Analecta Sc. (Maidment 1834) I. 98:
I have a Round Family besides.
Abd.15 c.1930:
Fegs, that's some fell roon lumps o' tawties ye hae. Is that steenie some sma? Weel, see, here's a rooner een.

3. Of wind: favourable (Bnff. 1968). Poss. by conflation with Room, adj., 2.

II. adv.

Sc. forms of Eng. round.m.Sc. 1979 Ian Bowman in Joy Hendry Chapman 23-4 (1985) 41:
I'll gar their wulkies gang tapsalteerie
an' birl them roun' an' roun' like a peerie.
wm.Sc. 1991 Liz Lochhead Bagpipe Muzak 16:
Telltale black marks roon the cooker and sink,
Toadstools on the ceiling
m.Sc. 1994 Martin Bowman and Bill Findlay Forever Yours, Marie-Lou 15:
So who's shoutin thir heid aff noo then?! D'ye waant me tae open the windaes so's the neebors kin hear ye an spread it roond ah starve ye?!
Edb. 1995 Irvine Welsh Marabou Stork Nightmares (1996) 22:
I was embarrassed when any of the other kids came roond to the hoose. Most of them seemed to have better hooses than us, it was like we were scruffs.
Sc. 2000 Herald (14 Aug) 32:
Perhaps if Andy Howitt can convince Tartan Army members that his dance would be an enjoyable experience for them he might have a sell-out on his hands, with kilted, flag-adorned, beer-swilling audience members burping their way through a performance with suitable comments like: "Here Boab, did ye see the wy the boy birled roon' there and sold us aw a dummy? Whit a loup that wiz, eh?" "Ay Jimmy, and whit a lovely pirouette an' aw.

Combs. and phrs.: (1) rooncast, broadcast, widely scattered, in quot. with nonce application to radio broadcasting; (2) roun-gaen, a route or path, circuit. Nonce; (3) roon-gang, a complete circuit, esp. of the hands of the clock (Bnff. 1968). Cf. IV. 5; (4) round-spun, of a coarsely-spun weave or texture; fig. in phr. round-spun Presbyterian, i.e. not of the best quality. The phr. is from J. Welwood (d. 1679) in Patrick Walker Some Remarkable Passages (1727) 29, and is used derogatorily. Scott, in borrowing the phr. appar. takes it in a good sense = genuine; (5) rounstow, to mark (sheep) by cutting off the ears. See Stoo; (6) roon the roonies, a leisurely stroll, on a more or less circular route, around Campbeltown and environs. (7) to get round, to recover from illness, to recover one's health (Ags. 1968).(1) Abd. 1932 R. L. Cassie Scots Sangs 36:
The rooncast folk micht tak a teet Ootowre this isle.
(2) Sc. 1871 P. H. Waddell Psalms lxv. 11:
Yer roun-gaens dreep rowth as they gang.
(3) Abd. 1951 Buchan Observer (21 Aug.):
The horses were kept eating and drinking the whole “roon-gang o' the knock!”
(4) Sc. 1818 Scott H. Midlothian xii.:
I could speak to Mr Crossmyloof — he's weel kend for a round-spun Presbyterian.
(5) Gall. 1824 MacTaggart Gallov. Encycl. 47:
The mark he knew his flocks by, was the mark of “rounstowing”, that is, cutting off the ears altogether. . . . He flung his marches open to his neighbour's sheep, and when they came upon his land, he “rounstow'd” their ears, which was doing away with all other marks and so getting them to become his property.
(6)Arg. 1993:
Up the toon an roon the roonies. If ye're gan roon the roonies again the night - make the best o the weather: it's tae breck the morra.
(7) Edb. 1798 D. Crawford Poems 88:
It's dung me fairly down, Nor ken I, gin I'll e'er get roun!
Rnf. 1862 A. McGilvray Poems 193:
That she'll get round again, I hope, Nor at this time the bucket cowp.

III. prep. In phr. to go round someone, to ingratiate oneself with someone (Bnff. 1968).Cai. 1896 J. Horne Canny Countryside 120:
I'll run 'e game wi' Nelly. I'll go roond her by hook or by crook, an' then skirl fan things is ripe.

IV. n. 1. As in Eng., a structure, building or enclosure of circular form. Specif.: (1) a circular tower or turret in a building of the Scottish Baronial style; (2) a circular or semi-circular wall used in hill country to protect sheep in a snow-storm (Rxb. 1825 Jam.; Ayr., Dmf. 1968).(1) Abd. 1718 Monymusk Papers (S.H.S.) 77:
A fine portico oposite to the chiefe entrie, and the two rounds on each hand equall and coverd with moddish roofs.
Sc. 1824 Scott Redgauntlet Letter xi.:
Dougal . . . was aye the last to gang to his bed, whilk was in a little round just opposite the chamber of dais.
Sc. 1927 W. M. Mackenzie Med. Castle 101:
The Scottish literary term for these mural towers [in castles or hall-houses] was Rounds.
(2) Dmf. 1809 Farmer's Mag. 469:
Eight stells, called, in this part of the country, rounds, from, I suppose, their being built in a circular, or rather oval form.
Slk. 1825 in Stat. Acc.2 III. 77:
They have stells or rounds into which the shepherds gather them [sheep] when the threatening snow approaches.
Dmf. 1843 Trans. Highl. Soc. 637:
But the least expensive stell for a snowstorm . . . is the circle or round, as it is called.

2. With def. art.; the surrounding country, neighbourhood (Sh., Fif., w.Lth. 1968). Also in pl. Nonce usage in adj. form bonnie roondy, having pleasant surroundings, pleasantly situated.Bwk. a.1838 Jam. MSS. XII. 188:
“In a' the rounds”, in the whole surrounding district.
Fif. 1864 W. D. Latto T. Bodkin xii.:
A' the young folk i' the roond are to be at it.
Ork. 1911 Old-Lore Misc. IV. iv. 185:
Da Morwick man at said Morwick was a bonnie roondy bit a toon spak trew.

3. Golf: a complete circuit of the course in which all the holes are played. Now St. Eng.Edb. 1775 C. B. Clapcott Rules of Golf (1935) 24:
No member of this Society pay the Cadies more than one penny per round.
Abd. 1834 P. Buchan Peterhead Smugglers 63:
To gang wi' you to the links ilka morning at five o'clock to a round o' the golf.
Sc. 1866 Golfer's Year Book (R. H. Smith) 65:
The order of play was the reverse of the wonted “round” over Bruntsfield, in order that strangers might cope on equal footing with players who were up to the green. Each round consisted of 7 holes, and four rounds were fixed on for the decision of the Tournament.
Sc. 1887 Golfing (Chambers) 9:
Whether the direction taken be from the starting-hole once round a course somewhat circular, or from the starting-hole to the end and back again zig-zag, the term invariably applied to each series of holes played is a round.
Sc. 1897 Encycl. Sport I. 473:
Medal play, the method of playing a game of golf by counting the number of strokes taken to the round by each side.

4. A single circuit of or turn up and down a ridge in ploughing (‡Ork. 1968). Also in Eng. dial. Hence in extended usage, in phr.: nae to ca' one's roons, not to fulfil one's obligations, not to keep pace with others.Abd. 1966 Abd. Press and Jnl. (20 Jan.):
In the days of the horses, if one ploughed a round less than the foreman, he was promptly told: “Ye're nae ca'in' yer roons,” and gradually it came to be used in reference to anyone who failed to keep his end up, whatever the activity.

5. Of time: a complete circuit of the clock by the hour-hand, twelve hours. Usually in phr. a (the) round o' the clock (I., n. and wm.Sc., Kcb. 1968). See also roon-gang s.v. II. (3).wm.Sc. 1880 Jam.:
Sleep! he'd tak the roun o' the clock every nicht.
Ayr. c.1930:
He slept the roun o' the clock.

6. The way a thing should go, the correct sequence or progression; one's turn in a sequence of activities.Abd. 1790 A. Shirrefs Poems 220:
Meg show'd them a' their diff'rent roun'.
Per. 1891 H. Haliburton Ochil Idylls 61:
And let your Latin be as snug As if she kent the roond o't.
w.Sc. 1880 Jam.:
Na' na! ye maun bide yer roun.

7. A cut of meat, esp. beef, taken from the hind-quarter above the hough and corresp. to Eng. ‡buttock or rump. Also in n.Eng. dial. Comb. round-steak, id. Gen.Sc.Arg. c.1850 The Follinash in L. McInnes Dial. S. Kintyre (1936) 30:
Collops off the roun.
Sc. 1855 H. Stephens Bk. Farm II. 692:
d is the large round, and e the small round, both well known as excellent pieces for salting and boiling.
Sc. 1909 Cookery Bk. Lady Clark (Frere) 180:
In hot weather a round will keep some time so rubbed, before roasting.
Sc. 1956 Scotsman (7 Nov.) 10:
Round steak. Sliced for stewing, or in piece for braising or pot roasting.

8. In dim. roondie; a unit of scoring in the game of Baisies, once round the area of play, a rounder (Ags. 1968).

9. With double pl., used as an int.: an exclamation in the game of marbles made by a player who wishes to claim the right to move to a better position at an equal distance from the ring (Abd. 1904 E.D.D., roonses).

Round adj., adv., prep., n.

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"Round adj., adv., prep., n.". Dictionary of the Scots Language. 2004. Scottish Language Dictionaries Ltd. Accessed 29 Mar 2023 <>



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