Scottish National Dictionary (1700–)

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RUIT, n., v. Also rut(e) (Sc. 1871 P. H. Waddell Psalms xxxiv. 16); rüt (Sh. 1918 T. Manson Peat Comm. 10), röt (Sh. 1908 Old-Lore Misc. I. vii. 271); reut (Ork.); rit(t) (w.Lth. 1892 R. Steuart Legends 125, Per. 1935 W. Soutar Poems in Scots 17), reet (ne.Sc.), reit (Abd. 1959 People's Jnl. (1 Aug.)). Sc. forms and usages of Eng. root (Wgt. 1702 G. Fraser Lowland Lore (1880) 26). Gen.Sc. Also deriv. ruitlet, a rootlet (Sc. 1928 J. Wilson Hamespun 71).

I. n. 1. Combs. and Phrs.: (1) at the root o' one's tongue, on the tip of one's tongue (Sh., ne. and wm.Sc., Kcb. 1968); (2) reet and crap, see crap and root s.v. Crap; (3) reet and rise, root and branch, the source and progress of an affair, every aspect of a subject, the whole story from the beginning with its subsequent details (ne.Sc. 1968). See Rice; ¶(4) root hewn, tough, stubborn, fig. from a tree the wood of which is the harder to cut the nearer the root; (5) root knot, of a sheaf of corn: the base of the sheaf below the binding; (6) ritnacrap, explained by Jam. as = root nor crop (Ayr. 1825 Jam.), but prob. a corruption of (2). Hence in neg. contexts, a mystery (Ib.), what is not understood in any way. Cf. (3). (1) Ayr. 1896 H. Johnston Congalton 248:
I've had the thing often at the root o' my tongue afore.
(3) Abd. 1889 Bon-Accord (23 March) 16:
This is the reet an' the rise o't a'.
Abd. 1915 H. Beaton Benachie 98:
She likes tae ken the reet an' the rise o' a'thing.
Kcd. 1956 Mearns Leader (17 Aug.):
Robbie Tamson, the vricht, wis the reet an' the rise o' the hale racket.
(4) Abd. 1768 A. Ross Helenore (S.T.S.) 96:
For they're a derf an' root-hewn cabbrack pack.
(5) Fif. 1800 J. Thomson Agric. Fife 163:
The covering sheaves ought to be well opened at the root knot.

2. A dried tree root used as firewood, gen. one dug up from a moss (ne.Sc., Ags., wm.Sc. 1968). Ags. 1820 Montrose Chronicle (18 Feb.):
A Quantity of Brushwood and Roots.
Cai. 1829 J. Hay Poems 17:
Some o' yon dry aspen reits, To mak a rantin fire.
Mry. 1873 J. Brown Round Table Club 122:
Ony o' thae soords wad split a moss reet at a crack.
Ags. 1897 Bards Ags. (Reid) 484:
See, there's a root upon the fire, 'twill mak' a cheerfu' blaze.
n.Sc. 1911 T. W. Ogilvie Poems 86:
Firry reets wi' rosit.
m.Sc. 1917 J. Buchan Poems 63:
While the bleeze loups high frae the aiken ruit.

3. The foot of a hedge (Ags., Per., Kcb. 1968). Also in n.Eng. dial. Lnk. 1831 W. Patrick Plants 228:
Root of a hedge at Avon Mill.
Kcb. 1894 Crockett Raiders xlvi.:
My great sheep-skin coat keeps me warm on the cauldest nicht in a hedge-root.
Hdg. 1903 J. Lumsden Toorle 19:
Burns had her tied be the fit to a stab or a hedge ruit.

4. Fig. of a person: a chap, a fellow. Cf. Stock. Kcb. 1894 Crockett Lilac Sunbonnet ix.:
He's a queer root, him.

II. v. To remove the roots from. Nonce. Sc. 1844 H. Stephens Bk. Farm II. 19:
A field of 25 acres of excellent Swedes was pulled, rooted, and topped.

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"Ruit n., v.". Dictionary of the Scots Language. 2004. Scottish Language Dictionaries Ltd. Accessed 26 Sep 2021 <>



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