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Scottish National Dictionary (1700–)

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About this entry:
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.

RUMP, n., v. Sc. usages:

I. n. 1. In phr. and derivs.: (1) rump and stump, completely, wholly, in its entirety, to the very last piece or fragment (Ayr.4 1928; Ork., em. and wm.Sc., Wgt., Uls. 1968). Colloq. or dial. in Eng. See also Stump; (2) rumpie, rumpy, (i) a small crusty loaf or roll (See 1927 quot.) (Per., Dmb., Gsw. 1968); (ii) comb. rumpy-bum, of a coat; tailless, cut short; (iii) comb. rumpie-pumpie, a jocular term for copulation (Ayr. 1968); †(3) rumpock, dim., used as a nickname for a person whose queue of hair has been cut short.(1) Gall. 1824 MacTaggart Gallov. Encycl. 499:
Up rump and stump did Auchen burn, The lairdy and his ha'.
(2) (i) Gsw. 1849 Glasgow Past & Present (1884) I. 73:
Above the door is the date 1695, with a representation of the implements used in the Baker's trade, such as the oven, peal, and “rumpies.”
Cld. 1866 G. Mills Beggar's Benison I. 150:
Even “penny rumpies” in bakers' windows, were most inviting.
Sc. 1927 J. Kirkland Bakers' ABC 288:
Rumpy — An old Scottish name for a kind of small crusty loaf or roll, egg glazed, round or oval in form, and cut in small squares on upper surface.
(ii) Ayr. 1887 J. Service Dr. Duguid 29:
I can picture myself noo, — a sturdy wee dyvour wi' a bit rumpy-bum coat on.
(3) Slg. a.1790 J. Kay Portraits (1842) II. 107:
His queue was docked, from which he was ever afterwards named Rumpock.

2. A contemptuous term for a human being or an animal of inferior quality, “an ugly, rawboned animal”, esp. of cows (Bnff. 1866 Gregor D. Bnff. 146). Poss. a deformation of Runt, id.Sc. 1729 Ramsay Poems (S.T.S.) III. 107:
But Bess the whig, a raving rump, Took figmaliries, and wald jump.

II. v. 1. In phr. to be rumped up, to have the brim of one's hat turned up at the back. Phs. fig. from the action of pigeons in setting up their tail feathers or from the rump or bustle of a lady's gown.Sc. 1714 Chrons. Atholl and Tullibardine Families II. 161:
Rothes, Hadintoun, and rest of the Squadron, gott hattes laced with whyt silver galoun, which they termed Hannoverian Hatts, so severall other zelotted gentlemen followed the like example, and some putt an H in the cock; so this day all our street caddies were rumped up in the like order.

2. To dock the tail of an animal. Also in Eng. dial.Slk. 1699 Edb. Gazette (26–29 June):
A Bay Mare . . . rumpit on the Tail.
Edb. 1739 Caled. Mercury (18 Jan.):
A Light Brown Horse, 14 Hands high, 4 Years old, new rump'd and very short.

3. To cut, clip or crop very short (Bnff., Slg., w.Lth., wm. and s.Sc. 1968). Also in n.Eng. dial. Ppl.adj. rumped, of hair: closely cropped (wm.Sc. 1968). Comb. rumping-shaft, “a rod used when the weaver has occasion to go to the warehouse for money, before so much cloth be wrought, past the mark, as will go round the beam” (Rnf. 1805 G. McIndoe Poems 12).Rnf. 1792 A. Wilson Poems (1876) II. 60:
“Rump the petticoats and spots!” His Sharkship roared wi' vigour.
Edb. 1821 W. Liddle Poems 203:
Fu' weel they ken the cheese gets rumping.
Sc. 1901 H. Wallace Greatest of These 174:
What for did he daur to rump your bonnie heid like that?
Per. 1904 E.D.D.:
Take the scissors an' rump my head.
Abd. 1943 W. S. Forsyth Guff o' Waur 64:
Upon a steel the tousy loons would eagerly sit doon, And in a trice he'd rump them to the skin.
Rxb. 1955 Abd. Univ. Review (Aut.) 142:
A rumpit stock, my branches snedded.
Arg. 1993:
I'm goin for a haircut the day - get rumped.

4. To eat to the last scrap or down to the roots (Kcb. 1968).s.Sc. 1859 Bards of Border (Watson) 73:
To rump the shaws close by the roots Away frae Jamie's tatties.
Per. 1904 E.D.D.:
That rabbit has rumpit a' my Kale.

5. To plunder, rook, clean out of money, etc., expropriate, make bankrupt (Rnf. a.1850 Crawfurd MSS. (N.L.S.) R.53; Bnff., Fif., Dmf., Slk. 1968). Also in Eng. dial.; in marbles: to win from (an opponent) his complete stock of marbles (em.Sc.(a), wm.Sc. 1968); in gen.: to win all the prizes from, to trounce in a game or competition.Sc. 1815 Lockhart Scott xxxv.:
Most of the chateaux, where the Prussians are quartered, are what is technically called rumped, that is to say plundered out and out.
Fif. 1825 Jam.:
To deprive one of all his money or property; a phrase often applied to a losing gamester; as, “I'm quite rumpit”.
Clc. 1882 J. Walker Poems 293:
Turkey, gash'd wi' clours and scaurs, And rumpit o' her bonnie lands By ursine Caesar's plund'ring hands.
Lnk. 1890 J. Coghill Poems 86:
[He] wager't like a drucken fule He'd ‘rump' the squad himsel'.
Per. 1904 E.D.D.:
Ye've rumpit me the day, I havna ae saxpence left.

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"Rump n., v.". Dictionary of the Scots Language. 2004. Scottish Language Dictionaries Ltd. Accessed 27 Mar 2023 <>



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