Scottish National Dictionary (1700–)
SKECH, v., n. Also skaich, skegh, skaigh, scaigh; skeach, skeech, skeich; schech. [ske, ski]
I. v. 1. tr. and absol. To obtain a thing in an indirect, underhand or furtive manner, by wiles, wheedling or filching, to scrounge, cadge, purloin (Cld., Slk. 1825 Jam.; Rxb. 1923 Watson W.-B.; Bwk. 1942 Wettstein; Rxb. 1942 Zai; ne.Sc., Ags., Fif., w. and sm.Sc., Rxb. 1970), freq. of wandering about in search of food, to scrounge a meal (Sc. 1880 Jam.; Edb. 1897 W. Beatty Secretar xviii., schech). Deriv. skaicher, skaigher, one who skechs, a scrounger, sponger (Cld. 1825 Jam.; Ags. 1910 Arbroath Guide (18 Aug.), applied playfully to a child (Ags. 1808 Jam., Mry. 1970).
Lnk. 1827 J. Watt Poems 98:
Fox what he'd skech'd fu' keen devourin'. Abd. 1832 W. Scott Poems 138:
Eppy Wabster, in her time, Was kent by a' the vagrants fine, She eest to skeigh. Per. 1881 D. MacAra Crieff 233:
It was frequently midnight or after ere the different “skeaching” parties returned. Edb. 1898 J. Baillie W. Crighton 47:
Some to sell, others to “skech” or “cadge”. wm.Sc. 1899 Mont.-Fleming s.v. Skaigher:
A man is said to “skaigh for his dinner” who calls upon a friend just at dinner-time. A skaigher is one who sponges upon his friends for an occasional meal or dram. Dmf. 1925 Trans. Dmf. and Gall. Antiq. Soc. XIII. 38:
Lookin' aboot for onything he can skech. Rxb. 1925 E. C. Smith Mang Howes 10:
A speerd if there was a mael o meat ti be bocht — skecht — gotten a len o. Abd. 1958 People's Jnl. (21 June):
She'd skaicht an' hain't ilka drap that the caufies didna' need.
2. To go about in a silly, vain, idle manner (Bnff. 1866 Gregor D. Bnff. 156; Bnff., Abd. 1970).
Abd. 1968 Abd. Press & Jnl. (27 Jan.):
Syne socht news fae a glaikit loon Wha skaiched aboot the Bay.
II. n. 1. The act of skeching or scrounging, a wheedle, begging wile; what has been obtained by such means, plunder, loot (Ayr.4 1928). Phr. on the skaigh, on the look-out or prowl for something (Abd., wm.Sc., Kcb. 1970).
Lnk. 1889 A. MacLachlan Songs 160:
Their prayer is a' a sneakin skech. Slg. 1904 E.D.D.:
He's on the skaigh for a lass.
2. A scrounger, sponger (Abd., Kcd., Fif., wm.Sc. 1970); a truant from school.
Edb. 1893 J. Baillie W. Crighton 12:
The biggest skech and meiser in the Wark. Fif. 1909 J. C. Craig Sangs o' Bairns 104:
Jock Macelly played the “sketch” For three weeks at a tack.
You may wish to vary the format shown below depending on the citation style used.
"Skech v., n.". Dictionary of the Scots Language. 2004. Scottish Language Dictionaries Ltd. Accessed 20 Jun 2019 <https://www.dsl.ac.uk/entry/snd/skech>
Try an Advanced Search