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Scottish National Dictionary (1700–)

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First published 1976 (SND Vol. X). Includes material from the 2005 supplement.
This entry has not been updated since then but may contain minor corrections and revisions.

MING, n.2, v.2

I. n. A smell (em.Sc., Lnk. 1975).Gsw. 1985 Michael Munro The Patter 46:
a ming is a bad smell. ...
em.Sc. 1988 James Robertson in Joy Hendry Chapman 52 71:
' ... a body wud caa out - "Neist stop Kirkcaldy" - but ye aye kent it wis Kirkcaldy oniewey on account o the ming frae the lino factories. ... '

II. v. 1.To be smelly or noisome, to be malodorous, to stink, gen. in ppl.adj. mingin, smelly (Ags., Ayr. 1975), stinking (Sh., Ork., Bnff., Ags., Fif., Edb., Arg., Gsw., Ayr., Dmf., Rxb. 2000s). Gsw. 1985 Michael Munro The Patter 46:
To ming is to stink; a ming is a bad smell. Mingin means stinking ...
em.Sc. 1988 James Robertson in Joy Hendry Chapman 52 70:
The saicont ane had a pock o chips, aa reikie an mingin wi vinegar, an whan he had a chip he aye passed the pock tae ae side an tither, for his friens tae get their chips likewise.
m.Sc. 1989 James Meek McFarlane Boils the Sea 155:
'It's a mingin flea-pit where old wifies get their pension money ripped off for a pint of cheap stout and the chance to win a few bob or a packet of cornflakes once a year.'
Edb. 1994 Irvine Welsh Acid House 100:
Wi aw used tae hing aroond John Deaf's hoose. It wis really mingin likesay, but that nivir bothered ye sae much in they days.
wm.Sc. 1998 Ciara MacLaverty in Donny O'Rourke and Kathleen Jamie New Writing Scotland 16: The Glory Signs 108:
'Yeah,' she says, 'like that stink you get down the pier.'
'Yeah, rotten old fisherman smell,' I say.
'Mingin' old cod,' she says.

2. Disgusting, revolting, bad of its kind, of no use or poor quality (Ags., Fif. 1975).Gsw. 1985 Michael Munro The Patter 46:
To ming is to stink; a ming is a bad smell. Mingin means stinking but can also be used to describe anything bad: 'We just came hame early cause the weather was mingin.'
Sc. 1997 Susie Maguire in Susie Maguire and David Jackson Young Hoots! 119:
And the moment he came on, I thought Oh NOOOOO!! Because he was wearing the most hideous tie in the whole entire world. It was totally mingin'. It looked like something you'd buy from Oxfam for 50p to wear to a 70s night.
wm.Sc. 1998 Alan Warner The Sopranos (1999) 101:
Tell yas something mingin, Manda spoke round a bolus of quarterpounder, she nodded at Orla, Ma big sister was in McDonald's ...

3. Ppl. adj. in extended use, 'stinking' drunk, very inebriated, in a state of semi-stupor from liquor (Ags., Fif. 1975). Sc. 1970 Daily Express (20 Aug.) 5:
They were "Mingin'" or "Pissed"-the state before complete drunkenness.
Sc. 2001 Sunday Mail 28 Oct 3:
While Ford gives it absolute laldy on some of his best-loved big band numbers on his album, Swing When You're Mingin'. He said: "It's usually when Scots are minging drunk that they stick a Sinatra album on and sing along - so I thought it was a great title for my album.
Sc. 2004 Daily Record 17 Mar 13:
Favourite expressions for having indulged in too much alcohol include: 'blootered', 'minging' and 'here are my plans for the new Scottish Parliament building'...

[Poss. by extension from Ming, n.1, 2.]

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"Ming n.2, v.2". Dictionary of the Scots Language. 2004. Scottish Language Dictionaries Ltd. Accessed 16 Apr 2024 <>



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