Show Search Results Show Browse

Scottish National Dictionary (1700–)

Hide Quotations Hide Etymology

Abbreviations Cite this entry

About this entry:
First published 1974 (SND Vol. IX). Includes material from the 2005 supplement.
This entry has not been updated since then but may contain minor corrections and revisions.

STOT, v.2, n.2, adv. Also stott, stoat. [stɔt]

I. v. 1. intr. To bounce, rebound, of a ball, etc. (Sc. 1782 J. Sinclair Ob. Sc. Dial. 94, 1808 Jam.; Per., Fif., Lth. 1915–26 Wilson; Bwk. 1942 Wettstein; Rxb. 1942 Zai). Gen.Sc. Also fig. to jump up, get up with a spring. Ayr. 1790 J. Fisher Poems 149:
Within the same she made it [a ball of yarn] stot.
Peb. 1793 R. D. C. Brown Comic Poems (1817) 131:
Ba's and bools that stott.
Ayr. 1822 Galt Provost xxxi.:
The bailie, like a bantam cock in a passion, stotted out of his chair with the spunk of a birslet pea.
Fif. 1864 W. D. Latto T. Bodkin xxvii.:
The toddy-bowl stottit aff its bottom.
Kcb. 1901 R. Trotter Gall. Gossip 19:
The pleuch use't tae stot aff the stanes an hoise the pleughman aff his feet.
Gsw. 1904 H. Foulis Erchie xxvii.:
My hert's in a palpitation — jist fair stottin.
Edb. 1928 A. D. Mackie Two Tongues 15:
Its echo stottin' frae the castle knowe.
Abd. 1950 Huntly Express (28 July) 4:
I stottit efter the back an' sat doon in my ain basket o' eggs.
Sc. 1991 Scotsman (25 Oct) 15:
He makes self-mocking jokes about his figure, dotes on his dogs, give his guests far too much booze tactfully making no comment when they stott off the door on the way out ...
Gsw. 1996 Big Issue (21 Jun-4 Aug) 24:
And from her mother, Mary learned the important Glasgow female art of making a nice pot of soup whilst having one's head stoated off the wall by a loving spouse.
Abd. 2000 Sheena Blackhall The Singing Bird 36:
Buoyant as cork,
Ma needles stot on bowsters o breeze;
Ma sap creeps up the sookers o ma reets
In quaet jubilation -
Sc. 2003 Scotsman (27 Mar) 3:
Once, I even saw him stoating around the sacred halls of the sainted Michael as proles with red banners were marching outside and bawling the odds about May Day.

Derivs. and combs.: (1) stotter, stottie ba, stottin ba, a ball that bounces, esp. an india-rubber ball (Bwk. 1942 Wettstein, stotter); (2) stottin bits, scraps of meat used by butchers as make-weights, etc. (Ags. 1967); (3) stottin' man, a boys' game (see 1965 quot.); (4) stotting song, a song sung in a ball game; (5) stoat-up, in football, the restarting of a game by the referee bouncing a ball between two players.(1)Sc. 1821 Blackwood's Mag. (Aug.) 36:
An excellent article of the kind [balls] and famous stotters.
Sc. 1847 R. Chambers Pop. Rhymes 253:
Stottie ba', hinnie ba', tell to me, How mony bairns am I to hae? - Addressed to a hand-ball by girls, who suppose that they will have as many children as the times they succeed in catching it.
Lth. 1888 D. Carmichael Cosietattle 287:
Hoo I wanted a guid stottin' ba'.
(2)Ags. c.1910:
When in the days of plenty the butcher trimmed the meat, he tossed aside the little bits of meat, fat and gristle, and it would be sold as cheap mince. I used often when a school girl to hear the remark, "Huh! Nae winder they get guid claes. They live on stottin bits."
em.Sc. 1946 St Andrews Cit. (1 June) 2:
It is a common expression among poorer customers on entering a butcher's shop to ask for "Threepence worth of stottin' bits."
(3)Rnf. 1965 T. E. Niven East Kilbride 264:
The stottin' man was a game of endurance. The unfortunate loser stood in the centre of a circle of lads who were "cleeked" together by their arms. The stottin' man was then thrown from one to the other, until he sometimes fell violently sick.
(4)Abd. 1985 Robbie Kydd in Alexander Scott New Writing Scotland 3 35:
She is stotting a ball cleverly and singing a stotting song, watched by a group of girls.
(5)Gsw. 1985 Michael Munro The Patter 66:
stoat ... In football, when play is restarted by the referee bouncing the ball between two opposing players this is called a stoat-up.
Sc. 2001 Herald (12 Mar) 11:
In those bygone days, after the player's leg had been found or his hip brusquely replaced without anaesthetic, the referee would call two players towards him. ... Ideally, the stoat-up would have been conducted over a puddle or a patch of mud auditioning for All Quiet on the Western Front. The referee would drop the ball and delicately avert his eyes. It was fun for all the family. But now the stoat-up has been replaced by player power, my friends.

2. tr. (1) To cause to bounce or rebound (Sc. 1808 Jam.). Gen. (exc. I.) Sc. Comb. stot-ba, bouncing a ball, as a game.Lth. 1885 J. Strathesk More Bits 32:
Great was the variety of games played with the ball, both by boys and girls, from “Shintie” and “Hails” to “Stot-ba'” and the “bannets.”
Lnk. 1889 I. Darling Poems 76:
Fin' anither place tae stott yer ba'.
Mry. 1897 J. Mackinnon Braefoot Sk. 46:
Every time I “stot” a “'lastic ba'” to the ceiling.
Edb. 1965 J. T. R. Ritchie Golden City 80:
The ball is “stotted,” usually against a wall or on the ground or off a ledge.
Abd. 1992 David Toulmin Collected Short Stories 297:
Watching his dothers stotting a ball at the kitchie gable.

Phr. stot-the-baa, also stoat the baw, a child molester, also child 1981 Ken Morrice For All I Know 43:
'He jumped over the balcony.' says an officer. 'Complained of being depressed. A sex offender, a stot-the-baa.' Kneeling beside him I think, 'This time he forgot to stot.'
Edb. 1993 Irvine Welsh Trainspotting (1994) 148:
Renton's mind was working overtime. Stoat the baw, they call it. Ye kin git put away fir it. Too right ye kin, wi the key flung away. Branded a sex criminal; git ma face split open in Saughton oan a daily basis. Sex Criminal. Child Rapist. Nonce. Short-eyes.

(2) To move (an object) downwards one step at a time, to let down by degrees, to edge down little by little.Sc. 1903 Union Mag. (July) 312:
McEwan, unable to carry the heavy coffin ‘stotted' it from step to step down a steep tortuous High Street stair.

(3) To deliver a staggering blow on. Hence stoater, also stotter, (a) an extreme example of its kind (good or bad); (b) a very attractive woman. (Gsw. 1971)(a)wm.Sc. 1974 Roddy McMillan The Bevellers 29:
Bob, you're a dab hand at accumulators. Ye always back wan stotter. Makes up for a' the stevers.
Gsw. 1985 Anne Downie in Julie Milton Original Prints 86:
"Well, whit do you think of it?" he asked on hearing my sharp intake of breath. "Isn't it a stoater?" I had to agree with his description, for, in the clearing, grew the tallest fir tree I had ever seen.
Gsw. 1985 Michael Munro The Patter 66:
stoater This can mean a particularly good example of anything but its most common use is in relation to attractive women: 'Have ye seen that burd Bill's gaun wi noo? A wee stoater!'
m.Sc. 1987 Andrew Cowan in Iain Crichton Smith Scottish Short Stories 1987 103:
Jamie glanced over his shoulder some moments later. The palms of his hands were tingling and they felt warm. 'Stoaters,' he said to himself. He reached into his pocket again, gripping the notes.
wm.Sc. 1988 Robin Jenkins Just Duffy 166:
Molly came in with the whisky. ... '... My God, lassie, this is a real stotter. Maybe you should go and pour some of it back.'
Sc. 1990 Scotsman (16 Mar) 14:
Also there were opening lines to admire for their powerful impact, like "Great red-oxide colored triple humpy-backit stotter" (Stewart Fulton, Edinburgh). [describing Forth Bridge]
Gsw. 1993 Herald (17 Jul) 6:
Some of you chaps out there not only send in questions but, smart-arses, answer them as well. Here is a stoater.
Arg. 1993:
He's a stoater, so he is - a cracker.
Lnk. 1995 Des Dillon Me & ma Gal 71:
How mad can you get. She was a stoater. She drags me out for starin out the window an the makes me stare at the wall! She never had a clue.
m.Sc. 1996 Christopher Brookmyre Quite Ugly One Morning (1997) 5:
'This,' he said, indicating the room in general, 'is what we experienced officers refer to officially as a fuckin' stoater. Observe and take notes, and consider yourselves highly privileged to be part of it.'
Gsw. 1999 Herald (27 Aug) 21:
"To top it all the young lady on the checkout had a stoater [of a black eye], and when she called for someone to check a large note, the supervisor had a matching one." What on earth has been going on? our correspondent asks.
(b)Gsw. 1985 Michael Munro The Patter 66:
stoater This can mean a particularly good example of anything but its most common use is in relation to attractive women: 'Have ye seen that burd Bill's gaun wi noo? A wee stoater!'
Gsw. 1987 Peter Mason C'mon Geeze Yer Patter! 63:
Yon lassie next door's a right wee stoater. The girl who lives next door to me is very attractive.

3. (1) To bounce, raise the body in walking, to walk with a precise, springy or stately step (Sc. 1808 Jam.; Bnff. 1866 Gregor D. Bnff. 184; ne.Sc., Ags., Per., Kcb. 1971), to go about in an active, bustling manner (Abd. 1971) or with deliberation (Id.).Sc. 1788 Scots Mag. 558:
O'er mony a field I'se warn ye've stottit.
Sc. 1798 Laing MSS. (Hist. MSS. Comm.) II. 659:
Jenny Muir was stotting about the house most cleverly.
Edb. 1844 J. Ballantine Gaberlunzie i.:
He stots aye about, wi' his tongue and his pack.
Rxb. 1847 J. Halliday Rustic Bard 191:
Farmer bodies, awfu' rude, In wrath aboot were stottin'.
Rnf. 1888 J. Nicholson Tibbie's Garland 157:
When oot I stots at e'en to meet the lass that noo's my maik.
Per. 1897 C. M. Stuart Sandy Scott's Bible Class 68:
I was used wi' the stiff clay land, and I could stot after the harrows.
Bnff. 1923 Banffshire Jnl. (24 July) 2:
Weel lat's stot awa' that wye.
m.Sc. 1928 O. Douglas Ann and Her Mother xix.:
Father meekly stotted about.
Gsw. 1985 Michael Munro The Patter 66:
stoat ... To stoat about means to bustle or simply to move around: 'Ah've been stoatin aboot the toon aw efternin.'
Edb. 1998 Gordon Legge Near Neighbours (1999) 95:
Well you see him, you see him stoating about at night, and there's me: sitting up on my pillows, arms folded, just watching the cunt, ...

(2) Of an animal: to bound, go by leaps (Bnff., Ags. 1971).Per. 1898 C. Spence Poems 56:
He oft stottit round the stooks A sister calf to meet.
Ayr. 1901 G. Douglas Green Shutters xxiv.:
See how the stot stots about the ring.

4. To stagger, to walk in an unsteady stumbling manner, from weakness, drink or the like (Sc. 1710 T. Ruddiman Gl. to Douglas Aeneis, 1808 Jam.; Bnff. 1866 Gregor D. Bnff. 184). Gen.Sc. Ppl.adj. stottin, reeling drunk, and in comb. stottin fou, id. (Abd., Ags., Per., Fif., wm.Sc., Dmf. 1971).Abd. 1804 W. Tarras Poems 69:
As to the fire he stottit thro' The gutters clypin frae him.
Edb. 1844 J. Ballantine Miller vi.:
The auld man stots wi' the stoup for water.
Ags. 1872 J. Kennedy Jock Craufurt 98:
He sent him stottin' to the wa,.
Lnk. 1895 W. Stewart Lilts 23:
Get up an' sen' him hame, he's stottin' fu'.
Abd. 1920 C. Murray Country Places 5:
It wouldna be seemly ava Stottin' hame in day-licht.
Gsw. 1930 F. Niven Three Marys v.:
Oh, here comes Mr. Ian stottin' fou.
Rnf. 1935 L. Kerr Woman of Glenshiels viii.:
He was drunk as a lord . . . stotting a' ower the place.
Cai. 1961 “Castlegreen” Tatties an' Herreen' 3:
He'd been at e' seile in Thirsa an' wis coman' hom' fair stottan'.

5. To stutter or stammer in speech (Sc. 1880 Jam.; Ork. 1929 Marw., Ork. 1971).Edb. 1788 J. Macaulay Poems 115:
Wha disna find Affliction's hammer? It gars us a' whiles stot an' stammer.
Ayr. 1870 J. K. Hunter Life Studies 65:
It was the first time he had ever appeared in public to address any audience, and he stotted and stammered sairly.
Ork. 1956 C. M. Costie Benjie's Bodle 171:
Willie stots a bit, an' the doctor could mak' naetheen o' im ava.

II. n. 1. A bounce, rebound, the act of rebounding (Sc. 1808 Jam.; Per., Fif., Lth. 1915–26 Wilson; Rxb. 1923 Watson W.-B.). Gen. (exc. I). Sc. Also fig.; the game of bouncing a ball; a bound, leap, spring, hop in a dance. Phrs. on the stot, on the rebound, to play stot, to bounce, bump. Adj. stottie, bouncing (Rxb. 1971, a stottie ba).Abd. 1801 W. Beattie Parings (1813) 14:
He keeped ay the set an' reel Throw a' the stots.
Ayr. 1822 Galt Provost xxxix.:
To bounce out with a grand stot and strut before the world.
Sc. 1859 Sporting Mag. (Oct.) 237:
The little bay at every third or fourth stride giving a proud little stot.
Ayr. 1890 J. Service Notandums 25:
He played stot against the door-cheek.
Sc. 1914 Scot at Hame (1 Oct.) 5:
Catchin' ye, on the stot, as it were.
Sc. 1956 Scotsman (21 Feb.):
The “stots” or bounces of the ball left round, clear, grassy spots.
Ags. 1962 D. Phillips Lichty Nichts 20:
Ball games were out of course (although girls did occasionally play stotts).

Phr. on the stot, on the ball; unawares.Gsw. 1962 Bill McGhee Cut and Run 35:
'Dey ye want tae have a buzz wi' that mob the night?' Pat asked again, as we neared the Schkipga. Persistent character. 'Ah can dig up a few handers right now if yese fancy it. Catch them on the stoat.' I was hedgy, but I couldn't let any of them see that.
Abd. 1992 Sheila Douglas ed. The Sang's the Thing: Voices from Lowland Scotland 204:
... an romance must hae blossomed 'cause they were mairried within three month. She cam hame as mistress o' the fairm toon at Gellybrae. The First World War had finished an she lost her sweetheart in it, ye see, an mairried him on the stot.
w.Lth. 2000 Davie Kerr A Puckle Poems 9:
shop stewards, - the lot,
are aa ti gan doun ti London.
Keep them on the stot.

2. A sharp recoiling blow, a smart rap (Rxb. 1923 Watson W.-B.; Ags., Dmf. 1971).Ayr. 1822 Galt Steam-boat viii.:
She set it down with a stot.
Ayr. 1890 J. Service Notandums 73:
He taks him a fung i' the ribs and a stot on the nose.

3. A sudden erratic movement, a fitful motion; a stumble, stagger (Cld. 1880 Jam.); transf., occas. in pl., the stots, a whim, crotchet, a pet or fit of sulks or contrariness (Rnf. c.1850 Crawfurd MSS. (N.L.S.) S.157; Abd. 1921 T.S.D.C.; Sh. 1971). Phr. by stots and bangs, by fits and starts (Mry. 1921 T.S.D.C.).Mry. 1921 T.S.D.C.:
Fat stot's he taen intae his heid the day?
Abd. 1928 N. Shepherd Quarry Wood v.:
But ye aye did a' thing by stots an' bangs.
Sh. 1933 J. Nicolson Hentilagets 17:
We cöst-oot aftin, an took kind o stotts.

4. (1) The beat of a tune, the rhythm of speech or dance, the regular relation between time and motion by which a thing is done, the go or swing of any activity (ne.Sc., Per. 1971); routine, measured pace.Sc. 1711 J. Watson Choice Coll. III. 51:
He that tynes a Stot o' the Spring, Shall pay the Piper a Pennie.
Bnff. 1782 Caled. Mercury (14 Aug.):
Ay noddan sae's ti lat fouk ken Ti keep the stot.
Abd. 1832 W. Scott Poems 93:
As for oursel's, sin' Eve shook out her head, We've tint the stot o' love right sair indeed.
Bwk. 1897 R. M. Calder Poems 226:
But tho' mony a clyte we got, We were up an' on the stot.
Abd. 1914 J. Cranna Fraserburgh 135:
Keepin' stot wi heed and buik, He warstled wi' the air.
Abd. 1955 W. P. Milne Eppie Elrick xxx.:
Foo's things dyaan wi ye, Mains, noo't ye've gotten sattlt doon again i' the aal stot?

(2) The sequence of events in a narrative, the details, the outs-and-ins, the thread of a speech or story.Fif. 1893 G. Setoun Barncraig ii.:
I had the whole stots o't frae Black Tam Himsel'.
e.Lth. 1908 J. Lumsden Th' Loudons 245:
Some o' thae freen's will doubtless tell Thee a' the stotts they ken themsel'.
Abd. 1920 T. McWilliam Light & Shadow 129:
Wheesht 'umman, I've lost the stot o't.
Fif. 1932 M. Bell Pickles & Ploys 27:
Let me gi'e ye a' the stots aboot our performance.

(3) Phr. aff (o') the (one's) stot, out of the rhythm of a tune or dance, losing the thread of one's discourse, out of the regular pace or motion of any activity, off one's stride (Rxb. 1923 Watson W.-B.; ne., em.Sc.(a), wm.Sc., s.Sc. 1971); off the mark, astray, in error; unusual, out of the ordinary (Watson); out of one's usual routine or temper.Lnk. 1895 W. C. Fraser Whaups xiv.:
He couldna but gie in that I wasna sae far off the stot after a'.
Slk. 1899 C. M. Thomson Drummeldale 23:
She's a gey kittle yin yon new tuin I was tryin' the day; an', man, div 'e ken, yince I gaed fairly off the stot.
Bnff.2 1929:
The aul' boy's gey girnie the day; something's knockit him aff o' the stot.
Abd. 1935 J. White Sea Road x.:
What was the use of his being put off his stot so long as he could continue to lead his normal existence.
Mry. 1959 Bulletin (7 March):
Beasts, like humans, hate being put “off their stot.”
Abd. 1996 Sheena Blackhall Wittgenstein's Web 6:
Luve cud ca ye aff yer stot, makkin ye as big a gype as Jock, the daftie loon frae the heid o the Clash.
ne.Sc. 1998 Aberdeen Evening Express (25 Mar) 36:
"But we were determined we weren't going to play second fiddle to them and we knocked them off their stot from the start. ... "

5. A stroll, saunter (Bnff. 1971).Abd. 1932 R. L. Cassie Scots Sangs 47:
We micht tak' a stot oot the Banff road.
Abd. 1955 W. P. Milne Eppie Elrick ii.:
A jist thocht A wid tak a bit stot roon tae see gin ye wis needin howkin oot.

6. A stammer, stutter, impediment in speech (Cld. 1880 Jam.; Ork. 1971). Adj. stotty, stammering.Sc. 1885 Life Stevenson (Balfour 1922) 223:
The wersh, sapless, fushionless, stotty, stytering South Scotch they [the English] think sae muckle o'.
Ork. 1920:
He had a stot in his speech.

7. A hindrance, obstacle, a stand-still (Cld. 1880 Jam.).

III. adv. With a rebound, with a bouncing thump (Bnff. 1866 Gregor D. Bnff. 184). Gen.Sc., freq. in phrs. to come, gang stot; with a tottering step (Id.).Per. a.1843 J. Stewart Sketches (1857) 28:
Awa to the green she gaes stappie and stot.
Abd. 1918 W. Mutch Hev ye a Spunk 7:
He tellt fou she had rung his lug An' garred him fair gang stot.
Slg. 1932 W. D. Cocker Poems 16:
The hailstanes like plunkers cam' stot.

[O.Sc. stot, a bounce, to rebound, 1513, rhythm, c.1590. Immediate orig. uncertain, phs. partly a variant of Mid.Eng. stut, to stutter, to stumble, partly ad. Du. stooten, to push, butt, to recoil (of a gun), to bump, stumble against, of gen. Teut. orig. Cf. O.N. stauta, steyta, Dan. støde, Ger. stossen, to push, thrust, butt.]

You may wish to vary the format shown below depending on the citation style used.

"Stot v.2, n.2, adv.". Dictionary of the Scots Language. 2004. Scottish Language Dictionaries Ltd. Accessed 22 May 2024 <>



Hide Advanced Search

Browse SND: