Scottish National Dictionary (1700–)

Hide Quotations Hide Etymology Cite this entry

WHILK, pron., adj. Also whulk and arch. forms quhilk(e). Pl. †whilks. Sc. forms of Eng. which, also in n.Eng. dial. (Per. 1915 Wilson L. Strathearn 79; Mry., Slg., Rxb. 1930). Also the whilk, used arch., as freq. in Galt, and in legal phraseology. Hence whilkever, whichever. For ne.Sc. form see Filk. [ʍɪlk, ʍʌlk. See I, letter, 2.]

I. pron. 1. As a relative. Liter. Ork. 1701 J. Brand Descr. Ork. 20:
Several old houses whilk to this Day are called Picts or Pights Houses.
Sc. 1711 Nairne Peerage Evidence (1874) 132:
To the said deceast Robert lord Nairn and the airs male of his body whilks failzieing to the said Margaret now lady Nairn his daughter.
Rxb. 1740 Trans. Hawick Arch. Soc. (1913) 51:
The halffe of the benefite of all heid or penny brythellis within this burghe and for the whilk the ffidler is to be comptable to him when requyred.
Abd. p.1768 A. Ross Works (S.T.S.) 177:
The importance of her last night's dream, Quhilk was: their castle just was like to fa'.
Edb. 1788 J. Macaulay Poems 118:
Your funny epistle, Sir, cam to my hand, In reading o' whilk muckle pleasure I fa'nd.
Peb. 1805 J. Nicol Poems II. 9:
But now arriv'd the day, for whulk They made sic preparations.
Slk. 1822 Hogg Perils of Man (1972) xxix.:
There is ae thing in the whilk I am greatly altered.
Per. 1878 R. Ford Hame-Spun Lays 39:
A pit he delved baith wide and deep, The whilk he filled rim-fou o' water.
Abd. 1882 G. MacDonald Castle Warlock I. vii.:
Whilkever o' them it was he gae the auld captain a hent.
Kcb. 1893 Crockett Stickit Minister 230:
The water-poo'er o' MacLurg's mill-lade, whilk I defy him to say I ever denied him.
Fif. 1909 J. C. Craig Sangs o' Bairns 103:
The “Wummers” had a pickle saut In whilk the neb was beddit.
Lth. 1915 J. Fergus The Sodger 15:
Pewter plates, Wi' whilk the Elders maun process on Saubbaths roon' the sates.
Sc. 1928 J. Wilson Hamespun 22:
It's then he likes o' feats to tell At whilk nae saul can match him.

2. As an interrog. (‡Ags., Per., Fif., Lth., Lnk. 1974). Sc. 1698 J. Kirkwood Plea before Kirk 26:
He cry's, and he cry's; There he's; There he's, Whilks he? Whilks he says another?
Abd. 1768 A. Ross Helenore (S.T.S.) 18:
I's try whilk o' us has the thickest skin.
Sc. 1797 Scots Mag. (Aug.) 534:
Either end of fifty-sax, or beginning of fifty-seven, I dinna now mind positively whilk.
Slk. a.1835 Hogg Tales (1837) II. 294:
Whilk o' them is it? think ye.
Gsw. 1868 J. Young Poems 170:
Fye, haste ye noo' laddies, say whulk o' the twa.
Per. 1915 Wilson L. Strathearn 79:
Whulk'll ye tak?

II. adj., relative and interrog. Rxb. 1703 Trans. Hawick Arch. Soc. (1902) 53:
The quhilke day Patricke Richardson and Walter Graham the two present baylyeas haveing conveined the toune counsel.
Lnk. 1722 Minutes J.P.s (S.H.S.) 209:
The whilk day, in presence of the said Justices of the Peace.
Sc. 1819 Scott Bride of Lamm. ix.:
Whilk doublet is it your pleasure to wear?
Kcd. 1819 J. Burness Plays, etc. 131:
Fowk kentna well whilk side to tak.
Edb. 1828 D. M. Moir Mansie Wauch xii.:
Out we were taken for the whilk purpose.
Fif. 1886 S. Tytler St Mungo's City vii.:
But whilk Mackinnon are you after?
Per. 1915 Wilson L. Strathearn 79:
Whulk ane o ye's comin wi me?
Sc. 1920 D. Rorie Auld Doctor 11:
Wha won the fecht, or whilk ane lost.
Ags. 1949 Forfar Dispatch (6 Oct.):
Whilk een wiz meetin his lass that nicht, whilk een wiz a main deil.

[O.Sc. quhilk, which, 1375, the quhilk, 1387, North. unpalatalised form of O.E. hwilc, which, interrog. See P.L.D. § 65.1.]

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

"Whilk pron., adj.". Dictionary of the Scots Language. 2004. Scottish Language Dictionaries Ltd. Accessed 27 Jan 2022 <>



Try an Advanced Search

Browse SND: