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Scottish National Dictionary (1700–)

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

WINDY, adj. Also Sc. forms winnie (Gall. 1824 MacTaggart Gallov. Encycl. 203), winny (Ayr. 1873 A. Aitken Poems 60, Abd. 1881 W. Paul Past & Present 121), win'y (Sc. 1867 N. Macleod Starling i. i.); wundy, wunny (s.Sc. 1897 Border Mag. (Dec.) 231; Kcb. 1901 R. Trotter Gall. Gossip 256). See P.L.D. § 64. [′wɪn(d)i, ′wʌn(d)i]

Sc. usages: 1. In combs. and deriv.: (1) windy-ask, a haze or thin mist, thought to presage wind (Sh. 1974). See Ask, n.1; (2) windy bicker, a spiced drink or posset taken to relieve flatulence; (3) wundy bluitter, a garrulous or boastful person (Rxb. 1923 Watson W.-B., Rxb. 1974). See Bluiter, n.3; (4) windy house, a means of ventilating a corn-stack. See quot. and cf. Wind, n.1, 2.(16) and Fause, adj., 2.(d); (5) windy knot, a knot in wood used for shipbuilding, to be avoided as indicating that the boat was fated to be wrecked in a storm; (6) Winny October, the 3rd October 1860 when a violent gale did much damage in Buchan (Abd. 1930); (7) Windy Saturday, a very windy Saturday used as a traditional reference in dating; (8) windy skew, = wind skew s.v. Wind, n.1, 2.(22), used fig. of a giddy, pleasure-hunting socialite; (9) win(d)ysome, windi-, (i) producing flatulence; (ii) long-winded, prolix; (10) windy sparl, the gurnard. See Sparl, n.; (11) windy-wallets, (i) one who breaks wind a great deal (Rxb. 1825 Jam., 1923 Watson W.-B.); (ii) a person who talks in a voluble, boastful or exaggerated manner, a romancer (Rxb. 1825 Jam., Rxb. 1974). See Wallet; (12) windy-wa's, in phr. laird o' windy wa's, a homeless person, a vagrant; (13) Windy Wednesday, see quot.; (14) wunny-weety, windy and wet; ‡(15) windy-wid, wood containing windy-knots (Sh. 1974). See (5) above.(1) Sh. 1894 Williamson MSS. (10 Jan.):
Hit's naethin bit a windy-ask, aa o'm astarn.
(2) Rnf. 1717 W. Hector Judicial Rec. (1876) 89:
1 Jully, ffor a pint of seck . . . £2 4s. ffor a windy bicker . . . 14s.
(4) Inv. 1808 J. Robertson Agric. Inv. 174:
The corn-stacks are built in Strathnairn and elsewhere, round a frame of wood set up firmly in a conical figure and to secure the admission of more air, a lateral vent, or small opening is perhaps made in the body, a little below the point of this wooden frame, which is called in the Low Country “a fause house,” and in the Highlands, “the windy house.”
(5) Sh. 1899 J. Spence Folk-Lore 126:
The service of an expert was commonly required to examine the börds, in order to detect the presence of windy knots or wattery swirls in the wood. The presence of these indicated that the boat was liable to störa-brooken, i.e. blown up by the wind on land, or misförn at sea.
(7) Dmf. 1810 R. Cromek Remains 115:
Mirk Monday was a day of almost total darkness, and is frequently counted from as an era. Windy Saturday is another of these traditional eras.
wm.Sc. 1835 Laird of Logan 91:
It will be sic anither day as the Winny Saturday that will blaw me to that quarter.
(8) Fif. 1807 A. Williamson Poems 132:
To leave my gowd unto a thriftless heir, Who tipp'ring walks, and maks a windy skew, At balls and dances, like a Lon'on beau.
(9) (i) Per. 1905 E.D.D.:
I like pease brose real well, but they're windisome a wee. The diet at that farm is mair windisome than fattening.
(ii) Ayr. 1887 J. Service Dr Duguid 85:
The win'ysome screeds of advice, which he thocht it incumbent upon him to give to me.
(11) (ii) Bwk. 1856 G. Henderson Pop. Rhymes 125:
Windy-wallets fu' o' pride.
(12) Sc. a.1745 D. Herd Sc. Songs (1776) II. 168:
I am the laird of windy-wa's.
Dmf. 1820 Blackwood's Mag. (June) 277:
Lord of mine own person, and no land beside or as the Scottish song expresses it, ‘Laird of Windy Waas,' all free and portable endowments.
(13) Sc. 1827 C. I. Johnstone Eliz. de Bruce III. v.:
Who shall ever forget the wild night o' the Windy Wodensday?
Kcd. 1846 Scottish Farmer (6 Nov.) 339:
On Wednesday, the 20th January, 1773, the greater part of Scotland was visited by a tremendous hurricane, which did immense mischief. It is styled to this day, in this and other districts, the “Windy Wednesday.”
(14) Ayr. 1955 S. T. Ross Bairnsangs 6:
The waither, cauld waither, The wunny-weety waither.
(15) Sh. 1964 New Shetlander No. 68. 11:
It was of vital importance to guard against using “windy-wid.” The planking would be carefully examined for certain light-coloured streaks in the timber, and where observed, it was at once discarded.

2. Having plenty of breath.Abd. 1776 C. Keith Farmer's Ha' 10:
The windy piper-sounds his drone, As weel he can.
Per. a.1893 Harp. Per. (Ford) 216:
The piper is windy an' weel he can blaw.

3. Puffed-up, proud, vain, conceited; braggart, boastful (Per. 1974).Abd. 1829 A. Cruickshank Poems 90:
We'll leave you a' besmear'd wi' grease, Ye winny calf.
Per. 1869 W. Pyott Poems (1885) 114:
Souter Tam, he was countit an ass, 'Mang our toun-bred gallants sae windy.
Ags. 1888 Barrie Auld Licht Idylls ix.:
I'm thinking he was windier of the cock.

[O.Sc. windy-walls, a.1640.]

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"Windy adj.". Dictionary of the Scots Language. 2004. Scottish Language Dictionaries Ltd. Accessed 22 May 2024 <>



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