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Scottish National Dictionary (1700–)

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First published 1952 (SND Vol. III). Includes material from the 1976 supplement.
This entry has not been updated since then but may contain minor corrections and revisions.

CLOOSE, Cluse, Clouse, Clouss, Cluice, Klus, n. Also cluss (Sc. 1791 T. Newte Tour 176). “A sluice” (Sh. 1914 Angus Gl., klūs; Abd. 1930 J. Cook in Abd. Univ. Review (Nov.) 26, cluice; Abd.2 1936, cloose; Ags.1 1936; Ayr.3 1910, cloose, Kcb.1 1936). Used fig. in Edb. quot. = the bung of a barrel. Also clew, clou (Sc. 1887 Jam.6), false sing. forms corr. obs. or dial. Eng. clew, clow, etc. (see N.E.D. and E.D.D.); cf. Sc. ho for hose. [klus]Ork. 1795 Stat. Acc.1 XIX. 411:
The ancient names of places are derived from the Norwegian, such as . . . Claistran, Close Town, from being the westermost extremity of the parish, and like a mill clouse, closing or shutting up the same.
Bnff. 1894 W. Gregor in Trans. Bch. Field Club III. 137:
The bitch then went to the man stationed to guard the cloose and prevent her from letting water on the mill.
Bch. 1930 P. Giles in Abd. Univ. Review (March) 110:
The water 's deep at the cluse an' she cud easy been droun't as weel's the bairn.
Edb. 1822 R. Wilson Poems 43:
Syne bid the landlord lowse the clouss, An' let his whisky barrels Rin dry that day.

[O.Sc. and Mid.Eng. have clous(e) and clowis forms. O.E. clūse is recorded only in the senses of “confinement; bond, chain; (mountain) pass” (Sweet), the earliest example of clūse = dam being a.1225 in Ancren Riwle. Late Lat. has clūsa, variant of clausa, a place closed in. Cloose is the regular development in Mod.Sc. (see P.L.D. § 38). Eng. sluice, and Fr. écluse are of the same origin, being from Lat. ex-clusa.]

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"Cloose n.". Dictionary of the Scots Language. 2004. Scottish Language Dictionaries Ltd. Accessed 12 Jun 2024 <>



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