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Scottish National Dictionary (1700–)

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

ER(E), adv., prep., conj. [e:r, ɛr, ər]

1. adv. Early, soon (Sh.10, Abd.2, Ags.19, Fif.10 1945). Gen. now in forms air, ear (see Air, adv.). Superl. forms erist, most probably (Sh. 1866 Edm. Gl.) and e(e)rest, in phr. for the eerest, for da erest, for, in, the meantime, for the present (Sh. 1866 Edm. Gl., — eerest; 1914 Angus Gl., — ērest).Sc.(E) 1879 P. H. Waddell Isaiah xxxiii. 2:
Be our strenth i' the mornin ere; our help i' the day o' dree.
Fif. 1938 St Andrews Cit. (29 Jan.) 3/4:
This didna very weel agree Wi' his wife, Kate . . . Wha learned him baith late and ere.

2. prep. Now only in use in combs. = (the day, year, etc.) before; see Erefernyear, Erethestreen, Ereyesterday.

3. conj. Before, until (Sh. 1914 Angus Gl., er; Sh.10, Abd.27, Ags.19 1950). Now only poet. or dial. in Eng. See also Or.Abd. 1914 A. McS. The Bishop 9:
W'it [wait] er' ye see. I'll weer ye oot yet.

[O.Sc. er(e), etc., before, previously, from 1375.]

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"Er adv., prep., conj.". Dictionary of the Scots Language. 2004. Scottish Language Dictionaries Ltd. Accessed 19 Jul 2024 <>



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