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Scottish National Dictionary (1700–)

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About this entry:
First published 1956 (SND Vol. IV). Includes material from the 1976 and 2005 supplements.
This entry has not been updated since then but may contain minor corrections and revisions.

GROW, v., n. Also growe, grou; grouw (Edb. 1895 J. Tweeddale Moff 17; Sh. 1916 J. Burgess Rasmie's Smaa Murr Aapril 9). Sc. forms and usages:

I. v. A. Forms: Pa.t.: weak, growed (m.Sc. 1870 J. Nicholson Idylls 82), groued (Abd. 1932 D. Campbell Bamboozled 12); strong, grew; graeu (Ork. 1908 Old-Lore Misc. I. vi. 221); pa.p. str., grou(e)n (Abd. 1915 H. Beaton Benachie 75, 1931 D. Campbell Uncle Andie 22), ¶grawn (Sc. 1887 Stevenson Underwoods 186), ¶grewn (Knr. 1905 H. Haliburton Excursions 33), wk., growed (em.Sc. 1926 H. Hendry Poems 86). [grʌu; pa.t. gru, grʌud, Rxb. griu, grju; pa.p. grʌu(ə)n, grʌud]

Sc. forms of Eng. grow.Fif. 1985 Tom Hubbard in Joy Hendry Chapman 40 30:
O conscious an unconscious sel,
O heichs an deeps, o facks an dreams,
Articulatit bi a leid
Whase words maun intimately growe
em.Sc.(a) 1991 Kate Armstrong in Tom Hubbard The New Makars 111:
in the beginnin wis the ward
grawed tae a cairdboard kist.
Lnk. 1991 Duncan Glen Selected Poems 15:
He tells me strokin stanes
is infintile. I should growe up
go efter girls
and then anerlie throw
- a hunter oot for the kill.
m.Sc. 1991 William Neill in Tom Hubbard The New Makars 48:
Thay hae thair freens athin this keep
whaur traison's cantrips growe,
an while ye're liggin fast asleep
they'll sett the hoose alowe.
ne.Sc. 1994 Alastair Mackie in James Robertson A Tongue in Yer Heid 92:
The hooses granite; the dyke waas granite; and the trees grouwin oot o granite at the kerb side.
ne.Sc. 1994 Alison Mann in James Robertson A Tongue in Yer Heid 194:
My six sturdy bairns that we hid raised in the wee hoose at Waterside - aye, wi'oot the rinnin water the Estate ca'ed modernisation - aa groun up wi faimlies o their ain.
Abd. 1995 Flora Garry Collected Poems 18:
An syne ma waesome wechty fraacht
Growes licht, yer sangie warms ma veins
Like some aal ballad's liltin strains
Or like a love-brew's heidy draacht.

B. Sc. usages:

1. Vbl.n. growan, growth (ne.Sc. 1881 Gregor Folk-Lore, Gl.). Obs. in Eng. since 16th c. For n.phr. grace and growin', see Grace, n., 2.

2. Pa.p. grown in adj. comb. grown-up, overgrown, choked (Sh., Cai., em.Sc.(b), wm., sm. and s.Sc. 1955).Rxb. 1923 Watson W.-B.:
A gairden grown-up wi' weeds.
Rxb. 1927 E. C. Smith Braid Haaick 12:
She is a traillie-wallets; hir pantry's fair grown-up wui dirrt.

3. In building a corn-rick: to push out successive rows of sheaves to give the necessary overhang, to cause the rick to bulge as it rises. Cf. n. 4.Dmf. 1955:
Tae grow a ruck tae the easin frae the fit an then pit the heid on it.

4. In comb.: grow-gray, adj., (1) growing grey, greying; (2) made of undyed wool of the natural greyish colour (‡Abd., Per.4 1955); also used substantivally = (clothes made of) wool of the natural grey colour.(1) Per. 1835 J. Monteath Dunblane Trad. (1887) 117:
While Donal' wi' a grow-grey head, His ain cauld coal maun blaw.
(2) Bnff. 1866 Gregor D. Bnff. 70:
The aul' man aye wears grow-grey claise. She keeps hir man weel happit wee grow-grey.
Abd. 1873 P. Buchan Inglismill 32:
His hose war' rig an' fur, a guid grow grey.
Mearns 1897 Bards Ags. & Mearns (Reid) 155:
'Twas only a Whig wi' a grow-grey wig.
Per. 1951 N. B. Morrison Hidden Fairing 91:
Perhaps it was this shawl of grow-grey wool he had never seen her without that made her always remind Bartle of a sheep.

II. n. †1. Growth. Obs. since 16th c. in Eng.Abd. 1768 A. Ross Rock and wee pickle Tow viii.:
I'll gar my ain Tammie gae down to the how, An' cut me a rock of a widdershines grow, Of good rantry-tree for to carry my tow.
Abd. p.1768 A. Ross Works (S.T.S.) 191:
Weet, cald, and jurging feet he never minds, Snow, sleet, slush, frost, green grow, or piping winds.

Phr.: on the grow, growing, stretching out.Abd. 1768 A. Ross Helenore 22:
Plain was her gown, the hew was of the ewe, An' tatter'd like, for she was on the grow.

2. Used attrib. = Growthie.Sc. 1825 Jam.:
Grow weather is a phrase commonly applied to weather that is favourable to vegetable growth, as having both moisture and heat.
Abd.24 1920:
It's a fine grow nicht.

3. Of a river, etc.: a sudden increase in the volume of water, a flood (Mry.1 1925).Mry. 1897 J. Mackinnon Braefoot Sk. x.:
The burn was beginning to show signs of a “growe,” and men were turning out one by one . . . to have a look at its whitening waters, and speculate.

4. The overhang of a corn-stack, the part where it bulges out (Kcb.10 1955).

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"Grow v., n.". Dictionary of the Scots Language. 2004. Scottish Language Dictionaries Ltd. Accessed 20 Jun 2024 <>



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