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Scottish National Dictionary (1700–)

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First published 1960 (SND Vol. V). Includes material from the 1976 and 2005 supplements.
This entry has not been updated since then but may contain minor corrections and revisions.

HALLOCK, n., adj., v. Also halick, -ich, -oc(k), -ok, -yach, hallich, -ach, -i(c)k, -och, hailick, -lok, hellock, -eck, hullock (Rnf. 1899 Country Schoolmaster (Wallace) 325).

I. n. A thoughtless, giddy young woman or girl (s.Sc. 1808 Jam., haloc; Dmf. 1825 Jam., hellock; Rxb. Ib., hallik, halok; Kcb.4 1900, hellock; Rxb. 1923 Watson W.-B., ha(l)o(c)(k), haillok; ne.Sc. (hallich), Rxb. 1956); occas. applied to a youth.Dmf. 1836 A. Cunningham Lord Roldan I. v.:
I wonder to hear ye make sae mickle about a rumlegarie, light-headed helleck of a lad like that . . . raving till he's hoarse, clean off-loof nonsense of his ain.
s.Sc. 1897 E. Hamilton Outlaws ii.:
Yon's a ginnaguid [sic] bit hallick, and eh! but she's gaun the black gate.

II. adj. Crazy, hare-brained (Abd. 1825 Jam.; ne.Sc. 1956, hallach); uncouth, noisy, in speech and manner (Mry.1 1925, halyach; ne.Sc. 1956, hallach).Abd. 1865 William Alexander The Laird of Drammochdyle (1986) 132:
The halloch, hairbrain't fool.
Abd. 1898 J. Milne Poems 23:
An' to leave their native walloch Till it sounds a foreign thing Plainly shaws their minds are halloch.
Bnff. 1924 Swatches o' Hamespun 19:
There wis as muckle scraachin an' kecklin ye'd 'a thocht a' the hallach quines i' the destrick hid been aboot.
Abd. 1932 R. L. Cassie Sc. Sangs 22:
We stoy roon an' harken weel Tae quines an' loons sae hallach.

III. v. To behave in a crazy, half-witted, noisy manner (Bnff. 1866 Gregor D. Bnff. 74, hallich; Lth., Cld. 1880 Jam., hallach, -ich; Ags. 1956). Also vbl.n., ppl.adj. hallachan, hallachin (Ib.; Slg. 1956); pa.p. hallach'd, crazed, stupefied.Abd. 1768 A. Ross Helenore 18:
She starts to foot, but has na maughts to stand: Hallach'd an' dameist, an' scarce at her sell.
Ags. 1894 J. B. Salmond B. Bowden (1922) 132:
He [took] to the lauchin' again, till I was fair ashamed o' him on the Sabbath day, so I awa' to the hoose an left him to halich an' snotter awa' as lang's he likit. [p. 62, hallich.]

[O.Sc. halok, n., c.1500, a light, thoughtless girl. Orig. unknown. ]

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"Hallock n., adj., v.". Dictionary of the Scots Language. 2004. Scottish Language Dictionaries Ltd. Accessed 9 Dec 2023 <>



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