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Scottish National Dictionary (1700–)

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First published 1960 (SND Vol. V).
This entry has not been updated but may contain minor corrections and revisions.

ILL-GIEN, adj. Also -given, -geen, -gi'in'.

1. Given or addicted to evil ways, ill-inclined; ill-disposed, malevolent (Sc. 1825 Jam.; Sh., Lnk., Dmf. 1958). See Gie, v.1Edb. 1791 J. Learmont Poems 46:
He's been an ill-gien chiel indeed.
Sc. 1837 Chambers's Jnl. (10 June) 155:
The callant's father was an ill-gien auld tyke.
Bwk. 1856 G. Henderson Pop. Rhymes 59:
Thae ill-gien witches a' to tame.
Dmf. 1866 Carlyle Reminisc. (1881) I. 256:
I did . . . dismiss him to the devil, or to Jericho, as an ill-given, unserviceable kind of entity.
Lth. 1894 P. H. Hunter J. Inwick 124:
That ill-gien deevil An'ra Wabster never missed a chance o' haein a jag at me.
Sc. 1903 Memoir of Almond of Loretto 34:
It mattered not how loutish or ill-given he might be.

2. Niggardly, mean (Cai. 1902 E.D.D., Cai. 1958); wayward, stubborn (Cai.9 1939).

3. Continually grumbling, discontented (Sh. 1908 Jak. (1928), -gi'in').

[O.Sc. ill-gevin, ill-disposed, a.1500.]

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"Ill-gien adj.". Dictionary of the Scots Language. 2004. Scottish Language Dictionaries Ltd. Accessed 29 Jan 2023 <>



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