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Scottish National Dictionary (1700–)

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First published 1965 (SND Vol. VI).
This entry has not been updated but may contain minor corrections and revisions.

MOLLIGRUPS, n. Also molly-; mooli-, mouli-; mali-; murdie- (Cld. 1825 Jam.); -graps, -grubs. Sc. variant forms of Eng. mulligrubs, a fit of melancholy or sulks, bad-temper (Sc. 1808 Jam.), and hence jocularly stomach-pains, indigestion, colic (Cld. 1880 Jam.). See also Bulliegrubs and cf. Molligrant.Dmb. 1844 W. Cross Disruption xxix.:
If it was disease o' the body like the mooligrubs or the cholic, I wad advise you a dose o' gambouge.
Ags. 1886 A. D. Willock Rosetty Ends 82:
When there was an east wind Geordie was sure to be in the mollygrubs.
Per. 1933 N. B. Morrison Gowk Storm 8:
When any of the brothers had the mooligrubs or sullens, she would tell him she would whip him — ay, even if he were the Duke of Buccleuch.

[The variants are influenced by such words as moulie s.v. Muild, grups s.v. Grip, n., 4. The orig. of Eng. mulligrubs is unknown, phs. a fanciful formation.]

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"Molligrups n.". Dictionary of the Scots Language. 2004. Scottish Language Dictionaries Ltd. Accessed 6 Dec 2022 <>



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