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Scottish National Dictionary (1700–)

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First published 1971 (SND Vol. VIII).
This entry has not been updated but may contain minor corrections and revisions.

SAUTIE, adj., n. Also sauty, sattie. Sc. forms of Eng. salty. [′sǫte, ′sɑte]

I. adj. 1. As in Eng., salt, salt-tasted, brackish. Gen.Sc.Ags. 1866 Arbroath Guide (13 Jan.) 2:
Till the sautie bree fell frae his e'e.
n.Sc. 1911 T. W. Ogilvie Poems 3:
The tears doon fa', I canna read Your gravestanes through this sauty mist.
Abd. 1916 G. Abel Wylins 52:
He swithered till the sautie tears Did on her weet cheeks fa'.

Combs.: (1) sautie backit, a salt-box (Ork. 1969). See Saut, n., 2. (1); (2) sautie bannock, an oatmeal bannock with various ingredients, including salt, specially baked on Shrove Tuesday (Sc. 1855 N. & Q. (1st. Ser.) XI. 245). Now hist. Hence sautie bannock(s) (Tues)day, Shrove Tuesday (†Abd. 1957).(1) Abd. 1906 Banffshire Jnl. (22 May) 10:
An' hoo we teas't lang Geordie Halkett Aboot his “hodgin” sautie backit.
(2) Sc. 1823 W. G. Stewart Superstitions 256:
Soon as the evening circle convenes, the Bannich Junit, or sauty bannocks, are resorted to. The component ingredients are eggs and meal, and a sufficient quantity of salt, in order to sustain their ancient and appropriate appellation of sauty. They have a charm attached to them, which enables the happy Highlander to discover the object of all his spells — his connubial bed-fellow.
Abd. 1865 R. Dinnie Birse 31:
Afterwards the bannocks were proceeded with, called “sautie bannocks”, which were composed of milk, water, meal, eggs, and salt well mixed and stirred together in a vessel, and put on a hot griddle with a spoon, in a half liquid state, where it was soon converted into a more solid body. . . . This custom is not yet obsolete in the Parish.
Abd. 1960 Stat. Acc.3 372:
“Meal Monday” and “Meat, brose and sauty bannocks Tuesday” are no more.
Abd. 1961 Buchan Observer (14 Feb.):
Sometimes charms were hidden in the knotty tams, a wedding ring was certainly popped into the first sauty bannock.

2. Tart, cutting, sarcastic.Abd. 1932 D. Campbell Bamboozled 21:
“Ye wad feel a heap mair at hame wi' the dogs up by in yer ain kennels.” Benjie (smiling) — “That's a sauty ane, Meg.”

II. n. Short for sautie-fleuk, the dab, Limanda limanda (Lth. 1811 Wernerian Soc. Mem. I. 11; Kcd., Lth. 1825 Jam.; ne.Sc. 1878 Trans. Nat. Hist. Soc. Abd. 92; Fif., Lth. 1926 Wilson Cent. Scot. 263; Bnff. 1969). The bastard sattie is the long rough dab, Hippoglossoides limandoides (ne.Sc. 1884 G. Sim Food of Fishes 38).Abd. 1889 Bon-Accord (22 June) 11:
Little boats spread away to the northwards, all busy “bobbing” for “sauties”. whitings, saithe, and codlings.

[From Saut + -ie, suff.]

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



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