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Scottish National Dictionary (1700–)

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

SNUID, n., v. Also snüid, snüd(e), snöd, snud(e), snood, snoud, snoad, sneud; sneed, snead; sned, snid; snoid, snaid. [snød; snɪd; ne.Sc. snid]

I. n. 1. A fillet or ribbon bound round the brow and tied at the back under the hair, worn esp. by young unmarried women and hence looked on as a symbol of maidenhood (Sc. 1808 Jam.; Fif., Lth., Ayr. 1923–6 Wilson; Uls. 1953 Traynor). Gen.Sc. Also fig. Now only hist. Also in Eng. dial. Deriv. and phrs.: a black snood, a black ribbon worn across one's cap as a sign of widowhood; snoodless, without a snood; to tyne or lose one's snood, to lose one's virginity (Sc. 1825 Jam.).Sc. 1726 Ramsay T.-T. Misc. (1876) I. 202:
I'll take thee, sweet May, in thy snood, Gif thou wilt gae hame with me.
Abd. 1768 A. Ross Helenore (S.T.S.) 14:
But on a day as Lindy was fu' thrang, Weaving a snood.
Sc. 1776 D. Herd Sc. Songs II. 202:
The lassie lost her silken snood, That gard her greet till she was wearie.
Lnk. a.1779 D. Graham Writings (1883) II. 133:
The lasses wad a gotten keeking glasses, red snudes, needles, prins.
ne.Sc. a.1807 The Mother's Malison in Child Ballads No. 216 A. xxi.:
There was na mare seen of that gued lady Bat her keem an her sneed.
Inv. 1820 E. Grant Mem. Highl. Lady (Strachey 1928) 206:
The girls wore their hair bound by the snood, a bit of velvet or ribbon placed rather low on the forehead and tied beneath the plait at the back.
Sc. 1822 Scott Carle, now the King's come ii. ix.:
Sir Thomas, thunder from your rock, And laee wi' fire my snood o' smoke.
Sc. 1822 North. Antiquities (Jamieson) I. 214 note:
The matrons attend her up-rising, and have a merry-making at the ceremony of the curch-putting-on, or adorning her for the first time (if she has preserved her maiden honours till marriage) with the curch, or close cap, as she can no longer wear the snood, or maiden tyre.
Edb. 1856 J. Ballantine Poems 95:
Her widow's black snood brings the tear to my ee.
Sh. 1879 Shetland Times (22 March):
Minna, raising her hand to her head, exclaimed, “Fyanden! I'm tint my snüde.”
Ork. 1885 Peace's Almanac 129:
At night, or rather early morning, when all was silent in the house, the mother, along with one or two female friends, having made a flat stone hot in the fire, laid the bride's “sneud” on the hot stone, and carefully watched it as it was slowly consumed. The shapes it assumed while burning, and the shape of the ash left on the stone, in some way prognosticated the fate of its late owner. This was also called the “sweein' o' the sneud.”
Ayr. 1927 J. Carruthers A Man Beset i. i.:
I was ettlin' to marry the bizzim, but I fund oot her snude was tyned.

2. (i) The part of a sea-fishing-line, made of hemp, to which the hook is attached directly or by means of a twisted loop of horse-hair, the usage varying according to the actual practice in particular areas (Sc. 1808 Jam., s.v. Snood; Sh. 1866 Edm. Gl., 1908 Jak. (1928); Uls. 1953 Traynor; n.Sc., em., wm.Sc. 1971); also applied occas. to the horse-hair attachment itself, the Tippin or Tome (Sc. 1825 Jam., s.v. sned; Abd. 1911; Traynor); in a herring-net: one of the short cords attaching the float to the main rope or bauk (Bnff. 1866 Gregor D. Bnff. 172, sneed); in an angling line: the loop of horse-hair or cat-gut by which the hook is attached to the line. Also in Eng. dial.Gsw. 1754 Burgh Rec. Gsw. (1911) 397:
Fishing lines, snoods and others furnished by them for the Largs fishing.
Ork. 1775 J. Fea Present State (1884) 110:
Fishing lines, Snouds, Nets, or Sail cloth.
Kcd. 1795 Stat. Acc.1 VII. 204:
720 hooks one yard distant from each other, on snoods of horse hair.
Ayr. 1822 H. Ainslie Pilgrimage 157:
To plet snoods, cast the fisher's knot and busk flies.
Abd. 1850 J. Cranna Fraserburgh (1914) 277:
The sneads were about 15 inches long and placed about 3 feet apart on the line.
Sh. 1877 G. Stewart Fireside Tales 92:
My snüids an' handlin rex me doon Dey're dere upo' da lame.
Bwk. 1922 Kelso Chronicle (8 Sept.) 2:
The horse hair “snoods” to which the hooks are tied.
Sh. 1949 New Shetlander No. 16. 9:
Making haddock-line toams, cunningly fashioning the snüds of the strong black hair.
Bnff. 1959 Scots Mag. (Nov.) 106:
The hooks are attached to the line proper (called the “back”) first by a “sneed,” which looks like brown whipcord, and to the sneed is attached a length of plaited horse hair called a “tippet,” and the hook is attached to the tippet with special linen thread.

(ii) A loop of horse-hair fastened on the end of a stick with which to trap fish, a snare, sniggle.Lnk. 1845 Stat. Acc.2 VI. 448:
It lies basking in the sun at the bottom of rivers, and readily suffers itself to be taken by what the boys term a sned, i.e. two or three horse hairs plaited together, and fastened to the end of a wand, in the form of a loop, which is slipped over the fish's head and suddenly drawn up.

II. v. 1. tr. To bind the hair with a fillet or band (Sc. 1808 Jam.; Uls. 1953 Traynor). Now hist. Ppl.adj. snooded, of a girl's hair: provided with a snuid or ribbon, hence fig. of the wearer: unmarried; of a cap: with ribbons attached. Liter.Sc. 1714 W. Fraser Hist. Carnegies (1867) 283:
Snude up your hair and pouder it often.
Sc. 1756 M. Calderwood Journey (M.C.) 164:
Her hair snooded back and powdered.
Sc. 1792 Tam Lin in Child Ballads No. 39 A. viii.:
She has snooded her yellow hair A little aboon her bree.
Sc. 1810 Scott Lady of Lake iii. xx.:
And plaided youth, with jest and jeer, Which snooded maiden would not hear.
Sc. 1837 Carlyle French Rev. III. vii. ii.:
Her sweeping tresses snooded by glittering antique fillet.
m.Lth. 1897 P. H. Hunter J. Armiger 51:
Snood her hair ahint her heid like ony dacent woman's.
Kcb. 1898 Crockett Standard-Bearer xxii.:
Ah, Jonita, you snooded folk tame us every one.
Rxb. 1913 J. Byers Hamely Musings 58:
On the twa-snoaded bonnet and brass nebbit shoon.

2. To tie the short hair line to the fishing-hook (Sc. 1880 Jam.; Uls. 1953 Traynor; em.Sc. 1971). Vbl.n. snooding, the short hair line to which the hook is attached (Traynor).

3. To catch in a noose, to snare. Cf. I. 2.(ii).Bte. 1853 W. Bannatyne Poems 60:
Like a poacher, a-snoodin o' hares.

[O.Sc. snude, = I. 1., 1535, sned, = 2.(1), 1565, O.E. snōd, id., of obscure orig.]

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"Snuid n., v.". Dictionary of the Scots Language. 2004. Scottish Language Dictionaries Ltd. Accessed 12 Jun 2024 <>



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