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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.

SPICE, n., v. Sc. usages:

I. n. 1. Pepper (Sc. 1782 J. Sinclair Ob. Sc. Dial. 128, 1808 Jam., 1881 A. Mackie Scotticisms 50; I. and n.Sc. 1971).Lnk. a.1779 D. Graham Writings (1883) II. 38:
Mak me a cogfu' o' milk brose, an' a placks worth o' spice in them.
Peb. 1793 R. D. C. Brown Comic Poems (1817) 135:
Carlines [boiled pease] wi' spice.
Ags. 1810 J. Paterson Poems 154:
Tak mustard too upo' your plate, — 'Tis better far than spice For fish this day.
Sh. 1901 T. P. Ollason Mareel 21:
I dosed 'im wi' da oil o' clow An' rubbed spice on da gum.
Abd. 1920 M. Argo Makkin' o' John 7:
Pit in a guid speenfu' o' syrup amon't an' a guid stourie o' spice.

2. Fig. Pride, conceit (Sc. 1808 Jam.).

3. A blow (Abd. 1825 Jam.).

4. Combs. and derivs.: (1) spice-box, pepper-pot (Sc. 1825 Jam.; Abd. 1971); (2) spicerie, (i) a slight touch, trace, specimen. Cf. Eng. spice, id.; ¶(ii) in pl. groceries, ad. Fr. épicerie; (3) spice-man, a pepper-holder (Abd. 1931), often made in the shape of a human being; (4) spice-mill, a pepper-quern, -mill, -grinder (Rnf. 1880 W. Grossart Shotts 123); (5) spicy, (i) n., a game with a skipping rope (Abd. 1910), in pl. fast turns of a skipping rope (Abd. 1949); (ii) adj., peppered, peppery; fig. proud, testy (Sc. 1808 Jam.; Abd. 1930); (6) spicy jock, a toad-stool with a hollow stalk (Abd. 1910).(2) (i) Ayr. 1822 Galt Sir A. Wylie xxxiv.:
I could wager, as sure as ony thing, that there's a wee spicerie of I'll no say what in this.
Ayr. 1823 Galt R. Gilhaize III. vi.:
With a spicerie of that wholesome virtue and friendly sympathy.
(ii) Abd. 1898 J. M. Cobban Angel xxiii.:
What's the papers? Let me look at them when ye have ta'en out the bit spiceries.
(4) Sc. 1888 P.S.A.S. XXIII. 20:
Seven spice-mills of wood.
(5) (ii) Sc. 1770 Hailes Ancient Sc. Poems 276:
A spicy man is still used for one self-conceited and proud.
Edb. 1821 W. Liddle Poems 88:
You look'd just, as your tail got spicy, Like them that day.

II. v. †1. Fig. To pepper, as with shot.Bnff. 1787 W. Taylor Poems 91:
Than Robie charg'd his gun wi' slugs To spice her buckie.

2. To beat, thwack (Abd. 1825 Jam.).

3. In phr. spice't, used as an expletive of irritation or anger, “damn it,” “confound it.”Abd.15 1930:
Spice't! There's that dog huntin the sheep again!

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



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