Show Search Results Show Browse

Scottish National Dictionary (1700–)

Hide Quotations Hide Etymology

Abbreviations Cite this entry

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

SPINK, n.1 Dim. spinky, -ie. [spɪŋk]

1. A name applied to various flowers. Most commonly used of the cuckoo flower, lady's smock, Cardamine pratensis (Bwk. 1853 G. Johnston Botany E. Borders 33, also bog-spink); the common primrose, Primula vulgaris (Sc. 1808 Jam.; ne.Sc., em.Sc. (a), w.Lth. 1971); the garden polyanthus, Primula elatior (Clc. 1886 B. & H. Plant Names 447); the maiden pink, Dianthus deltoides (Sc. 1808 Jam.; Edb. 1886 B. & H. Plant Names 447); the common cowslip, Primula verna (Ags. 1952). Also used variously in Eng. dial. Combs. May spink, see Mey, 1. (15), spinkie den, a flowery dell.Edb. 1773 Fergusson Poems (S.T.S.) II. 156:
Or can our flow'rs at ten hours bell The Gowan or the Spink excel?
m.Lth. 1788 J. Macaulay Poems 120:
A garlan' o' braw spinks an' crawfeet made.
Abd. 1804 W. Tarras Poems 1:
His chackit plaid the speckl't spink outvies.
Sc. 1814 J. Sinclair Agric. Scot. II. 67:
Polyanthuses, which last, the cottagers often name spinks.
Fif. 1827 W. Tennant Papistry 9:
Witchbells, dear daffodillies, Kingcups and spinks.
Per. 1889 T. Edwards Strathearn Lyrics 27:
I kissed the spink and daffodil, A' in their goud attire.
e.Lth. 1905 J. Lumsden Croonings 287:
Foxgloves, bluebells, thimmels, an' spinks.
Abd. 1922 G. P. Dunbar Whiff o' Doric 24:
He kent the lythest neukie where the spinkies first would blaw.
Abd. 1958 Abd. Press & Jnl. (13 March):
A spinkie-den with burn and playing bairns and new greenery.
Kcd. 1965 Dundee Courier (17 May):
Gathering “spinkies” on the grassy slopes of the cliffs between Stonehaven and Dunnottar Castle.

2. Fig. applied to attractive persons in the bloom of youth.Fif. 1806 A. Douglas Poems 24:
I'll wager 'tis that bloomin' spink, The charmin' Mary Pirie.
Sc. 1812 The Scotchman 67:
May thae delightfu spinks neer be skaithed.
Slk. 1824 Blackwood's Mag. (March) 299:
This spink of a mountain damsel.
Clc. 1852 G. P. Boyd Misc. Poems 24:
'Deed, my bit spinks, ye needna wonder, I speak sound truth.

[Appar. a variant of Pink, n.1, with prothetic s.]

You may wish to vary the format shown below depending on the citation style used.

"Spink n.1". Dictionary of the Scots Language. 2004. Scottish Language Dictionaries Ltd. Accessed 20 Jun 2024 <>



Hide Advanced Search

Browse SND: