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Scottish National Dictionary (1700–)

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First published 1974 (SND Vol. IX).
This entry has not been updated but may contain minor corrections and revisions.

STITH, adj., adv. Also styth(e). [stəiθ]

I. adj. 1. Stiff, rigid as in death.Abd. 1754 R. Forbes Journal 25, 28:
As styth as gin I had been elf-shot . . . or else sheet him styth.
Abd. 1768 A. Ross Helenore (S.T.S.) 15:
Up by the lambie's lying yonder styth.
Mry. 1806 J. Cock Simple Strains 107:
The Laird he bann'd he'd lay him stvth.
Bwk. 1862 J. G. Smith Old Churchyard 177:
Mould'rin i' the cauld clay Stark, stith, an' dead.

2. Firm, immovable, unshakeable. Arch.Sc. 1871 P. H. Waddell Psalms xxxi. 4, xxxvii. 24:
Yerlane are my stoop sae styth . . . the Lord hauds his han' fu' stythe.

3. Hard, severe, intense, of weather. Obs. in Mid.Eng. Cf. stith-driven under II. but there are difficulties about this usage and the word here is prob. a variant of Stife, q.v.Abd. 1801 W. Beattie Parings (1813) 35:
The first thing meets him, is a dose Of styth endrift and hail.

II. adv. Intensely, with force and severity, in comb. stith-driven, but see under I. 3.Bnff. 1852 A. Harper Solitary Hours 30:
Tho' the stith-driven snaw 'bout our wee cot be scuddin'.

[O.Sc. styth, strong-flowing, 1375, hard, firm, severe, of weather, a.1400, O.E. stīð, hard, inflexible, severe.]

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"Stith adj., adv.". Dictionary of the Scots Language. 2004. Scottish Language Dictionaries Ltd. Accessed 3 Jun 2023 <>



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