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Scottish National Dictionary (1700–)

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

TOWMOND, n. Also towman (ne.Sc. 1773 Weekly Mag. (25 Feb.) 274, -mon, touman, -mon(d); towmont(h); tomond (Lnk. 1808 W. Watson Poems (1877) 18), tomen (t), toman (Edb. 1791 J. Learmont Poems 56), tomonth (Wgt. 1804 R. Couper Poems II. 55); twomond (Uls. 1844 R. Huddleston Poems 15), twomont (Rnf. 1791 A. Wilson Poems (1844) 85). [′tʌumən(d), ′to-, -mənθ]

1. A twelvemonth, a year, the period of a year (Sc. 1808 Jam.). Also used coll., attrib., and adv. Obs. exc. liter. Hence towmond auld, -all, to(w)montal(l), -ell, -ill, tomminaul, tomerall, adj., twelve months old, used subst. a yearling cow, steer or colt (Ayr. 1808 Jam., towmontell, 1825 Jam., towmondall, tomminaul); “a two-year old horse” (Gall. 1824 MacTaggart Gallov. Encycl. 450, tomerall), which is appar. due to a misconception.Sc. 1715 Ramsay Poems (S.T.S.) I. 67:
Till this Time Toumond I'se indent Our Claiths of Dirt will sa'r.
Abd. 1768 A. Ross Helenore (S.T.S.) 22:
She'll be mair stivage, heary, trust ye me, Gin she a toment yet be latten be.
Ayr. 1785 Burns Cotter's Sat. Night xi.:
The frugal wifie garrulous will tell How 'twas a towmond auld.
Lnk. 1793 D. Ure Hist. Rutherglen 51:
The colts, when a year old, are called Tomontals, a provincial contraction for twelve-month-old.
Rnf. 1807 R. Tannahill Poems (1900) 10:
She skits and flings like ony towmont filly.
Rxb. 1821 A. Scott Poems 186:
For mony lang towmond thegither.
Mry. 1824 J. Cock Hamespun Lays 103:
This toumans twa, I wat, I'll min?
Abd. 1871 W. Alexander Johnny Gibb xxvii.:
I haena been in Aiberdeen this three towmons.
Kcb. 1897 T. Murray Frae the Heather 171:
And I o' towmonds five times three My prime o' life enjoyed on Dee.
m.Sc. 1917 J. Buchan Poems 19:
The weakest's doots were tided ower Anither towmont.
Ags. 1932 A. Gray Arrows 67:
I'll be hame within the towmond.
Bnff. 1934 J. M. Caie Kindly North 38:
The lass I ha'e lo'ed for a towmond an' mair.
Abd. 1955 W. P. Milne Eppie Elrick ii.:
'E sic lammie 'at deet a towmon seen come Cannlemass.

2. A sheep or wether in its second year (Rxb. 1801 J. Leyden Complaynt 328, 1923 Watson W.-B., Rxb. 1972), phs. partly confused with Dinmont.

[O.Sc. tholmont, 1431, towmound, 1596, = 1., Mid.Eng. towlmonyth, O.N. tólfmánuðr, a twelvemonth. The spelling two- may however be directly from or assimilated to Mid.Eng. twel(f)month, O.E. twelf monað, id.]

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"Towmond n.". Dictionary of the Scots Language. 2004. Scottish Language Dictionaries Ltd. Accessed 26 May 2024 <>



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