Scottish National Dictionary (1700–)

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POWSOWDIE, n. Also -y, -soddie, -y, -soudie, pow's-, pou-; persowdi (Angus), persowdie (Edm.). [pʌu′sʌudi]

1. Broth or thick soup made out of a sheep's head (Rxb. 1802 J. Sibbald Chron. Sc. Poetry Gl.). Edb. 1787  W. Taylor Poems 24:
In haf an hour hese get his mess O' crowdy mowdy, An' fresh powsowdy.
Peb. 1817  R. Brown Lintoun Green 92:
Pow's-sowdy, King's-hoods, mony-plies.
Sc. 1844  G. Outram Lyrics (1874) 14:
We sall subsist upon our ain national vivers allenarlie, . . . whiles pangin oursels wi' . . . drammock, brochan an' powsowdie.
Dmb. 1894  D. MacLeod Past Worthies 216:
Speldins and haddocks, sheep heids and wilks, Wi' swats and guid powrowdie [sic].
Sc. 1926  H. McDiarmid Penny Wheep 59:
Wi' powsoudie or drummock, Lapper-milk kebbuck and farle.

2. A heterogeneous mixture of various ingredients, a messy hotch-potch, a mush (Sh. 1866 Edm. Gl., 1914 Angus Gl., ‡Sh. 1966); “milk and meal boiled together” (n.Sc. 1808 Jam.). Also fig. Sc. 1816  Scott Antiquary xxxv.:
Making some pousowdie for my lord, for he doesna eat like ither folk.
Edb. 1928  A. D. Mackie In Two Tongues 32:
The wice auld beasts . . . 'll rether champ Green curlydoddy Nor wark their harns Tae powsoddy.

[O.Sc. possodie, a term of endearment, c.1500, powsodie, = 1., a.1685. Phs. Pow, n.1, + Sowdie.]

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"Powsowdie n.". Dictionary of the Scots Language. 2004. Scottish Language Dictionaries Ltd. Accessed 24 Mar 2019 <>



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