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A Dictionary of the Older Scottish Tongue (up to 1700)

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First published 1937 (DOST Vol. I).

Byganis, n. pl. Also: buyganis, bi-, byganes, -gaines, bygean(i)s. [f. Bygane ppl. a. The Anglicized bygones is common in the 17th c.]

1. Things of the past or done in the past; esp. past offences or injuries. a 1568 Sempill Sat. P. xlvii. 56.
Than cumis conscience … , Greitand for byganis
a1578 Pitsc. I. 84/4.
The Earle of Douglas … was ressawit richt hairtfullie be the king and remittit all byganis
a1605 Montg. Ch. & Slae 821.
‘Of by ganes I haif hard,’ quod he, ‘I knaw not things to cum’
1596 Dalr. II. 164/18.
The Duke … forgaue thame baith al byganes
1615 Highland P. III. 211.
The said George to go to courte … to procure vnto thame ane remissioun for bigaines

2. Payments for past periods; arrears. 1570 Reg. Morton I. 55.
How Dauid Orme may be satisfeit anent the byganis
1583 Edinb. Test. XII. 302 b.
I grant me awand … xij merkis of his fie in compleit payment of all biganes
1584 Glasgow B. Rec. I. 115.
To pay to the saidis pure men all thair biganes conforme to the compt
1614 Crim. Trials III. 299.
Ane precept … to mak him payment of the biganes of his pensioun
1641 Acts V. 366/2.
That ministers may get tymeous payment of thair stipends both for bygeans & to com
1668 Irvine Mun. II. 227.
Quhat they are deu for byganes
1681 Foulis Acc. Bk. 70.
I have given him for byganes 4 s.

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"Byganis n. pl.". Dictionary of the Scots Language. 2004. Scottish Language Dictionaries Ltd. Accessed 8 Aug 2022 <>



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