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

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First published 1937 (DOST Vol. I).
This entry has not been updated since then but may contain minor corrections and revisions.

Assure, v. Also: assur, assuir(e, -yr, asshur; asseure, asseuer, -ir. [ME. assure (Chaucer), a(s)seure, OF. aseurer, a(s)surer. See also Assover.]

1. tr. To inspire with confidence; to confirm in a resolve or opinion; to convince. Freq. in p.p.(a) 1375 Barb. vi. 225 (his gentill hart assurit him in-till that neide). 1513 Doug. iii. ix. 44 (Anchisis assuris his spreit). 1558-66 Knox II. 451 (the text assureis me). 1562-3 Winȝet I. 18/6 (geue ȝe may assuir the peple heirof). a1585 Maitl. Q. lxxii. 31 (firme faith sall me assuire). 1596 Dalr. I. 90/11 (assuiring thame selfes that … ).(b) 1513 Doug. i. iii. 65 (ar ȝe sa gretly assurit in ȝour hie kyn?). c1550 Lynd. Meldrum 1327 (assurit that thair suld cum no mo). 1562-3 Winȝet II. 5/21 (to be assuirit of the trewth). c1568 Lauder Minor P. i. 453 (may be assurde of ane mischieuous end). a1578 Pitsc. I. 74/21 (ȝe may be assurit that … ). 1596 Dalr. II. 64/23 (assuiret and certifiet that the king rygnes allane). 1611-57 Mure Sonn. x. 4 (to make a man assuird).

b. To make (a person) sure or certain of a fact; to inform positively or with confidence.Frequently parenthetic in the phrase I ȝow (or thé) assure.a1500 Henr. Fab. 137 (ouer all thing, I ȝow assure … ). 1490 Irland Mir. I. 98/30 (the angell assurit thame of hire haly concepcioune). a1500 Seven S. 34 (sekerly I ȝow assure that … ). a1500 Bernardus 113 (planly y the assur). c1500-c1512 Dunb. xx. 47 (sicker I ȝow asseure). c1550 Lynd. Meldrum 1079 (I ȝow assure that … ). 1558 Q. Kennedy Tractive 266 (I assuyr ȝour Lordschip … ). c1568 Lauder Minor P. i. 371 (assuring ws he euer is with ws). a1578 Pitsc. I. 261/22 (assuirand him he wald gett battell). 1622-6 Bisset II. 180/1 (I assuir ȝou that God sall blise ȝow).

c. To assert positively or confidently. c1450-2 Howlat 603.
It semyt that thai sib war, forsuth I assure
1558 Q. Kennedy Tractive 130.
Assurand hym and his cumpanye to be Christis Kirk

2. intr. To have trust or confidence (in something or to a person); to have courage to do.a1400 Leg. S. xvi. 234 (ydolis that ware na worth in til assure); xxvi. 779 (til hyme & to thé I wil assur in this ded). c1420 Ratis R. 308 (may nan in thaim assur). c1500-c1512 Dunb. xxi. 5 (in this warld may non assure). 1513 Doug. xi. x. 36 (gif ony hardy wight may traste or assure in thar awyn mycht); xv. 95 (he na langar durst assure for to debait hym).

b. tr. To be sure of (a thing).a1500 Henr. Fab. 2759 (this sall thow trow and sikkerlie assure).

3. tr. To guarantee the safety of; esp. to safeguard or protect by an ‘assurance’.(a) c1420 Wynt. viii. 5173–5.
The Ramsay … sayd, that he suld … cum to that plas, Wytht thi thai all assuryd ware … The Erle thame assuryd willfully
1456 Hay I. 176/27.
Gif a man of were assuris ane othir frely to cum
Ib. 239/20.
All men suld have thame assurit in thair craft and laborage
1549 Compl. 74/19.
The Inglis men … repute ȝou for there mortal enemeis far mair nor thai repute ony Scottis man that vas neuyr assurit
1551 Acts II. 484/1.
Quhair Scottismen vnassurit with Ingland raid vpone Scottismen assurit with Ingland
(b) c1420 Wynt. vii. 3075 (C); Ib. viii. 5171 (C).
Fourty dayis asseueryt war thai Thaim for that passage to purway
1456 Hay I. 184/28.
He is nocht behaldyn to cum agayne … bot gif he war asseurit of his lyf
Ib. 238/24.
All pilgrymes suld be asseurit of all men of were

4. intr. To give assurance, be security, for. 1552 Antiq. Aberd. & B. III. 279.
The saydis Prouest to assure for the Middiltounis as well as for his awn seruandis

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"Assure v.". Dictionary of the Scots Language. 2004. Scottish Language Dictionaries Ltd. Accessed 21 Jun 2024 <>



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