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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.

Clay, n. Also: claye, cley, kley. [ME. cley, clay, OE. cléᵹ.] Clay. Cat and clay: see Cat n.2 a1400 Leg. S. xlvi. 146.
The … dignite I … forsakis ay As vndire my fet I do clay
c1420 Wynt. iv. 267.
Throuch the depe slyk and the clay Haldand on the nerest way
c1450-2 Howlat 981.
Suthly we se Thy nakit cors bot of clay, a foule carioun
1453 Misc. Spald. C. V. 50.
For reddyng of clay fra the key
1468 Peebles B. Rec. 158.
Yt was ordanyt … that na man sal leid na clay fra thin
a1500 Henr. Fab. 1700.
Quhen columbie vp keikis throw the clay
c1500-c1512 Dunb. Flyt. 211.
Thow bringis the Carrik clay to Edinburgh Corse, Upoun thy botingis
1513 Doug. vii. Prol. 54.
The plane stretis and euery hie way Full of floschis, dubbis, myre, and clay
c1552 Lynd. Mon. 1702.
Sum holkit claye, sum brynt the tylde
1555 Peebles B. Rec. 218.
The holis … quhair he tuk the clay till his kill bigging
1590 Reg. Great S. 810/2.
To wyn quarrell and clay in the Deyn as uthirs nichtbouris … usis but ony latt
(1614) Chron. Perth 15.
The … bow of the brige fell doun, being eveill biggit, fillit onlie with clay and ȝeard
1646 Tulliallan Coal Wks. 197 b.
Johne Dreysdill, for ane watir spout biging and kley bering

b. Attrib. with barge, cullour, hill, mug, pot. 1512 Treas. Acc. IV. 456.
ij dusan … of burdis for the clay bargis
1398 Reg. Great S. (1814) 253/2.
A via tendente uersus le Clayhill
Vie. .tendentis uersus le Clayhillis
 - 1513 Doug. viii. Prol. 95.
Thocht clay muggis crakkis
1511 Reg. Privy S. I. 336/1.
Preceptum remissionis Iohannis Strathachin in le Claypottis
1550 Reg. Cupar A. II. 76.
All and hale the fowr acris of land … with clay pottis, exceppand clay for neidis of our place
1558 Inverness Sheriff Ct. 76.
The landis gewin … for his part of the claye pottis
1595 Edinb. Test. XXVIII. 9.
Fyve elneis … of clay collour Lundoun braid claith

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"Clay n.". Dictionary of the Scots Language. 2004. Scottish Language Dictionaries Ltd. Accessed 16 Jun 2024 <>



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