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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.

Clenging, Cleinging, Cleanging, vbl. n. Also: clengeing, -yng(e, clengging, clengeine, -gine, -gen, cleyngeing, cleingin. [f. Clenge v.] The action of cleaning or cleansing, in various senses.

1. a. For the removal of infection or physical impurity. c1420 Wynt. v. 4830.
The purificatyowne of Mary, Clengyng that is propyrly Off wemen [etc.]
1500 Edinb. B. Rec. I. 77.
Quhen thai mak ony … clenging of hous thai sall haif rewaird thairfor
Ib. 78.
Quhen thai ar vacand for eirding and clenging
1512 Ib. 138.
Anent the clengeing of this towne and infectit geir
c1520-c1535 Nisbet Luke v. 14.
Offir for thi clengeing … as Moyses bad
1555–6 Edinb. B. Rec. II. 317.
To Homill quhen he wes stekit up for clenging of the pest geir
1622-6 Bisset II. 395/3.
A burn or strype of walter … for wesching and clenging of the pest folkis
1645 Peebles Gleanings 252.
For biggin the kill for the infected cloths clenging
1647 Glasgow B. Rec. II. 119.
For better expeading of the cleanging of housses

b. For making clean or clear of rubbish, etc.(a) 1510 Reg. Privy S. I. 326/1.
Ane act … maid anent the clengeing of the calsay and commoun strete
1513 Treas. Acc. IV. 512.
To xx werkmen … at the dichting and clengeing of the gunnys
1518 Dunferm. B. Rec. 297.
Concernyng the clengen of the burne quha suld cleng the burne
1543 Edinb. B. Rec. II. 112.
For clengeing of the paythment and doand sic vther seruice
1554–5 Ib. 353.
For clengging of the eirle of Irgyllis clois, that my lord of Irgyle mycht haif entres thairto
1558 Treas. Acc. X. 436.
To vj barrowmen for thair wagis lauborand in the said castell in clenging of the well thairof
(b) 1540 Treas. Acc. VII. 339.
For wphalding of the palice of Linlithqw watter tycht, cleinging of the alliring, and for utheris laubouris
1557–8 Edinb. Old Acc. I. 247.
To ane barroman for cleyngeing of the nether Tolbuith
1589–90 Ayr Common Good Acc. MS.
For clinging of the gobar of sand and dirt
fig. 1580 Hay in Cath. Tr. 51/8.
Ye … denyes bayth place and tyme of cleanging [of sins]

c. pl. Offscourings. c1520-c1535 Nisbet 1 Cor. iv. 13.
As clengeingis of this warlde we ar made

2. Clearing from a charge or accusation. 14.. Acts I. 5/2.
Quhethir he wil bataile or to tak purgacioun of xii leil men with clengyng of a hyrdman
1564 Reg. Privy C. I. 256.
His gudis arreistit … sall incontinent eftir his clenging be deliverit to him
1568 Buch. Indict. 45.
It is trew that God at that tyme permittit hym to obteyne ane countrafactet clengeine
a1578 Pitsc. II. 88 marg.
The clinging of the earle of Rothous of the cardinallis slaughter
1597 Misc. Spald. C. I. 138.
Clenging of Jonet Leysk [etc.] … of wichcraft
1626 Wemyss Chart. 314.
To abide their censure, ather in clengeing or fylling of me

3. Making clear by removal of something. 1535 Treas. Acc. VI. 265.
To Iames Murray, … to pas to the stedis quhair the Kingis gracis gudis gangis … for clengeing of that ground of uthir mennis cattell
1574 Conv. Burghs I. 28.
The schip and bark foirsaid … [is] to pas for clenging of thair seais and watteris [from pirates]

4. Attrib. with caldroun, graith, meit, money, plas. c 1420 Liber Calchou 449.
Ilkane of thir [parts of the body] has his clengyng plas quhare he may … clenge him
1513 Doug. iv. xi. 105.
The bestis and the blude, And clengyng graith
Ib. viii. iii. 202.
Purgit entralis, clepit clengyng meit
1594 Edinb. B. Rec. V. 112.
Thair clengeing caldroun quhilk stuid in the houssis of the Newheavin
1645 Stirling B. Rec. I. 188.
The counsall … apointit the deane of gild [etc.] … stentaris for the clenging moneyis throw the toun

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"Clenging vbl. n.". Dictionary of the Scots Language. 2004. Scottish Language Dictionaries Ltd. Accessed 24 May 2024 <>



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