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

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First published 1963 (DOST Vol. III).
This entry has not been updated since then but may contain minor corrections and revisions.

Horn, Horne, n.1 Also: hoirne[ME. horne, horn, OE. and ON. horn.]

1. A horn on, or from, an animal; the material of this. 14.. Acts I. 338/2.
That the ere of the bestis and the hornis ar in like lang
c1420 Wynt. i. 788.
Thare owsyn ar wytht hornys thre
Ib. 801.
Off leynth foure fwte hale is that horne
a1500 Henr. Fab. 1682.
Ceres that goddes. … With … copia temporis to fill hir horne
1507 Aberd. B. Rec. I. 437.
That na craftisman by hidis bot as the law requires. that is to say, the louge and the horne elik lang
c1500-c1512 Dunb. Flyt. 212.
Thow bringis the Carrick clay … Upoun thy botingis hobland hard as horne
1513 Doug. iv. Prol. 64.
The bustuus bullys … With horn to horn wyrkis … mony a wound
Ib. xi. xv. 14.
With Lycyne bow nokkyt with hornys meyt
1531 Bell. Boece II. 402.
Thay put ane hait irne, throw ane horne, in his fundement
a1568 Scott xxxiv. 72.
I hald ȝe want bot hornis, As bukkis in belling tyme
1570 Conv. Burghs I. 21.
That the scheip skyn be flane to the horn
1632 Edinb. Test. LVI. 24.
Twa hundreth hornes for bowettis
fig. a1568 Scott xxxiii. 41.
Thow hes thi horne ay in thair sydis That can nocht fle
1618 Trial Isobel Inch 5.
That every man had hornis (as it was) in her syd
 — a1568 Bann. MS. 260 a/12.
Sa betuix thame twa I gat the horne
a1570-86 Maitl. F. liii. 15.
Thay … syn bringis hame the laird the horne
1569-73 Bann. Memor. 102.
The secund horne of his argument
- 1570 Sat. P. x. 277.
Than did sum lords lyft vp thair hornis on hie Quhilks did withstand ȝour Kingis authoritie

b. Something resembling a horn. 1513 Doug. iii. ix. 103.
The moyn hes nw fyllyt hir hornys … thrys With newnlyght
1533 Bell. Livy II. 205/35.
Thay arrayit thare army in maner of twa hornis [L. cornua]
Ib. 206/35.
The left horne of Romanis … fled
1567 G. Ball. 104.
Ȝe Moabitis, with hornis twa full hie [i.e. of the mitre]

c. The constellation Ursa Minor. [It. corno.] 1513 Doug. iii. viii. 22.
Watlyng streit, the Horn and the Charle wayn
Ib. viii. Prol. 154.
The sevyn starnys and the Charl wayn, … The horn and the hand staf
a1605 Montg. Flyt. 419 (H).
Be the hornes [sic], the handstaffe, and the kinges ell

d. pl. Metal tips or points for laces. 1488 Treas. Acc. I. 81.
A point maid of perle contenand xxv perle with hornis of gold
1576 Edinb. Test. IV. 106.
Ten dosane … pointis of silk all hornit … ; foure dosane of silk pointis withont hornes
1589 12th Rep. Hist. MSS. App. viii. 105.
xx gros of greit hornis to the goune
1600 Treas. Acc. 68 b.
Twa silk laisis with hornes

e. The prow or forepart of a boat. ? a 1560 Music of Scotland xxxvi. 56.
Ther cam a ship ..., Sanct Michael was the stieresman, Sanct John sat in the horn
1597 Misc. Spald. C. I. 107.
Sche ... delyuerit to him ... four cuttis of salmond ... , and bad him put the samyn in the horne of his coble
a1628 Carmichael Prov. No. 1577.
The devill rowis in his cobill horne that [etc.]

2. A hollow horn used for blowing; a metal instrument of similar form. 1375 Barb. vi. 469.
To hunt hym out of the land With hund and horn
Ib. xix. 579.
He blew his horne for to rely His men
1386 Rotuli Sc. II. 85/2.
Men folwand thar gudes with hond or with horn
14.. Acts I. 323/2.
The forster … aw … thris [to] blaw his horn
1432 Ib. II. 22/1.
The Kingis officiaris … sal haif a horne and a red wande … ; and the officiaris of the regalite … a horne quhar he pasis within the regalite
?1438 Alex. ii. 2742.
Ane horne of ebor fyne And his swerd hes he fra him done
a1500 Henr. Fab. 835.
Than start he vp … Withe horne in hand, … Ane pursephant semelie
c1475 Wall. v. 180.
So hard thai blaw rude hornys wpon hycht
c1515 Asl. MS. I. 241/13.
Schir James of Douglas … come … to Striuling & blew out xxiiij hornis attanis apon the king and apon all the lordis that war with him that tyme
c1500 Rowll Cursing 214 (M).
With bugillis and hornis made of bras
1513 Doug. viii. i. 4.
The trumpis blast and hornis made deray
1581 Sat. P. xliv. 81.
Eftir that Sathan his horne begoud to blau
c 1590 Douglas Corr. 34.
As I haue … na neu thing to writt … excepe a new tout in ane aulde horne, as thay saye
1609 Skene Reg. Maj. i. 71 b.
Gif ane man findes ane theif with the fang, … he sould raise the blast of ane horne vpon him
Ib. ii. 12.
He may follow his hounds within the Kings forest, as farre as he may cast his horne
fig. 1456 Hay I. 22/13.
The pape Sanct Gregore the secound blewe his horne wele quhen he cursit the Emperour Lyoun

b. The kingis horn, one used by a sheriff when acting for the king. 1432 Acts II. 20/2.
The schiref … sal pas and persew the slaaris ane or maa ande rais the Kingis horne on hym
Ib. 21/2.
Gif it happynis the schiref to persew fugitouris with the kingis horne … , and the cuntre rise nocht … herande the kingis horne [etc.]

c. The horn used in proclaiming an outlaw, three blasts being blown by the king's messenger. Chiefly in the phrases at the horne, outlawed, and to put to the horn, to outlaw.Also in early use (see 2), the kingis horn.(1) 1397 Acts I. 208/1.
He that apperis nocht at the next justice air sal be at the horne
1488 Paisley B. Rec. 28.
Supporting and resetting of ony persons being rebelt and at the horne
1494–5 Treas. Acc. I. 212.
Ane composicione maid … for the eschete gudis, of William of Conyngham, fugitife and at the horne
1508 Reg. Privy S. I. 258/1.
Androis being … our soverane lordis rebell and at his horne unrelaxit thairfra
1535 Stewart 14289.
He dryvis ws bot to scorne, Sayand thai men war at the kingis horne
a1578 Pitsc. II. 187/22.
The lordis that war in Ingland and at the quenis horne come to Edinburght
1590 Acts III. 525/1.
All sic personis as ar or salbe fund in registeris or adiornall standand denunceit rebellis and at the horne
c1650 Spalding II. 268.
Quhairvpone he is denuncit and registrat at the horne
1678 Mackenzie Laws & C. ii. xx. § 7.
If any malefactor be at the horn
fig. 1567 G. Ball. 76.
For ȝe war all at Goddis horne
(2) 1464–5 Acts XII. 21/1.
That he be furthwith put to the horne of party and syne opinly put to the kingis horne
1473 Acta Aud. 30/1.
Vnder the pain of rebellioun & putting of thaim to the Kingis horne
1490 Treas. Acc. I. 131.
Dave Rudman to pas to Pettinweme with letteris to put men to the horne that sclew a man
1522 Fife Sheriff Ct. 276.
For the quhilk slauchtir thai ar … put to our horn as fugetyve fra our lawes
1549 Coll. Aberd. & B. 114.
Gif thay failyie thairin that ye denunce thame … our rebellis and putt thame to our horne … for thair contemptioune
1595 Aberd. Council Lett. I. 63.
Androw Moresone tends to putt the … provest and baillies to the horne maist wrangouslie
c1650 Spalding II. 373.
If thay disobeyit, … sending out pairtyis to plunder thame, at the leist, to put thame to the horne
fig. 1535 Stewart 3065.
He flemit law, put justice to the horne
(3) 1491 Acta Conc. 205/2.
The kingis hienes … prolongis the execucioune of the horne in the meyntime
1516 Reg. Privy S. I. 412/1.
With discharge … of all lettres and proces of horne gevin agains the said Alexander
a1568 Bann. MS. a/16.
Be quhais … royell ordinance The furious Mars wes blawin to the horne
1571 Bann. Memor. 67.
He … past to the horne, and also incurrit the said pane of tressone
a1578 Pitsc. I. 51/17.
They sould be denunceit as tratouris to our sowerans hienes horne
1588 Aberd. Council Lett. I. 46.
I thank yow for your superseiding of my godson … fra the horne
1622-6 Bisset I. 204/18.
The thrid [pain is] denunciatioun to the horne
c1650 Spalding II. 161.
Quhairvpone here laxt him self fra the horne
Ib. 393.
If thay comperit not at all, then thay war denuncit to the horne
fig. 1567 G. Ball. 121.
Wesche me againe, and from thy horne Deliuer me in stres

3. Attrib. with buckrum, flasc, glew, kame (comb), schethe, spune.(1) 1501 Treas. Acc. II. 32.
For tua horne kames
1531 M. Works Acc. II. 19.
Ane pund of horne glew for pannalis for the glewing of the grete braid ouer wyndois
1581 Edinb. Test. IX. 185 b.
Foure dosane of horne schethis
1597 Ib. XXXI. 282 b.
Ane dussone of horne flascis
1626 Wedderb. Compt. Bk. 142.
Ane puder red horne flas
1632 Tailor's Acc. Bk. B. 4 b.
For halfe ane ell of hoirne buckrum to the cloik neck, vi s.
(2) 1549 Compl. 43/3.
Euyrie sheiphird hed ane horn spune in the lug of there bonet
1558-66 Knox I. 38.
The goodwyiff of the other syd of the gait hes tynt a horne spune
1575 Edinb. Test. III. 328 b.
Sevin dosane of horne spvnes
1606 Dunblane Test. III. 104.
To everie ane of thame twa dissone horne spoinis
1623 Edinb. Test. LII. 72.
Tua gros horne spunes at ffour pund the gros

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"Horn n.1". Dictionary of the Scots Language. 2004. Scottish Language Dictionaries Ltd. Accessed 21 Jul 2024 <>



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