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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.

Knok, n.1 Also: Knokk, knhok, knock(e, cknock; knoke, knoik, knoak, cnoke; knouk. Plur. and possess.: knox. [Corresp. to ME. clokke, clok, MDu. and MLG. klocke, etc., appar. with kn- for cl- as in knapholt. Cf. Cloke n.2 and Cloak n.]

1. A clock.(a) 1429 Ayr B. Ct. MS.
For bent to the kyrk vj d.; Item for a cord to the knok viii d.
1462 Peebles B. Rec. 147.
Quha sa be fundyn in the faut sal pay ij s. to the knok bying
1503 Reg. Soltre 158.
For ane knok that strikis the howris iiij li.
1565 Instit. Ct. Sess. 2 b.
That the keipar of the knok of the stepill of Sanct Geill, nather hald the knok abak nor haist the hour
1540–1 Acta Conc. Public Aff. 547.
[To make for Dundee] ane … substancious knok with all instrumentis of irnewerk necessar … to strike houre and half houre … the xxiiii houris day and nycht. with thre warnyngis ilk warnyng to contene vixx and nyne strakis. the first at foure houris in the mornyng [etc.] … upoun the five bellis in the stepill
1541 Treas. Acc. VII. 459.
For mending of my lord princes knok and for girthing of the Kingis grace knok, making of ane new bell, witht ane kist lokkit and bandit to put her in
1554 Haddington Treas. Acc.
For ane horologe to the knok xl s.
1554–5 Edinb. B. Rec. II. 301.
To lay the haill knok … all ouer with reid leid
1564 Reg. Privy C. I. 308.
Ane lytill knok, with ane walknar ouregilt
1585 Edinb. B. Rec. IV. 412.
For repairing of the knok of Lundores, … setting vp thairof and dressing of the sam to haif twa hands
Ib. 428.
Vnderstanding that the new knok is maid reddie … [ordains] the greitt bell quhairvpoun it strikis to be rayset hiear
1599 M. Works Acc. VIII. 1 b.
To ane man that clayit the cace of the knok
1610 Carnegie Lett. & Chart. 342.
The king's knokmaker hes promesit to latt ws sie ane knok vith ane reweill matin
1611–2 Misc. Spald. C. V. 87.
For ane daill to fessin the hoill of the loft of the knok quhair the pases come downe
1619 Edinb. Test. L. 217.
My knok hingand in my chalmer
1638 Elphinstone Mun. 13/2.
Ane iron knok with paces abone the midyett
(b) 1504–5 Aberd. Trades 50.
Foure markis … for the kepin of thar comon horelege and knock
a1578 Pitsc. II. 305/15.
He vas keipit onburied in the stipill of Leith besyde the knock
1672 Aberd. B. Rec. IV. 278.
Patrick Kilgour, knockmacker [to deliver] … ane knock of brase about the bignes of ane hous knock, which sould be ane pendulum of the best forme, which sould goe aught days at once winding vp [etc.]
1681 Foulis Acc. Bk. 92.
To Andrew Broune for helping the knock & jack [£1/–/–]
1689 Watson's Coll. i. 19.
To put a knock upon our steeple, To shew the hours to country people
1694 Hist. Carnegies II. 265.
Hearing the knock strick, he asked if it was fyve
1701 Hawick Ann. 111.
For mending of the knocke, and putting her to chop again after she had stood dumb for 13 yeiris time
(c) 1574 Edinb. D. Guild Acc. 39.
For taking doune & mending of the knoik
1582 Ib. 125.
Ane lang leink to the knok iij s. … ane spair … to ane quhill of the knoik ij s. vj d.
1640 Bk. Carlaverok II. 503.
The caise of the cnoke
(d) 1653 Edinb. B. Rec. VIII. 328.
Mr. Mylls knoakmaker to tak doun, dight, mynd, and sett up the great knoak of the touns steiple
(e) 1614 Haddington B. Rec. (Robb) 24 Nov.
The auld knox bell brokein
pl. (a) 1576 Glasgow B. Rec. I. 55.
To mend the twa knokkis
1581–2 Misc. Spald. C. V. 54.
To Thomas Huntar, cutler, … for handling the knoks of the toun
1667–8 Glasgow Chart. II. 353.
To ane vther for attending the belles and knockes
(b) 1597 Elgin Rec. II. 56.
To agree … with ane man to cast the paisis of the knox
1625 Glasgow Burgesses 63.
Made burgess for the keeping of the twa ordinar knox
1666 Glasgow B. Rec. III. 68.
Anent the rouling of the knox in Briggait
(c) 1577–8 Misc. Spald. C. V. 114.
To the rewlar of the knokis
1632–3 Ib. 103.
Ane mutchkine oile oliue to the knokis

b. With defining words.Denoting certain makes or types, or with specific functions, or naming particular clocks.(1) 1627 Edinb. Test. LIV. 160 b.
Ane hous knoke
1691 Moray Test. I. 171.
An hous knock estimate to twenty four pounds
1640 Black Bk. Taymouth 350.
Ane chalmer knok
(2) 1638 Elphinstone Mun. 13/1.
[A] straiking knok to stand on ane table
1643 Edinb. Test. LX. 270 b.
Twa streking knokis
1645 Aberd. Sheriff Ct. III. 43.
A striking knok with the kes furnishit
1649 Wemyss Chart. 233.
My striking knouk for Jeain Linsay
(3) 1657 Edinb. Test. LXIX. 14.
Ane houre knok, ane lantrane
(4) 1679 Old Ross-shire I. 127.
[A] pendula knock belonging to Thos. Ogilvie in Elgine
1711 Ib. 130.
Ane pendili knock in the principle dyneing roome, £48
(5) 1595 Cart. S. Nich. Aberd. II. 395.
For the dichtin of the kirk knok
1597–8 Misc. Spald. C. V. 70.
For mending the quheillis and extre of the towbuithe knok
1618 Aberd. B. Rec. II. 358.
Inrespect the townis commoun knockis, to witt, the kirk knok, tolbuyth knok. and college knok, ar out of all … ordour
1621-40 Melville Commonpl. Bk. 31.
The Coledge Knoke
1657 Glasgow B. Rec. II. 535.
To Alexander Jafra for his gyding of Hutchesounes knok
For the guyding of the Hie Kirk knock
1667 Irvine Mun. II. 215.
To dress the toune knok for ane yeir

c. Of the knok(e, = o'clock. 1559 Misc. Wodrow Soc. 270.
Afoire none att ten houris of the knoke
a1578 Pitsc. II. 83/12.
Betuix foure or fyue houris of the knok

d. A winding mechanism, a windlass.
To mend the axtre of the knoke that wowndis up the wyndowsis.

2. Attrib. with bell, case (caice, keis), castell, cover, graith, pace, rent, string, stuill, tow, wheile.See also Knok-hous, -keper, etc., below. — 1669 Stirling Common Good 54 b.
For iron work to the knock bell and makeing the new hammer
1622 M. Works Acc. XVI. 13 b.
For ane pair of bandis to ane knok case in the abbay
1659–60 Peebles B. Rec. II. 200.
To William Hasilhope for making the knocke keis, £2. 10s. 0d.
1663 Kirkcudbr. Min. Bk. 157.
A going knock and knockcaice
1629 M. Works Acc. XXI. 31.
Ane cleik and ane cheinȝie ane ell lang for hinging vp of the knok castell in the chaippell
1693 Foulis Acc. Bk. 155.
To James Purdie till account for the knock cover
1587 Lanark B. Rec. 90.
Ane ald skin and half ane eln harn to dicht the knhok graith
1652 Stirling B. Rec. II. 318.
For 22 fodome of towes to the knoke paces
1629 Reg. Privy C. 2 Ser. III. 216.
Ane confirmatioun of the knocke rent to Leith
1653 Edinb. Test. LXVII. 9b.
Tuelf pair of knock stringes doubill estimat all to x lib.
1692 Foulis Acc. Bk. 145.
For knock strings
1599 M. Works Acc. (ed.) 316.
To big the heid of the wolt to set the Kingis knok stuill upon
1643 Edinb. Test. LX. 236 b.
Fyve stane of knok towes or stringes at xij s. the stane
1651–2 Peebles B. Rec. II. 193.
To John Horsburgh for the knok wheile [12/-]

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



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