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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.

Lace, n. Also: lase, las(se; laice, layce, lais(e, lays; les(e, leesse; leace, leas(e. [ME. lace, las (a 1300), OF. laz, las.]

1. A noose or snare. Only fig.In feyndis, luffis or one's lace; in lace, in captivity or bondage.(1) a1400 Leg. S. xxi. 725.
Hyre man … That was sa fast in feyndis lase
(2) ?1438 Alex. ii. 10.
Candas, the fair of face, That had him lukkin in luffis lace
1513 Doug. i. x. 33.
I ombethynk me of a trane, This queyn first forto cawch in luffis lace
1560 Rolland Seven S. 8840.
For a sicht that he saw of ȝour face, He is sa fast lynkit in lufis lace [etc.]
(3) 1513 Doug. viii. Prol. 28.
Lufferis langis only to lok in thar lace Thir ladeis lufly
c1590 Fowler I. 52/124.
With his plesant gracious words than snared in his lace
(4) c1530-40 Stewart Bann. MS. 252 b/44.
Gif I sowld for ane woman's saik My lyfe thus leid in lais [: clais]
c1590 Fowler I. 48/38.
Yit hes ane abiect woman him of Pulia led in lace

2. A cord or string. c1420 Wynt. iv. 1231.
A Romane sawe a Frankys man Abowt his hals thare hawe than, Off gold thrawyn, all lyk a les [: purches; v.rr. las(s)e]
Ib. 1242.
This Roman … Tyt away that goldyn las [: place; W. lais]
1513 Doug. xii. x. 122.
At ane hie balk teyt vp scho has With a lowp knot a stark cord or a las [v.rr. lace, les], Quharwith hir self scho spilt
1576 Digest Justiciary Proc. I. 25.
Thome … layit doune to hir ane grene silkin laise … and bad hir … knit it about the left arme
a1605 Montg. Ch. & Slae 115 (Wr.).
His quaver by his naked thyes Hang in a silver lace
1630 Orkney Bp. Ct. 74.
The fornemitt persounes … vnmercifullie skourgit … the said Edward with leaches, leasis and beltis

3. a. A lace or cord for lacing up articles of clothing and the like (as shoes, a woman's bodice, etc.).? Also cod-lase, Cod n. 4.(a) 1496 Treas. Acc. I. 259.
Bocht ij vnce of rubanis to be poyntis and lasis … Item, for horning of the samyne
1562 Ib. XI. 203.
viij silk lasis witht thair hornis
1672 Edinb. Test. LXXIV. 203.
Some brokine galloune knittens luping and laces
(b) a1400 Leg. S. xxxvi. 1208.
He To quham I ame nocht worthi loute, Na of his schone the laise tak oute
1474 Treas. Acc. I. 27.
To by laicis to the sleifis of the Kingis doublatis
1491 Ib. 190.
To be laycis
1500 Ib. II. 40.
For vj elne of braid ribanis to be ane lais to the lady
1511 Ib. IV. 230.
For laissis to thaim [a kirtle and lining]
a1568 Scott iv. 44.
It settis not madynis als To latt men lowis thair laice
1572 Sat. P. xxxiii. 25.
My sleifis wer of to borrow and len glaidlie; My lais and mailȝeis of trew permanence
1576 Crim. Trials I. ii. 51.
Ane blak bonet … with silkin laissis drawin throw the lippis thairof
1602 Tailors Acc. Bk. 23.
For ane blew lais to ȝour ladyschip wyllicot & bodyis xl s.
1619 Edinb. Test. L. 256.
Ane cloik with tua braid lais
1666 Edinb. B. Rec. X. 10.
The skinners … [had] poynts ribbens laices lowpping and such lyk … being poynts and practiques of their trade peculiarlie belonging to them
1689 Foulis Acc. Bk. 115.
For a silk louping to be a lace to my uife
(c) 1603 Montgomery Mem. 247.
For tweleue llesis to my goun, xij d.
1627 Orkney & Zetl. Test. I. 170.
Thrie dossone leasis and tua dossone pointis
1695 Soc. Ant. II. 234.
[Funeral expenses.] For 2 dozen of leases tay the brew peaces and theans, 4s.

b. A hair-ribbon. See also Hede-lace n. 1506 Treas. Acc. III. 115.
For ane unce ribanes to hir hede lases, v s.
15.. Clar. iii. 774.
Hir bricht hairis wyde wavelling out of lace
Ib. v. 2074.
Whill … lustie Venus … let hir goldin traces out of leace
1678 Cunningham Diary 105.
For a brow lace to my sister Rebecca

c. A necklace. See Nek-lace n.

4. Lace or braid for trimming garments. coll. or plur.(1) 1613 Crim. Trials III. 244.
[He] buirdit ane Yarmouth bark, and tuik furth thairof … the skipperis cloik, and ane stand of apparell, laid over with siluer laise
1628 Edinb. Test. LIV. 293 b.
xxiiij pund silk laise and gallones at xx li. the pund wecht
1633 Cochran-Patrick Coinage II. 97.
These waires of gold and silver laice are brocht from France for the most pairt
1636 Sutherland Corr. 168.
Faill not send me … sillwer leas and buttons to serw it [a riding coat]
1638 Rep. Elphinstone Mun. 26.
Broun veluote breikes thik wrocht our with silk lese
One coitt of blak veluote, ...  ane double vennes caff witht tua lefe [? read lese] on all seames and poyntis about the west
1640 Black Bk. Taymouth 349.
Ane greine London cloath bed pasmentit with greine and orange silk laice
1647 Acts VI. i. 727/2.
For all sortis of … ribbens pearling leace and posmantis of silk silver gold worsett or threid … imported for sale
Ib. 794/2.
John Huntar Englishman silver and gold lais drawer and worker in the Cannogait
1674 Fraser P. 258.
Four greine velvat cots … layed with small silver lease for footmen
1679 Old Ross-shire I. 127.
A reid bead with silk leis on it, £10, ane blew curtein bed with leis or freinsch
(2) 1671 Reg. Privy C. 3 Ser. III. 405.
All maner of ribbens, gallownes, … and liverie laces
1695 Acts IX. 460/1.
On all silver and gold fringes, silver and gold laces, gallounes and embroideries imported

5. Lace, the ornamental open-work fabric. 1672 Acts VIII. 72/1.
That none wear … any white lace or point maid of threid … excepting [noblemen]
1674 Sc. Ant. I. 179.
A thrid leace 8 d., … whit leace at the fair 1 lib. 16/-

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"Lace n.". Dictionary of the Scots Language. 2004. Scottish Language Dictionaries Ltd. Accessed 24 Jul 2024 <>



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