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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.

Law-day, n. [ME. and e.m.E. law-day, laweday, ME. laghe-daye (1331), lauedaue, laghedaghe (1235–52).]

A day on which courts of law may lawfully be held or judicial acts carried out; hence, one on which the courts are in session. Chiefly plur., = one of the periods when this is so.(1) plur. 1444 Aberd. B. Rec. I. 399.
The ballȝeis putt the caws in delay … till the law dayis eftir Michelmes
1470 Prestwick B. Rec. 19.
At the law dais next efftir Pasche, haldin at the curt of the samyne
c1475 Wall. i. 275.
A gret dyttay for Scottis thai ordand than; Be the lawdayis in Dunde set ane ayr
1492 Edinb. B. Rec. I. 62.
At the first law dayes after Pasche
1498 Lanark B. Rec. 10.
The breif raisyt be John Yong continewit to the law dayis efter Michaelmes
1534 Acta Conc. & Sess. MS. VI. 119 b.
The said James Sinclar to compeir … befor the said … counsale … all the law dais fra the x day of September nixt to cum to the xxvj day of October nixt thaireftir
1551–2 Prot. Bk. W. Corbet (S.R.S.) 19.
[The said David Oswald shall contract and marry the said Alison's eldest daughter] als sone as law-dayis cumis
1609 Skene Reg. Maj. i. 100.
And gif he [the soitour] aucht bot thrie soyts he sall appeare bot at the thrie heid courts of the ȝeare, that is to say, the law dayes after Michaelmas, the law dayes after Ȝule, and the law dayes after Pasche
(2) sing. 1532–3 Bk. Dunvegan I. 69.
The heide sheriff court of Invernes holden … the xiiii day of Januar beand the law day nixt efter Hilary
1573 Edinb. B. Rec. IV. 4.
Quha that enteris nocht to satifie the gude toun … to be callit the nixt law day to heir thame be decernit to haue tynt thair rycht of the saidis aikerris

b. Such a day or (plur.) period of days appointed for trial of a cause or as a date of hearing. (Cf. day of law, Law n. 5 a.)(1) plur. 1434 Ayr B. Ct. 19 Apr.
The qwilk day the said Maky aperit and askit his law dais
Ib. 19 July.
Saule Kenedy forspeker to the said Thom fand a borht that he aht to hafe his law dayis
(2) sing. 1410–11 Reg. Episc. Brechin I. 30.
We assignit til the partieis the law day and hed court nixt eftir Michelmes nixt to cum
1505 Mill Mediæv. Plays 136.
The … bailȝes assignit the law day eftir Ȝouyll nixt … to the personis that the Abbot of Bonacord was plantuis one

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"Law-day n.". Dictionary of the Scots Language. 2004. Scottish Language Dictionaries Ltd. Accessed 16 Jul 2024 <>



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