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

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First published 1983 (DOST Vol. V).
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Opinioun(e, Oppinioun(e, n. Also: op(p)inn-, op(p)yn(n-, op(p)en-, op(p)un-, op(p)on-; apown-, apen-, apin- and -ion(e, -ioun(n, -iown(e, -yo(u)n(e, -yown(e, -yeon(e, -iyone; -ȝo(u)n(e, -ȝeo(u)n(e, -ȝowne; also Punȝoun n. [ME. and e.m.E. opinion (Cursor M.), opynyoun etc., openion (483), oppynyon (Caxton), F. opinion (12–13th c. in Hatz.-Darm.), L. opīnio.]

1. An opinion, view or belief held by one or more persons. a1400 Leg. S. ix. 305.
To tak opinioun, to conclude, suppose, imagine. (1) Bot syndry opynione Sere men has of his passione
c1400 Troy-bk. i. 483.
Gentillis … Opynioun held of Medea That scho [etc.]
14.. Acts I. 377/2.
c1420 Wynt. i. 74.
1456 Hay I. 142/20, 26. Ib. 145/4; etc.
To the quhilk question sais ane opynioun that [etc.] … Bot an othir opynioun haldis that [etc.]
Ib. II. 24/8.
A false knycht that … dois nocht the bidding of his prince and is contrarius till his biddingis and opyniouns
1490 Irland Mir. MS. 357 b.
I was … in thi ȝoutheid in a part eftir my opinioun lufit with thi hienes
Ib. (ed.) I. 31/3. a1500 Bk. Chess 87.
Bot quha sa sayis in thair opinioun This sport was maid in seging … Of Troye … he goith mys
a1500 Seven S. 2719. 1513 Doug. x. ii. 100.
1533 Bell. Livy I. 183/24, 25.
This opinioun [v.r. oppinȝeoun] is mare autentik than is the opinioun [v.r. oppinȝeoun] of Piso historiciane
1544 Corr. M. Lorraine 92.
1549 Compl. 31/16.
The peruerst opinions of inuyful calumniaturis
c1552 Lynd. Mon. 673.
Thare logick and thare heych opinionis
Ib. 1731. 1558 Q. Kennedy Tractive 144.
Man is … puniste … for dissobedience and the indurit opinioun quhilk he consavis thairefter
Ib. 100. Id. Compendious Ressonyng (ed.) 171/8.
This grit variance of opinioun quhilk is rissyn laitlie amangis Christin men for maters of the fayth
1562-3 Winȝet I. 133/25.
To ȝour priuat opinioun
1564 Knox II. 425. 1563-1570 Buch. Wr. 34. c1590 Fowler II. 141/24. 1590-1 R. Bruce Serm. 63.
Sa they count faith … ane fantasie and opinion
1596 Dalr. I. 95/6. Ib. 207/8. 1632 Aberd. Council Lett. I. 370.
My lord advocatt and Mr Thomas Nicolsone are not in the opinione that [etc.]
(b) a1400 Leg. S. xxi. 645.
Bot opunyonys ware sere Quhethyr [etc.]
c1420 Ratis R. 1770.
14.. Reg. Maj. c. 48.
Efter the opunione of sum mene he may be distrenȝeit
a1500 Lanc. 172.
c1500-c1512 Dunb. lxxv. 55.
I am applyit to ȝour opunȝoun [B. opinȝoun]
(c) c1420 Wynt. i. 327.
Sum men haldys oppynnyown That [etc.]
Ib. ii. 835.
Oppynnyownys [C. oppynyonys]
1631 Annandale Corr. 284.
A oppiniowne that ye … hath newir … contentment of my companei
(d) c1420 Wynt. i. 1490 (C).
Awtouris seyr in thar storice Opponyonys [R. Oppynnyownys] haldis on syndry wyse
1528 Douglas Corr. 131.
And perseverand in thare malyce and wrangous oppunȝeon
(e) a1605 Montg. Ch. & Slae 800 (L).
He culd nocht luik … That all openyonis sperit
1667 Boyd Fam. P. No. 284 (29 Dec.).
To do anything contrarie my own openioun not agreabel to lau and resoun
(f) 1479 Newburgh B. Ct. 42 a.
Al the comunis that helde apone that apownȝowne
1521 Douglas Corr. 79.
In quhome be oure apiniounes standis the surety of oure souerane lorde
(2) 1558-66 Knox II. 60.
Persaiving that the Frensche maid na persute without thair wallis they tuik oppinioun that they wald never ishe mair

b. Vulgar or common opinion. 1494 Loutfut MS. 33 b.
Eftir the opinion wlgair he [the tench] hantez [etc.]
a1538 Abell 6 a.
And … he … slew hir eftir the common opunȝone
1611-57 Mure Misc. P. xiv. Title.
Ane epitaph (efter the vulgar opinioune) wpon the death of George Glaidstanes

c. A religious belief, tenet or persuasion; freq., one condemned as false, heretical, novel or wicked.(1) c1420 Wynt. v. 3357.
For hys oppynnyown the clergy Gert hym be sowmownd
1456 Hay I. 18/7, 19, 24. 1490 Irland Mir. I. 64/4; etc. c1520-c1535 Nisbet I. 7.
1535 Stewart 59253.
Apenionis that aror did contene
1544 Reg. Privy S. III. 125/2.
Thame that … haldis oppunyeonis … forbiddin be the saidis actis
1550 Ib. IV. 153/1.
For his … pertinessite in halding of oppynionis concerning the faith
1562-3 Winȝet II. 73/11. Ib. 26/24.
Euery man efter his consait consauis sindry opinionis and errouris
1596 Dalr. I. 227/19.
Leiueing thair opinione, mony … conioyned thame selfes to the … kirkes
?c1675 J. Gordon Hist. II. 8.
The reasone and fundatione of ther opinione they laye, because such a preiveleidge … belonges to the Churche
(2) 1456 Hay I. 168/27. Ib. 31/8.
That gif a man deis in a wrangwis caus manetenand a fals opynioun
c1515 Asl. MS. I. 325/7.
Fals opinionis of Gentilis
1525 Acts II. 295/1.
The dampnable opunȝeounis of heresy ar spred in diuers cuntreis be the heretik Luther
1540 Lynd. Sat. 1133.
Ȝour new opiniones
1543–4 Corr. M. Lorraine 69.
Thir new oppynyonis
1544 Reg. Cupar A. II. 31.
Ony oppinniones of heresijs
c 1545 St. A. Univ. Rec. xxi.
Incressinge of hereces and strangis opinionis amangis the commone pepill
1558-66 Knox I. 150.
Heresye is a fals opinioun … clearly repugning to the word of God
1558 Treas. Acc. X. 370.
For disputting upoun erronius opinionis
1558 Q. Kennedy Tractive 112.
Men gevin to wickit opinioun
Id. Breif Tract. (ed.) , etc. Id. Compendious Ressonyng (ed.) 150/20.
The wickit opinioun aganis the mes
1573 Davidson Sat. P. xli. 46. 1580 Facs. Nat. MSS. III. lxx.
Uith the superstitious opinion joyned therewith

d. A person's or a party's political view or position as shared by his or their partisans or adherents.The cause or interest of, or that espoused by, one party or faction in opposition to another.Common in this sense in Bell. Boece. 1515 Reg. Privy S. I. 405/2.
And … to all his kyn … that abidis faithfully at the opinnioun of the said governour
1531 Bell. Boece (M) I. 28.
Thir pepill … war devidit in two opiniouns, betuix quhom was ithand battallis
Ib. II. 170.
The Murrayis gaderit to thair opinioun the inhabitantis of Ros [etc.]
Ib. 227.
He wes slayn with vm men of his opinioun be [etc.]
Ib. 270.
Philip Mowbraye, Scottis man howbeit he followitt that tyme the opinioun [L. partes] of Inglismen
Ib. I. 104, etc. 1547 Treas. Acc. IX. 110.
Ane proclamatioun of the Protectour of Inglandis … to seduce the harttis of the pepill to his openyoun
c1552 Lynd. Mon. 884. a1578 Pitsc. I. 15/25.
Ane wther factioun to quhais opinioun Queine Mother with mony of the nobillis assisted werray trewlie

2. A considered view expressed as advice or judgement; a counsel, proposal or recommendation. 1456 Hay II. 148/15.
Quhen thou askis at thy counsailouris thair opyniounis
Ib. 152/33.
Ȝit june … thy counsale with the opynioun of thy counsailouris
c1475 Wall. iii. 332.
‘I giff consell … Tak pes a quhill … ’ So said Adam … And Kneland als grantyt to thar opynyoun
1526 Douglas Corr. 342.
1530 Acta Conc. Publ. Aff. 350.
That thai be sworne nocht to revele the oppunȝeouns and argumentis of the lordis havand votis
1532 Acts Sederunt i. 4.
1540 Lynd. Sat. 3614. 1549 Compl. 99/27.
Til hef his opinione and consel quhou thai suld vse them
1560 Cal. Sc. P. I. 546.
1560 Rolland Seven S. 8060. 1562-3 Winȝet I. 66/10.
To ansuer till ws in writt ȝour opinioun and auctoritie thairfor concerning the articlis subsequent
a1578 Pitsc. I. 267/17.
My lordis ȝe desyre my oppinioun [etc.]
1578 Conv. Burghs I. 59.
That the conseruatour … give his opinioun befoir definitive be givin out
? 1614 Melrose P. 158. 1627 Rep. Parishes 43.
Oure judgement and oppinioun concerneing the articles proponit wnto ws
1638 Rec. Kirk Scotl. 60.

3. a. One's opinion of the worth of a person or thing; (favourable or unfavourable) estimation; esteem. a1400 Leg. S. xx. 9.
Sume men gud opunyone Has … Quhat man he was
1533 Boece vii. i. 220 b.
That the pepill mycht haue ane consate and opinioun of his nobilite, he gaif him to be manerlie
1551 Corr. M. Lorraine 345.
That the King … sulde have … the better oppenyon in him
1554–5 Ib. 395.
That the Quyneis grace hes ane ewyll opponȝeone of my serwice touerts hyr grace
a1570-86 Maitland Maitl. F. cv. 5.
To gar the peple ewill opinioun taik Off thame [etc.]
a1597-1617 Hist. Jas. VI 89.
The lords … having a gude opinioun of thair manhode, thoght gude [etc.]

b. The opinion held of one by others, one's reputation or credit. a1500 Henr. Test. Cress. 557.
Of all wemen protectour and defence Thou was and helpit thair opinioun
1513 Doug. iv. Prol. 155.
Haldand opynyon deyr of a boryt beyn

c. ? One's belief in the importance of something; or ? expectation, apprehension. 1568 Skeyne Descr. Pest 27.
Quhay ar constrynit to visie infectit be pest, first of all most remoue the opinione of dethe bot not the dredour of God

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"Opinioun n.". Dictionary of the Scots Language. 2004. Scottish Language Dictionaries Ltd. Accessed 28 Sep 2023 <>



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