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

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First published 1983 (DOST Vol. V).
This entry has not been updated but may contain minor corrections and revisions.

Paint, Paynt, Pant, v. Also: paynit, pent, pynt. P.p. also panetit; paint, (paynitt). [ME. peyntien (c 1290), peynte(n (Chaucer), paynt, paint (14th c.), pente (14–15th c.), p.p. ipeint (a 1250), ypeint (c 1290), peynt, paint, paynt (Cursor M.), peynt-, peinted (14th c.), y)paynted, e.m.E. paint, paynt, etc., also poynt (1517), OF. peindre, p.p. peint.The ME. (and OSc.) pres. t. is appar. an analogous back-formation from the p.p.]

To paint.

1. tr. To depict or portray on a surface by means of colour and lines; also, to delineate or inscribe on a surface.(a) (a) a1400 Leg. S. xi. 69 (see Paintour n. (a)). c1460 Alex. (Taym.) 7408.
Ane payntoure … To paynt his fessoune and his phisynomie With all the portrature of his body
c1500 Rowll Cursing 209 (B).
To leir to paynt portour or blasoun Thair forme
1531 Bell. Boece II. 89.
He inhibite to paint or graif the signe of the croce on ony pament of kirkis
Ib. 461.
That he commandit ane paintour to cum in Scotland to paint hir visage to the quik
Ib. (M) II. 346 (see Paintour n. 1 (c)). c1552 Lynd. Mon. 1848.
Att that tyme thare wes none vsage To carue nor for to paynt image
1560 Rolland Seven S. 408.
We sal gar paynt vpon the wallis about The seuin science
1596 Dalr. I. 225/21.(c) a1400 Leg. S. vii. 816.
Al the feld … Full of fare croycis cane appere As thai be crafte wele payntyt were
Ib. xli. 384. c1420 Wynt. viii. 1801. 1456 Hay I. 41/1.
And ȝit this story is payntit in mony placis and namely in publik placis in marbir stane
c1475 Wall. x. 822.
A flud he beris apon his cot armour Ay drownand folk so payntyt in figour
1549 Compl. 148/4.
The armys that … is payntit on ȝour vallis & in ȝour glasyn vindois
1561 Reg. Privy C. I. 174.
Quhilkis markis nor descriptioun of the fassioun and forme thairof is on na wyise specifiit, discrevit nor payntit in nor upoun the said libell as aucht to have bene
1574 Glasgow B. Rec. I. 32.
Ane brod payntit vpone the samyn the image of Oure Lady
a1578 Pitsc. II. 163/27.
And [they] caussit put away the ten commandementis and the Lordis prayer quhilk was painttit on the wallis and caist dirtt wpoun thame
15.. Clar. v. 88.
Monie ane fals woman thair [on a tapestry] wes paint [:faint]
(b) (c 1580) Alex. ii. 7466.
All this [the story of Troy] halely was pantyt thare
1513 Treas. Acc. IV. 477.
For xxiiij ellis lynnyng to lit blew for the heid of the standert to pant Sanct Androis cors
1585 Cart. S. Nich. Aberd. II. 387.
For berin the tymmer to be Jon Melvill skaffelin quhen he pantit the beleue in the kirk
1665 Lauder Jrnl. 27.
On the cielery we have panted Thetis dipping hir sone Achilles in the ocean
(c) 1679 Rothesay B. Rec. 374.
For the broad quheron the armes be pynted

b. transf. — 1513 Doug. xii. Prol. 71.
Towris turettis … Stude payntit … Apon the plane grund by thar awyn vmbrage

c. fig. To depict in words; to describe or relate vividly; to set forth as if in a picture. Also absol.Freq. to paint furth or out.(1) 1549 Compl. 32/31.
Plato [etc.] … hes hed grite defferens ande contentione to paynt ande discriue the origyne ande propriete of the varld
a1570-86 Maitland Maitl. F. c. 38.
Quhat is scho this can paynt sa fair ane taile [etc.]
absol. 1513 Doug. i. Prol. 327.
Euery vertu … This ornate poet … Payntand discryvis in person of Eneas
(2) a1500 Henr. Fab. 1103 (Ch.).
The doctouris of deuyne That … full weill can … paynt thair mater furth be poetry
1572-5 Diurn. Occurr. 280.
Ane orisoune in the quhilk he pantit furth … the great buntifulnes [etc.] … schawin … be the Quene of Ingland
(3) 1581-1623 James VI Poems I. 76/12.
Vse vocabula artis quhairby ȝe may the mair viuelie represent that persoun quhais pairt ȝe paint out
1596 Dalr. i. 96/22.
In thir things we war the langer that the cleirlier we mycht paynt thame out
1600-1610 Melvill 274.
This way fangit in the net of these craftie hountars (wharin the partis of all I could pent out particularlie giff my purpose permitted)
a1651 Calderwood V. 667.
I have continued … to paint out everie one of you … in youre owne colours

d. To depict, portray, represent, as being what a complement specifies. e. With furth: To give (persons) the appearance of being (to be), to portray them as, what is specified.d. a1400 Leg. S. xiii. Prol. 48.
& ȝet the fowre [evangelists] here a-towre Ar payntit with facis fowre
c1530-40 Stewart Bann. MS. 89 a/29.
Na surrigiane may cure thame [hands] … Bot thow thame oppin payntit as a port And frely gife sic gudis as God thé send
1568 Cal. Sc. P. II. 452.
Why should princes ears be stoppid seeing they ar payntid so long?
e. 1558-66 Knox IV. 374.
Nature, I say, doth paynt them furthe to be weake, fraile, impacient, feble and foolishe

2. To display or present (an assumed or specious appearance). c1500-c1512 Dunb. lx. 50.
Panting ane prelottis countenance

3. In passive, of the thing on which a picture etc. is painted, drawn or otherwise imposed: To be adorned with (the picture etc.). 1509 (c 1580) Edinb. B. Rec. I. 122.
That thair baneris … be paynitt [sic in pr.] with the imagis figuris and armis of the webstaris

4. tr. To colour the surface of (a thing) with a wash or with paint; to decorate by painting; to adorn with colours.Also, to cause this to be done. ?1438 Alex. ii. 2036.
The chalmer of quhilk the wall Of gold clenely was pantit all With siluer als and with asour [etc.]
c1450-2 Howlat 670 (A).
Till a palace of pryce … Pantit and apparalit proudly in pane
a1500 Gol. & Gaw. 65. a1500 K. Hart 333.
Ane wysar that wes payntit for the sicht As ruby reid and pairt of quhyt amang
Ib. 128. 1533 Bell. Livy I. 48/14.
He … gaif to thame abulȝementis payntit in maner of cote armouris
1535 Stewart 12687.
Mony pynsall panetit wes full proude
1554 Edinb. B. Rec. II. 194.
Quhen the said Dauid wes payntand the said Maister James hous [etc.]
1555–6 Ib. 367.
Coft viij laid lyme to paint Sanct Marye chapell
1581 Sat. P. xliv. 208.
Ger paint thair baigis: to Geneue haist vith speid
1628 Misc. Maitl. C. III. 373.
That the jeistis be all weill paintit
1659 Glasgow B. Rec. II. 428.
Licence … to wash and pynt houssis
1686 Banff Ann. I. 163.
Sir George Gordon … is to cile and pent the upper inner room of the tolbuith at his cost

b. absol. Of a painter: To carry out work of this kind. 1537–8 M. Works Acc. (ed.) I. 215.
To Patrik Pow paintour for xi wolkis … wirkand and paintend hawand wolkle ix s.

c. transf. To colour or stain by any means. — 1549 Compl. 14/33.
The defluxione of blude hed payntit ande cullourt all the feildis

5. reflex. To ‘paint’ or put colour on one's face, cosmetically. a1400 Leg. S. xxxiv. 99.
For scho has set hale hyr wil Hyr lufaris here til enples til & fore that cause hyr payntis
c1420 Ratis R. 1295.
Sum … Wyll pres thaim prewaly to paynt [: playnt]

6. tr. To adorn, decorate, deck, beautify, variegate (with something coloured or bright) . a1400 Leg. S. xxviii. 316.
Hewynis King That … with mony sternis sere Payntyt the lyft
?1438 Alex. ii. 7923.
In the hall … That with grene iasp all pantit was
a1500 Henr. Fab. 1657 (Bann.). a1500 Rauf C. 664.
The hall was … paintit but peir Dyamountis full dantely dentit betwene
c1500-c1512 Dunb. Tua Mar. W. 379 (Ch. & M.).
And [he] payntit me as pako proudest of fedderis
1533 Gau 16/17.
Thay that payntis thair body with precious clais or siluer or gold precious stenis … thay sine

7. fig. a. To adorn excessively or meretriciously or with a view to deception; to ‘colour’ highly. 1562-3 Winȝet II. 64/16.
Thow may se an infinit of exemplis na quair almaist omittit quhilk is nocht feinȝetlie pyntit and colorit with the sentenceis of the New or Auld Testament
a1568 Bann. MS. 213 a/13.
Paynit nocht thy wirdis se that thow be nocht nis Speik nocht in termis of clergy
1573 Tyrie in Cath. Tr. (S.T.S.) 3/4.
Wordes craftelie paintit and coloret … to impesche … men of gude ingyne … to cum to the vnderstanding of the veritie

b. To ‘colour’ or ‘gloss’ over something discreditable with something superficially creditable, to ‘veneer’. — a1568 Weddirburne Bann. MS. 260 a/5.
Hir toung was wonder sle With … inconstance payntit with steidfastnes

c. absol. or intr. To ‘gloss’, to pretend or deceive. — 1632 Lithgow Trav. (1906) 422.
You leye, you paint, you faine

8. To apply (a particular colouring) to (on) something. c1590 J. Stewart 49/47.
Lyk vermell paintit on the iwore bone

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



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