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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 since then but may contain minor corrections and revisions.

Paper, Paiper, n. Also: papp-, paipp-, pep(p)-, peap-, peip-, peyp- and -a(i)r, -er(e, -eir, -ir, -yre; -ier, -yer; palpire. [ME. (1341–2) and e.m.E. papyr, -er, -ure, -ir, also paupire (c 1475), AF. papir, OF. papier.]

1. Paper, collectively.For further examples, see Lumbard a. b, quare, rime, schete and throuch.In, also into, paper, (written) on paper.Also, a specific make of paper, as designated by its watermark.(1) 1364 Coldingham Priory xliv.
In percameno et in j quaterno de paper emptis iiis. vjd.
1428 Ayr B. Ct. 121 a.
1456 Hay I. 244/20.
For a lettre of paper with a lytill wax
1462 Peebles B. Rec. I. 149.
Our Lady … payntyt on papar
a1500 Henr. Test. Cress. 575 (Ch.). a1499 Contempl. Sinn. 257 (Asl.).
Richt as the quhyte papere is redy to the prent Of … ymagrie [etc.]
1507 Treas. Acc. IV. 79.
For … gret papir for the Kingis doublat
1512 Ib. 347.
For bindin of it [a psalter] in breddis of papir with rubanis
a1585 Maitl. Q. xxxix. 74.
1584 Sempill Sat. P. xlv. 1009.
Not all the paper of this towne … May had the half that he hes done
1587 Carmichael Etym. 4.
Charta, papyre
Id. Prov. No. 1273.
Quhit wall is fuiles papyer
1670 Dumbarton B. Rec. 86.
Gray paper
1694 Household Bks. Gr. Baillie 257.(b) 1566–7 Treas. Acc. XII. 404.
1591 Crim. Trials I. ii. 252.
Inchantit mwildis … put in ane peice paipar
1596 Edinb. Test. XXIX. 323.
(c) 1607 Sc. Ant. XV. 141.
(d) 1615 Wedderb. Compt Bk. 255.
10 rym palpire
(e) 1534 Mill Mediæv. Plays 273.
1570 Cal. Sc. P. III. 529.
1587–8 Dundee Treas. Acc.
For peper and threid to mak cartagis
1641-8 Skipper's Acc. (Smettone) 2 b.
For 2 quhar of gune peper
Ib. 25 b.
For carkeight paper 2 li. 8 s.
1651–2 Peebles B. Rec. II. 192.
For skinnis and peper to knit up louse writtis
(f) 1503 Halyb. 271.
A reym of peyper
1600-1610 Melvill 418.
A quare of peiper of calumnies
(g) 1625–6 Peebles B. Rec. I. 414.
(h) 1666 Glasgow Chart. II. 87.
1688 Misc. Bann. C. III. 259.
Pamphletts stitcht up in peaper
1691 Sc. N. & Q. XII. 90.(2) 1496 Acta Conc. II. 19.
The pretendit assignacione writin in paper
1496–7 Ib. 49. 1528 Lynd. Dreme 598.
The quhilk Sanct Paule … Can nocht … in to paper wryte
1562 Prot. Bk. Gilbert Grote 52.
With ane testimoniall in paper
1604 Stirling Ant. III. 304. 1640 Fam. Innes 168.(3) 1579 Edinb. Test. VII. 285.
xxiij rym … of paper of the small hand … paper of the greit hand
1586 Ib. XVII. 28.
Tua rym paper of the pot
1611 Ib. XLVI. 340 b.
Sextene rym pott paipper at liij s. the rym … xlviij rym vnicorne paipper at xxx s. the rym
1685 Inverness Customs MS. 2 b.
4 reames coppe peper

2. A (piece of) paper, in the usual applications.In (3), freq. plur. without inflection. See also Paintit paper, s.v. Paintit ppl. a. 2(4).(1) 1546 Lynd. Trag. Card. 121.
Ane paper blank his grace I gart subscryue
1600-1610 Melvill 435.
And nocht stand at the durre geiffing in peapers of petitiones
1604-31 Craig i. 41.
This papyre then commends my loue to thee
1608 Wedderb. Compt Bk. 113.
He promesit to pay it agane … with a drawine pepper
1641 Acts V. 667/2. 1642 Orkney Rentals iii. 5.
Inventer of the wreatis and pepiers belonging to the bischoprick of Orknie
1650 Ib. VI. ii. 573/2.
The haill paperis … takin at the battell with James Graham
?c1675 J. Gordon Hist. I. App. xlix.
All such peapers as concern learning and literature
1665 Misc. Maitl. C. II. 524.
For transcryveing a paper in a fine hand
1670 Kirkcudbr. B. Rec. MS. 24 Dec.
Which … bands the … councell ordaines to be put in the tounes kist with the rest of the tounes paperis
1676 Douglas Corr. 278. 1681 Lauder Observes 40.
The papists put a number of papers containing treason, in a meal-tub, in a Presbyterian's house
c 1685 Annandale Corr. 315.
My tears which hes wett this papper soe ofen
1696 Cunningham Diary xxxvi. 1702 Conv. Burghs IV. 327.
Ther bookes, peapers and accompts
(2) 1564 St. A. Kirk S. 229.
Wyth ane papar abowt his head, contenyng wryttyn tharupon, Behald the contempnar
1575 Dunferm. B. Rec. II. 12. 1602 Crim. Trials II. 401. 1638 Reg. Privy C. 2 Ser. VII. 55. 1658 Dunferm. Ann. 331.
With a paper on her breast … to the example of uthirs of her fornication
1673 Kirkintilloch B. Ct. 48.(3) 1488 Treas. Acc. I. 81.
In a litill paper … ane vche with a diamant
1537 Acta Conc. & Sess. MS. IX. 157.
xxij paperis of gret prenis
1566 Treas. Acc. MS. 120.
xxiiij paper of prenis
1593 Wedderb. Compt Bk. 79.
[Cloth] in 18 peperis packit
1597 Edinb. Test. XXX. 162.
xxvij paper small steill buttounes
1606 Brechin Test. XLI. 259 b.
Ten paipper Spanes neidillis at xxxv s. the paipper
1617 Edinb. Test. XLIX. 267.
Halff ane paipper of huid preines
1618 Edinb. Test. L. 62 b.
Nyne paipper halff pepper Spainȝe neiddillis at xxiii s. the paipper
1621 J. Bell in Glasgow Herald (1864) 25 June.
20 paper neidills
1653 Edinb. Test. LXVII. 10.
xxv paipers of steill huicks

3. Attrib. and comb.With -buke (= notebook; e.m.E. -booke, 1548), -miln (e.m.E., 1498), also -doublet, -maker, meyttour (= mitre) (see Myter n. 3 for examples), etc.(1) 1551 Treas. Acc. X. 22.
For ane paper buke to be ane register for my lord governouris evidentes
1554 Ib. 228. 1579 Misc. Bann. C. II. 197.
Thrie fyue quair papir bukes
1613–4 Glasg. Univ. Mun. III. 565. 1623–4 Peebles B. Rec. I. 412. 1675 Stirling Common Good MS. 91.
For thrie peaper books for vpfilling the registers
(2) 1592 Glasgow Prot. XI. 4.
Molendinum papiratum [commonly called] paper mylne
1592 Mining Rec. 81. 1594 Bk. Old Edinb. C. XXV. 56.
The west mylne of Dalry … quhilk is presentlie a paper mylne with the dam wattergang … and all uther commoditeis
1695 Ib. 65.(3) 1590 Reg. Privy S. in Bk. Old Edinb. C. XXV. 53.
Pietter Gryther and Michaell Kysar, almanis paper makeris [appointed paper-makers to the King for nineteen years]
1594 Bk. Old Edinb. C. XXV. 57.
Partineris of the work of the said paper making
1600 Black Bk. Taymouth 337.
Ane papir doublet
1699 Fountainhall Decis. II. 55.

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"Paper n.". Dictionary of the Scots Language. 2004. Scottish Language Dictionaries Ltd. Accessed 20 May 2024 <>



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