Show Search Results Show Browse

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

Hide Quotations Hide Etymology

Abbreviations Cite this entry

About this entry:
First published 2001 (DOST Vol. IX).

Special(l)y, -ie, adv. Also: spec(c)-, spet-, speac- and -ial(l)y(e, -ial(l)i(e, -yal(l)y, -ielie, -ealy, -ealie, -aly, -allie, -illie, speccllie, speischailly, (speceabille). [ME and e.m.E. specialliche (1297), specially (13 … ), speciali (Manning), specialy (1340), spesyaly (c1450), specyally (Caxton), speciallye (1548-9), speciallie (1590); Special adj. Cf. L. speciāliter, OF specialment (c1120), spécialement (13th c., both in Larousse).]

1. Exceptionally, in a special manner; to an extent beyond what is usual. 1375 Barb. iv 467.
The king … speryt syne specially [C. full specialy] Gyff ony man couth tell tithand Off [etc.]
1375 Barb. xvi 11.
He … him chargyt to the king To pray him specialli that [etc.]
a1400 Leg. S. xxviii 11.
& it [sc. the pearl] awalȝes specyaly Gyfine in met agayn mysalry
?1438 Alex. ii 1788.
‘I hope thow lufis specially’. ‘Ȝe say suth,' said Ideas, ‘Better than all on erd that gais’
c1420 Wynt. ii 154.
He [sc. Abraham] lewyt all tym wertusly, And God hym blyssyd specyally
c1420 Wynt. ix 2920.
Specialy This Erle of Mare wes tretit thare As of houshald famyliare
c1450-2 Howlat 877 (B).
Ȝe salbe specialye sped or I mair spell
1456 Hay I 218/13.
All realmes suld be subject to the empire, bot gif thai be specially privilegit be emperouris power hafand
1490 Irland Mir. I 24/16.
Thocht he gowerne all creaturis, ȝit the laif he gouernis generaly as seruaundis and ws specialy as his propir childer and sonnis and infantis
1567 Sel. MSS Q. Mary 177.
We mon tak the best of it, and sa … mon all that luffis us, of quhilk nowmer we have evir thoucht and yit dois specially esteme you

2. Especially, particularly; more than other people or things, above all; principally.(1) ?1438 Alex. ii 10746.
Becummis my men now specially! Of me now sall ȝe hald ȝour feis
c1420 Wynt. vi 163.
A wykkyd wyff had he, that lyvyd in till adultery, And had a lemman specyally
1456 Hay II 65/13.
That all princis, lordis, and knychtis specialy, suld [etc.]
1456 Hay II 89/11.
That he speke wele avisitly till his awin peple specialy, and syne till all otheris
c1460 Regim. Princ. 281 (Maitl.).
Our althing I pray thé specialie … remorde and graip thy conscience
1479 Dunferm. B. Rec. I 307.
I … bindis speciali aboyne all the laif of my landis a land liand in vest part of the forsad Maygate
a1508 Kennedy Pass. Christ 1570.
Syn [to] Thomas, quhilk wes herdest in trouth, Crist his sermone directit specialie
1527–8 Selkirk B. Ct. (ed.) 93.
We ordand na man that is unfre specealie to by fleich nor feiche … mair na to susten thairself and housuald [etc.]
1562-3 Winȝet I 37/4.
We first soundit the trompet of Godis Word twiching this purpose in thre questions specialie, amangis mony ma proponit to Johne Knox and his brether
a1568 Bann. MS 212b/50.
To luve … is bot naturall Till all mankynd in ȝoutheid specialie
1596 Dalr. II 387/21.
A comete quhilk speciallie [L. potissimum] did insinuat our ile, as all man beleiuet
1598 James VI Basil. Doron 110/10.
Præferre speciallie to youre seruice, samonie as treulie haue seruid me & are able for it
(2) 1375 Barb. iv 641.
I sall ȝow schaw Off ȝour fortoun a gret party, Bot our all specially … Quhat end that ȝour purpos sall ta
1405 Slater Early Sc. Texts No. 58.
The qwilk ȝour hee excellence wil … gif heryng to … as thar is cause of resoun & specialy in this case syne it twichis the kyrke
c1420 Wynt. vii 3554.
Off Frawns thare come rycht mony, … and specyally Thai ware tretyd wyth plesawns
1456 Hay II 55/32.
Force is a grete vertu in all noble actis, and specialy agayn the vii dedely synnis
1491 Cart. S. Nich. Aberd. I 256. 1518 Glenartney Doc.
How ye sal punis sic trespasouris and specealy commone stalkaris and huntaris
1543–4 Corr. M. Lorraine 69.
Ye suld nocht mell yow wyth na brokyn men and specyally wyth tham that faworyt the cast of Yngland
c1552 Lynd. Mon. 5476.
1551 Hamilton Cat. 200.
The fift gift … is cunning or knawlege to leif a gud lyfe at all tymes, bot specially in the middis of ane evil natioun
1598 James VI Basil. Doron 34/7.
Looke the histories of Genesis [etc.] … but speciallie the bookes of the Kings & Chronikles
1607 Acts IV 379/2.
For repressing of the insolence of the barbarous people … and specealie aganis that … wicked race and name of the Glengregour
1622-6 Bisset II 215/25.
They ar noted on the mergynis thairof … bot speciallie on the mergene of the secund buik of the maiestie
(b) a1500 Henr. Deth & Man 32.
Fulfilland evir my sensualitie In deidly syn, & speacialy in pryd
(c) 1522 Melville Chart. 62.
I … salbe reidy … to tak the saidis Schir Jhonnis part agane all wderis … and speischailly … contray the Lard of Balwere
(d) 1559–60 St. A. Kirk S. 13.
I haif faltet greatlie aganis God … in thocht, worde and deid and spetialie in blasphemows wordis
1570 St. A. Kirk S. 336.
Dauid hantit to hir be nycht and day, and spetialie that he com to Thomas Fleschear hall twys or thryis on syndry nychttis
1574–5 St. A. Kirk S. in Mill Mediæv. Plays 286.
The minister … to command … all … indwellaris in this citie and spetialy yowng men … that [etc.]
a1578 Pitsc. I 54/21.
He gadderit ane companie of his freindis and spetiallie the Hammilltouns quho assistit him for the tyme
1582–3 St. A. Kirk S. 498.
He hes dilapidat mekill of his [sc. father's] geir within thir tua yeiris, and spetialie the last viage he maid … he spendit … vijxx frankis
(e) 1599 Elgin Rec. II 76.
All prophane pastyme inhibited … within the burgh or college and speciallie futballing through the toun
(f) 1605 Stewart Mem. 114.
(3) 1375 Barb. xvi 481.
The forest left thai standand still, To hew it than thai had na will Specially quhill the Dowglas Swa ner-hand by thar nychtbur was
c1460 Wisd. Sol. 3.
Al this warld is bot vanite … , specialy of all lawbore that man makis to conquest riches
14… Reg. Episc. Aberd. I 249.
His charter contenys certane meris in it that is to say specialy the burn of Nessok … and nane othir
1514 (c1580) Edinb. B. Rec. I 147.
He had brokin the priueliegis of the burgh … specialie now of lait in the bying of certane schippis
1543 Douglas Corr. 152.
[This] wes weray suspitious and contrarious to the commone weill of Scotland, spetialye in tyme of weyr
1548 (c1580) Edinb. B. Rec. II 141.
That na maner of wemen … speciallie the frute sellares be fund on the hie gaitt flyting with vthers
1570 Leslie 166. 1597 Skene Verb. S. s.v. Particata.
John Naper, … ane gentleman of singuler judgement and learning, specially in mathematicque sciences
1597 Dundee B. Rec. in Mill Mediæv. Plays 174.
Certane personis … quha keipis superstiouslie certane dayis specialie Ȝull day
1581-1623 James VI Poems I 80/20.
For any heich & graue subiectis, specially drawin out of learnit authouris, vse this kynde of verse following
1625 Justiciary Cases I 20.
He misgovernit himselff be extraordiner drinking and beiring company speciallie at ane brydell
1654 Conv. Burghs III 394.
Wee have licence to import all comodities, speciallie salt, frome France or Spaine
1654 Cramond Kirk S. I 8 Oct.
To instruct the ȝoung ones in literature specillie to teache them the catechisme and to pray
1660 Laing MSS 278.
I must … expostulat with you for your refusing to deliver the honnors, spetialy I am not weel satisfyed that [etc.]

3. Explicitly, in a detailed manner.(a) c1420 Wynt. viii 641.
The cas wes specyally Put to thame
1456 Hay I 102/21.
Law canoun and law civile … determynis specealy as law and resoun gevis
1456 Hay I 209/30.
And specialy and expressely all the lawis civile sais that all the naciouns that ar in this warld … ar all subject to the impire
1460 Hay Alex. 1648.
Supois that we Tell of sic worthie deidis speciallie, Mony a worthie man in that fechting Did worthie deidis quhareof I spek nothing
c1500 Barounis Lawis 16.
Apone sic a poynt till him nemmit speacialie be that ilk officiar him attachand
1503 Acts II 242/1.
Quhare ony persone happinnis to get ane remissione in tyme tocum, that the said remissione sall nocht extend nor salf the takare fra gretar crimez be ony generale claus na is contenit specialy … and that generale claus sall nocht include gretare nor the speciale claus
1583 Reg. Privy C. III 621.
Thir answers, we testifie, wes alsua aggreit unto and gevin be the uthers persones quhilkes wer present specialie nominat in the uther tickit gevin to us
1588 Aberd. Council Lett. I 39.
It is specielie spokkin without counsall that ather sall thai escheme us or caus us brek lawburrowis
1612 Sutherland Bk. III 183.
The landis and fischingis possest be them, as they are specialie set doun in the cattologue of thair occupatiounes
1646 Melville Chart. 174.
Heerby lykwyes it is speciallie declared that the said Mistress Katharine Lesly shall accept of the said soume of three score thousand merkes above written, to be payed to her in maner … aforesaid
(b) 1639 Johnston Diary Ia 60.
The proposition … hath annexed to it some conditiones which are so wrapped up in generals that they transcend our reach, we humblie begg your graces favour to condescend more speccallie upon these conditiones required of us

b. Individually, separately. 1456 Hay I 151/3, 4.
He [sc. a king] may nocht knaw wele all the names of his men of were, na specealy that he payis ȝerely wagis to, na may nocht governe ilke company specialy, him self, that is under him

4. Expressly, for a particular purpose. c1400 Troy-bk. ii 1993.
And for that reull purpos he Gart specialie lettres [L. speciales litteras] mak
c1420 Wynt. vii 1925.
Oure se … past abbotys twa … The kingys erandys specyally Chargyd to this Pape Schyr Luci
1471–2 Acta Aud. 20/2.
That … he be depriuit for euer fra the office of depute scherefschip … efter the tenour of the act of parliament specealy maid vpon schereffis
1473–4 Treas. Acc. I 1.
Noble lordis … be his hienes specialie deput and ordanit … for the hering and resaving of the saide compt in his name
1495 Reg. Paisley 404.
James … King of Scottis, till oure lovittis Johne the Roys [etc.] … oure schireffis … conjunctly and severaly, specialy constitute greting
1503 Charter (Reg. H.) No. 662.
To our louitis William Scot … our schireffis in that part coniuntly & seueraly specaly constitute greting
1504 Crim. Trials I i 43.
We … be thir our letteris, specialie exemis al the personis abone expremit … fra [etc.]
1521 Facs. Nat. MSS III xv.
I am cummyn in this realm … specially concerning the weylfar … of his derrest nevo
1554 Edinb. B. Rec. II 188. c1575 Balfour Pract. 298.
In criminal causis … na procuratour may be maid nor constitute speciallie be the persewar
c1575 Balfour Pract. 683.
Fulis, menstrallis, bardis … but gif thay be speciallie licentiat be the King, sall be compellit to seik sum craft to win thair living
1622-6 Bisset II 215/36.
The … jowallis takin furth of Scotland of befoir in tyme of weare quhairof the blak croce of Scotland is speciallie nemmed war all delyvered agane
1647 Galloway P. 11 Aug.
A letle croft … called Quhirlies croft … is exceptit and speaciallie reserved furth of this tak
1676 Inverness Rec. II 268.
The … Counsell being conweined … specllie to gett informatione of quhat wes done [etc.]
1688 Rec. Old Aberd. I 144.
The baillies … hes enacted and speciallie ordained for eviteing of … troubles betuixt the trades of Old Abd. and … New Abd. … that [etc.]

You may wish to vary the format shown below depending on the citation style used.

"Specialy adv.". Dictionary of the Scots Language. 2004. Scottish Language Dictionaries Ltd. Accessed 7 Oct 2022 <>



Hide Advanced Search

Browse DOST: