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

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First published 2001 (DOST Vol. X).
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Tallo(u)n, Tallow(e, Talch, Tauch, n.2 Also: talloune, tallown(e, tallone, talon(e, tallane, tolone, tallo(u, tallyow, tello, talche, thalch, talcht, taulch(t, tawlche, talk, tauche, taucht, tawch(t, tawche, taugh, tawgh, taweche, tach, taich, taitche. [ME and e.m.E. talwȝ (c1350), talȝ, talow, talowȝ (all Wyclif), tallo (c1425), talgh (c1440), tallow (1541), MLG talg, talch, Du. talk.]For the variation in forms, cf. Eng. sallow and Older Sc. Sauch(e n.

Tallow, the fat of an animal; such fat when melted down and clarified for use as lubricating grease, for making candles, etc.See also Brew talloun n., Crakking n. and Crakling n. For further examples of ruch talloun see Ruch adj. 11 (b), (c).The occasional collocations talloun or tauche, taugh or tallow, tach and tallow may suggest an awareness of great disparity in the possible pronunciations of the word rather than a distinction in sense for which there is no evidence.(1) 1482 Edinb. B. Rec. I 46.
Of a barrell of saip, oley, buttir, vynager, flesche, or tallone
1485 Acts II 174/2.
That the actis … maid … anent the halding and keping of talloune within the realme be kepit
1496 Treas. Acc. I 294.
For a barell of tar to myng with the talloune
1498 Reg. Privy S. I 23/2.
1512 Treas. Acc. IV 398.
Gevin to Downy, candel makar, to by talloun, fourty Franche crounis of wecht
1518 Edinb. B. Rec. I 181.
The said Robert … byis talloun … and sendis the samin furth of the realm quharethrow the exhorbitant derth of talloun is risin
1529 Edinb. B. Statutes 8 Oct.
That thai mak thair candill of gud and sufficient stuff baith weyk & tallone & sufficient werkmanschip
1531 Bell. Boece I xxix.
Mony fair ky … of quhilk the flesche is richt … tender, the talloun of thair wambis is sa sappy, that it fresis nevir
1533 Boece 141.
Birnand torches myxt with pik, rosett, talloun and burntstane
1535 Stewart 53869.
Pik and tar, talloun and brynt stane … Vpoun that sow richt suddantlie [they] leit fall Quhilk … scaldit hes richt mony
1544 Treas. Acc. VIII 319.
For threid, talloun and ledder boucht to the tow of the well withtin the castell of Edinburght, iij s.
1557–8 Edinb. B. Rec. III 17.
Thomas Mow candilmaker … to abstene … fra all melting of ony crakkingis of talloun within thair bak hous … for avoyding of the corrupt and vnhalsum air
1572 Crail B. Ct. 6 Oct.
[Ordains] that na maner of flesche … be presentit … in the merkate … withowt the hyd, skyn and talloun be presentit thairwith
1581 Edinb. B. Rec. IV 216.
Four last of talloun ryndet and vnryndet
1584 St. A. Test. MS II 50.
1595 Duncan App. Etym.
Adeps, creash, tallon
15… Aberd. B. Rec. MS XXV (Jam., s.v. Leis).
1589 Skipper's Acc. (Morton) 1a.
For talone to our teyes
?1594 Monro W. Isles in Orig. Par. II i 386.
The flesche of thir sheipe cannot be eattin be honest men for fatnesse, for ther is no fleche one them, bot all quhyte lyke talloune
(b) 1567 Lanark B. Rec. 37.
(c) 1593 Skipper's Acc. (Morton) 69a.
Reseuet of Tomes Honter ii barellis of tolone with my awne mark to sell to hes awne us and to my cometeye
(d) 1562 Dumfries B. Ct. 169b.
[They] ar actit in the sovm of nyne punds vsuale mony of Scotland and that for the price of ten stain of tallow
1566 Peebles B. Rec. I 302.
The millar to find cog, roung and tallo, and vthir gud seruice batht to poir and riche
1602 Hist. Fam. Seton 888.
Letter granting … licence to transport furth of this realm forty lasts of tallow to the parts of France
1664 Melrose Reg. Rec. II 88.
Elleven punds of the price of the said sheip and ther tallou
1664 Kirkcaldy B. Rec. 182.
That the candlemakers of this burgh has regreitted the haill tallo of the burghe by pynding of the samen and selling it to sea
1677 Banff Ann. I 157.
The hydis, tallo … and penches of the saidis beiffis
(e) 1426 Acts II 7/2.
That na talch be had oute of the realme vnder the payne of eschete of it to the king
1449 Aberd. B. Rec. I 402.
That na man by talch mar than may suffice his hous
1502–3 Acta Conc. III (1993) 288.
xij stane of talch
1526 Acta Conc. Publ. Aff. 242.
1542–3 Elgin Rec. I 73.
The prouest … hes set the comond tollis with the schamill maill … for the spaice of thre ȝeris for the sovme of thventy aucht markis and ane stain of thalch ȝeirle
1596–7 Misc. Spald. C. II 133.
For ane cabok of talche of ane stane vecht
(f) 14.. Acts I 336/2.
That … quhair thai [sc. shoemakers] suld gif thair lethir gude oyle and taulch thai gif it bot watter and salt
1505 (c1580) Edinb. B. Rec. I 107.
It is … forbidden that any … persoun melt or rynde thair tawlche in fore housis on the hie gaitt
1507 Aberd. B. Rec. I 436.
It is statut and ordanit that na taulcht be barrellit nor schippit
1548 (c1580) Edinb. B. Rec. II 141.
That the said candilmakeris … by na kitchein fie nor paynsche tawche in hurt of the occupatioun of cordiners
1597 Skene Verb. S. s.v. Cepvm.
Cepvm animalium, the taulch, creische or fatnes of beastes
(g) 1520 Stirling B. Rec. I 7.
In byin of mertis, mutton, talk and skennis
1586 Perth B. Ct. 22 Nov.
For olȝie butter and talk coft and resauit fra him
(h) 1535 Stewart 10483.
Sa mony bleises … Of pik and tar, … Of wax and rosat, of tauche and sindrie tow, Quhilk kest greit licht thair
1537 Selkirk B. Ct. (ed.) 183.
Twa bannokis of tauch
1564 Perth B. Ct. 198 (28 Nov.).
a1568 Bann. MS 139b/19.
Off moltin tawch quhen they want Schir Garnyga will … spew ane pynt at a pant Off fawll vly ba
1590 Crail B. Ct. 3 Nov.
[It is statute] that no persone … by ony mair talloun or tauche nor may sufficientlie serue thair awin hows
1595 Stirling Chart. 219.
1609 Dunferm. B. Rec. II 70.
For ilk stane weyt of taugh or tallow
(i) 1659 Stirling B. Rec. I 231.
The great charge and expences susteaned by the inhabitants of this towne and shire throw transporting and carrieing of tach and tallow furth of the same
(j) 1629 Monteith Stewartry Ct. 22 Dec.
The judge … allowis to the said James the taich of the saidis kow and ox for his travell and paines
1635 Monteith Stewartry Ct. 10 Dec.
For taich lowsit to him fra Jon Symmer in Lanrik
1636 Monteith Stewartry Ct. 19 Jan.
Within the quhilk (? hoill) thair was fund scheipe bonis and ky bonis with ryndit taich
(k) 1635 Edinb. Test. LVII 92.
Thrie stane of taitche at xlviij s. the stane wecht
proverb. a1628 Carmichael Prov. No. 1554.
Tig with your tittie, ye wil get tauch to your schone
(2) 1508 Treas. Acc. IV 110.
In Strivelin, for ane stane of schip [= sheep] tauch to lay on the muld of the gwn
1570 Elgin Rec. I 123.
That the stane of schip tallown be sauld for xiiij s. the stan and stan of nolt tallown for xij s. the stan
15… Aberd. B. Rec. MS V 21 (Jam.).
Scheip tawcht & nolt tawcht
1642 Falkirk Baron Ct. (11 Nov.).
The said James … sauld to the persewer the haill nolt tauche that he sould haue of the haill guidis that he sould happine sley
1583 Edinb. Test. XIII 108b.
xxx stane of gray tauch for cordineris price of the stane xvi s.
1646 Edinb. Test. LXII 96b.
In the crakling house … fyftene tubes of gray talloune
1575 Edinb. Test. III 416b.
Threttie stane of rouch tauch price of the stane xiiij s.
1583 Edinb. Test. XII 248b.
Sex stane of rouch tauch price of the stane xx s.
1591 Edinb. Test. XXIII 342.
Of vnwrocht tauch lxxv stanes price of the stane ij merkis
1661 Glasgow B. Rec. II 475.
The fleshouris throw their inhansing in their hands and power not onlie the ruch tallyow they had … but also quhat they could buy fra … wther fleshouris
1681 Glasgow B. Rec. III 307.
That the pryce of the stone of sufficient rough tallou shall be sold for thrie mark and half merk
1590 Exch. R. XXII 88.
[£6 10 s. of 1 last 1 barrel tallow called] Naris talloun
c1590 Thanes of Cawdor 196.
For ane stane Belges talon
1593 Exch. R. XXII 333.
Reis talloun
1597 Bk. Rates 11b
Talloun of Nevis the barell thairof x li.
1597 Bk. Rates in Halyb. cxvi.
Ilk last of Nevis [Skene Verb. S. Narvis (s.v. Bullion)] talloun
1612 Bk. Rates (Halyb.) 340.
Tallown called Narves tallow the barrell
1627 Dumbarton B. Rec. 22.
Fyne hieland tallow
1661 Acts VII 254/1.
Tallow called Narves tallow ilk sex barrells
1661 Acts VII 254/1.
Scots tallow ilk three barrells
(3) 1496 Treas. Acc. I 294.
For talloune to the quhelis and axtreis to the artailȝery, and to the towis
1497 Treas. Acc. I 349.
Item, for xxiij pund of talloune to Mons
1508 Treas. Acc. IV 111.
For rosat and talloun to lay on that gun stok
1512 Treas. Acc. IV 458.
Item, for a barrell of tallon to tallon the berk with
1533 Treas. Acc. VI 160.
For walx and talloune to mors the hagbutis
1539 Treas. Acc. VII 345.
Debursit … upoun colis, petis, wyre, walkis, tello, rosset [etc.] … upoun the making of twa new muldis
1574 Edinb. D. Guild Acc. 41.
1589–1600 Skipper's Acc. (Morton) 62b.
For ane quarter weycht of talone for our chelderis superis
1663–6 Household Bks. Archb. Sharp MS 32.
For tallon to horse foot
1680 Paisley Tolbooth Acc. 17 Aug.
For tallowe to run in the batts of the storme window

b. Used disparagingly of human fat. c1515 Asl. MS I 216/26.
Erll James Douglas deit at the castell of Abercorn … thai said he had in him four stane of talch and maire
c1500-c1512 Dunb. Flyt. 245.
Filling of tauch, rak sauch—cry crauch, thow art oursett

c. attrib. and comb.Tallow-loaf, a lump of tallow. Tallow-silver, a sum of money payable as rent, commuted from an original payment in tallow.(1) 1535 Edinb. Hammermen 145b.
Aganis Ȝoule gevin for twa gret taucht candill to the alter viij d.
a1539 Reg. Soltre 214.
He sall fynd … to the quheir tawche candell
1555–6 Edinb. Old Acc. II 57.
For tawch candils, all winter, in the windois of the kirk, xxxij s. iiij d.
1622-6 Bisset II 248/19.
The maister … aucht to fynd him [sc. a sick mariner] lycht as talloun candill
1671 Kirkcudbr. B. Rec. MS 19 July.
Item fyftie two shilling for tallow light
(2) 1542 Treas. Acc. VIII 77.
For viij dusane … girthis putt upone the talloun punscheonis in Leitht
(3) 1676 Kirkcudbr. B. Rec. MS 12 Jan.
For four tallow loafis
(4) 1697 Rental of Brabster, Caithness in Old-lore Misc. VIII 199.
Brabster Andrew Jack ther laboures a pennyland and payes therfor of Mertimes debt and tallow silver [£7 3 s. 4 d.]

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"Tallon n.2". Dictionary of the Scots Language. 2004. Scottish Language Dictionaries Ltd. Accessed 2 Mar 2024 <>



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