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

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First published 2001 (DOST Vol. X).
This entry has not been updated since then but may contain minor corrections and revisions.

Tirve, Tirr, Tirl(e, v. Also: tyrve, tirwe, tirff, tyrff, tir(re, tyr(r, turve, tur(e. P.t. and p.p. also tirlt, tirrd, turd. [ME to-turuen, tirven (both Havelok), tyruen (E. E. Allit. P.) terue(n (Chaucer), e.m.E. tyr(r (once, c1567, Northumb.), ? OE *tyrfan, *tierfan or *tyrflian. Also in the later dial.] tr.

1. To strip (a person) (of his claithis, nakit, etc.). b. To strip (the clothes, also, once, the skin) off a person. Also transf. ?a1500 Remembr. Passion 371.
Think how He wes tiruit before the croce
c1500 Rowll Cursing 133 (B).
Ruffy ragmen … Sall ryfe thair sinfull saule in raggis And quhen the devillis hes thame tirvit All thair saulis salbe transformit
c1500-c1512 Dunb. (OUP) 7/23.
Of all his claythis thay tirvit him bair
1513 Doug. ix viii 78.
In quhat land lyis now … Thy fair body and membris tyrvit [Ruddim. tyrryt] and rent
1529 Rec. Earld. Orkney 58.
Thai … crewellie slew thame … and tirffit thame nakit
1533 Bell. Livy II 187/19.
He gart tirve [v.r. tyrff] this maister nakit of al his clothis
1590 Reg. Privy C. IV 492.
Thay wer tirrit to thair sarkis
1608 Rec. Old Aberd. I 43.
Ordanet hir to be put to the cros and tirrit fra the vest vp and skurgit
1644 Reg. Privy C. 2 Ser. VIII 161.
They causit thair officers … tirre us mother naked
1645 Old Dundee I 495.
These cruel Irishes, seeing a man well clad, would first tyr him and save the clothes unspoiled, then kill the man
c1650 Spalding II 340.
Thay tirrit Skipper Walker out of his clothis and cled him in raggis
b. a1500 Prestis of Peblis 994.
Off his coate thay tirlit be the croun And on him kest ane syde clarkly goun
1513 Doug. v v 32 (Sm.).
A habirgeoun … Quhilk he … with his strang handis two Tirvit and rent of bald Demoleo
1596 Highland P. I 194.
[They … spuilyied from her … certain gold and silver and] maist shamefullie tirvit the claithis of thair servandis
1598 Crim. Trials II 70.
[They] tyrrit thair claithes of thame and schot thame moder-nakit furth of thair said duelling hous
1600 Reg. Privy C. VI 128.
They … tirvit the claithis af him and rave the same
1621 Glasgow Weavers 68.
John Patersoune … had offendit his deikin … in thir wordis, saying to him the divill tir the skin af him
transf. 1635 Dickson Wr. 83.
God shall draw you out among hypocrites; he shall tirr the visorne off your faces, and shew your rottenness to man and angel

c. ? To skin (a toad), cf. 1621 quot. in b above or ? a further example of Tirl n. to turn, pull, manipulate by turning or pulling. a1605 Montg. Flyt. 412 (T).
Thir … wiches In tyme of thair triumph they tirlt [H. tirrd] me that taid

2. To strip (a house, etc.) of its roof. b. To strip (the roof, slates, etc.) off a house, etc. c. To make (a hole) in the roof of a house. d. absol.(a) 1513 Treas. Acc. IV 523.
To the sclatter tyrvand, thekand and correckand the chapell
1531–2 M. Works Acc. (ed.) I 101.
For thekin of … the baikhous quhilk wes tyrvit for layin of the guttaris
1535–6 M. Works Acc. (ed.) I 189.
For the beting of the gret hall quhair it was tyrvit and the leid stollin
1560 Rolland Seven S. 3307.
Thay … tyruit the hous abone the pyats cage, Quhair that fireflauchts & raine micht get passage
1564 Edinb. Old Acc. II 187.
Sanct Thomas ile, being haill tirwit and theikit of new
1590–1 Reg. Privy C. IV 587.
[They] … tirvit the said complenaris houssis, and tuke of the rigging and thak thairof
(b) 1572-5 Diurn. Occurr. 302.
Clyd, quhilk wes haililie left woyd be the inhabitaris thairof, and tyrit be thair selffis
1572-5 Diurn. Occurr. 307.
The houssis that wer castin doun for inlaik of fyre … the laird of Collingtonis hous in Forrestaris Wynd wes half tirrit [etc.]
1581 Burne Disput. 152.
Our kirkis … sould be tyrred that the licht of the Evangel may enter the mair eselie in thame
1597 Misc. Spald. C. I 114.
The said Alexander past on the hows … to mend the sam, and hewing tirrit hir pantrie
1603 Inverness Rec. II 8.
That his hous be tirrit aboun his heid quhair he dwellis in caice he disobey
1623 Rec. Univ. Aberd. 283.
The haill liberarie to be tirrit and the gestis thairof to be takine upe
1645 Edinb. B. Rec. VIII 71.
The baillie Andro Sympsoun to caus the clengeris tir the haill thack housis within his boundis
1664 Glasgow B. Rec. III 31.
That about threttie foot of the sklaitit toofall … be tirred, new sarked and of new againe sklaitit
1691 Stirling B. Rec. II 338.
For mending of the tolbuithe steiple which wes tirred by the wind
(c) 1641 Peebles Gleanings 238.
[James Williamsone having vowed to] tirle the said minister's hous above his head, … clam up to the top thereof, and with a graip kuist down a great part of the thack
(d) 1568 Reg. Privy S. VI 88/1.
The chapell … besyid the castell of Downne is turvit and the haill sklait and tymmer werk thairof … applyit … to the … reparatioun thairof
(e) 1647 Edinb. B. Rec. VIII 124.
A numerous multitude of prenteisis … have turd there houses, broken up thair doores [etc.]
proverb. 1578–9 Reg. Privy C. III 83.
He appointis the ferme corne … to be applyed to the garisoun for thair horse corne … this corne … is the cheif friell annexit for custody of the Castell … als meikle to say, ‘Tyr the kirk and theik the queir’
1666-74 Fraser Polichron. 67.
Nor will I (as the Scots proverb saith) tirr the kirk to thack the cure
transf. c1650 Spalding II 188.
He also tirred the laterans in the colledge, whereby the studentis had not sic naturall eisment as befoir
b. c1520-c1535 Nisbet Mark ii 4.
Thai tirvit the rufe [W. maden the roof nakid, P. vnhileden the roof]
1531–2 M. Works Acc. (ed.) I 104.
Sklatis that wes tyrrit of the baksyd of the kingis chalmer
1558 Melrose Reg. Rec. III 158.
Mr. Walter Balfour [etc.] … turweand the leid of thair closter
1572-5 Diurn. Occurr. 219.
To tir and tak doun all the tymmer werk of all houssis in Leith Wynd
1584 Reg. Privy C. III 681.
[They] tirrit and reft doun the faill and thak of hir … byris
1584 Cart. S. Nich. Aberd. II 387.
For to tyr of the sklettis of the weddin kirk dur and to carie them to the woult
1598 Edinb. D. Guild Acc. 673a.
To ane sklaitter for pointing of the sklaittis and laying on of thame that war tyrrit
1599 M. Works Acc. (ed.) I 318.
For mending of … the foir rowndis tirrit with the wind
1652 Edinb. B. Rec. VIII 268.
To tak of the roofe of the lipperhous timber and sklaitts … inrespect the samen is alreadie tirrd in part be strangeris
1662 Reg. Privy C. 3 Ser. I 257.
[Mr. James Daes [etc.]] caused tir and pull of the haill divotts of the said house
1682 Kingarth Par. Rec. 132.
That he … tirr the thack off the chamber that the timber be not consumed
1700 Wauchopes 29.
[Sir John Wauchope] cover'd the tower head with copper, which the English tirred and carried of with them
c. 1560 Rolland Seven S. 3436.
The burges … saw ane hole tyruit in the hous rigging
1668 Lauder Jrnl. 187.
His taking a man out of the Laird of Innerleith his house … because they refused to open, tir a hole in the hous top and fetch him out
d. 1658 Melrose Reg. Rec. I 192.
[The pursuer was to] ture and theik conforme to the ordor of master and tenandrie

3. a. To strip (ground) of its surface of turf, peat, etc. b. To strip (the growing layer) from the ground.a., b. 1593 Aberd. B. Rec. II 85.
The saidis inchis ar sa flayne and tirrit, that … thair is na faill to be had thairin
1604 Shetland Sheriff Ct. (ed.) 113.
That thai met sevin fadome of grund tird quhairupoun my lordis peitis wes biggit and knew nocht the steillaris thairof
1631 Paterson Ayr & Wigton I xii.
Ane ditcher … Tirring the earth for fewell
1662 Inverness Rec. II 212.
That non presume … to cast flagg, fail or diwott … or tirr any pairt of the said carse
1664 Edinb. B. Rec. IX 352.
[Not] to suffer … any pairt of the foir mure to be casten or tirrd
1668 Glasgow Chart. II 135.
To tirr six elnes of ground inward on the topp of the said craig … and to wonne stones dounward to the bottom of the poiste
1669 Reg. Privy C. 3 Ser. II 679.
The forsaid mure is muche tirred
1581-1623 James VI Poems II 37/26.
Jehouas uoice makis hyndes to calue & tirris the forrestis grene

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"Tirve v.". Dictionary of the Scots Language. 2004. Scottish Language Dictionaries Ltd. Accessed 16 Apr 2024 <>



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