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

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First published 2002 (DOST Vol. XII).
This entry has not been updated since then but may contain minor corrections and revisions.

Wil(l, Wyl(l, n. Also: wil(l)e, vil(l, uill, wylle, vyl(l, woll. [ME and e.m.E. wil(le (both c1175), wylle (a1250), will (Cursor M.), wyl (Manning), wyll (c1420), OE willa, wil(l, MDu. wille, ON vili, vil.]

1. a. The will as a human faculty, directed towards choice or determination of ends or outcomes; a person's disposition, inclination or drive towards the achievement of his ends. Freq. in contrast with wit or resoun. Also personified.a. 1375 Barb. iv 732.
Quhethir-sa men inclynyt be To vertu or to mawyte He may rycht weill refreynȝe his will [C. vill] Othir throw nurtur or throw skill
c1420 Ratis R. 1684.
The sevynt eild … has appeyt and wyll As fallis wantone childyr tyll
c1420 Wynt. i Prol. 12.
Story for to wryte … To rays hartis in plesance, And the heraris tyll excyte Be wyt, or wyll, tyll thaire delyte
c1409-1436 Kingis Q. § 45.
My hert, my will, my nature, and my mynd, Was changit
1456 Hay I 19/31, 32, 33.
He schewe in Him twa willis, quhen He said Thy will be done, that is to say the will of the Fader that is in me salbe maister and nocht the will of the humanitee that is in me
c1460 Consail Vys Man 166.
Set thi wyt thi will to dant
a1500 Seven S. 1909.
Scho … welcummit him with hert & will
c1500-c1512 Dunb. Tua Mar. W. 321.
Bot ay my will wes the war of womanly natur: The mair he loutit for my luf the les of him I rakit
1535 Stewart 17468.
Lat nocht ȝour will no moir exceid ȝour wit
a1538 Abell 122a.
Ane man desiris ane thing … Lu thare is arbitratioun or wil. Bot he will nocht tak that fra his nychtbur for it wer aganis God and his conscience. Than his will is fre … Tharfore to the man … is imput merit gife he dois gude [etc.] … of his fre will
c1550 Rolland Ct. Venus iii 327.
Not pretendant to argune throw ȝour will Bot to ressoun that ȝour sermone resound
a1561 Q. Kennedy Breif Tract. (ed.) 140/17.
They … var nocht ane in substance, bot be concord of mynd and vyll
a1568 Scott xxx 9.
Ȝowth and will ar so consors Withowt that wisdome mak devors Thay rin lyk wyld vndantit hors
c1600 Montg. Suppl. viii 4.
The hairt consultis with the thocht So thocht and mynd consultis inwart To will, and quhen that thay haue wrocht Directis the handis [etc.]
c1616 Hume Orthog. 10 (see Wyle n. 2 a).personified a1508 Kennedy Pass. Christ 459.
Ire is thair gid … Will is thair law, inwy thai mak schirray
c1500-c1512 Dunb. G. Targe 175.
Will, Wantonnes, Renoun

b. A particular sort of disposition or inclination, chiefly with a qualifying adjective expressing a personal quality or feature of a person's nature or an attitude exhibited on a particular occasion. Also applied to the attitudes or point of view of a group of people. Also pl. and proverb. See also Gud(e) will n. and Ill-will n. 1375 Barb. xi 259, 260.
He … thoucht that men of sa gret will Giff thai wald set thar will thar-till Suld be full hard to wyn
1375 Barb. xvii 857.
Mar inclynyt he To the folk of the south countre Na to the northyn mennys will
a1400 Leg. S. xxiv 472.
Quhene ony mys did thé til, Thu tholyt with debonare wil
14.. Acts I 29/2.
Gif the ayr be absent for ivil wyl or malyce
1456 Hay I 199/23.
A monk has na self will, bot anerly the will of his abbot
a1500 Gol. & Gaw. 100.
Schir Kay wes haisty and hate, and of ane hie will
a1500 Henr. Fab. 2830 (Bann.).
A frawart will, a thrawin phisnomy
a1500 Henr. Test. Cress. 399.
With better will thairfoir they tuik hir in
c1475 Wall. v 34.
Schyr Jhon Butler … With thre hundre quhilk war of hardy will
1562-3 Winȝet II 63/15, 16.
To hef maid … the natuir of men of sik sort quha … be impulsioun of a certane wil led be necessitie may do na wther thing may wil na wthir thing bot sin, be ressoun that this wil cariit about and inflammit with a certane furious raige [etc.]
1571–2 Reg. Privy C. II 121.
Thair indurit and disperat evill will
1629 Justiciary Cases I 97.
The said Issobell Ȝoung … haifing consauet ane evill will aganis George Sandie
proverb. a1598 Ferg. Prov. MS No. 443.
Good wil should be taken in pairt of payment
pl. 1513 Doug. ix xi 28.
Thai war … sa egyr of thar willis At thai the port quhilk … Was commandyt to kepe stekit … Has warpyt oppyn … Sa gret confidens in thar fors had thai
1581 Sat. P. xliv 356.
Quhom ȝe blasphemit hail, vith villis bent
1596 Dalr. II 391/30.
That tha suld signifie to the Scotis how weil inclynet war the Dolphine and his father to the quene [etc.] … Quhilkes wilis of the Scotis towards thame and thair kingis vttirlie to be sincere but fraud or gyle tha knew perfytlie

c. Fre (liberale) will, free will, freedom, the ability to choose freely, freq. of (at, etc.) one's (awyn) fre will, without compulsion, willingly. 1375 Barb. i 247.
He that thryll is … has he nocht sa mekill fre As fre wyll to leyve or do That at hys hart hym drawis to
1420 Reg. Episc. Morav. 475.
Resyngnande of his awyn fre wil purly and symply
1456 Hay I 75/6.
To prove a … caus … be gage of armes in clos bataill of a mannis free will
1456 Hay I 103/24.
We suld nocht force na constrenȝe na mistrowaris Sarraȝenis … to trowe in oure faith … bot … lat thame be in thair free will and mak thame exhortaciounis [etc.]
1456 Hay II 111/8.
That … God has nathing maid … bot … resoun and liberale will of the makare
1477 Stewart Mem. 74.
It sal be leuefull to the said Neill to dispone apon his sonis mariage at his awin fre will
1496 Acta Conc. II 40.
Scho sall haf … fre will and lyberte to pas to the consistory
1499 Glasgow Dioc. Reg. II 18.
Of his fre vill and mynd, and hiris
1515 Selkirk B. Ct. (ed.) 34.
Peter Portuus of his fre woll offerit to … paye … all that he is awand
a1538 Abell 122a (see c below). 1537 Lynd. Depl. Magd. 9.
Adam! Allace that thow abusit Thy fre wyll, being inobedient
1581 Burne Disput. 2.
The frie vil being cooperant to the Halie Spreit, obeyis Goddis commandementis
1582 Donaldson Cramondiana 57.
Walter Innes, … of his awin frie moteiff will becam in the will of Patrick Lesly

2. What a person wants, (one's) desire, wish or inclination in some regard, freq. contrasted with intellect (Wit n.) or reason and viewed as a base or unworthy impulse out of rational control. Freq. distinguishable from senses 3 or 5 in that the achievement of the desired outcome is outside the control of the experiences of the desire. Also pl.Some examples may belong in 3 below. 1375 Barb. i 213.
Gyff that ony man … Had ony thing … That war plesand to thar liking, … it have wald thai … For thai dempt thaim efter thar will Takand na kep to rycht na skill
1375 Barb. xix 91.
Graunt me … that ȝe off all my land … Wald giff me leve to do my will
a1400 Leg. S. i 686.
It is myn [sc. St. Peter's] will On the croice to be festnyt swa
a1400 Leg. S. xii 163.
Pylat tald to Judas How his ȝarning hale set was Of thai fare happlis … & bot he of thame mycht get Hyme worthyt de—syk wes his wil
a1400 Leg. S. xxxvi 479.
Quhare-fore he wes put to dede, Nocht of resone, bot of wil A wyfis ȝarnyng til fulfil
c1420 Wynt. iii 172.
To this than assentyde thai And bade that he suld say thaim tyll Quhat ewyr war lykand tyll his wylle
a1500 Henr. Fab. 579.
I wes vnwyse that winkit at thy will, Quhairthrow almaist I loissit had my heid
c1475 Wall. xi 477.
‘Be thi desyr resonable I sall it grant … ' The Butler said … 'ȝeild thé to me.' Than Wallace said; ‘Thi will wnskillfull is; Thow wald I did quhilk is our hye a mys’
a1500 Seven S. 612.
Salf the child ellis do ȝour will
1490 Irland Mir. I 7/14.
That the powere is nocht gevin to thame [sc. rulers] to gouerne the Cristin pepil eftir thar will and plesaunce
a1500 K. Hart 445.
‘Quhat folk ar ȝe thairout?' ‘My name is Age’ … 'Quhat war ȝour will?' ‘I will cum in, but dout’
c1500-c1512 Dunb. Tua Mar. W. 336.
Ȝit tuk I nevir the wosp clene out of my wyde throte Quhill I oucht wantit of my will or quhat I wald desir
1563 St. A. Kirk S. 185.
Ordenis … hyr father to compeir … to schaw his wyl in the sayd caws
pl. 1513 Doug. v Prol. 38.
Virgile … altyrris hys style sa mony way … To satyfy ilk wightis fantasy; Lyke as he … the willys of euery wight dyd feill
1653 Inverness Rec. II 207.
The said Donald uttered that … they wold tuggle him, which unbeseiming carriage I desyrit micht be forborne by theis men and suffer the course of justice to have place rather than thair pernitious wills

b. The outcome of desire or longing, the thing desired or chosen; pleasure, satisfaction or some gain supplying these. Freq. to have, get one's will, also to have na will of. Also pl. c1420 Ratis R. 713.
With wyll and ȝouthed duellis hee, Quhill eild and dises cumyne bee. Than ar thai all had in disspyt That ere ware maisteris of delyt
c1420 Wynt. viii 1040.
He hyr grawntyd hyr askyng … Scho … gat hyr wyll and hyr yharnyng
1460 Hay Alex. 1366.
Thai com out … Thinkand for till oureryde the first battall And of the laif to tak baith will and wale
1560 Rolland Seven S. 9157.
Sa nichtlie quhen Lodwik takis delite, He hes his will of that fair ladie quhite
1565 St. A. Kirk S. 235.
Sua fearing the … thretinyng of his father, rather compellit nor myndit wyth his hart to perform, he consentit, albeid the sayd Joanna apperit to hym to have als lytell wyll of hym as he had of hyr
1590-1 R. Bruce Serm. 127.
Gif this first apprehension of Christ like us weill … we begin to cast the affection of our hearts on Him, we have good will of Him; for all our affection proceeds fra our will … But gif sa be that we have na will of Him, that we have na love nor liking of Him … Then we reject Him
1591 Crim. Trials I ii 250.
Skilfull wemene … that will owthir caus your husband love yow, or ellis gett your will of him
c1610 Jok Uplandis Newis 6a.
Quhat is your will with me?
c1624 Wodrow's Life of Bruce 9.
I liked better to go to St. Andrews, for I had no will of the court
1626 Sel. Biog. I 353.
I have na will of strangers
1638 J. Row Sermon 3 (see Dichells n. pl.). a1681 Cargill Lecture and Sermon 15 (see Out adv. 20).pl. 1560 Rolland Seven S. 1280.
Fra time he saw his willis he culd not get At his plesure, he maid him me deforce Contrair my will

3. Intention, purpose, freq. of an action about to be undertaken, or already underway (though not necessarily successfully), by someone in a position to carry it out, or of an action already performed.Some examples may belong in 2 above. 1375 Barb. iii 134.
Hyme that behynd him [sc. Bruce] was All magre his will him [sc. Bruce] gan he ras [etc.]
a1400 Leg. S. ii 905.
That nothir stekis fra Godis mercy Of the fel syne the quantite Na ȝet the gret ennormyte [etc.] … Ellis that till Our Saweour The will of the man k[n]awyn be
a1400 Leg. S. xviii 21.
Sa that to the Saweoure Be knawyne the changinge of vil
?1438 Alex. ii 2298.
I me repent That I sa largely myne intent Hes said bot he that luffis weill … His will he may nocht hele
c1420 Ratis R. 73.
Thai thre termes ar ay present Intyll His rychtwys jugment And haffis caus wil & qualite Of thai tymis sa demys He
c1420 Wynt. v 5277.
Goddys will Wes nevyr to mak hys werkys ill
c1450-2 Howlat 874 (A).
It nedis nocht … to renewe oucht Of ȝour entent … I wait ȝour will, & quhat way ȝe wald that I wrocht
1456 Hay I 134/30 (see Willfullnes n.). c1460 Consail Vys Man 294.
Fra al desyr of vrangvys wynne For as belangand payne and meid The wyll is reput for the deid
a1585 Maitl. Q. 281/47.
My will is guid my lerning is bot small
1580-92 James VI Lusus Reg. 4.
O Volumna, prent a uill into thaire couplit hairtis; Quhiche may retaine that union ay
1638 Johnston Diary I 339.
I praysed God … that he had keiped me in this toune by my wil

b. Last will, a person's declaration or testament as to the disposal, upon his death, of his property. Also a further example of Latter-will n., q.v.(1) 14.. Reg. Maj. c. 63.
A woman alsua … may mak testament … alsua in hyr last wil of the gudis of hir husband scho may dispon
1622-6 Bisset II 86/6.
Be the law of this realme … ane mannis last will and desyre suld be frank and frie anent the dispositioun of his guidis
(2) 1545 Old Dundee II 67.
Conform to her latter will

c. With greater force, expressing determination, courage or ferocity. d. With a will, with one will, of a single determination or purpose. e. In(to), of, will to do (something), determined, fully intending to do (it).c. 1375 Barb. ix 70.
Thai a lord had thaim to leid That dar put him in awentur … for quhen that he Off sic will [is] & sic bounte … His folk sall tak ensample
?1438 Alex. ii 8894.
He lansit furth with hart and will … And thocht his vow for to fulfill … And hynt the king richt by the hand
c1420 Wynt. i Prol. 26.
To wryte as Dares … Wrate of the Trojanys … Allsua set I myne intent, My wit, my wyll, and myne talent
a1500 Henr. Fab. 2180.
He … hit him with sic will vpon the heid Quhill neir he swonit
1568 Lyndesay Pref. (STS) 401.
Sa cruell and feirs aduersaries, of equall will, rage, and furie, indifferentlie aganis all
d. 1375 Barb. iii 112.
Thai abaid till that he was Entryt in ane narow place … That he mycht nocht weill turn his sted Then with a will till him thai ȝede
1513 Doug. iii i 112.
Thai war al of a will and a desyr To pas furth of … Trace
e. 1375 Barb. xi 238.
The erle off Murreff … come … In-to … gret will for to manteym thar mycht
a1400 Leg. S. xxxiv 8.
Of his mysdide hafand hert sare, In wil to mysdo nomare
?1438 Alex. i 1485.
In grete will vengeance for to tak, Ane schot on Pirrus can he mak
?1438 Alex. i 1899.
Thai that war in will to do His will
1513 Doug. ii ii 91.
The Grekis oft in purpos war and will To fle from Troy
1513 Doug. ix xii 27.
Pandarus than hym self furth schew That wonder fervent in hys furour grew; Hys broderis slauchter to revenge in will

4. Variously const. in senses 2 and 3 above. a. To be, have, etc. (one's, na, etc.) will to do (something), that (something should be done).(1) 1375 Barb. i 11.
I wald fayne set my will Giff my wyt mycht suffice thartill To put in wryt a suthfast story
1375 Barb. vii 171.
He had to slep sa mekill will That [etc.]
1375 Barb. xi 629.
Thai … set bath will & strenth & mycht To rusch thar fayis
1375 Barb. xv 17.
Our men … haf will To do mar than thai may fulfill
1375 Barb. xv 79.
I trow that he Sall haf na gud will for to fycht
a1400 Leg. S. xxxviii 253.
My wil wes neuir … To do sa as thu has thocht
c1400 Troy-bk. i 47.
For hys entent is and hys will In pece to kepe hys kynryk still
c1420 Wynt. ii 729.
It wes thare wylle … that ile … be conquest to thame wyn
c1420 Wynt. v 4845.
Off it scho had na nede … Noucht for-thi it wes hyr wille, The lauch at all poynt to fulfille
a1500 Gol. & Gaw. 57.
Sen thy will is to wend, wy, now in weir [etc.]
a1500 Henr. Fab. 240.
This burges mous had littill will to sing
1560 Rolland Seven S. 4576.
I haue na will for to be lattin blude
1584 Sempill in Sat. P. xlv 771.
Downe … To Lambeth … Vpon his feit but not be ferrie … He had no will to fie a bote
1647 S. Leith Rec. 79/1.
His lordship said he had no will to have a seat in any place … that wold give any discontent to the neighbours
(2) c1400 Troy-bk. ii 178 (D).
The goddes wote my wyll That [etc.]
c1552 Lynd. Mon. 5238.
Tharefor, my wyll is that [etc.]
1584 Sempill in Sat. P. xlv 351.
Lowrie lowsit them long or day, And had no will they were corrected
1600 Facs. Nat. MSS III lxxvi.
I haw na vill that … my brother … knaw ony thing of the matter

b. Of (one's) will, in ful gud vyl, willingly. Also (to be) of will to do (something), (to be) willing, keen, eager.(1) a1400 Leg. S. iii 685.
His clathis … To the tormentoris of will He gafe thame
a1400 Leg. S. v 281.
Thai went furth in ful gud vyl, And al his bydynge can fulfill
a1400 Leg. S. xxviii 183.
Of his wil set ded he tuk, To wyne ws
a1500 Rauf C. 541.
For that I hecht of my will, And na man threit me thair till, That I am haldin to fulfill And sall do quhill I may
(2) c1420 Wynt. v 1898.
Wemen in sic perylle … Offtsys … Hechtys … mare, Than efft to qwyt off wyll thai are
1487 Acts II 176/1.
[Justices to be created] that is of will … to execut justice

c. Agayne, but, contrar, etc. a person's will, against someone's will, without a person's agreement or support. Also with one's will, with one's consent.(1) 1375 Barb. xiii 298.
Schir Aymer … led away the king Agayne his will
a1400 Leg. S. xi 349.
He agane hir will Hyre difforsit
1392 Lennox Mun. 48.
But the wyl and the lewe of the forsayde eryll
c1460 Thewis Gud Women 201.
Men bindis oft folk agane thar will … Quhilk war nocht fors thai wald nocht dod
1460–70 Innes Sketches 506.
In contrary owr predecessoris wyllis
c1475 Wall. vi 595.
The Sotheron folk … Horssit thair king and off the feild couth ride Agaynis his will, for he was laith to fle
1513 Doug. xiii viii 23.
Quhen … weit or rayn … Haldis the husbandis ydill aganys thar will
1562 Digest Justiciary Proc. D 41.
That he … wald speik the Queine outher with hir will or againes hir will
1562-3 Winȝet I 114/25.
Dispositioun of the saidis guidis to hef bene contrare ȝour will
1581 Bk. Univ. Kirk II 492.
That na persoun be intrusit in ony of the offices of the kirk, contrarie the will of the congregatioun
a1605 Montg. Ch. & Slae 904 (L).
Incist nocht, we wyst nocht, We want aganis oure will
a1605 Montg. Misc. P. xx 30.
Had I offendit oght Or wroght aganst thair will [etc.]
(b) 1511 Selkirk B. Ct. (ed.) 13.
The said hors … wrangusly tane fra thaim and … halding againes thair woll
(2) ?1438 Alex. ii 1367.
Sic ane thing That neuer sall failȝe with my will

d. Genitive singular willis, in adverbial use: Gif (and, as, sen, quhair, quhat, etc.) ȝour etc., also God's willis is (be, were, wald, etc.), if (as, since, etc.) it is your, God's, etc. will, if it pleases you, etc., also efter ȝour willis, according to your will, as you pleased.(1) 1375 Barb. i 618.
Giff that ȝour willis wer Ic ask ȝow respyt for to se This letter … Till to-morn
1375 Barb. xiii 519.
On the morn … The king rais as his willis [C. wille] was
1375 Barb. xix 158.
Schir, … sen ȝour willis is [etc.]
?1438 Alex. i 440.
Gud shir, gif it ȝour willis be, [etc.]
?1438 Alex. i 584.
God sawe thé, gif His willis be
c1420 Wynt. iii 88.
He askyt drynk off wattyr … To gyff hym, gyve hyr wyllis were
c1420 Wynt. iii 346 (C).
Sa fast than mycht he haldyn be At mycht at his fais willis [R. lykyng] be
c1450-2 Howlat 312 (B).
Ȝe sall here in schort space Quhat worthy lordis thair was, Giff ȝour willis ware
1460 Hay Alex. 1910.
Alexander … was nocht hurt Bot that his scheild was taistit … For the intentioun was of Nicolas And he haid hit him quhair his willis was
a1500 Rauf C. 502.
I wait not quhat his willis be
a1500 K. Hart 644.
All thing ȝe haue wrocht With help of Wisdome and his willis wald I sall reforme ȝow it blythlie
(2) ?1438 Alex. ii 3644.
Had I wrocht efter ȝour willis And done ȝour counsall

5. What a person in authority determines, ordains or commands, an ordinance, decision, judgment or command; also, to do (obey) a person's will; also, the will of God, etc. (once, the goddis). b. In legal documents or authoritative statements. Also transf., used as a description of the clause of the document containing the word will. c. What a person can command, his authority, power or might.(1) 1375 Barb. xii 170.
Syne on this wys he said his will ‘Lordingis [etc.] … Fecht we sall'
?14.. Ship Laws c. 21 (B).
He aw to do it in gude kepyng qwhil he wyt the wyl of his maystyrys
1442 Raine N. Durham App. 21.
Quharefor straitly we forbide that [etc.] … vnder al payne & charge may effter folow thir our [sc. James II] lettres for owr wil til endure
1460 Hay Alex. 2939.
King Dare is rychteous lord of Tyre … but his will and his consent To ȝeld the toun the duke is nocht content
1494 Loutfut MS 4b.
The counstable … sal tak bath the parteis & led thaim befor the iuge and the said iuge til say his wil to thaim
1589 Warrender P. (SHS) II 111.
[He [sc. the king] has made a declaration of his] will and mynd [for the government of the country]
1609 Skene Reg. Maj. ii 158b.
He … sall be imprisoned vntill the King declare his will anent him
(2) 1375 Barb. iv 392.
That durst nane warne to do his will
a1400 Leg. S. xxvii 688.
Sewine mene thane he taucht hyme til, To serwe hyme & to do his wyl
a1500 Seven S. 1244.
Scho … said schir I sall do ȝour will Bot God I tak witnes me till That I had lever be far de … Bot I sall followe neuertheless Ȝour will with alkyn sobirnes
a1500 Bk. Chess 579.
And so on fors this princis will was done
c1500 Makc. MS vii 4.
Done be Thi wil in erd as in hewyne ay
15.. Clar. ii 934.
Ȝour willis I sall obey everilk deill
(3) a1500 Colk. Sow ii 33.
Throuch the will of God so as it was Thay war weseit with suddane soir seiknes
1490 Irland Mir. I 7/7.
The will and ordinaunce of the hevinly King Jhesu
1490 Irland Mir. I 7/27 (see 6 (3) below). 1494 Acta Conc. I 372/2.
His wiff wes liand in cheld bed lare abidand the will of God
1549 Compl. 83/4.
The vil of God hes permittit … that sic propheseis cum til affect
1571 Ferg. Serm. iii Malachi Sig. C ii.
For my part I wald ȝe had angelis to ȝour ministeris gif … it wer the will of God; bot seing that God willis not so [etc.]
1595 Brechin Test. I 131b.
Abyding the will and mercie of Father Sone & Halie Gaist
1566-70 Buch. Comm. on Virgil Æn. vi 669.
Vates, deorum interpres (declarer of the will of the goddis)
b. 1417 Reg. Episc. Aberd. I 215.
Robert Duyc of Albany … to the schirefs of Aberden and of Banf … our will is
1448 Reg. Episc. Brechin. I 114.
Our will is that … ȝe inquyr tharupoun with … diligence
1490 Paisley B. Rec. 40.
We charg you that ye … declare … to all our liegis that it is our will [etc.]
1514 Misc. Spald. C. IV 19.
It is our will … that [etc.]
transf. 1678 Mackenzie Laws & C. (1694) iv i 236.
The king in his summons says, Our will is, &c. that [etc.] … which is called the will of the summons, and which will of the summons does comprehend a command to the messengers to cite the defenders
c. a1500 Gol. & Gaw. 288.
The wy that wendis for to were quhen he wenys best All his will in this warld with welthis, I wys, Yit sall be licht as leif of the lynd … Your mycht and your maieste mesure but mys

6. Variously const. in sense 5 above. a. At, to, eftir (the) will (of a person in authority, once, his pleasure), under the control, at the command or according to the judgment (of a person, etc.). Also pl.a. (1) 1375 Barb. iii 746.
Thai … Become his men … And has him trewly wndertane That thai … Suld be in all thing at his will
1375 Barb. xiii 364.
The castell schyr is at ȝour will
a1400 Leg. S. iii 1029.
Lady, sene ȝe Of sle spekine has sutelte, With wisdome thare-to at ȝore wil [etc.]
1400 Yester Wr. 41.
I obliste me … in fourty pvnd … to be vpleftyt at the wil of any man … that happynys to duele with the said land
c1420 Ratis R. 1597.
Al thing changis at the wyll … Of mekile God
1425–6 Acts II 11/1.
Gif ony man attemptis in the contrary of this, his gudis salbe eschete to the king ande his body at the kingis will
1451 Acts II 40/1.
That na Inglis penny haf cours bot at the wil of the ressauour
1456 Hay I 61/17.
Schir Pompee … fled nocht … for he … had folk ynewe at will
1473 Reg. Cupar A. I 191.
Our landis of Morton … ar set to Thome Sowtar … and his thre sonys … tha standand at the wil and ordynans of thar fadir in disponyng … of the tak to thame
c1475 Wall. vi 901.
I had leuir at myn awn will haiff thé With out cundyt that I mycht wrokyne be
1497 Acta Conc. II 82.
The panys … to be mitigat be the kingis hienes and at his will and emplesure
1500 Acta Conc. II 446.
Referris him … til the Kingis grace and at the wil of his emplesore
1545–6 Prot. Bk. Sir Wm. Corbet 6.
A hundreth merkis to be weill payit all at anys … and all the laiff to rest at wyll
a1561 Q. Kennedy Breif Tract. (ed.) 131/10.
The body of our Lord … in the sacrament, … invisible and insensible at the vill of the Lord
c1575 Balfour Pract. 592.
It sall be at the will and discretioun of the judge
(b) 1487 Fraser P. 106.
Quhilk mariage he sale fulfile … at the wile of the said Archibald
pl. a1500 Henr. Fab. 42.
Of this poete, my maisteris, … I wald preif To mak ane maner of translatioun … Correct it at ȝour willis gratious
(2) a1400 Leg. S. xix 444.
Sene he mycht nocht be mycht Oure-cum Christofore … be slycht He thocht thane that he wald Til his wil gere hyme fald
c1420 Wynt. ii 711.
That yle thai … sawe thai mycht, … Wyn it hally to thare wylle
c1460 Consail Vys Man 114.
Euir conforme thé to his vyll
1526 Reg. Privy S. I 532/2.
Reservand his fee and leveray claithis to our soverane lordis will
1533 Gau 91/4.
Keip vs fra … inobedience to Thy wil
c1540 Aberd. B. Rec. MS XVI (Jam. s.v. Gofe n.).
Hir crag selbe put in the gowffis wnto the townis will
1572 Buch. Detect. (1727) 141.
I remit me altogidder to ȝour will
(3) 1490 Irland Mir. I 7/25.
To submyt ȝou humylly to Jhesu … that eftir His will and plesaunce ȝe gouerne ȝou … for and ȝe be neclegent, nocht knawand His will nore his law and doctrine [etc.]
c1508 Ch. & M. Prints vi b 40.
Be it to me eftir thy word and will
1529 Dunferm. B. Rec. I 279.
Eftir the wil, mynd, entent and special command of the saidis Johne and Jonet his spous
1533 Gau 22/19.
We suld dant the body onder the spreit that it sal noth lewe as it desiris bot efter the wil of God

b. (En)during, (als lang as, etc.), for an authority's will, while, for a period of time during which a judgment or authoritative decision of some sort is in effect.(1) 1464–5 Acts XII 31/1.
Thai … sall … entire the kingis ward … and thare abide enduring the kingis will
1510–11 Reg. Privy S. I 337/2.
To endure als lang as he haldis the comptrollary … and forther the kingis will
pl. 1523–4 (c1580) Edinb. B. Rec. I 217.
The provest [etc.] … banissis hir this towne induring thair willis
1599 Murray Lyon Hist. Lodge Edinb. 26.
Ordanis na maister … to gaif the said Alexander … wark within this said burcht during thair haill willis
(2) 1498 Reg. Privy S. I 26/1.
Licence … to endur for the kingis will and quhill he … revok the sammyn
1508 Reg. Privy S. I 266/1.
He … to bruke the samyn for the kingis will

c. At(one's (awin)) will, under one's own authority or control, at one's command; as one pleases; freely, without hindrance. Also transf., of wind, etc., favourable.(1) 1375 Barb. v 314.
The folk … Assemblyt … As folk that had na dreid off ill For thai thocht all was at thar will
1388 Douglas Chart. 33.
S[ch]o sal haf fre issov and leif to pas at his wil
?1438 Alex. ii 1377.
And gif that sho on ony wyse With-haldis me of hir franchis Than haue I lemman at my will [F. J'aurai adont amie et amourz a mon chois] And lufe I will baith loud and still
c1420 Wynt. v 157.
Swa at hyr wyll Datys scho pullyd and ete hyr fyll
1456 Hay I 120/25.
Fra a man be tane in bataille, he is bonde … that man that takis him may do with him at his will
c1475 Wall. ii 15.
Bathe meite and drynk at his wille he had thar
1490 Lennox Mun. 136.
Sa that scho may frely occupy … the sade … lande at hir wyll and plaseyr
1491 Reg. Episc. Aberd. I 328.
To dispone apone the said bell and the profites tharof at his awin vil
1513 Doug. i ii 14.
Eolus … Temperis thar ire les thai suld at thar will Beir with thar byr the skyis [etc.]
(2) c1420 Wynt. iv 489.
Wyne and flesche thai had at wylle
1456 Hay I 147/18 (see Wale n. 1 b (2)). a1500 Gol. & Gaw. 253.
Thai … Micht nocht warne thame at wil to ische nor entre
a1500 Henr. Fab. 2111.
Thow art ane berne full bald, And wyse at will
c1475 Wall. vi 54.
He at will may lap hyr in his armys
transf. c1420 Wynt. ii 714.
Thai tuk wpe sayle and passyd in hy Wytht wynd at wyll to Brygancy
1535 Stewart 584.
The wynd wes fair, the wedder wes at will

d. Of (be) a person's will, by, due to his command, or authority. a1400 Leg. S. xxi 641.
Clement … wald nocht … consent … That Jhesu Cristis patronag Succed suld be harytage, Na ony pape suld of his wil Mak ony man succed hyme til
c1405 Slater Early Sc. Texts No. 59.
My men be my wille & assent has byrnde the toun of Berwike
1598 Edinb. B. Rec. in Hist. Fam. Seton 966.
Upon report made to them … of his majesty's will … they … ordained that [etc.]
1609 Skene Reg. Maj. ii 130.
Arbitrare crimes … are punished be the Kings will and mercie

7. a. To be, cum, etc. in(to) (another's, esp. an authority's) will, to be, etc. under (his or its) authority, at (his) command, or subject to (his) control; to submit to (an authority), chiefly of a criminal or fugitive from justice.(1) 1375 Barb. iv 173.
Thai … thaim ȝauld To be in-till the kingis will
a1400 Leg. S. xi 199.
Fra … Ind sal cum to thé Messyngeris, & put tham in thi will
14.. Burgh Laws c. 37 (B).
Al the gudis of hym sal be in the wyl of the kyng
1451 (c1580) Edinb. B. Rec. I 13.
Henryk Rafe is adiugeit be dome in the townis will xx li. for wrangous vsing the fredome as is fundin be ane assyse
c1475 Wall. vi 352.
To charge Wallace that he sulde cum him till … and put him in his will
1532 Selkirk B. Ct. (ed.) 122.
This inquest deliveris that George Michelhyll is in ane amerchiament and in wyll of our alderman and bailȝes vyll … quhat thai vyll do with hyme
c1550 Rolland Ct. Venus iv 325, 326, 327.
This man suld be put to the ordinance Of me and in my will the syse him maid And fra my will he may na way ewaid And throw my will he man stand to his chance The iuge grantit
1554 Crim. Trials I i 368.
Andro Layng … in ane court of justiciare … become in will to oure souerane lady and hir justice
1566-70 Buch. Comm. on Virgil Æn. vi 502.
Cui tantum de te licuit, quha had ye sa far in his will
1600 Sc. Hist. Rev. XXXVI 20.
[Alexander … snatching the dagger … presented it to the King's breast declaring that the King] behooved to be in his will, and used as he list
1627 Justiciary Cases I 66.
Conforme to his judiciall confessioun and becuming in his maiesteis will as culpable thairof
a1633 Hope Major Pract. II 292.
If the partie accused … come in the king's will and mercie [etc.]
1653 Argyll Rentals II 27 May.
Fra McNachtan ane take of Borgadill-beg, and he came in his will for ane hundreth merkis of entares
(2) a1400 Leg. S. xliii 476.
Almacius thane wes besy To get the gudis … Of … Valaryane … For-thi hir gert he bryng hyme til, To grype the gudis in-to wil
1473 Prestwick B. Rec. 22.
Willi Jurdane come in will for the distrubillans of the toun
1503 Dunferm. B. Rec. I 127.
Will Lambert in vill for strublin of Duncan Dovne and put him in vill tharof
a1508 Kennedy Flyt. 330.
Pas to my commissare, and be confest, Cour before him on kneis, and cum in will
1531 Bell. Boece II 310.
He commandit ane gard to wait on this Angus sa lang, quhill he come in will
1533 Boece 626a.
Duke Robert pursuit the said Donald so sharply that he come in wyl
1548 (c1580) Edinb. B. Rec. II 142.
Patrick Loch become in will for his falt
1548–9 Treas. Acc. IX 287.
New letteris of hornyng upoun thame that become in willis in the justice courttis
1557–8 Ayr B. Acc. 129.
Johne Blaris gild unlaw cuming in wil, [11 s.]
1566 Reg. Privy S. V ii 96/1.
Robert Leirmonth … fugitive fra the law, becum in will, or at the horne
1569-73 Bann. Memor. 215.
Some are come in will, whilk will is declaired to be this—to renunce the kingis auctoritie
1652 Peebles B. Rec. II 4.
John Hoipe … comes in will for ryot
1690 Lanark B. Rec. 237.
All quhich Nathaneell acknowledged and came in will

b. To have in one's own will, to have under one's own control or subject to one's own decision. 1496–7 Acta Conc. II 69.
He had in his chose and will to pay the soume … at … Candilmes or than til pay [etc.]

c. A fine or charge levied as a result of a person's being in will (see a above) for a crime or misdemeanour. Also const. of the levying authority. Chiefly 1508–9 Reg. Privy S. I 275/2.
Forsamekle as he [etc.] … war adjugit in the last justice-ayre … in soumes of money, unlawis [etc.] … for his … service done to his hienes … he remittis … to him the remanent of al the soumes, unlawis, compositiouns, willis and fynance abone exprimyt
1540–1 Ayr B. Acc. 85.
[Receipts for 11] willis [and 8 unlaws]
1548 Treas. Acc. IX 264.
To David Spens, messinger, send to Glasgow witht the extract of the willis of the Justice Courttis
1548 Treas. Acc. IX 265.
To Mongo Stratherne, messinger, letteris direct to Lanark to help to gather in the willis and to him to ane compte
1548–9 Treas. Acc. IX 287.
To Mungo Stratherne … send to … Cliddisdaill to poind for the willis of the last Justice courttis
1548–9 Treas. Acc. IX 294.
To inbring certane willis restand awand be certaine personis quhilkis come in will for [etc.]
1549 Treas. Acc. IX 321.
To Petir Thomsoun, send to the west countre to gadder in the willis and uther dettis restis awand thair
1553–4 Edinb. B. Rec. II 190.
To the saidis Maister Johne William and Dauid thair cousingis awin and particulare willis and proffettis
sing. 1556–7 Ayr B. Acc. 126.
[Dean of Guild … Charge … 3 entries at 5 s., 15 s.] The will of twa gild unlawis, [£1, 2 s.]
1557 Edinb. Old Acc. I 232.
The said compter chargis him with the will quhairintill William Byrnie in Leyth wes adjugit for not entering of ane pakald, xxx li.
1566–7 Craven Ch. in Orkney II 55.
With the thrid of the vill of the said bischoprik, extending the yeir comptit to 1 last iiij brs. 3 pt. brs.

8. The Fates. 1513 Doug. vii v 25.
Och, kynd of pepill haitfull and onworthy! For all the willis [L. fatis contraria nostris fata Phrygum] and the fatis Troiane Bene to our mynd and destaneis

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"Wil n.". Dictionary of the Scots Language. 2004. Scottish Language Dictionaries Ltd. Accessed 27 May 2024 <>



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