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

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First published 1986 (DOST Vol. VI).
This entry has not been updated since then but may contain minor corrections and revisions.

Punct, Punt, n.1 Also: puncte, pwnct, punte, puntte, pwnt; ponct, pont; pwnyt; pount, pounct(t; Punk. [ME and e.m.E. punct dot, measure of time (1398), moment (1561), also pont detail (c1400), med. L. (Eng.) punctus and punctum, L. punctum a point: see Point n.1] A point, in various senses.Common only in sense 2 where it corresponds to usage in Latin documents, but uncommon in the other senses of Point n.1

1. A dot or speck.

a. As a decoration on a garment. b. As a punctuation mark. = Point n.1 1 a. c. In musical notation. = Point n.1 1 b, q.v.a. 1516 Inv. Wardrobe 24.
Ane saferon with punctis of gold with lxi perle of crammasy velvot
b. c1616 Hume Orthog. 34.
The round punct concludes an assertion … The tailed punct concludes an interrogation
c. c1550-c1580 Art of Music 11b.
And with pwnctis within cirkillis or semecirkillis imprentit
Ib. 20b.
That quahan a pwnyt is put eftir ane long, it is indicat to be of perfectione, and gif it be eftir ane mynnym, it is of division
Ib. 21.
Off divisioun quhow is the pwnct knawin? It is the pwnyt quhen it is put to the noit befoir or behind that nother to the noit nor fra the noit dois tak nor gif
Ib. 20b.

2. A separate item or article; a particular; a detail. = Point n.1 2.In all punctis, in every particular, in all respects.(1) (a) 1490 Irland Mir. 356a in G. G. Smith Specimens of Middle Scots (1902) 95/25.
sing. And to the thrid punct [etc.]
1496 Acta Conc. II 9.
The lordis herefore contynewis this punct of the summondis to [etc.]
1497–8 Ib. 129.
[Gif] thar men servandis … brekis ony punct before writin
1498 Ib. 220.
That thai ansuere punct be punct apone al punctis contenit in the sade act
1513 Acts II 282/1.
Thai culd nocht consent to gif consell to enerve nor violate the said confederacioun in ony punct
1515 Douglas Corr. 69.
Nedfull it is, and that is a speciall punct of ȝour memoryall, to caus the kyng [sc. Henry] wryte ta the Kyng of Frans heyre apone
1522–3 Edinb. B. Rec. I 211.
That the said Robert denyit that thai had brokin ony punct contenit in the said decrete
1531 Ib. II 53.
Als oft as thai brek ony punct of the said act
1533 Acta Conc. Publ. Aff. 400.
And the punct is rycht periculous to thaim for and thai excede thar boundis in thar executioun [etc.]
c1575 Balfour Pract. 382.
Gif the samin manifestlie be razit in the dait, or ony uther substancial punct
pl. 1427 Indenture Crown Office Writs No. 40 (Reg. H.).
And til al thir pvnctis & condiconis beforesaid bathe the partyis handis ar vphaldyn
1460 Ayr B. Ct. 3 April.
And her for the sayd Marion … was owrtane & filit be ane grete assis of all the said puncteis
1478 Reg. Cupar A. I 209.
To kepe al the punctis he has suorn a sollemne ath
1492 Reg. Episc. Morav. 245. 1496–7 Acta Conc. II 46.
To preiff sufficiently the punctis contenit in the sadis summondis
1499 Exch. R. XI 393 heading.
The punctis to be inquirit at the inqueist
1499–1500 Acta Conc. II 386.
For the wrangus spoliatioun … of yowis and weddris … and for certane utheris punctis
1509 Reg. Privy S. I 285/1.
Dischargeing his ballies … of rasing of ony unlawis thairof for the punctis of his forest courtis
1520 Fife Sheriff Ct. 181. 1533–4 Dunferm. Reg. Ct. 106.
The quhilk day the assis accusit of the generale punctis of the hed curt conform to act
1546 Blackfriars Perth 214.
To preive the punctis of the letres
1561 St. A. Kirk S. 80. c1575 Balfour Pract. 172.(b) 1473 Reg. Cupar A. I 173.
And at al thir pwntis forsade be lelaly and treuly kepit
1484 Misc. Spald. C. II 255.
With all vthir puntis contenit in band of manrent
c1500 Halyb. xxiii.
To schaw the verite … a pon all puntis at I knaw in thir materis
1507–8 Rec. Earld. Orkney 80. 1528 Douglas Corr. 345.
For the observing of every puntte desirit be the said erle in this said writting
a1538 Abell 111b.
Thai martirit him renowand all the puntis of owr saluitoris passion
1536 St. P. Henry VIII IV iv 667 in Robertson Concilia Sc. I cxxxvii.
This was the pwntis of the kyngis charg and command
1559 Inverness Rec. I 37.
The forsaidis personis … nayt the puntis of the forsaid precep
1560–1 St. A. Kirk S. 66.
Wytnessis examinated upon the puntis of the libellat summondis of Aleson Calland
1563–4 Reg. Privy C. I 263. 1565 St. A. Kirk S. 240.
And sua contrary to his fyrst deposicion in twa puntis, to wyt [etc.]
1689 Cullen B. Rec. 48b (5 Feb.).
Consenting thir punts be registrated in the books of … session [etc.]
(c) c1420 Ratis R. 213.
Gif thow thir sex pontis seis
1489–90 Acta Aud. 142/1.
And othir ponctis contenit tharintill
1498 Aberd. Pynours 57.
Quha brekis this statut or ony pont contenit in it
1536 Prot. Bk. Thomas Johnsoun 20.
Quhair it [the contract] falis in ony pont
1556 Prestwick B. Rec. 63.
The inquest absolfis Adame Myllar of al ponttis contenyt in this wryt … excep [etc.]
1593 Innes Review III 102.
In quhilk heid being soundit letlie be his majestie I answerit to it I hed doin in that pont
(d) 1505 Chart. Coupar A. II 116.
The quhilkis pounctis and conditionys abuff writin nocht bein kepit
1533 Boyd Fam. P. No. 9 (3 Jan.).
That this my present obligatioun and all the pouncts thairof be inserit in the officialis buks of Glasgw
1555 Lochwinnoch Par. 54.
Conform to the tennour of the said registrat contract, in that pounctt
(2) 1422 Stirlings of Keir 209 (see Article n. 1). 1465–6 Charter (Reg. H.) No. 391.
In all and sendry punctis articylis and circumstans in forme ande effyit
1512 Grey Friars II 31.
In all punctis and effect contenit in the samyn
1518 Chart. Coupar A. II 118.
1551–2 Perth Guildry MS 280 (15 Jan.).
Quhilkis actis Patrik Adamson den of gild … hes … approvit in all punctis
1564–5 Rec. Earld. Orkney 121.(3) 1490 Irland Mir. I 116/2.
Dame Cherite, in all punctis conformand hire to hire best luffit scistir
1526 Hawick Arch. Soc. (1906) 43. 1566 Canongate Kirk S. (ed.) 43.
Sum of the baillies … confessis thame … to have don partle punischment … bot thay could nocht in all pounttis be ressone that [etc.]
1619 Laing MSS I 154.
I sall fullfill unto your lordship in all pountis
(4) 1550 Perth Guildry MS 268 (30 May).
And will nocht refus his craft nor na punct thairof
1595 Conv. Burghs I 468.
And mony vther pountis of thair craft
(5) 1498 Acta Conc. II 205.
Apone certane punctis of errour contenit in the sammyn [summons]
1512 Crim. Trials I i 80.
The tym of the takin or apprehending of tham, salbe na punct of dittay
(6) 1557–8 Inverness Rec. I 18.
Ane aquavitte pot and ane caldron pertening to the said Fynla as ane punt of heretage
1561 Ib. 68.
The proffeitt … of his puntis of heretage, viz., his horse [etc.]

b. A feature, aspect, instance, mark or characteristic (of something.) = Point n.1 2 c. a1500 Henr. Fab. 712 (Bann.).
Quod the wolf, ‘thow wantis pontis twa, Belangand to perfyt confessioun’
c1500-c1512 Dunb. xlv 17.
It is ane pount of ignorance To lufe in sic distemperance
1513 Doug. Comm. i v 28.
Considdir gif this be punctis of traison, or rathar of honour

3. a. ? A point in space, a specific place. 1588 Prot. Bk. W. Cumming 128.
The vattir was helpabill at this punct to be pot be laboris ane oder way

b. In heraldry: Hede punct: see Point n.1 3 b.

c. A moment in time, an instant; a moment of decision or crisis; the moment (of some event, as death). = Point n.1 5 a-c.In ane punt, in an instant, instantly. 1513 Doug. xii xiii 29.
For now is cum the extreme lattir punct. Thou mycht quhil now haue catchit at disiunct The silly Troianys
a1538 Abell 50b.
Thai leid thare life in corporall plesance & in ane punt thai pas to the hell
1629 Maxwell Mem. II 202.
And my … dochtir at the punt of daithe

d. A critical situation, a crisis; critical condition, extremity. = Point n.1 5, 6. 1513 Doug. iii iv 138.
Our falloschip excers palestral play … Nakyt wreslyng and struglyng at nyce punte [: envnte; v.rr. poynt : anoynt]
1543–4 Corr. M. Lorraine 53.
And I promis yow … geif it cumis to ony punct of scharpnes your grace sall fynd me the samyn
1559 M. Napier Mem. J. Napier 64.
Quhow all affairis standis with me, quhilkis ar at syk punt … that [etc.]

4. At ane gud punt, in good condition, in good fettle. = Point n.1 6. c1543–4 Corr. M. Lorraine 436.
Your broder hes him recommendyt unto yow for he is at ane gud punt

5. In punct, on the point, in imminent danger (of some undesirable fate). = Point n.1 8.Cf. med. L. (Brit.) in puncto, -u, id. 1497 Acta Conc. II 88.
Throw the quhilk the wynes and uther gudis ar in punct of tinsale
1513–14 Acta Conc. Publ. Aff. 9.
The saidis merchandis gudis being in thar schippis in greit punct of tynsell in rotting
a1538 Abell 4b.
At Babilon wes in punt of tynsall
Ib. 25a.
Thai slew sa mony of the Romanis that the laif wes in pont of fleing

6. ? A certain conclusion to which an argument is directed, a ‘point’ being made; or ? 3 c or 3 d. 1544 Corr. M. Lorraine 74.
Your grace knaws quhat pount I am at and alswa sall clerlie onderstand that I haiff maid na faill

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"Punct n.1". Dictionary of the Scots Language. 2004. Scottish Language Dictionaries Ltd. Accessed 13 Apr 2024 <>



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