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

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First published 1951 (DOST Vol. II).
This entry has not been updated but may contain minor corrections and revisions.

Fra, prep., conj., and adv. Also: fraa, fray(e, frae, fre. [Northern ME. fra (midl. and southern fro, froo), ON. frá. Cf. Fro prep.]

1. prep. From, in various contexts. a. Indicating departure (from a place or person). Occas. placed after the noun in verse.Fra hine, fra thine, see Hine adv., Thine adv.(a) 1375 Barb. i. 439.
The byschop … fra his presence went in hy
a1400 Leg. S. xv. 142.
He … folouyt hyme fra place to place
Ib. xix. 2671.
With that Criste fra hyme wanyst
c1420 Wynt. v. 3394.
Fra land to land he wes vagand
c1475 Wall. i. 364.
In Aperill fra him he bound to wend
a1500 Rauf C. 33.
He cachit fra the court
c1500-c1512 Dunb. lxvi. 69.
It micht have cuming … Fra Paris
1508 Reg. Privy S. I. 250/2.
To … pas again to the partis thai cum fra
1512 Reg. Privy S. I. 360/2.
Quhill the said Robertis returnyn fra the partis beȝound
a1570-86 Maitl. F. lvi. 82.
O conquerour of all honour Ascendit wes quhair thow come fra
1578 Prot. Bk. J. Robesone 5.
Efter his returnyng fra the saill to this realme agane
1590 Irvine Mun. I. 65.
For frie ische and intres to and fra the said wattir
1615 Red Bk. Grandtully I. xxvi.
To flitt and remoue himself, … furth and fra the said place of Murthlie
(b) c1475 Wall. viii. 837.
Thayr lestyt nayn agayn thaim that thai met, Bot othir dede, or ellis fled thaim fray
1515 Reg. Privy S. I. 409/1.
He frelie … may … bring and bere away to and fray this said realme & townis of quhat merchandis it sal pleis him
1529 Reg. Episc. Aberd. I. 396.
All pepill … passing in or fray owre said burght
1563 Grant Chart. 129.
To laidin his schip or boytt and lowis fray schoyr
(c) 1552–3 Edinb. Old Acc. I. 79.
For upbringing of the daylis frey Leith
1561–3 Ib. 383.
For carying of … stanis fre the gaitt to the kirk yeard
1570 Leslie 281.
The Frenche men … returned … to Kirkintulloch, and swe fre that to Leithqw and Edinburgh

b. Indicating distance or remoteness. 1375 Barb. i. 187.
Fra Weik anent Orkenay To Mullyr-snwk in Gallaway
c1420 Wynt. i. 230.
Fra Ynd to Tygre … Lys a land calde Parthia
1488 Acta Aud. 117/2.
That the Archidene sulde haf all the land fra the bra of Stratirun to the sey
1530 Glasgow Prot. IV. 34.
Fra the Wyndheid of Glasgw to the Grayfreris
1535 Stewart 36461.
All his bodie fra the top to ta
a1585 Maitl. Q. xlv. 15.
Quhen I find I am so far thame fray, Quha wes my only comfort
1595 Bamff Chart. 140.
As the samyn [landis] lyis merchit and mithit fraa … the Schallvallis

c. Indicating separation, removal, deprivation, or abstention.(a) 1375 Barb. ii. 497.
All the commownys went him fra
Ib. vi. 642.
The arm he fra the body bare
a1400 Leg. S. x. 61.
Thai tuk fra men the sycht
Ib. xxxiii. 110.
Quhen … he wes nere fra his wit
c1420 Wynt. i. 621.
Fra hys wyll quhen that we wryth
?1438 Alex. ii. 9308.
Thay dang thame fra thare dykes than
1446 Reg. Episc. Aberd. I. 249.
War that land fra it that Forbes clemys … , the lave war nocht a dauach and a half
c1475 Wall. iii. 101.
The worthi Scottis … putt thair hors thaim fra
1488 Lanark B. Rec. 3.
The wrangwis haldin fra him of vij s for flour tan frahim
a1508 Kennedy Pass. Christ 1057.
My kind king to sla me fra
1535 Stewart 27229.
Fra blude and battell I sall neuir blin
1568 Skeyne Descr. Pest viii.
The pure in sicht of the riche [being] … as beistis degenerat fra mankynd
1567 Sat. P. iii. 71.
Sho … baid fra bed untill sho hard the crak
1588 King Cat. fol. 162.
Nocht onelie to abstein fra flesh bot fra certane fruicts also of the earth
1629 Elgin Rec. II. 210.
To tak the clothis fra the woman in the beid hous
(b) 1551 Prot. Bk. Sir W. Corbet 16.
To part tham fraye the laiff of thair landis
1566 Inverness B. Rec. I. 132.
The sowme of ten merkis … to be vpliftit … fray the provest and bailȝeis
1586 Ib. 306.
Jonat Buddytht sall absteyne fray Thomas Mc Gillemechell, … and fraye all maner of men
(c) a1578 Pitsc. I. 109/15.
I pray … that I be nocht … excludit fre the fruit of thy gentrice
1640 Kirkcudbright Min. Bk. 87.
It being … knawn that the said William tuik a pairt of the said monie frae him
1677 Corshill Baron-Ct. 140.
For awaytakeing of ane foredoor frae the house

d. Indicating deliverance, defence, freedom, or exemption. 1375 Barb. vi. 430.
A gret menȝe … cummerit thame swa, That weill nane eschapit thaim fra
1398 Acts I. 212/1.
At thai be fre fra all maner of imposicion
a1400 Leg. S. Prol. 68.
Hou he brocht vs fra the care
a1500 Henr. III. 145/5.
Luf ws fra barret betis
a1500 Gol. & Gaw. 58.
Criste were thé fra wa
1473 Treas. Acc. I. 47.
The intimacione of the Kingis appellacione fra the Bishop of Sanctandros
1501 Doug. Pal. Hon. Prol. 38.
Thame to reserue fra rewmes pungitiue
1533 Gau 88/3.
Keip ws fra al onthankfulnes
1560 Rolland Seven S. 1835.
Thair is nane may fra his handis vs defend
1567 G. Ball. 112.
The Lord … hes vs fred full well thame fray
1591 Misc. Spald. C. III. 160.
Aucht great aikin treis, … for brackin of the wind fra the said kirk

e. Indicating absence or non-attendance. a1500 Seven S. 1889.
Fra he a day fra hame wald duell All that was done scho wald him tell
1526 Reg. Privy S. I. 542/1.
Thair tresonable remaning and byding fra the oist and army of Sulway
1546 Aberd. B. Rec. I. 246.
To remain at hame … and abyd fray the oist
1602 Elgin Rec. II. 107.
Gif he be found fra the kirk on Sondayis [he] salbe puneist with a belting
1629 Ib. 210.
For byding fra the eftirnonis sermoun

f. Indicating the personal or other source or origin of something. 1461 Liber Plusc. 336.
I that am descendit … fra the gude king Henry the thrid
1473–4 Treas. Acc. I. 14.
A sadill … coft be Andro Balfoure fra the said James
1493 Halyb. 31.
Resauit fra him 3 outrikis
c1500-c1512 Dunb. Tua Mar. W. iii.
The luf-blenkis of that bogil fra his blerde ene
1560 Acts II. 605/2.
That honorable personis be send in ambassat fra & on behalf of the estatis
a1578 Pitsc. I. 40/33.
His … messaige that come to him fre the mai[e]stratis
1616 Orkney & Zetl. Sheriff Ct. 73.
He … desyreing ane cashie of hay fra him
1618 Sutherland Corr. 136.
I am byinge my blok fre him agane
1681 Corshill Baron Ct. 156.
Ane bawbee peice … [that] he got frae him

g. Indicating change. c1500-c1512 Dunb. lxvi. 23.
The change of warld fra weill to wo
c1550 Rolland Ct. Venus Prol. 9.
Of the planetis aspectis … That … fra vther ar wonder alterat
Id. Seven S. 9435.
Ȝe … Fra all dolour to mirth hes changeit my cheir

2. From, in respect of time. a1400 Leg. S. iii. 1135.
The bischope fra that tym ay To sancte Andrew … Wes mare dewote ine al thinge
1386 Rotuli Sc. II. 85/2.
Fra the makyng of this endentures to the last day of May
1478 Acta Conc. 11/1.
He continuit the seruing of the breif fra a day to ane vther
a1500 Seven S. 713.
Fra that day furth his eme had dreid
1556 Lauder Off. Kings 487.
Wa be till him that hurdis vp his corne, Syne kepis it vp to dearth, fra morne to morne
ellipt. c1420 Wynt. ii. 32.
Befor or fra than reknys he The yhere, as made wes the Cyte

b. In the phr. fra time that. 1450 Antiq. Aberd. & B. II. 343.
Frae tyme that I sal be … joysand frely the benefice of Turray
a1568 Bann. MS. 48 b/6.
Kingis and lordis sall haif no mair, Fra tyme that thay be bund on beir
a1570-86 Maitl. F. cxii. 29.
Fra tyme he gat the purs in hand He kyndlie cousing callit me
1590 Burel Entry Q. Anne.
All curious pastimes … Wes to be sene … Fra time that brauitie began

c. Fra that or at, from the time that. 1375 Barb. i. 581.
Than thocht he to have the leding … Fra at the Brwce to dede wer brocht
a1400 Leg. S. xviii. 689.
Fra that I had mad this bone Sum comfort tuk myn harte sone
a1500 Henr. Fab. 2245.
Efter thay lousit, fra that it worthit weill lait
1513 Doug. vi. x. 1.
Fra that the ancyant nun … Thir wordis endit had
1535 Stewart 28.
Fra that his grace has sene Sa nobill kingis befoir his tyme haif bene

d. Fra this furth, from this time forward.Fra hine (furth), fra thine (furth), see Hine adv., Thine adv. Fra hand, see Hand n. 1558-66 Knox II. 74. Ib. 83.
That fra this furth thay be not compellit to tak ony credeit
1564 Edinb. B. Rec. III. 183.
Sua that na pairt of the samyn [walls] be clymable … fra this furth

3. ellipt. as conj. a. From the time that, as soon as.(a) 1375 Barb. i. 106.
Durst nane of Walis … fra ewyn fell, abyd Castellor wallyt toune within
Ib. 141.
Fra he wyst quhat charge thai had, He buskyt hym
a1400 Leg. S. Prol. 12, etc.
Thai ma nocht fra thyne be brocht, Fra thai thare-in beset thare thocht
c1420 Wynt. vi. 1219; etc.
Fra this the Empryoure had herd, In till hys thoucht he wes afferde
1456 Hay I. 121/53.
Fra a prisounare be tane, the takare may do with him quhat ever him lykis
c1475 Wall. vi. 538.
Wallace was blyth fra he hard thair wourd
c1500-c1512 Dunb. Tua Mar. W. 80.
Fra I had preveit his pitht … Than suld I cast me [etc.]
1533 Boece xiii. ix. 518 b.
Incontinent fra thai landit King Philip met thame at Bolonye
1569-73 Bann. Memor. 334.
Fra he was laid doun he fumeth at mouth
1604 Urie Baron Ct. 10.
That fra the nycht cum thair be nawayis fund oney people within the miln
1640 Baillie I. 251.
Fra the Provost of the towne required he should be heard
(b) 1571 Sat. P. xxvii. 44.
I feir … it work to war Fray thai aganis our pairtie anis prewaill
1629 Boyd Last B. 7.
Frae once the bee hath winne to its hyve-hole, it entereth into rest

b. Since, because. 1637 Baillie I. 24.
I wish all [books] in leather; but frae it cannot be, it's better to have them in your parchment
1638 Ib. 106.
Frae my voyage to Edinburgh was hindered

4. adv. Indicating movement away or dissent. To and fra, to and fro. 1375 Barb. xvii. 531.
So lang thai raid distroyande swa, As thai trauercit to and fra
c1450-2 Howlat 270.
Sum said to and sum fra, Sum nay and sum ȝa
1501 Doug. Pal. Hon. i. 48.
Now thair, now heir, now hie and now deuaillis, Now to, now fra
1641 Acts V. 629/2.
With power of ferrieing to and fra vpone the said firth

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"Fra prep.". Dictionary of the Scots Language. 2004. Scottish Language Dictionaries Ltd. Accessed 26 Sep 2023 <>



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