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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 since then but may contain minor corrections and revisions.

Gres, Grese, n. Also: greas(e, greis, gresse, graisse. pl. gressis, -ys. [ME. grece, grees (14th c.), gres (c 1200), OE. græs. Cf. Gras, Gers.]

1. a. Grass. b. Herbs (cf. 2).(a) a 1350 Facs. Nat. MSS. II. 14.
In communi pastura dicte terre usufructu [gl. gres, watir and other profitis] pro suis animalibus
1375 Barb. ii. 361.
The gres woux off the blud all rede
Ib. viii. 445 (E).
He gert … sekkis ta Fyllyt with gres
a1400 Leg. S. xviii. 996.
In the fyrst aucht ȝere The twa lafis & half ete I, & syne furth gres anerly
c1500-c1512 Dunb. Tua Mar. W. 24.
Thair mantillis grein war as the gres
1534 Dunferm. Reg. Ct. I. 26 b.
Johne Hakat … grantit … certain cattellis gres in his myir of Pitsyrran
1551 Banff Ann. I. 28.
Geve ony persone beis fundin cherand or cwttand gres vpone the balkis
1567 G. Ball. 238.
Of grene gres sone cummis wallowit hay
1574 Breadalbane Ct. Bk. 15.
Anent non passing out of the ground with thair gudis … to gres, and eitting of the toft gres
1609 Skene Reg. Maj. ii. 12.
Gif the King will set the gresse in time of fogage
1635 Glasgow B. Rec. II. 28.
The gres of Lytle St. Mungowis kirkyaird is sett to Johne Barnes
1660 Melrose Reg. Rec. I. 300.
Ane half sowmes gresse of nolt grassed be the persewar to him in summer gone a yeire
(b) 1549 Banff Ann. I. 27.
All the craigis and greis betuixt the Droppane craig and the landis ward
1649 Glasgow B. Rec. II. 176.
To pay … in satisfactioune … of all … gleibs, horse or kyes grese
1661 Lanark B. Rec. 185.
To give the grese of the Castlehill this yeir … to Mr Robert Birnie
(c) 1621 Urie Baron Ct. 38.
To cut or pull any greas among thair maisters … cornis
1636 Ib. 80.
To pay … for the grease of thair gudis
(d) 1587-99 Hume 163/286.
The graisse of my planting shall be the work of my hands, that I may be glorified

b. Attrib. with mercat, rowme, seller. 1538 Edinb. B. Rec. II. 89.
That the gres mercat aboue the Tolbuith be chayngeit and … that the gres be sawld at the fute of the kirk ȝaird
1610 Edinb. Marr. 149.
John Scot, gresse-seller
1612 Edinb. Test. XLVII. 85.
That my richtis and takis of Spolischeill and Tounsley, being gres rowmes, be possest be my spous
1616 Edinb. B. Rec. VI. 139.
His tenement of land lyand … foranent the gres mercat

2. pl. Herbs or plants; also collect., grass. 1456 Hay II. 163/22.
A … gardyn quhare thare is grete quantitee of fruyte treis, herbis, and othir gresis
Brus v. 13 (E).
This wes in ver, quhen … all gressys [C. grewis] begouth to spryng
c1500-c1512 Dunb. Tua Mar. W. 20.
Quhill all the gressis did gleme of the glaid hewis
1513 Doug. iii. viii. 63.
I saw … fowr horssis … Gnyppand gresys [R. greissis] the large feildis on raw
1599 Aberd. Eccl. Rec. 169.
That nane schear gressis in the kirk yearde … sua that it sall be nocht lesum to the officear to haue the use of the gressis and schering theirof

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"Gres n.". Dictionary of the Scots Language. 2004. Scottish Language Dictionaries Ltd. Accessed 20 Jun 2024 <>



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