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

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First published 1963 (DOST Vol. III).
This entry has not been updated since then but may contain minor corrections and revisions.

Inspreth, Insprecht, n. Also: insprech, -spraich; inspraith, -sprayth, -spreith, -spreathe; -spreght, -spraight, -spright; -spraicht. [Of doubtful etymology. Appar. confined to the West and South-west (not found east of Linlithgow).The second element agrees in form with Spreith, Sprethe n., booty, plunder, cattle as booty, but the difference in meaning makes it doubtful whether there is any connection with this.The spellings insprech, -spraich, are probably due to the common confusion in MSS. between t and c. Those with cht (and ght) are in line with other words in which this is a common variant (not merely in writing) of th.]

1. Household furnishings, furniture. = Insicht n.(a) 1488 Acta Conc. I. 90/1.
Macolme … sall … pay … for certane vtheris gudis and insprech of houshalde four skore of merkis
1574 in Three Reformers 10.
My insprech and silver wark
(b) c1500 Harl. MS. 4700 282 b.
Baith catale corne & inspreth
1540 Maxwell Mem. I. 283.
Ȝe sall deliuer to the Lard of Nedder Pollok certane inspreth
1552 Glasgow Test. I. 94.
Inspreth & outspreth pertenyng to the hous
c1575 Balfour Pract. 236.
It is leasum … to ony persoun to leive in legacie his wapinis, armour and inspreth of his house to quhom he pleisis … reservand alwayis to his air his … principal inspreth
1564–75 Hamilton & Campsie Test. I. 4 b.
Inspreth & insycht to the valour of [etc.]
1580 Edinb. Test. VIII. 8 b.
The haill insycht & inspreth of the place of Pokellie in tymmer wark … , fyre veschell … , irne chymnayis [etc.]
1628 Dundonald Par. Rec. 256.
To receaue the inspreth of John Blaks hous quhilk he had boght
1653 Z. Boyd in Glasgow Univ. Mun. I. 310.
All my moveable goods as bedding, boords, and other inspreth
1671 Kirkcudbr. Test. (Kirkcudbr. Sheriff Ct.) 6 Sept.
The inspreth and plenisching of my hous
(c) 1562-3 Winȝet I. 114/6.
Togiddir with thair sones, dochtiris, horss, cattell, and all thair insprayth
1564–75 Hamilton & Campsie Test. I. 26 b.
1618 Trial Isobel Inch 8.
Quhat inspraith saw she in the forsaid waist hous
1637 Edinb. Test. LVIII. 132.
My pairt of the inspraith of my hous
(d) 1593 Edinb. Test. XXV. 308 b.
I leif the haill inspreith [etc.]
1627 Glasg. Univ. Mun. III. 529.
Inventar of the college inspreathe
(e) 1537 Glasgow Prot. IV. 116.
John Law fand na insprecht nor na uder thing within the said place bot baer wawis allanerlye
1560 Stirling B. Rec. I. 75.
The … arschip gudis and geir, insprecht and utheris abon writtin
1587 Ayr & Wigt. Coll. VI. 245.
All and sindrie his guidis and geir … insprecht and utheris
c1686 Depred. Clan Campbell 35, 37.
Account of what goods, gear, and inspreght was taken from Duncan McGillespick, … Inspreght and other household plenishing, 9 merks
(f) 1569 Prot. Bk. T. Johnsoun (S.R.S.) 161.
[All] inspraicht [such as] beddis, burdis [etc.]

b. Attrib. with gudis, plenishing. 1544 Reg. Privy S. III. 129.
At the horne for his … birnyng … of the said Davidis hous, insprech gudis, and cornis
1552-3 Lochwinnoch Par. 43.
Inspraith gudis
1568 Waus Corr. 42.
Fullili contentit for all the haill inspreit gudis of Barnbarracht and Frucht
1648 Linlithgow Pal. 331.
Ane inventar of the wholl guidis and geir and wther inspright plenishing within the two north eist chalmeris
c1686 Depred. Clan Campbell 37.
Of pleugh irons and inspreght plenishing the worth of fiftie-sex marks

2. Transf. or in loose usage. 1584 Sempill Sat. P. xlv. 925.
Heir all the inspraich [v.r. -spraith] he provydit
1635 D. Dickson Wr. I. 125.
He makes Satan fall from heaven like lightening, he robs him of his armour and inspraith

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"Inspreth n.". Dictionary of the Scots Language. 2004. Scottish Language Dictionaries Ltd. Accessed 25 Feb 2024 <>



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