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

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First published 1937 (DOST Vol. I).
This entry has not been updated but may contain minor corrections and revisions.

Act, Ac(k, Ak, v. Also: hakin, var. of *akin quasi-strong p.p. of ak in place of the usual akit, actit. [Orig. in p.p. actit, f. L. actum neut. p.p. of agere to do, transact, etc.]

1. tr. To enact, decree. c1475 Wall. xi. 1228.
The gret jugement, At king Robert ackyt in his parlement
1499 Dunferm. B. Rec. 6.
The qwhilk day it is ackit that qwha that alegis [etc.] … sal be punist
1550 St. A. Baxter Bks. 6.
It is ackin [sic] be the bredren off baxtorie … to stand ferme & stabyll with thair decane in all thingis
1622-6 Bisset I. 242/5.
The act … is of new maid & acted in favouris of the clerk register

2. To enter (an agreement, obligation, etc.) in a book of record. 1474 Edinb. B. Rec. 32.
Thai to be ratifiit … siclik as thir actis, and to be actit and transsumpt in the commoun buke
1479 Peebles B. Rec. 185.
[To] caus the clerk to ac that deliuerans in the common buk
1514 Lennox Mun. 211.
The saidis lordis … ar content that [thir presentis] be ackit in the officialis bukis of Glasgow
1547 Glasgow Test. I. 15.
Ten lib. of this some … is ackit in the officiallis bukis
1573 Reg. Privy C. MS. XLII. 3 b.
That the samin suld be actit and registrat in the buikis of … counsall and sessioun
1589 Bk. Carlaverock I. 283.
That this oure band … be actit and registrat in the Buikis of Secret Counsaill

3. In passive (to be, or becum, actit), of a person: To have one's name entered in a record as being under some bond or obligation. Freq. const. with for, or to and infin. (a) 1492 Acta Conc. 221/1.
Thai consent … that Thomas Kennedy … be ackit to content & pay … twentj li.
1493 Ib. 310/11.
He haid causit the said Adam to be akkit in the officialis buk for … jc merkis
1530 Edinb. B. Rec. 20.
That thai be acit in the common bukis to … keip the said statutis
1564 Exch. R. XIX. 529.
I … grantis me to becum actit cautioner and sovertie for my cousing
1576 Reg. Privy C. II. 480.
The act and cautioun in the quhilk thay ar actit for the remaining of me … in the toun
1601 Elgin Rec. II. 95.
Johnne Cockburn is becum voluntarie actit that his miln sall nocht gang … on Sabboth dayes
1642 Fam. Rose 332.
To be bund, obleist, actit and astrictit
1669 Misc. Abbotsf. C. 95.
The said Mungo … becam acted not to truble, molest, or wrong the said Thome
(b) 1557 Crim. Trials I. i. 397.
He is nocht hakin ... to haif past to the said raid, becaus he is nocht ane landit manne

4. refl. To enter (oneself) as being under a bond or obligation. 1553 Lanark B. Rec. 23.
Wylem Lowre, burges of Lanark, akkit hymself … to pay to David Blake … all the expens and costis
1580 Misc. Maitl. C. I. 301.
Quhilkis buikis the said Mr. James actit himself to preserue
1609 Stirling B. Rec. I. 123.
[He] actis himself gif hereftir he be fund giltie … he sall amitt & tyne his friedome
1656 Glasgow B. Rec. 349.
That the haill fleschours … be put in ward quhill they act themselfis to sell thair haill tallow … according to the tounis statutis

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



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