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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.

Brek, Breke, v. Also: brekk-, breck(e, breik; p.t. brak, brack, brac; brek, breik; brake, braik, break; bruk, brok; p.p. brokin(e, -ing, -yn(e, broikin, brokne, brokkin, brockin(e, brocken (brekine?, bracken); brek; brok(e, brock, brook. [ME. brek (brec), breke, OE. brecan. See also Braik, Brak, and Brik v.]The normal form with long e (cf. speke) is represented by the spellings breke, breik, and possibly implied in brekis, brekand, breking, but the greater prevalence of the short vowel is clearly indicated by the usual spellings brek (occasionally brekk-) and breck.

To break, in various senses.

1. tr. To rupture or crack (a material thing); to rend.(a) c1420 Wynt. iv. 437.
Hyr consale gave hyr to ger breke The bryggys
c1460 Wisd. Sol. 563.
Wer is to brek a dowble raipe na a single
1529 Edinb. B. Rec. II. 12.
Vnder the payne of breking the lvme
1534 Melville Chart. 76.
The laird … breikis his plewchtis
a1568 Scott ii. 119.
Cum furth and brek a speir
a1578 Pitsc. I. 117/24.
No man can brek thame [sc. arrows] at anis
1595 Duncan Appendix.
Rumpo, … to brecke
1607 Linlithgow Palace App. iii.
When the inner wall sall fall and brek your fontane
1611-57 Mure Ps. cxli. 5.
This … shall not breke my heid
1653 Glasgow B. Rec. II. 259.
Sundrie of the wreights … brecking all thair worklomes
(b) 1375 Barb. ii. 61.
Thai brak the dur
a1400 Leg. S. ix. 227.
Quhene thu brak thine awne mawment
c1420 Wynt. iii. 289.
Sampson … brak alle Thai rapys in tyll pecys smalle
Ib. viii. 5154.
The Dowglas … brak his spere
a1500 Doug. K. Hart 886.
With the brand brak he both his schinnis
1558-66 Knox II. 347.
Sum say that he brack the stancheour of the wyndo
1566 Reg. Privy C. I. 460.
Henrie … brak ane greit staff upoun him
1572 Sat. P. xxx. 176.
Ely all his bonis braik [: straik]
c1650 Spalding II. 4.
The hangman brak his suord
1663 Lamont Diary 202.
[He] fell and bracke his arme
1667 Highland P. II. 49.
He brack the bow
(c) 1375 Barb. xii. 98.
His hand ax schaft, that swa Wes with ane strak brokyn in twa
a1400 Leg. S. l. 688.
Angelis … All that brekine was, can bet
c1420 Wynt. viii. 2530.
Mony a swerd … In pecis brokyn thare lyand were
1456 Hay I. 268/18.
Quhen ane had brokyn his wappin
a1500 Henr. Fab. 2190.
With the bastoun weill brokin wes his heid
1485 Acts II. 172/1.
Quhare thare is fundin ony sic werk … the werk to be brokin
1493 Dunferm. B. Rec. 44.
Robert Lam seriand … present his wand brokyn upon Rob Schaip
c1500-c1512 Dunb. xxxviii. 3.
The ȝettis of hell ar brokin with a crak
1555 Edinb. B. Rec. II. 298.
For mending of fyve greit loks quhilks wer … brokin with presoneris
a1568 Bann. MS. 158 a/43.
The dur mon be brockin
a1578 Pitsc. I. 117/27.
The bischoip … pullit out [the arrows] ane be ane … quhill he had brokin thame all
1596 Dalr. I. 23/32.
The pig quhairin it was, was brokne
1614 Melrose P. 176.
Cannon billetts … brokkin lyk goulfe balles
1652 Glasgow B. Rec. II. 226.
Ane jeist in the hie stiple that is said to be brockine
1665 Aberd. B. Rec. IV. 218.
Who … had brockine his back
(b) 1611-57 Mure Ps. vii. 3.
Of amitie Iff I have brock the bands
1662 Lanark B. Rec. 191.
Unsufficient [work] sall … be … brock and cuttit
c 1685 Annandale Corr. 314.
Furnitur, which is eather spoild or brok

b. In p.p. of a vessel stranded or wrecked.Also transf. of the persons wrecked. a1400 Leg. S. vii. 370.
Quhat schepe that brokine ware A-pone that coste
1493 Acta Conc. 275/1.
The hale schip wes tynt & brokin be aventure of sey & wedder
1504 Edinb. Chart. 188.
The schip … latlie skorit or brokin in tha pairtis
1535 Stewart 36299.
How Donewaldus … Into ane schip … wes brokin on ane sand
1568 Edinb. Test. I. 212 b.
In the schip brokin at Were
1625 Garden Kings 14.
Thou … lastlie brockin to this bay them brought

c. In various figurative phrases. a1500 Henr. Fab. 1547.
Brekand his hart with sair murning
c1500-c1512 Dunb. lxvi. 83.
It breikis my hairt, and birstis my brane
a1605 Montg. Son. xlvi. 9.
To brek ȝour brains … is no bute
1596 Dalr. I. 256/10.
Thay … brack the backis of the heretickis
1611-57 Mure Ps. cv. 16.
He … bracke the staffe of breade
1649 Lamont Diary 4.
He bracke Priscians head verry often

2. a. To break down (a wall, building, etc.); to make a breach in; to break into, or out of (a place).(a) 1375 Barb. x. 88.
To that brig held thai fast thair way, And till brek it can fast assay
c1400 Troy-bk. ii. 661.
One neid thai huffed … To breke the walle
1456 Hay I. 172/34.
To brek prisoun and escape
Ib. II. 101/3.
It … brekis stepillis and kirkis
c1475 Wall. viii. 402.
Wallace gert brek thai burly byggyngis
1535 Stewart 22496.
That wall wes nocht biggit with lyme … Quhairfoir it was the eithar for to brek
a1570-86 Maitl. F. xcv. 49.
He neuer tyris for to brek byris
1629 Boyd Last B. p. xviii/2.
Before that God the heav'nly sluices break [: check]
(b) 1375 Barb. xii. 396.
Howsis and thak thai brak
a1400 Leg. S. xxxiv. 346.
Thai brak the sel [= cell] & had hym oute
a1500 Henr. Bludy Serk 56.
That prince … brak the bour
a1500 Seven S. 1799.
All that nycht thai wrocht … Quhill thai the foundement fand & brak
c1500 Rowll Cursing 21.
That brak his ȝaird and stall his frutt
1533 Boece v. v. 172 b.
The confederate naciouns … brak the dyke
1554–5 Edinb. B. Rec. II. 295.
Ane theif that brak ane buith
Ib. 356.
Quhair the thevis … brak the kirk
1558-66 Knox II. 57.
The haill victuallis they careit to Leith; the mylnes thay brak
a1570-86 Maitland M. Fol. xvii. 15.
Think that it wes his hand that brak the waw
1625 Garden Kings 15.
Severus wall … Conar … did brack
1689 Glasgow B. Rec. III. 421.
These who brack the tolbooth
(c) 1456 Hay I. 173/8.
That ane othir man had brokin his prisoune
1673 Aberd. B. Rec. IV. 285.
Considering that the said pend was never befor brockin

b. To break the surface of (the ground) by digging, ploughing, etc. Also with furth. 1488 Acta Aud. 117/2.
The citineris … has erit and brokin the erde … within the saidis landis
1516 Reg. Privy S. I. 417/1.
To lawbour in the mynd of ure of gold … and to brek the ground thairfor
1539 Reg. Privy S. II. 455 2.
Ane lettre … gevand him full poware … to breik and rife out his landis of his heretage
1554 Edinb. B. Rec. II. 193.
That the haill commoun streit of the said wynd is brokin
1555 Peebles B. Rec. 218.
All thame that has broking ony land in common gaittis
1565 Dysart Rec. 31.
Alledged that Iohn Inglis brack his ground for insetting of the water in upon his ground
1585 Rec. Earld. Orkney 306.
The outbrekis that Nicoll Broun … hes brokkin fourth within the boundis of … Bowbrek
1626 Stirling's Royal Lett. I. 38.
Licence and commission to breck, dig, opin and search all and whatsumiver ground

c. To make (an opening) by breaking. 1481 Peebles B. Rec. 189.
Archbald proponit … [to] brek dur and wondow opynand apon the said wynd
1513 Doug. ii. viii. 97.
The way is maid by fors, and entre brokkyn
1613–4 Misc. Spald. C. V. 94.
For mending the hoill in the thack … that the theves brak

3. a. To cut up (esp. flesh or fish) or divide into portions; to break up into separate parts or lots.(1) 14.. Acts I. 335/2.
Thai brek the fische and sellis it in pennyworthis
1444 Aberd. B. Rec. I. 11.
That na fleschowar … brek flesch in ony othir place bot the fleschous
1465 Peebles B. Rec. 154.
Thai … that brak red fesch to sell, the schyn [= skin] to be brokin wyth the samyn fysch
1474 Edinb. B. Rec. I. 29.
Brekand schepe skinnis … outher for poyntis or for gait ledder
1484 Ib. I. 49.
That na fische be halden nor … brokin into houssis, bot in the market
1510 Ib. 130.
[Each baxter] to brek for mayne [breid] xvj laid
1531 Ib. II. 55.
Gyf ony fremaister of the said [tailor] craft … brekis ony manys stuf vnordourly
1538–9 M. Works Acc. V. 32.
To the pynouris … for breking of the … twa flottis
1550 Stirling B. Rec. I. 58.
All fleschouris … to be fre to brek fischis apon the commoun skemlis
1561 Inv. Q. Mary 38.
Ane tapestrie … brokine to mak a claith of estait
1595 Edinb. B. Rec. V. 142.
Dischairging any mayne flour to be brokkin or grund at thair commoun mylnis
1632 Milne Home MSS. 199.
Gif beir beis brokin or ony saill maid thairof
1657 Glasgow B. Rec. II. 373.
Williame Stirling wha was … appoyntit to breck the salmount
(2) 14.. Acts I. 336/2.
Off the tailȝeouris chalance … Item, thai breik men thair days
1506 Treas. Acc. III. 187.
To the king, quhilk he brak, 14/-
(3) 1555 Peebles B. Rec. 214.
The inqueist ordanis the stallanges to be broking
1571 Ib. 326.
xx lib. to be broking to the brig werk and pulder
1654 Ib. II. 22.
The stentmaisters appoynted … for breaking the haill stent

b. To brek bou(l)k: see Boulk n., Bouk n.

c. To apportion a tax on (a person); to assess or stent. 1555 Peebles B. Rec. 207; Ib. 214.
The counsale ordanis tua of ilk quarter breik the laif of thair nychtbouris … to the pissance of thair geir
1571 Ib. 326.
The said inquest ordanis viij personis of thame that is ellis brokin anent the payment of the pulder … [to] breik thame that brak the laif
1646 Peebles Gleanings 266.
That it [sc. the sum] be brokin throu the toun, and everie persone ... pay 24 s. Scotts

d. To break up or disband (a company). 1456 Hay I. 116/10; Ib. 150/15.
Gif he dois nocht [justice], he brekis his company
1572-5 Diurn. Occurr. 199.
My lord regent brak his cumpany of horsmene
1569-73 Bann. Memor. 309.
That the said erle [etc.] … sall presentlie brecke and discharge thair men of war
1689 Reg. Privy C. XIII. 566.
His partie is just brock

e. ? To deprive of position or property. c 1541-2 State P. (Reg. H.) No. 29.
Iames Dog ... wes solistit be brokin men of the bordour to the byrning of Caroun ... for the quhilk the king hes brokin him

4. With adverbs, especially doun or up.(a) 1375 Barb. ix. 322.
The king … gert brek doune the vall
1507 Reg. Privy S. I. 224.
To brek down his hous
1561 Treas. Acc. XI. 70.
That nane brek doun gold nor silver
1569-73 Bann. Memor. 118.
[Any] that wald brek doun the pillaris
1618 M. Works Acc. XV. ii. 33 b.
For breking out tua doores in a wall
1631 Lithgow Poet. Remains 116.
In breking downe the bonds of peace
(b) c1420 Wynt. iv. 2191.
He mad entre, and wp brak … The tresoure hows
Ib. v. 2055.
Marchus … brak downe off thare mawmentys
1456 Hay I. 61/5.
He … brak up the portis
c1500-c1512 Dunb. lv. 13.
Thai brak vp durris
1531 Bell. Boece I. p. xiii.
Hanniball … brak doun the wallis
1562-3 Winȝet II. 51/18.
Quhais blasphemeis he … brak doun to nocht
1633 M. Works Acc. XXVII. 7. b.
The slape in the park dyck that the loch brak out
c1650 Spalding II. 300.
Doctour Goold … brak doun the astler wark
1644 Aberd. B. Rec. IV. 29.
They brak vp the prisone hous doore
(b) 1612–3 Misc. Spald. C. V. 92.
Thai that bruk doune the pillar of Jhone Meluin stair
c1650 Spalding I. 188.
Thay … bruk wp girnellis
(c) a1400 Leg. S. ix. 251.
[Thai] gret playnt mad … of thare goddis brokine doune
1513 Doug. vi. iii. 132.
Thocht the first [branch] be doun brek
1531 Bell. Boece I. p. xlix.
Scho [sc. a ship] was brokin down
a1568 Bann. MS. 28 a/39.
Quhen thair ȝettis wes broken asundir
1618 M. Works Acc. XV. ii. 34.
The dore that is new brokin out
c1650 Spalding I. 244.
The Kingis letteris brokin wp
1664 Aberd. B. Rec. IV. 210.
Haveing brockin doune the croves vpon the … Done
1682 Lanark B. Rec. 208.
Having … bracken up the croce with foir hammers

b. To brek up, to bring to light. 1633 I. W. in Lithgow Poet. Remains 77.
The … grievance of this land, Which thou breks up … To show thy Sou'raigne [etc.]

5. a. To throw into disorder; to scatter. 1375 Barb. xii. 217.
Luk ȝhe na vay brek aray
a1400 Leg. S. xxix. 93.
As the herd brokine was, Quha best mycht rane to the chas
c1420 Wynt. viii. 4684.
In hy he brak aray
Ib. 6242.
That brak gretly thaire aray
1531 Bell. Boece I. 162.
This contentioun rais be evill-dedy men, that … socht occasioun to breke the cuntre
1549 Compl. 14/31.
He sau neuyr the array of men of veyr brokyn

b. To break the force or effect of. 1375 Barb. iv. 137.
That battalyng … brak Blesis that wald thame ourtak
c1420 Wynt. i. 718.
That a fwt wpe thai streke, That it fra thaim the weddyr breke
Ib. v. 2004.
In intent that destyne Off thare goddys suld brokyn be
1513 Doug. i. iv. 10.
Ane havyn place … with ane ile … To brek the wallis and storm of euery art
Ib. iii. viii. 55.
To brek the salt fame of the seys stowr
1585 James VI Ess. 70.
So shall she … brek her wawes on rockis
1596 Dalr. I. 293/30.
Sum … buir armes against him; quhais force he brack

c. To overcome by persuasion, force, etc. 1513 Doug. viii. vii. 33.
Aurora with her terys so thé brak For till enarm hir child
1531 Bell. Boece I. p. xi.
No thing brekis me bot slogardy
Ib. 219.
He thocht best to brek thaim be lang tary
1560 Rolland Seven S. 155/12.
With aw and laubour ȝe suld brek thame [: correct thame]
1563-1570 Buch. Wr. 46.
Quhen thai could not brek the Quenis obstinat mynd
a1578 Pitsc. I. 117/32.
Ȝe on na wayis can get thame [sc. the barons] brokin bot be this prettik

6. a. To fail to keep or observe; to violate or transgress.(a) 1375 Barb. xi. 645.
I will nocht for him brek purpos
1456 Hay I. 129/4.
Thai mai nocht brek thair ath
Ib. 180/19.
Ȝe brek the kingis sauf condyt
Ib. II. 91/22.
To brek luferent
1457 Peebles B. Rec. 121.
And [= if] he brek the ordynans befor mayd
c1475 Wall. i. 76.
The wys lordis gert hym sone brek that band
1513 Doug. ii. iii. 26.
Leifful is now to brek … The sworn promys
c1552 Lynd. Mon. 916.
Brek we command, we ar nocht wyse
1569-73 Bann. Memor. 67.
It will giue occasiounes … to brek guid ordour
1622-6 Bisset II. 267.
That nane … violate or brek the foirsaidis lawes
(b) a1400 Leg. S. xxix. 148.
Brekand my byding
1456 Hay I. 149/5.
Nocht brekand my leautee
Ib. 243/19.
Quhasa brekis trewis
Ib. II. 32/20.
That brekis thair aithe
1464 Peebles B. Rec. 150.
Of all browyng that brekis price
1506 Edinb. B. Rec. I. .
Brekand this statute
1513 Doug. vii. x. 43.
The prynce … list not … breik his heist
c1552 Lynd. Mon. 441.
In breking Godis commandiment
a1578 Pitsc. I. 253/3.
He was far lather to breik his new allyance
1606–7 Misc. Spald. C. V. 80.
For breking the statute concerning the Inglische beir
(c) 1504–5 Charter (Reg. H.) No. 67.
Tuenty pundis … for brekking faith
1554 Edinb. B. Rec. II. 207.
The persoun that brekkis this statut
1573 Sat. P. xl. Pr. 25.
Brecking the law of God
1619 Garden Elphinston 1027.
That thow sould breck that band
(b) c1420 Wynt. ii. 1088.
For that he … brak byddyng
Ib. vi. 1181.
He … that brak his pes
1456 Hay II. 161.
I brak nocht my lay
1458 Peebles B. Rec. 128.
Ony brostar that brak prys
1471 Acta Aud. 22/2.
At the said Johnne … brak nocht the kingis protectioune
c1515 Asl. MS. I. 190/4.
Falslie he brak his allia till ws
Ib. 320/12.
That the son [= sun] … brak his cours
1513 Doug. iii. i. 101.
Al faith and frendschip brak he than
1549 Compl. 33/25.
Thai foure elementis brac nocht his command
(c) c1400 Troy-bk. ii. 1424.
He had falsly Brokin his faith
1442 Reg. Great S. 64/1.
Giff we had broken the condiciouns
1456 Hay I. 182/31.
That he has brokyn his lawis
Ib. 242/31.
Never suld word … of a king be brokin
1494 Acta Aud. 198/2.
Gif … the bande were brokin
c1515 Asl. MS. I. 74/18.
I haue brokin my mariage
1523 Edinb. B. Rec. I. 211.
[He] denyit that thai had brokin ony punct … in the said decrete
1546 Ib. II. 125.
Of thame that hes brokin the said statutes
(b) 1665-76 Lauder Jrnl. 232.
Priuiledges and liberties alledged [to be] brook
1691 Annandale Corr. 52.
The Highlanders have brock the truce

b. To bring to an end; to abrogate. 1459 Peebles B. Rec. 131.
Gorg Wilȝamson has brokyn sessyng
1460 Ib. 137.
Thom Dicysoun … said at that sessyn … was lachfully brokyn
1600 Hamilton Facile Tr. 429.
That the band of mariage may be broking during the lyf tyme of mariet personnes
1611-57 Mure Dido ii. 681.
For thee alone, my shamefast lyf I brack
1625 Garden Kings 14.
Thou … some bad lawes abolishes and brecks
1658 Lamont Diary 110.
He bracke the taylie and left his lands to his daughter

c. To break out from (ambush). c1420 Wynt. viii. 6561.
Thai brak enbuschement suddanly

d. To brek ward, see Ward n.

7. absol. a. With preps. , advs. or adj s., as in, off, lows. 14.. Acts I. 376/2.
Giff a theff brek in a hous or vndermynis it wyth delfyng
c1420 Wynt. ix. 135.
Off thair hors brak lows mony
1666 Carstaires Lett. 160.
I most breck of, being in hast

b. To break or violate a compact, statute, etc.; to break one's word, faith, or friendship. 1456 Hay I. 248/7.
Quhether … the king of Fraunce mycht lefully brek [sc. truce] agayn till him
Ib. 21.
He has brokyn to me; tharefore I sall brek till him
c1475 Wall. x. 615.
Brek he on me, … I cum to thé
1496 Acta Conc. II. 8.
Thai brak and failyeit in the completing and fulfilling of the poyntis … contenit in the sammyn [decret]
Ib. 26.
It was allegit be the sade Lord Ruthven that … Lord Olephant had broken to him in the refusing … of his son
1512 9th Rep. Hist. MSS. 190/2.
Gif it happinnis me … to brek or falȝe in ony poynt hereof
1531 Edinb. B. Rec. II. 45.
Gif thai keip the statutis … ; and quhilk of thaim that brekis [etc.]
1535 Stewart 21117.
Quhen euir tha list tha find ane caus to brek
1570 Leslie 94.
Oure brodir brak first to us, … and laitlie we warnit oure broder, as he did nocht us or he brak
c 1593 Misc. Spald. C. I. 5.
Eftir thai haid promisit … , thay brak thrys in ten dayis baith in murther and herchip

c. To raise a question with one. 1551 Corr. M. Lorraine 345.
I thocht it neidfull to breik with my lord governour gife he harde ony thing of this sclander

d. To become bankrupt. 1662 Lamont Diary 157.
The said Thomas bracke, being one that playd the merchant in some commodities

8. intr. To undergo breaking.(a) Brus iii. 699.
Wawys wyd that brekand war
c1400 Troy-bk. ii. 1975.
The schippis that ware brekande
c1420 Wynt. i. 824.
Adamant … That nevyr ma brek but bukkys blwde
1547 Ex. Processes (Reg. H.) No. 1 (Hope v. Tod).
Ane schip … quhilk … happinnit to brek at Gulanenes
a1568 Bann. MS. 329/51.
A byle … brekis [M. man breik] at the last
1570 Sat. P. xvii. 71.
As sum stringis will rather brek nor be
a1605 Montg. Misc. P. xxxviii. 30.
Go to … and gar the bealing brek
1640 Lithgow Poet. Remains 226.
With them the ulcer brecks
(b) a1400 Leg. S. xii. 450.
Al his bandis brak in twa
Ib. xxxiii. 561.
The quhele … brak ful smal
c1420 Wynt. v. 186.
The templis all Fell and brak in pecis small
Ib. viii. 4748.
The mast gest off that towre brak
1494 Treas. Acc. I. 240.
Lettres … anentis the schip at brak at Quhithirne
c1500-c1512 Dunb. xxvii. 73 (A).
His birnes brak
  Ib. lxx. 74.
Quhill all his vanis brist and brak
c1515 Asl. MS. I. 269/23.
A gwn that brak in the schutting
1513 Doug. i. iii. 21.
The jaw of watir brak
1572-5 Diurn. Occurr. 123.
The Vnicorne … come vpoun ane rok and brak in pecis
a1570-86 Maitl. F. xlix. 173.
How feill ȝe … as my girdin brak
  1608 Crim. Trials III. 46.
His girdis brack, and the Laird fell
(b) ?1438 Alex. ii. 102.
For tein his hart in shunder breik [: speik]
1490 Acta Conc. 426/2.
The … schippis quhilkis brek beside Kynneff
15.. Clar. i. 49.
Baith thair speiris in peices brake
c1552 Lynd. Mon. 3186.
The bargis brake in schonder

b. Of blossoms: To open up. Also of dawn. c1500-c1512 Dunb. xlviii. 167.
Haill, blosome breking out of the blud royall
1535 Stewart 10495.
Ane litill efter that the da sky brak
15.. Clar. v. Prol. 3.
When … bewis brekes and blomis upon breid
c1552 Lynd. Mon. 183.
With blomes breckand on the tender bewis
a1605 Montg. Misc. P. xlviii. 1.
Haill! bravest burgeoun brekking to the rose

9. To break out; to burst or spring forth; to appear suddenly. Usually with advs. (as out, up).(a) a1400 Leg. S. xlvii. 91.
Thane the gret fir suld brek oute
c1420 Wynt. i. 136.
[The rives] brek on ende At the hylle of Oskobares
1482 Peebles B. Rec. 191.
Gif it happynnis … that the dam brek owt
c1500-c1512 Dunb. xxii. 9.
Quhair my plummyis begynis to brek out
1530 Edinb. B. Rec. II. 37.
That the said seiknes brekis and spreddis vtouth the toune
1562-3 Winȝet II. 20/6.
Gif ony siklyke thing brek out
1563-1570 Buch. Wr. 57.
Geif wear brekks up of this foly
a1585 Maitl. Q. lxvii. 11.
Lat quhyllis it brek furth in effect
(b) c1420 Wynt. iv. 2006.
The hill of Ethna than off fyre Brak out
Ib. 2360.
All the wyndowys … Brak wpe
a1500 Henr. Fab. 1331.
The blossummis … brak vp on bank and bra
1558-66 Knox I. 77.
Upoun what uther trifeling questionis … the war brak up
1563-1570 Buch. Wr. 467.
The quhilk practise … sum tyme brak out with him
1584 Misc. Wodrow Soc. 418.
Efter the writing heirof, … the murder of the Prince of Orenge first brack up
a1605 Montg. Ch. & Slae 262.
Ay the mair I schape to smorit, The baulder it brak out
1611-57 Mure Ps. xviii. 13.
Flames of fire Brack forth
(c) 1456 Hay I. 162/10.
Quhen the weris … ar brokyn up
1584 Edinb. B. Rec. IV. 351.
That the pest … is laitlie brokkin vp in St. Jhonestoun
1593 Misc. Abbotsf. C. 216.
This matter being sa publicklie brokkin furth
1605 Aberd. B. Rec. II. 265.
The … pestilence is brackin up … againe in Edinburgh

b. To break out, begin an attack, rush suddenly upon. 1375 Barb. iv. 414.
Thair buschement apon thame brak
c1420 Wynt. iv. 2047.
The Romanys wyth thare consules … Brak apon thame suddanly
c1475 Wall. vi. 824.
The buschement brak, and come in all thar mycht
1558-66 Knox II. 7.
Some of ours brack upoun thair horsemen
1572-5 Diurn. Occurr. 219.
Thai … returnit agayne, and brak abak upoun thame
a1578 Pitsc. I. 86/15.
The bucheris … brak about him with sic ane reird

c. To break out in disorder; to rise. 1544 Corr. M. Lorraine 118.
Your graice has hard how all this cuntreth wes brekand, hed nocht bein my haiste haym cumin

d. To start, begin. Also with on. 1580-92 James VI Lusus R. 18.
Ye made you readie for to rin the race, ye brakk together & ran out the same
1649 Glasgow B. Rec. II. 176.
That the meill mercat breck on and begin everie mercat day … at ten hours befoir noone

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"Brek v.". Dictionary of the Scots Language. 2004. Scottish Language Dictionaries Ltd. Accessed 27 Nov 2022 <>



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