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

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First published 2002 (DOST Vol. XII).
This entry has not been updated since then but may contain minor corrections and revisions.

Ȝeld(e, Yeld(e, Ȝeild, Yeild, v. Also: yheld, yeild, ȝeeld, yeeld(e, ȝeald, yeald, yield, ȝald, yald, ȝeall, yeill. P.t. ȝald(e, yald, yhald(e, ȝauld(e, yauld, yhawld, ȝold(e, ȝaild, ȝeld, ȝeild, yeild, yeeld, yhalded, ȝoildet, ȝeldit, yelded, ȝeildit, ȝealdit, yealded, yeelded, yieldit. P.p. ȝoldin(e, -ing, -yn, -en, yoldin, -yn, yholdyn(e, ȝouldin, ȝaldin, ȝowdin, ȝ(h)eldyn, ȝeildin, ȝolde, ȝald, ȝeild, yeild, ȝoldit, yoldit, ȝelded, ȝeildit, -ed, yeilded, ȝealded, yealded. [ME and e.m.E. ȝelde (c1175), yeld (c1250), ȝeld, ȝeild(e, yield, yeild (all Cursor M.), yhelde (Rolle), ȝeeld (Wyclif), yeeld(e (both Shakespeare), OE ᵹieldan, ᵹeldan, p.t. ᵹeald, ᵹuldon, p.p. ᵹolden, ON gjalda.]

I. 1. tr.a. To render (payment), to pay (money, a debt, what is due). b. To give (an account of money due). c. To give (an account of events, etc.). d. To allow, permit, concede (something).a. 1406 Rep. Hist. MSS, Var. Coll. V 79.
Yheldand and payand … til … his mudir, or til hir assignayse, als mikil male [etc.]
c1420 Bute MS 70.
Nane that his lifray weris … na nane that til hym sal ȝelde ferme
14.. Acts I 22/2.
Gif the dettur grauntis the dett he sal ȝelde it
c1520-c1535 Nisbet Matth. xx 8.
Call the werkmen, and yeld to thame thare hyre
1606 Misc. Abbotsf. C. 271.
Yealding vnto vs … for the … lands … one hundreth poundes … and … ten horsemen [etc.]
b. a1400 Leg. S. xxxiii 28.
A tribone is als i-wise That trybut gadris to the king & ȝeldis hym thare of reknyng
c. a1400 Leg. S. v 438.
Thi faddir … Ane ald man … That mon ȝeld resone … To Criste for thi saule [L. quia pro te Christo rationem reddam]
1601 Elphinstone Mun. 30.
It is reason that I yelde your maiestie some accompte of all the letters
d. 1607 Acts IV 370/2.
As it is alredie fundin that the space of ane haill ȝeir eftir the date of the said band be ȝeldit and allowit for the returne of the said certificat
c1616 Hume Orthog. 22.
In sum case we ar forced to tolerat this idle e [etc.] … Ther may be moe, and these I yeld because I ken noe other waye to help this necessitie

2. To give as due of right (something owed or deserved); to render (thanks, homage, judgment, etc.).pres. a1400 Leg. S. v 625.
Say hym, ‘Quham to that thu Gafe it umquhil thé gyffis it nov, Ȝeldand the thank of thi gud vil'
c1409-1436 Kingis Q. § 53.
Venus … To quhom I ȝelde homage and sacrifise
Arundel MS 251/386.
And so my desire is to ȝeld vnto Thé praysing all houris and all momentis of tyme
(b) 1501 Doug. Pal. Hon. 1008.
Ȝeildand Venus thankis ane thousand syith
1513 Doug. iii vi 97.
And thar apon the strand Settis vp ane altare thi sacrifyce to ȝeild
1572 Warrender P. MS 72.
Subjectis … that indilaitlie … yeild thair obedience to our auctoritie
c1590 Fowler II 34/5.
Surely we … can ȝeild na vther faith vnto thy words or credence vnto thy promisis
1612 Fraserburgh Kirk S. I 10 (16 Dec.).
Seing he compeiris nocht to ȝeild obadience the sessioun orda[ines] [etc.]
(c) c1520-c1535 Nisbet Rom. ii 15.
The conscience of thame yeeldis to thame a witnessing betuix thame self of thouchtis that ar accusand or defendand
1590 Cal. Sc. P. X 318.
To yeeld such assurance both touard the ligue and ammitye that we may know what to expect
(d) 1592 Warrender P. (SHS) II 177.
I am nocht able to yeald your hienes sufficient thankis
p.t. a1400 Leg. S. xxvii 924.
The laiffe, That saw or herd this gret ferly Ȝauld thank to God
a1400 Leg. S. xli 171.
Gyf he ȝald dettyt honoure Til God
c1420 Wynt. vi 1047.
Off hys menbrys … That serwyd the Dewill … All tha till hym in lyff he yhawld [C. ȝhalde]
c1420 Wynt. viii 1898.
Thai he send in till presand Till Edward … That yhald tharfore mony thankis
(b) 15.. Clar. ii 895.
He Wald not licht doune, bot thankis to them ȝold
(c) 1589 Warrender P. (SHS) II 106.
His majestie … at requeist of the quene yelded to him his pardone
(d) 1460 Hay Alex. 1762.
Thus maid the Greikis this disconfitour And Alexander thame ȝeildit the honour
p.p. a1400 Leg. S. xxxviii 525.
Jhesu Criste … To quhome al joy ȝoldine be Of al Cristine & of me
14.. Acts I 372/2.
Gif he cummys efter the tyme of the mute ande the dome be ȝoldin
(b) c1575 Balfour Pract. 281.
Ilk lauchful judgment sould be gevin and ȝeildit cleirlie out of ane mouth, and be ane toung

3. To give in return, to render (one thing) (for another). Also absol. or intr. b. tr. To repay, requite (a person). = Forȝelde v. c. To compensate (harm). d. To render (oneself) as vassal. Cf. 6 below.(1) 1375 Barb. vii 117.
Thai met the king & halist him thar, And the king thaim thar hailsing ȝauld [C. ȝald]
a1400 Leg. S. xxxv 208.
Thane Paulyne askit [etc.] … & a voice ansuere ȝald
c1400 Troy-bk. ii 1312.
Vlixes ȝeldit [C. yhalded] him certane Siclyke mannasses … As he to him had mannassed thair
?1438 Alex. ii 176.
‘Ȝe sall haue full great honour Gif ȝe thame help' … The king said ‘Cassamus, … I sall hald cunnand gif I may.' Cassamus … said ‘Fare king, quha micht ȝow ȝeld This grete foredede and thy bounte Gif that ȝe hald ȝour hecht to me?'
?1438 Alex. ii 10648.
The maydinnes … Halsit him and he … Ȝeild thame thair halsing ilka deill
1456 Hay II 107/4.
Thame that … ar habilest … help … and sa sall thy realme cum in honour vertu and gud governaunce throw thy providence; and God sall ȝelde it to thé
1460 Hay Alex. 1914.
Quhan Alexander recouerit of the straik He thocht rycht weill he suld ȝeild him the maik
a1500 Rauf C. 224.
And euer to his asking ane answer he ȝald
c1475 Wall. xi 657.
To that desyr Wallace nane ansuer ȝald
a1500 Lanc. 380.
Ȝolde
a1500 Lanc. 557.
Yald
1501 Doug. Pal. Hon. 936.
Venus agane ȝald thame thair salusing
c1520-c1535 Nisbet Luke xiv 14.
Quhen thou makis a feest, call pure men, febile, crukit and blind, and thou salbe blessit … for it salbe yoldin to thee in the rising agane of iustmen
1570 Sat. P. xx 62.
At thame rycht fane or [els be sl]ane: That ganȝell will thay ȝeild; Stand not abak [etc.]
c1590 Fowler I 38/43.
To thy requeist I yeild consent
absol. or intr. a1568 Bann. MS 222a/14.
Louke quhat ȝe ask of God in ȝour preyer And ȝald ȝour seruand in the same maneir
(2) a1400 Leg. S. iv 140.
That Criste, oure mastere, can vs kene Gud fore ewil to ȝald almene
c1420 Wynt. iii 399.
For luff to yheld fenyhyng, It is to lele hart a throwyng
c1520-c1535 Nisbet Rom. xii 17.
To na man yeeldand euile for euile
1584 Laing MSS 43.
The mair easely to yeld thair debtfull obedience for the redres of biganis
b. a1500 Henr. Fab. 732.
God ȝeild ȝow, schir, for that text weill I knaw
c. 1622-6 Bisset II 246/25.
Gif … they have festened it [sc. the ship] to no buy, and gif [it] do hurte, they be haldin to ȝeild the hurte
d. a1500 Lanc. 950.
My lady … Wold ȝe deden my ransoune to resaue Of presone so I my libertee myght haue Y ware ȝolde euermore your knyght

4. To hand over, relinquish, surrender (a stronghold, weapon, etc.) (to, till a conqueror), also in fig. context. Also const. our, up. b. To hand over (a person) tyll a third party. c. Of the sea: To relinquish (something). d. To ȝeald place to, to give up or concede (a right or privilege). e. To extend, tender furth (one's hand).(1) 1375 Barb. iv 317 (C).
Thai the castell to thame ȝald
1375 Barb. x 809.
To Dunde he tuk the way That then wes haldyne … Agayne the king, tharfor … He set ane sege thar-to … And lay thar quhill it ȝoldyn was
1375 Barb. x 829.
At mydsomer … He suld the castell ȝauld quytly
1375 Barb. xv 259 (C).
Ȝalde
1460 Hay Alex. 2856.
Till him ȝeildit thair ware citeis sevin
a1500 Gol. & Gaw. 1032.
Gif thou luffis thi life … Yeld me thi bright brand
c1475 Wall. ix 577.
Mony castellis he gert sone ȝoldin be Till Inglismen
c1500-c1512 Dunb. Flyt. 545.
Deulbere, thy spere of were but feir thou yelde
c1550 Lynd. Meldrum 558.
He suld baith hors and armour ȝeild Till him that wan
c1590 Fowler I 29/72.
‘We … did sie The verye sings … that lowe shuld captiwe thé' … Than ansuerd I ‘ … And trewlie I had yeild to lowe my hart and whole consent'
1611-57 Mure Early Misc. P. ii 42.
Receaue … The bow, the schafts [etc.] … Once quhich I bruick'd bot now … I yeild to thé, more worthie thame nor I
1611-57 Mure Early Misc. P. vi 1.
To thé Cupido ȝeilds his golden dairt
1630-1651 Gordon Geneal. Hist. in Misc. Spald. C. II xxxv.
They beseidged the same so furiouslie, that the fort in end wes yeilded vnto them
(2) a1500 Gol. & Gaw. 717.
Schir Bedwar to Schir Bantellas yaldis vp his brand
a1500 Lanc. 552.
He bidis yow your londe Ye yald hyme our without impedyment
b. c1420 Wynt. iii 276.
Men … passyd wytht rapys … to ta And for tyll bynd this Sampsone fast … thare ansuere wes that he Sulde bundyn, and syne yholdyne [C. ȝeldyn] be Tyll his fays
c. c1460 Wisd. Sol. (STS) 13.
Al fludis enteris in the sey, and the seye ȝeldis neuir thai fludys agane in fludys
d. 1592 Douglas Chart. 301.
The Eirll of Angus … ȝealdit place to the Duik of Levenox to beir the crowne
e. c1590 Fowler I 86/18.
And streatching owt hir plesant hand … She sighing … yeild it furth

5. To ȝelde (furth, to, up) the (this, one's, etc.) breith, gaste, life, saule, spreit, to die. See also Gast n.1 1 and Spirit n. 2 (3) for further examples.(1) a1400 Leg. S. i 88.
Ner for hungyre the gaste he ȝalde
a1400 Leg. S. x 312.
Eglippus … To God of hewyne the sawle can ȝeld
a1400 Leg. S. xxvii 1165.
Ȝaulde
c1400 Troy-bk. i 544 (see Spirit n. 2 (3)).
Yhald
c1450 Cr. Deyng (STS) 272.
And syne He ȝauld His saull to His Father, and sua suld we
c1475 Wall. x 392.
Graym yauld to God his gud speryt and his deid
a1500 Lanc. 1087.
Of knychtis wich that haith there lyvis ȝolde
c1500 Makc. MS iv 53.
Criand ‘Eloy!’ Thi gaistly spret thow ȝald
1513 Doug. xi i 132.
And now with honour hes he ȝald the breth
1513 Doug. xi iv 54.
That … I mycht haue ȝald this sawle full of ennoy
1530 Lynd. Test. Pap. 1147.
Scho … Syne ȝaild the spreit
1533 Boece 322a.
Sanct Moloc … ȝald the gaist
a1538 Abell 49a.
He resingnit the kinrik to … Aydan and sa he ȝeld his spreit
(2) c1420 Wynt. ii 180.
Ane hundreth yhere quhen he wes aulde And sevynty to the gast he yhalde
1513 Doug. i iii 9.
Quhy mycht I not … haue deit, And by thi rycht hand ȝaldin [Sm. ȝowdin] forth my sprete?
1560 Rolland Seven S. 5715.
He … turnit his bak, and vp the gaist he ȝald

6. a. reflex.To give (oneself) up, surrender (to a conqueror, justice, etc.), also in fig. context. Also transf., to give (oneself) up to God. b. passive.To have surrendered, hence, to be captured, to be in captivity, also in fig. context. Also transf.a. 1375 Barb. iv 172.
Thai within … Tretyt fyrst and syne thaim ȝauld
1375 Barb. xiii 533 (see b below). ?1438 Alex. ii 8634.
Ȝeild thé to me Or eillis thy lyfe lorne wil be
c1420 Wynt. vii 101.
The knycht … askyd mercy … And sayd … he yhald hym till hys will
1456 Hay II 29/13.
It war better to syk a knycht to ȝelde him self to justice tobe punyst
c1475 Wall. viii 452.
Quha ȝeildis him sall neuir ransownd be
a1500 K. Hart 243.
Woundit he wes … He said I ȝeild me now to ȝour estait Fayr quene
a1538 Abell 97(bis)b.
Thair enymis seand this thai trowit at thai ȝeldit thame to thare king
c1550 Lynd. Meldrum 758.
The Inglis capitane cryit hie … ȝeild ȝow, doggis, or ȝe sall die
1596 Dalr. I 198/26.
The people … quha inhabited thir partes war compelled to ȝeld thame selfes
1611-57 Mure Early Misc. P. i 31.
Ȝeild thou and learne how to practize … The heavinly joyes … of loue
transf. c1475 Wall. xi 482.
Ȝoldin I am to bettir … To mychty God … sen I had wit off man Befor my werk, to ȝeild me I began; And als at ewyn … I me be tuk to the Makar off mycht
b. 1375 Barb. xiii 543.
‘Welcum schyr Marmeduk,’ said he, ‘To quhat man art yow presoner.’ ‘To nane,’ he said, ‘bot to ȝow her I ȝeld me at ȝour will to be.' … Quhen Marmeduk apon this wis Was ȝoldyn [C. ȝolden]
c1420 Wynt. v 2298.
Thare than wes Waleryane Yholdyn [C. Ȝheldyn, W. Ȝolding] and as presownere tane
c1475 Wall. vii 856.
Scottis men … on thar kneis kneild … cryt apon Wallace … to tak thaim in his grace … rewth off thaim he had … 'Luk yhe sla nane off Scottis will ȝoldyn be'
a1500 K. Hart 342.
Sum farar way ȝe micht ȝour harmes wreik Than thus to murdour ws that ȝoldin ar
1494 Loutfut MS 114b.
Gif a man takis his enemy prisoner in feild and has him ȝoldin
c1500-c1512 Dunb. G. Targe 209.
Than was I woundit to the deth wele nere And yoldyn as a wofull prisonnere To lady Beautee
1531 Bell. Boece I 77.
Cassibilane … randerit him to Julius … Cassibilane, yoldin in this maner, was commandit to pay [etc.]
1533 Boece 121b.
Kendalis with vthir nychtbouris affrayit become ȝoldin to Romanis
1533 Boece 256a.
That quhil the feild war wynnyng thai suld salf na Britoun how beit he wald be randerit, nor that Scottis with thare life suld neuer be ȝoldin to inemyis
1533 Bell. Livy II 91/22.
The inemyis kest away thare wappynnys and war ȝoldin presoneris
1535 Stewart 13608.
Fechtand in feild thai thocht erar to de But straik that tyme nor for till ȝoldin be
a1538 Abell 25b.
Thai sparit nane at wes ȝoldin bot straik thame down without mercy
15.. Christis Kirk 150 (B).
He wes nocht ȝoldin Sevin myll quhill he wes chest
1567 Anderson Collect. Mary I 97.
Quhat is a prince without a peopill, befoirhand alreddie ȝealded to his apetyte
a1585 Maitl. Q. 158/138.
Cruellie to kill Ȝour wofull woundit prisoneir All ȝouldin in ȝour will
a1605 Montg. Sonn. xxxvi 7.
I ȝoldin am, and ȝit am stryving still
(b) 1568 Lennox Mun. II 440.
He reft the erle his lyfe, being ȝoldit [Haddington Corr. 270, yoldit], beheidit his sone [etc.]
(c) c1575 Balfour Pract. 592.
Quhatever he be that strikis down a man aff horseback … suppois he be ȝeildin thairefter to ane uther man … he that strikis him down sall have his half ransom
transf. c1475 Wall. xi 479 (see a above).

7. intr.a. To surrender (in battle, etc.) (to a conqueror, the will of another, etc.), also in fig. context. Also transf. and reflex. b. To submit, agree to (circumstances, a plea, etc.); to agree to (a request, offer, etc.). Also const. infin. c. To give way to (something).a. a1568 Scott ii 26.
Thay wer sa haisty … That nane of thame wald ȝeild … Bot to debait or be doun bett And in the quarrell keild
a1568 Mersar in Bann. MS 269a/21.
Athis to sueir and giftis to hecht … And for hir honour for to fecht … Bot fra scho to his willis ȝold Adew fair weill thir somer flouris
1570 Warrender P. (SHS) I 81.
The indifferentis will yeld to the maist maisters
1572 Buch. Detect. (1727) 3.
That thair was not a man … bot he was drewin to this necessitie, outher with dishonour to ȝeild to rumouris fenȝeit aganis him or to enter into combate with the reporteris
a1605 Montg. Ch. & Slae 736 (W).
Quhairwith befoir he seyit to schuit, He never yeild to youth Nor [etc.]
1600 Crim. Trials II 156.
Mr Thomas said to him, ‘Ȝeall theiff! dar thow?'
a1605 Montg. Misc. P. xxix 18.
Fra I the force thairof did feild [sc. Cupid's dart] I wes constraned for to ȝeeld To hir
1581-1623 James VI Poems II 86/154.
But onlie mot I conquered be And onelie will I yeelde To Cupids shott
1638 Rutherford Lett. (1894) 551.
Do not now jouk, or bow, or yield to your adversaries in a hair-breadth
1665–7 Lauder Jrnl. 135.
On of his friends … invited him to a feigned fight of canes … to which at lenth yeelding, he beates him
transf. c1508 Ch. & M. Prints 218/21.
Thou gert him err into his latter elde Declyne his God, and to the mawmentis yeld
1686 Dunlop P. III 22.
If He haf ani serfis for your [sic] in that ples I desayer to yeld to him
reflex. 1567 G. Ball. 237.
Quhen deith cummis thair is na vther grace, Bot ȝeild thé than for doutles thow mon die
b. (1) 1572 Cal. Sc. P. IV 355.
When ȝe maid the lyke mocioun on the behalf of the queen … thay willinglye yealded thairto at your first requisitioun
1592 Acts III 571/2.
It is nocht lesum … to astrict or burding ony … liegis with … impossible conditionis … albeit thair necessitie … constraine thame to ȝeald thairto
1595 Innes Sketches 534.
We … being requyirit … to conveine with him [etc.] … nocht willing our far to deject and cast downe ane penitent sinner, yieldit
1610 Crim. Trials III 110.
He refuised to yeeld to such an vnhonest and vnlawfull motion
1619 Perth Kirk S. MS 1 Nov.
He wes direct be the counsell to schaw the sessioun of the rwynis of the stipill that they micht concure to the reparatioun thairof, quhilk they ȝeildit to
1622 Fraserburgh Kirk S. 133 (24 April).
The sessioun ȝeildis to the suit off the said Johne
1622-6 Bisset II 256/30.
It chanced that the schip can fynd na fraucht … and they moist go fordwarde … they that be at his coistis, he aucht to raise there weyges … eftir the reat of there hyre for to go to ane certane place or weill als far, as they war hyred to, all aw to be allowed bot they moist ȝeild to the schip, quhere they tuik it fra, and sett it at the eventoure of God
1632 Lithgow Trav. ix 418.
I yeeld to the noble mans counsell and … he sent a guide with me
1638 Rec. Kirk Scotl. 144.
If the privilege craved were in matters that were in our power, we would soon have yealded
1640 Misc. Hist. Soc. I 113.
I have resolved to mak offer [etc.] … if your lordships sonne and myne yeelde not to this, I can pay no annuell
1640 Misc. Hist. Soc. I 113.
I wes … patient and ȝelded for reverence and respect to ȝour ladyships pleasour
1691 Lauder Jrnl. 302.
The king … plead with them to spare him … which was yealded to
(2) 1630-1651 Gordon Geneal. Hist. 46.
They hearkned willinglie, and yeelded to assist him to the uttermost of their abilities
c. c1590 Fowler I 241/28.
Sen all my mirth hes ȝeild without debait To vapourd sights [= sighs]

8. Of things: To bend or give way to, with some force or pressure. a1585 Maitl. Q. 259/3.
The reid in the loch sayis Thocht raging stormes movis ws to schaik … We ȝeild thairto bot dois not brek
1600 Crim. Trials II 217.
The whole wall being likewise of boordes, and yeelding with the strokes, it did bide them the space of halfe an houre
1672 Sinclair Hydrostaticks 187.
For rendring the metals … more easie to work in making them yeeld … to the force of wedge and leaver

III. 9. tr.To bear, bring forth (progeny, a crop). Also in fig. context. b. To produce, generate (a return, product). c. To emit (light). d. absol. To discharge. 1513 Doug. xiii ii 88.
Lavinia … Of Troiane kyn with blude Italian Sammyn mydlit to me as spous … Sal ȝeld lynnage to ryng perpetualy
a1570-86 Maitl. F. 288/14.
Barran treis will bloswmmes beir Als weill as thois that fructe do ȝeild
1650 Fugitive Poetry II xxiv 6/8.
The ground for corne soure hemp shall yeeld
1657 Balfour Ann. II 134.
Lett the reader heir behold the seeds of most basse and wicked counsell sowin, wich ȝoildet no better fruitt then the alienatione of the subiects hartes from ther prince
b. 1610 Laing MSS 123.
With the intres that the grund yeills
1640 Misc. Hist. Soc. I 113.
Takand for it the possessioun quhilk hes not ȝeilded the half thir two ȝeris bygaine
1645 Acts VI i 373/1.
This wheate will ȝeeld a fourfold greater increase nor our cornes
1668 Kirkcudbr. Sheriff Ct. Deeds I 226.
Alsmuch strae as ane reicke of the great new barne of Bar full off unthresched corne being thresched will yeald
1684 Symson Descr. Galloway 75.
Besides the oxen yeeld much more dung
c. c1650 P. Gordon Brit. Dist. 62.
The sunne … yeelding a dime and shaddow light
d. 1540 Lynd. Sat. 4354 (B).
Scho ȝeild and ȝet at baith the endis

10. To cause, occasion (a state or feeling). 1632 Lithgow Trav. x 448.
The English fleete … comming, yeelded no small feare to the affrighted towne

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