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

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First published 1986 (DOST Vol. VI).
This entry has not been updated since then but may contain minor corrections and revisions.

Powny, -ie, Pouny, -ie, n. Also: powiny, pounnie, poynie, pawnie. [Orig. Sc., and continuing in this form in mod. Sc.; in 18th c. Eng. as ponie (1710), pony; of uncertain origin.Prob. repr. an earlier *polney, *poulney, OF poulenet a little foal (1444 in Godef.), dimin. of poulain, polain young animal, foal, colt (12th c.) (whence appar. ME and e.m.E. pullan (1329), pull-, polayn, etc., poultry), pop. L. *pullan-, f. L. pullus young animal.]

A pony. Also comb. with -fowl (= fole).(a) 1657 Misc. Hist. Soc. VII 25.
I bowght a poynie … for 26 li. and a marke
(b) 1659 A. Hay Diary 56.
I caused bring home the powny and stugged him
1663–6 Household Bks. Archb. Sharp MS 21.
For bringing home the pownie and bring over the clokbage, 00/16/00
Ib. 59.
1665 Grant Chart. 347.
The dinn pouny
1675 Cunningham Diary 54.
For a gang of shoo's to Cuninghamheid's pownie, 6.0
1676 Ib. 85. 1687 Douglas Corr. 282.
But send in John Brodie upon any little pounie to Edinburgh
1688 Reg. Privy C. 3 Ser. XIII 267.
To interrogat … if the defunct … did not throw my lord off a litle pownie which he road
1692 Pitcairne Assembly ii i 25.
Make a dish of kail of my powny, if yow please
1695 Edinb. Test. LXXX 136 b.
iiij verry old cairt horses and ane old pounnie all worth lxxx lb.
1696 Foulis Acc. Bk. 192.
The gray pownie
(c) 1652 Nicolson Diurnal 4 March.
Received fra James Galloway for the little pawnie 19 li.
comb. 1652 Nicolson Diurnal 29 April.
To the pawnie fowles 7 pks. oatts

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"Powny n.". Dictionary of the Scots Language. 2004. Scottish Language Dictionaries Ltd. Accessed 27 Feb 2024 <>



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