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

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First published 1990 (DOST Vol. VII).
This entry has not been updated since then but may contain minor corrections and revisions.

Realm(e, n. Also: reallme, realmme, reallem, raellme; relm(e; ralm(e; reaulme, reualm; rewlm; ruelme. [ME (Piers Plowman) and e.m.E. realm(e, OF reialme (1080 in Larousse), realme (Wace), reaulme, L. regimen and pop. L. *rēgālimen (f. L. rēgālis); cf. Rewm(e n.]

1. A kingdom; a state, country or land, properly one ruled by a king.(1) a1400 Leg. S. xxxiii 20.
Capadoce … a realme of gret lose
c1460 Alex. (Taym.) (ed.) 2041.
Him quha gaue hale realmis to his lordis
Ib. 2063.
Ane realm but reull may nocht stand
1467 Acts II 88/2.
The mone of wther realmis
1490 Irland Mir. in Innes Rev. VI 92.
A persoune may cum to a realme be … successioune [etc.]
a1500 Colk. Sow iii 142.
Throw this penny, he grew the michtiest man In ony realme
c1500-c1512 Dunb. (O.U.P.) 109/14.
Welcum … incomparable knight … In every realme oure scheild and our defence
1513 Doug. vi i 129.
I ne ask na land, nor realm
c1520-c1535 Nisbet Luke xi 17.
1531 Bell. Boece I viii.
Spane, Inglande, Pole, with othir realmes mo
15.. Clar. iii 1140.
Rich juellis to by ane reallem
1562-3 Winȝet I 121/24.
Quhat is ony realme or prouince in Christianitie bot as a part of Judæa be the quhilk is signifiit the hail Kirk of God
(2) 1456 Hay I 36/22.
The ferde realme or empire was Rome
1490 Irland Mir. I 9/9.
The haill pepil of the realme
c1515 Asl. MS I 158/13, 14.
Than the nixt realme est … is the realme of Amason
1513 Doug. i viii 19.
Dido, … weilfair Providing for the realm in tyme tocum
1545 Douglas Corr. 418.
Thir two relmis
1576 Reg. Privy C. II 524.
The keparis of the cattell sa dispasturing the ground of the opposit realme
(3) 1456 Hay I 170/14.
The realme of Britonis
1482 Edinb. Chart. 147. 1490 Irland Mir. I 11/1.
[The Romans] had full dominacioune in the realme of Israell
c1515 Asl. MS I 168/21.
The realme of Mesopotanea and the empyr of Pers
1513 Doug. ii i 23.
Of Myce the realm had socht
1527 Dunferm. B. Rec. I 155.
Interpret in comone langag and wlgar of the said realme of Scotland
1550 Reg. Privy C. I 85.
The liegis of the realme of Ingland
a1578 Pitsc. I 342/1.
The king … devydit the haill realme of Scottland in foure pairtis
1623 M. Works Acc. (ed.) II 137.
The realme of Scotland
(4) 1445 Reg. Episc. Morav. 219.
Lik as oderis baronys men of our realme sal do
1456 Hay I 182/11.
Na … man that is inymy to the King of Fraunce to pas throu his realme but leve
Ib. 247/18.
The subjectis of that kingis realme
Ib. II 149/12.
Quha best lufis thé and the prouffit of thy realme [etc.]
1508–9 Reg. Privy S. I 278/1.
The thre estatis of our realme
1521 Douglas Corr. 79.
1522 Maxwell Mem. I 250.
Johnne Duk of Albanye, tuetour to our souueraine lord and guuernour of his realme
1531 Bell. Boece xiv c. 5 (Au.) in Sc. Hist. Rev. XVII 12.
Maist tressonable dissaver and levar of thi realme [L. patriæ]
1533 Boece 53b.
Thare native realme
1555 Glenartney Doc.
Marie Quene drowrier of oure realme and regent of the samyn
1569 Q. Mary in Misc. Abbotsf. C. 26.
We being movit with the greit luiff … quhilk we beir to our naturale realme [etc.]
1602 Aberd. B. Rec. II 232.
The maist fertile … pairt of our haill realme
(b) c1460 Regim. Princ. 91 (Marchm.).
(c) a1595 Cullen Chron. Aberd. 41.
(5) 1513 Doug. i viii 138.
And ples ȝhe with me in this realm remane [etc.]
1512–13 (c1580) Edinb. B. Rec. I 139.
Strangearis of all vther natiouns resorting within this realme
1515 Reg. Privy S. I 409/1.
[Authority to] bere … to and fray this said realme v townis of quhat merchandis it sal ples hym
1528 Lynd. Dreme 906. 1531–2 Acta Conc. Publ. Aff. 370.
Or thai suld tyne … ane fute braid … of this realme [etc.]
1546 Reg. Privy C. I 36.
The north partis of this realme
1550–1 (c1580) Edinb. B. Rec. II 152.
The … lichtleing of this realm … in pairts of Flanderis and France
c1568 Lauder Minor P. iv 6.
In this realme … And thow layk … geir, Thow will be lytill regardit
1584 Acts III 371/1.
Leidin mynes within this realme
(b) c1475 Wall. xi 1176.
Ye suld nocht had entres In to this rewlm
1544 Corr. M. Lorraine 109.
To the … destrwksion of this hayll rewlm
(c) 1521 Doug. in Doug. (Sm.) I p. xc.
(6) 1425 Acts II 9/1.
The kingis lawis & statutis of this realme
1532 Acta Conc. Publ. Aff. 385.
The lordis spirituale and temporale of this realme
1546 Reg. Privy S. III 305/1.
The sowme of fourty pundis money of this realme
1560 Admir. Ct. Bk. 141.
Johnne Quhitheid is … na subiect of this realme
1572–3 Canongate Ct. Bk. 434.
Na lyning aucht to be … becaus of the plane municypall law of this realme of the majestie it is expressit in the borrow lawis that [etc.]
1574 Conv. Burghs I 27.
Convoying of the schippis of this realme langis the coist of Ingland
1585 Burntisland B. Ct. 22 June.
The sowme of viii s. … money of this realme for [etc.]
1612 Orkney & Shetl. Ct. Bk. (ed.) 22.
Conforme to the lawis and pracktique of this realme
1621 Acts IV 616/2.
The lordis … haue sett doun the pryces off all lettres actis infeftmentis and wreatis proper vnto quhatsoeuir clerkschip within this realme
(b) 1544 Corr. M. Lorraine 108.
To the plesur off your grece and common veil off this ralme

b. attrib.1596 Dalr. I 307/7 (see Raker n.1 b).

c. transf. The office, or powers, of a king; kingship. 1560 Rolland Seven S. 9037.
I had rather baith croun and realme forsake

2. The realm. = Scotland.(1) 1398–9 Acts I 210/2.
That our lorde the kyng for seknes … may nocht trauail to gouerne the realme
1424 Ib. II 7/1.
It is … forbodyn be our souerane lorde … that ony ligis or bandis be maid amangis his liegis in the realme
1444 Aberd. B. Rec. I 10.
For the worschipe of the king and the gude of the realme
1473 Acts II 105/1. c1475 Wall. i 43.
Thre ȝer in pes the realm stude desolate
1482 (c1580) Edinb. B. Rec. I 41. 1510 Reg. Privy S. I 330/2.
And the laif to banys the realme
1530 Lynd. Test. Pap. 535. 1549 Compl. 167/13.
There is nocht ane … paris vitht in the realme, bot [etc.]
1552–3 Edinb. B. Rec. II 176.
Licence to the said James to pas furth of the realme to the pairtis of Ingland [and] France
1554–5 Ib. 207.
Other inwith the realm or outwith the samin
1555 Acts & Decr. XII 221b.
To latt thair guidis and geir pas furth of the realm
1570 Leslie 169.
The Erle of Arrane … lauchfull tutour and governour to the quene and realme
a1578 Pitsc. I 232/15.
The best … rynnar of the speir in the realme
(b) 1398 Acts I 210/2.
That the mysgouuernance of the reaulme … sulde be imput to the kynge
(c) 1487 Perth Guildry p. 116 (Jan.).
Ony part vtuth the ruelme
(d) c1500 Harl. MS 4700 143.
Tuiching the commoun proffitt of the ralm
1524 Acts XII 40/2.
(2) 1482 Acts II 143/2.
The Duke of Albany to tak apon him to be lieutennent generale of the realme
1482–3 Acta Conc. II cxi.
xxti merkis of the usuale mone of the realme
1512 Reg. Privy S. I 371/2.
The eist seys of the realm
1515 Douglas Corr. 318.
Be the advice of the … nowbelle lordis of the realmme
1542 Reg. Privy S. II 756/1.
The Est and South Bordouris of the realme
1549–50 Reg. Episc. Aberd. I 446.
Four pundis ten schillingis guid and vsuall monye of the realme
1567 Kirkcaldy B. Rec. App. 308.
The use of the realme
1570 Leslie 169.
The Erle of Arrane … second persone of the realme
1574 Acts III 88/2.
Ony subiect of the realme
1596 Dalr. I 105 marg.
Thrie ordouris of the realme, ecclesiastik, nobilitie and the laik sorte
Ib. II 391/27.
The inhabitans of the realme
(3) 1516 Selkirk B. Ct. MS fol. 48b.
The quhilk deit at facht and treucht of the realme
1532 Ib. fol. 161.
At the facht and peis of the realm
1526 Selkirk B. Ct. MS fol. 120a.
His fader … deit vestit and sesit at facht of haly kirk and peice of relme

3. transf. The people of a realm or country, esp. the people of Scotland. 1456 Hay I 11/19.
Sanct Peter … send his disciplis and convertit realmes and regionis
a1499 Contempl. Sinn. 117 (Asl.).
All his realme till him takis attendans
a1568 Scott i 177.
Latt all thy realme be now in reddines With coistlie clething to decoir thy cors
1572-5 Diurn. Occurr. 33.
[He] commandit the realme to follow him … to pas on the ald enemies
a1578 Pitsc. I 153/16.
George Douglas Earle of Angus … was maid lewtennent be the quene and consall to pas witht the haill body of the realme in defence of the borderis

4. transf. and fig. a. The kingdom of heaven. b. Hell or the kingdom of the dead.a. 1490 Irland Mir. I 17/4.
The realme of paradice
Ib. II 58/15.
In that realme sal be all blithnes
Ib. 146/10.
The hevinly realme
c1520-c1535 Nisbet Matth. xiii 19.
Ilkman that heris the word of the realm and vndirstandis nocht
Id. Mark ix 46.
The reaulme of God
Id. Luke viii 1.
b. 1490 Irland Mir. I 161/26.
The nethmast realme of innemeis infernale
1513 Doug. vi ii 156.
Stix the cayrful schaw And realmys [L. regna] wilsum for levand men to knaw

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"Realm n.". Dictionary of the Scots Language. 2004. Scottish Language Dictionaries Ltd. Accessed 20 Jun 2024 <>



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