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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 but may contain minor corrections and revisions.

Relev(e, -lef(e, v.1 Also: ra-, rel- and -lewe; -leiv(e, -leyve, -leiw(e, -liev(e, -leeve, -leave, -live, -liwe, -lyv(e; -leif(f, -leff, -leife, -leyf(f, -lief(f, -leaf(e; -lyf. P.t. and p.p. -levit, -lefit, etc.; see also Releyt. [ME and e.m.E. releve(n (Chaucer), -lieve(n (Gower), -leeve (Lydgate), -lyve (1523), OF relever (11th c. in Hatz.-Darm.), L. relevāre to raise again, assist. See also Relev(e,v.2]

1. tr. To rescue (a person) from trouble, difficulty or danger; to bring or give aid to by one's action or activity. Const. also fra, of, out of (a dangerous situation or place).In early use, chiefly with reference to help given in battle.Also, to come to the relief of (a besieged garrison). Also fig. in this sense.Also, once, with a non-material thing as object.Also absol.(1) 1375 Barb. xi 512.
Thaim thocht that na myscheiff mycht be Sa gret … That ne his worschip suld thaim releve [C. releif]
?1438 Alex. ii 4384.
He … releuit his men with all his mycht
a1500 Lanc. 3198.
Wondir well thai have in armys prewit, And with thar manhed oft thar folk relewit
c1475 Wall. v 829.
Wallace on hors the Sotheron men amang His men relewit
1561 Crim. Trials I i 415.
[He] wald haue drowned him selff in the North Loch, wer nocht he wes releved thairfra be nychtbouris
1561 Q. Kennedy Compendious Ressonyng (ed.) 168/8.
That the saullis of men departit ar relevit throucht the godlines of thair freyndis on lyf
1567 G. Ball. 33.
He wil thé stryke …, Syne thé releue with his maist mercyful hand
1582 Reg. Privy C. III 525.
Be the cuming of the men of … townis adjacent rysing to the fray, the said Williame wes relevit
1583 Reg. Morton I 137.
Ȝe haue hard … quhow ȝe ar relevit off the denger ȝe micht haue incowrrit
(b) 1630-1651 Gordon Geneal. Hist. 232.
God … miraculouslie relived him [from the danger of his enemies]
(c) 1632 Lithgow Trav. iii 100.
Upon the fourth day … there came fisher-boates to relieve us
(d) 1375 Barb. xv 257 (C) (see (3) (b) below).
a1500 Henr. Prayer 78.
Of this mischeif quha may releif ws ocht For wrangus win bot thow our sin oursyle?
a1500 Lanc. 3362.
For at al perell [etc.] … In tyme of ned he can tham all ralef
c1475 Wall. viii 1399.
Quhen scho saw weill gold mycht hyr nocht releiff [etc.]
1540 Lynd. Sat. 2267.
Quhen thow … gois to purgatory … Than sall thy pardoun thé releif
1549 Compl. 73/26.
For ȝe quhilkis suld sustene deffende ande releif me ȝe ar the aduerse party of my prosperite
1567 G. Ball. 42.
Than sall thay not … beleif, Thocht ane from deid suld ryse thame to releif
a1585 Maitl. Q. 79/71.
My lordis … better micht ȝe put to rest This land … And thame releif that ar opprest
(2) 1639 Drummond Wks. (1711) 216.
Relieving King James III when he was beleaguer'd in his maiden-castle
fig. a1570-86 Maitland Maitl. F. 311/89.
ȝe ar not sure … Quha will cum releif ȝou And ȝe be seigit sair
(3) c1420 Wynt. ix 3044.
Geff we falye in oure assaut, Releve ye than al oure defaut
absol. 1375 Barb. xi 354.
And the king … Suld … releve that [C. relief thaim] with his baner
(b) 1375 Barb. xv 257.
For thai couth se quhar na succour Suld cum to releyff [C. to releif thame] and thai Tretyt
c1475 Wall. ix 982.
Quhill on the morn that mar men couth raleiff

2. To assist (a person) by donation, or provision of what is necessary; to succour one in poverty or need.pres. 1375 Barb. xviii 268.
Apon na maner thai Had power to the fyrth to bring Thar wittailis to releve the king
a1400 Leg. S. xxvi 760.
Frend, mycht I thé lewe, Myn wil ware gud thé to relewe With creance, … gyf I mycht trew [etc.]
c1490 Porteous Noblenes 62/55 (Ch. & M.).
Larges releuis and succuris a man and scarsnes interditis nobilite
(b) 1615 Douglas Corr. 196.
It wald try a great meanes … to releyue many vho daylie fall away [from the church]
(c) 1698 Banff Ann. I 168.
The magistrats … ordain the drum to goe thorrow the towne inhibiting to relive any poor except those who have badges
(d) a1400 Leg. S. x 454.
It that remanyt to gyfe To poure folke, thame to relefe
1529 Acta Conc. Publ. Aff. 311.
And that every ane of thame relefe otheris
(e) c1490 Porteous Noblenes 178/21 (Asl.).
He suld … at mistere releif help and succour tham
a1500 Seven S. 1766.
To fynd sic fussoun we wald preif That all this cite mycht releif
c1500-c1512 Dunb. (O.U.P.) 124/28.
O gentill egill … ȝour leggis quhy do ȝe not releif
1515 Cart. S. Nich. Aberd. II 351.
[Until] God relief thame to prouide sum vthir competent and accident thing for him
1557 Aberd. Council Lett. I 3.
As the support of the quenis lands suld releif the burrowis for ane feyrd part of the taxt
a1585 Maitl. Q. 169/14.
And ȝe be fallin in distres ȝow to releif he wilbe sueir
p.t., p.p. a1400 Leg. S. xvi 716.
Al myn fawtis wele supleit, & in al myn myster me relewit
Ib. xl 924.
Sa wane the Scottis-men gret riches, Quhare-for the land relewit vas
And … c1400 Troy-bk. ii 1213 (C).
The seyd oost releved I Inne welth of wittaile gret copye
c1420 Wynt. ii 356.
In tyll tyme off hungar sare, The folk at [ed. that] full relevyde ware
c1475 Wall. vi 618.
1555 Conv. Burghs I 7.
That the borrowis that ar depauperit may be relevit
(b) 1596 Dalr. I 204/22.
He called agane and releiuet the mounckes and preistes, quha fled the crueltie of the Romanis
1640 Aberd. B. Rec. III 199.
Quhairby the aged … and impotent people … may be releiwed yeirlie
(c) 14.. Acts I *91/2.
Giff ony of our brether … fall crukyt or pure … he salbe releyffyt

b. To assist or furnish (with provisions, arms, etc.). Also, without const.(a) 1375 Barb. iv 456.
Quhen this James off Douglas … War relewyt [C. War weill releyit] with armyng [etc.]
Ib. xix 811.
Thai had defawt of mete, bot thar Thai war relevyt with gret plente
c1420 Wynt. iv 1951.
Thou sall hym wytht gud relewe
(b) a1400 Leg. S. xl 161.
He can hym ma Bischope … & with relykis cane hym releife

3. To free (a person, community, etc.) from, fra, of (a cause of) mental pressure or distress, or physical pain or discomfort; also with some remedy, etc. Also without const. and ellipt.Also in passive, with the cause of distress as subject, const. of the person.(1) 1549 Compl. 75 h. of ch.
On diuerse cuntreis that Gode hes releuit fra persecutione
c1552 Lynd. Mon. 479.
Quho in Christ fermely beleuis, Sall be releuit frome all myscheuis
1567 G. Ball. 13.
Thairfoir thow … will releue All thame, that can in Christ beleue, From deide, the Deuill, and hellis paine
1631 Laing MSS I 189.
Wherby I am releeved from that toyle which my age and decayed bodie could not have sustained
(2) 1512–13 (c1580) Edinb. B. Rec. I 140.
As God relevis thame of pestilence and givis thame heall
1567 G. Ball. 113.
God … sall releue All Israel of thair distres
a1568 Bann. MS I p. 23/64.
Thame that wer hungry … [He] relevit of all thair wrechitnes
1573 Davidson Sat. P. xlii 652.
Euin sa the saull hes the awin tymes Quhen it wald be releuit of crymes
1590 Cal. Sc. P. X 465.
That sche did put inchantit powder … in ane clout under som wemens bed feit to releive them of the dolour of their birth
(b) 1535 Stewart 43827.
Tha thocht no ill to wirk … For to releif thair father of his neid
1549 Misc. Spald. C. IV 52.
The entering of the said capitane sall relefe you of part of cummyir and pyne
1560 Rolland Seven S. 6487.
It … will releif vs of all pouertie
a1568 Bann. MS I p. 8/59.
Releif me of my mesery And present cair
1572 Peebles B. Rec. I 353. 1590 Waus Corr. 459.
And relief ws of the exclammatioune quhilk vtherwyis may be maid
a1568 Scott iv 100.
Fra sklander to releif ȝow
(3) ?1438 Alex. ii 9078.
The king … releued his men with this
a1570-86 Maitl. F. 420/55.
The elect … at lenthe with ioye salbe relewit
(4) 1501 Doug. Pal. Hon. 783.
Saue that I had sum hope till be releuit
c1536 Lynd. Compl. Bagsche 219.
He kend I had bene weill releuit Quhen to the court he gart me carie
1543 Corr. M. Lorraine 41.
Gif God fortonis me to be relewit at this tyme
(b) a1400 Leg. S. xxxviii 115.
The tyme cumis … quhene nane sal vthir relefe … As for to les thame of thar payne
c1420 Ratis R. 1023.
Mekle thinge That … may his seruand weil raleif
c1530-40 Stewart Bann. MS 96a/46.
Grit God releif Margaret our quene
1560 Rolland Seven S. 4602.
Sa this ane time that ȝe will me releif
a1568 Bann. MS 249a/21.
The luk of ȝow that suld my hairt releif Is he … dispyte
1580 Hay in Cath. Tr. 33/7 (see Relefe n.2 4 b).
c1600 Montg. Suppl. xxxv 34.
Thow the laidneitt will releif Quhilk cumis to Thé with hairt contreitt
(5) ellipt. 1375 Barb. xx 203.
He bad thaim leve thar sorowing For it … mycht nocht releve And mycht thaim … engreve
(6) 1549 Corr. M. Lorraine 314.
That the affarris and cummerris salbe fordair releyffit of yowr grace

b. To free from (fra) a punishment or penalty; to let off. 1572-5 Diurn. Occurr. 152.
That the saidis lettres sould desert in thameselff, and relivit [sic] fra the pane thairof
1615 Fraserburgh Kirk S. I 11 April.
Hawing … endit his repentance to ane sabboth [he] creawis the nixt sabboth to be reliwit
1625 Ib. II 7 Dec.
[He] offerit, giff it pleisit the sessioun to … relieve him with ane day, than he wauld … satisfie

c. To be relewit of (an enemy), to be freed of him; to get rid of. a1578 Pitsc. I 167/3.
Traisting to be relewit be that way of thair eneme the Duik of Albanie

d. reflex. To relieve one's feelings by self-expression or composition. a1568 Sempill Sat. P. xlviii 97.
This far to releif me, … This sang of thre lassis was maid abone glassis

4. To free (a person or community) from, of a legal (freq., financial) obligation; to give legal relief; to reimburse (a cautioner).Also const. at the handis of, also of, (the obligee).(1) 1497 Acta Conc. II 86, etc.
Letters … to mak him be relevit of the sade soume of xxx li.
1533 Bell. Livy II 174/15.
Thus mycht the pepill be relevit of the tribute imput to thame for this ȝere
1535 Stewart 44325.
Tua thousand merkis … He had with him King Richart for to gewe, Of his ransoun to help him and releue
1564 St. A. Kirk S. 224.
William Peblis sall … relev the sayd Besse … of all coistus and cherge tharof
1582 Conv. Burghs I 157.
And oblessis thame and thair saidis burrowis … to releve … Edinburgh of all and sindry the premissis
1606 Chart. Coupar A. II 220.
Becaus his maiestie will be relevit and dischargit of the sustenacioun of the ministeris of the foirsaidis kirkis
(b) 1616 Urie Baron Ct. 18.
James Sellat confessit himself to releiw George Grig of the prys corne acclamit
1639 Aberd. B. Rec. III 150.
Actit to releiwe the … thesaurar, of the premisses, and of all that may follow thairon
1674 Edinb. B. Rec. X 193. 1688 Galloway P.
[He] binds him to releive his meisters off all teind dew and payeable furth of the saids lands
1691 Stirling B. Rec. II 64.
To freith, releive, and disburden the saids heall inhabitants of all … publict burdeings
(c) 1627 Reg. Privy C. 2 Ser. II 68.
Till he be releeved of his present ingadgements
(d) 1668 Glasgow Chart. II 139.
And also to relieve and disburden the said Sir Patrick … of our said soveraign lords taxations and all publick burdens
1681 Stair Inst. i xv § 8.
December 4 1629 Cockpool contra Johnston … where the clause of relief bore only to relieve the cautioner of his cautionry
(e) 1478 Acta Aud. 66/2.
That the said Robert his sone suld relefe him of xx merkis of the said soume
1483 Acta Conc. II cxxxiii.
The Lordis decretis … that Schir Johne … sall relefe and kepe scaithles Schir Johne the Ros of Halkhede … of the payment of … fifty merkis
1531 Dunferm. Reg. Ct. 49.
Master Andro protestit he var absoluit and ralefit of his souerty
1534 Ib. 117.
1582 Lanark B. Rec. 88.
The said Stein sall find sowertie caischoun to ralef the toun thairof
(f) 1478 Acta Conc. I 23/1.
To releif him of the borrowgang of xxtj li.
1496 Ib. II 29.
Wilȝeam Tyrie … to call his lard to releif him of the haile annuale; … and failyeing that the sade lard releif him nocht the sade day [etc.]
1517 Selkirk B. Ct. (ed.) 43.
James Ker to raleiff him of the v nobillis that Jhone Wolsone allegit the said Jhone was bund for
1518 Fife Sheriff Ct. 95. 1523 Carnwath Baron Ct. (S.H.S.) 2.
To releif thaim of the borrowis that thai war for Jhon Somerwell
1534–5 Glasgow Prot. IV 73.
1535 Aberd. B. Rec. MS fol. 31.
Quhat skaith hapynnit to cum on him for non pament of the said merchandis that suld cum on the non payris of the samyn & tha suld be addettit to releif him thairof
1559 Admir. Ct. Bk. 104.
Obligatioun maid to the said Robert oblisand thame to releif him of thair saidis ransonis respective
1561 Ib. 202. 1596 Paisley B. Rec. 182.
To relief and skaithles keip Patrik Semple … of all fenssis maid upon his maill for payment of the said sown
1605 Glasgow B. Rec. I 242.
[The burgesses] ar releifit of that burdeine of the menstrallis meit quhairof thai war in vse of
1611 Edinb. Test. XLVI 278.
And thairby to releif and disburdene Johonne Andersoun … of all payment thairof
1635 Glasgow Chart. I ii 357.
And obleist to freithe and releif the said college [etc.] … of the … vpholding of the said kirk
(g) 1501 Acta Conc. III 4.
[An action] to freith relief and keip him skaithles at the handis of Wilyeam Adare … of the payment of thir soumes … undirwritin
(h) 1559 Inverness Rec. I 39.
Tha relyf ws nocht of the buchre male of the Vytsunday fyfte sewyn
(2) 1496–7 (c1580) Edinb. B. Rec. I 71.
And quha that relevis thame that thay be put in waird and remane thair quhill the said ferme be payit
1529 Selkirk B. Ct. (ed.) 102.
Leffull dettour … ay and quhill the said Jhone fynd that he was relevyt and deuly freid his borrowes
1562 Reg. Privy C. I 221.
The said William Gordoun [shall be] oblist to releve his said souerte
1580 Waus Corr. 230.
Without the Mastar of Glames feind heme casoun to raleue heme at all handis
1587 Acts III 463/1.
That the plegeis enterit sall keip trew warde ay and quhill thai be fred and relevit ordourlie
(b) c1575 Balfour Pract. 276.
The immediat tenent to the over-lord sould releive and keip skaithles all uther mediat tenentis … anent all sic unlawis
1635 Antiq. Aberd. & B. III 310.
1643 Aberd. B. Rec. IV 4.
The said David actit him to releive his cationer
1652 Aberd. Sheriff Ct. III 66.(c) 1681 Stair Inst. i xvii § 13.
Co-principals bound conjunctly and severally, are mutually, as cautioners for thair shares, liable to relieve each other
(d) 1609 Skene Reg. Maj. i 15 h. of ch.
Of him quha releaues nocht his borgh
(e) 1499–1500 Acta Conc. II 374.
[That the defender] aucht nocht til freith no releif the sade Walter
1525 Wigtown B. Ct. fol. 181b.
The said Jame Edȝare convyt to raleyf hyme
1533 Dunferm. Reg. Ct. 100.
The said Jhone … ralefand his pleg and souerte for his enteres and expres deniet the premises
1549 Banff Ann. I 27.
William Urquhartt oblest him to releiff and defend Alexander Fynlach burges tuechane the clame … anent the sett of the croft
1556 Edinb. B. Rec. II 245.
The counsale ordanit Thomas Hal, javillour, to releif the baillies anent the boy quhilk was input in the tolbuith … or to enter the boy agane
1564 Peebles B. Rec. I 293.
To sell the same to releif creditturris that thay haif ado with in respeck of the det
1566 Treas. Acc. XI 506.
Witht ane ordinance … to admonische the lard of Pharnihirst to relief the wardane … for vj oxin
1576 Dickson & Edmond Ann. Sc. Printing 285.
We … obleissis us … to releif and keip skaythles our saidis souirteis respective
1587 Aberd. Council Lett. I 30.
Ilk ane to releif utheris for thair awin pairtis pro rata of the said sowmes
1587 Prot. Bk. J. Inglis 28 April.
George Fordice … obleist hym self … to releif & keip skaythles, [four persons named] as cautionaris & souerte for the payment of ane hunderit pundis to be payit to Johne Forsyth … in name of tochir with Margaret Fordice his syistir, & that betuix & Lowran day
1603 Shetland Sheriff Ct. (ed.) 92.
Mareoun Ormisdochter, hes releifeit hir cautioner, … for hir entrie at this court
1605 Melrose Reg. Rec. I 3.(f) 1564 Inverness Rec. I 119.
To relyf and skaythles kyp the sade Donald
(3) 1482–3 Acta Aud. in Acta Conc. II civ.
Johne Wallace … sal releif and kep skaithles the said persons at the handis of the said Margret, Countas of Craufurd, anent the payment of the said soume
1532 Instit. Ct. Sess. in Facs. Nat. MSS III xx.
In the actioun persewit be him aganis Johnne Rutherfurd … for to releif him of Gilbert Menȝeis
1576 Kirkcudbr. B. Rec. I 3.
The saids Mungo [etc.] … ar becum actit … to releif and hald harmeles and skaithles the said William Quhitheid at the hands of the thesaurar
(4) 1618 Crim. Trials III 445.
absol. Alexander Gourlay … become plege, souertie and lauborris for Alexander Sowre, &c. Mr. Andro Skeane relieved

b. With the amount due (as a fine, debt, etc.) as object: To pay off, repay. 1574 Cal. Sc. P. V 50.]
([If such debts were, she might have found the) middis (to have relieved them by her husband's goods)
(a) 1652 Aberd. Sheriff Ct. III 72.
To raise leavy and releave the amerciaments and escheets of the said court
(b) 1577 Perth Kirk S. MS 16 Sept.
And that to releiff the ane part of the dettis that the last possessor ves achtand
1587 Aberd. Council Lett. I 31.
The said erle to releif the expenssis of the seallis of the infeftment

c. To free from a charge or duty. 1521–2 Selkirk B. Ct. (ed.) 63.
A wacht … to … be rasavit be ane of the balyeis … and be the samen that rasavit to releff thaim upone the morne or thai disever
1559 Knox VI 94.
Who, I trust, shall releaf me of the presupposed jorney
1639 Dumbarton B. Rec. 59.
The proveist … engages to relieff the armet men sent furth of the burgh gif the service continues langer nor ae month

d. To free (land) from (of) a financial burden. 1616 Misc. Hist. Soc. I 90.
Siclyk the said erll oblissis him to freth and releiff the saidis landis of thir annuelrentis

5. To set free (a person, also a bird or ship) (from, out of, furth of, of bondage or captivity).Chiefly Sc.(1) 1540 Crim. Trials I i 228.
That the king was moveid, upone sute, to releive him
1570 Leslie 107.
The saide David Kar wes resplatit and relevit
1572 3rd Rep. Hist. MSS 418/2.
The Maister of Forbes … is sa straitlie deteneit captive as upoun na band can he be gottin relevit
c1575 Balfour Pract. 140.
Quhen he is takin it is not leasum to the forestar to releive him or let him pas away without speciall command of the king
a1578 Pitsc. II 51/5. 1581 Nugae Scoticae 36.
I vais relivit upoine catioun
c1590 Fowler I 198/1.
This lark releiud by yow … Refigurs not my … plight
1591 Douglas Corr. 35.
Thairin to remaine … ay and quhill he be fred and releuit be ws
1596 Glasgow B. Rec. I 182.
Agnes Brovne … put in the stokis, and becaus na thing wes tane with hir wes releivitt
1611-57 Mure Sonn. iv 6.
I expected grace, To snair myselfe in hope to be reliued
(b) 1540 Lynd. Sat. 3264.
Micht I speik with Temporalitie He wald relief me sone [from the stocks]
1567 Hosack Mary Q. of Scots I 544.
Diuers noblemen … [offered] to convene hir forces and releif hir maiestie
1576 Inverness Rec. I 252.
Hornaris … to be put in captivitie … to that thai be releiffit and relaxit in the authoriteis letters
c1630 Bk. Carlaverock II 13.
[To] freith, releif, and set him at libertie furth of hir present vaird
(2) c1552 Lynd. Mon. 2427.
Of that dangerous den he [sc. Daniel] wes releuit
1565 Misc. Maitl. C. III 190. 1567 Edinb. B. Rec. III 232.
George Couttis … to be relevit furth of waird and convoyit to Leithe and boittit thair
1569-73 Bann. Memor. 28.
To releive hir hienes from the bondage … of that … vnworthy man
c1600 Montg. Suppl. xxxi 51.
Of presone strang thow did relewe Paull the sulderis frome amang
1607 Reg. Privy C. VIII 21.
And endevoiring to releve oute of the same [sc. Edinburgh Castle] the said Sir James McConeill
1610 Crim. Trials III 91.
And forceablie relevit him furth of our souerane lordis prisone
1645 Dumfries Treas. Acc. MS p. 18.
To twa Englishmen when they were releivit out off prisone
1667 Highland P. II 16.
He asked … if ther wes anie way to releive him out of that prisson
1683 Meikle Old Session Bk. 166.
To tuo men relived from the Turks slavrie
(3) a1597-1617 Hist. Jas. VI (1825) 19.
The capten … seing that ship takin away, … directit owt twa great ships to releve hir fra the handis of her ennemeis

b. To set free from a charge or duty (? by supplying a substitute or replacement). 1644 Murray Kilmacolm 51.
To goe to the army, nowe in England, and supplie there as minister till he was relyvat

c. To free (a pledge) from pawn. a1586 Kamington in Maitland Geneal. Setoun 47.
Quhat they wodset, this worthy man releuit
1644 Law Memor. lxii.
To the intent he might never be able to relieve some cloaths he had panded besyde you

d. ? To replace one dish by another. Cf. 18th c. Eng., in this sense (1741). 1698 Marchmont 183.
[Bill of Fare]: 2 dish of fish to relleve
Ib. 184.
To relleve, hot ham and chickens

6. To make (a need, weakness, etc.) less harmful or oppressive; to relieve or mitigate.(a) c1420 Wynt. iv 1853.
Thai relevyd welle All thare defawte off yrne and stelle
1490 Irland Mir. II 42/22.
Send thi blist sone to me … to les and releue my hevy dolouris
1574 Glasgow B. Rec. (M.C.) 10.
To releve his extreme pouertie in tyneyng of his pak
1596 Irons Leith I 565.
As also the messerie of honest aigit pvir personis may be relewit
(b) 1535 Stewart 2952.
Ilk craftisman thairof to haif ane breid … for to releif his neid
1567 Sat. P. vi 114.
Set your cure For till relief the greit penuritie Off laubouraris
c1600 Montg. Suppl. xxix 76.
And myn offences manifold Throw Him releiffitt quytt

b. To make (something said) less displeasing. c1420 Wynt. v 4336.
Had he cald Lucyus procurature, … That had mare grevyd the cadens Than had relevyd the sentens

7. To exalt or elevate (a person or thing); to raise in rank, standing or condition.(1) ?1438 Alex. ii 3124.
Throw him ȝour … freindis [shall be] honourit and releiuit
c1420 Wynt. iv 2294.
He … [was] relewyd tyll heyere gre
Ib. vi 987.
Relevyd … he suld be, Or he deyd, in the Papys Se
Ib. 1628.
A dowchtyr fayre, That to the kyng had offt repayre, That till hyr fadyr dysplesyd noucht To be relewyd for-thi he thowcht Off that repare
c1552 Lynd. Mon. 472.
Euerilk man he sall releue, Quhilk in his blude doith ferme beleue: And bryng ws all vnto his glore
Arundel MS 286/255.
And to thé cogitacionis of mony hertis suld be releuit
?1438 Alex. ii 9229.
He said ‘my standart doun is fellit! Releif it sone or all be quellit!’
1567 G. Ball. 124.
My banis law Thow sall releue
(2) c1420 Wynt. iv 2142.
We sla thaim … That yhit relewe wald oure renowne
Ib. v 4614.
For to releve the Crystyne state, That he wald the byschopys all Agayne to thare kyrkys call
Ib. vii 1575.
Quhare-throw relewyd wes his name And he comendyt off gret fame
Ib. ix 1474.
Agayne yhoure will and off malis Hely yhe releve [C. releyff] thare prys
c1590 Fowler II 103/27.
The mercenarye forces …, gif they have win thyne ennemie and relived thy estate [etc.]

b. To restore (a structure or its parts). 1540 Perth Guildry 512 (12 June).
And to releif the samyn lovis werk als sufficient as tha find the samyn with myln and mylnlaid thairto pertenand

c. To lift, raise up, (? or restore) to (till, in) a better condition. c1420 Wynt. vi 669.
The kyrk off Scotland … He relewyd in gret fredome
Ib. 737.
Flawndrys in hys dayis wes Relevyd till ane erldwme
1549 Compl. 137/19.
Quhilkis suld and culd haue releuit and restorit thé [sc. Scotia] to thy fyrst stait

8. To recover or regain (heritable) land.(a) 1596 Dalr. I 162/30.
Nocht onlie to releiue quhat thair he had loste, bot to subdue quhat was nocht ȝit subduet
a1586 Kamington in Maitland Geneal. Setoun 49.
These rented relictis be hir they warre releued
(b) 1596 Dalr. I 307/22.
[The people] sent Makduff … to desyre Malcolme Canmoir … to cum hame and releife his fathiris heritage

9. Only Sc.: To bring (a matter) into prominence; to make clear or evident. 1533 Bell. Livy I 131/33.
For thir ressouns he was constrenit to releve the mater
1566 Lethington in Burnet Hist. Ref. (1679) I Rec. iii 269.
An instrument to relieve the truth and to confound false surmises

10. intr. a. To rally (to a leader or into the main body of an army). b. To advance, or return, to battle. c. To advance or charge (on an enemy).a. c1475 Wall. iii 406. x
His men supprisyt agayne to him relewyt
Ib. x 194.
thousand thar … With thair chyftane in to the ost relewyt
(b) c1475 Wall. vi 608.
The fleand folk, that off the feild fyrst past, In to thair king agayne releiffit fast
b. c1450-2 Howlat 512 (A).
As he relevit, I wis, so was he war than Of ane wy him allane
c1475 Wall. iv 625.
Schir Jhon Butler relewit in agayne
1513 Doug. x x 4.
Ceculus … The bargane stuffis, relevand in agane
Ib. xi xiv 16.
Thai that drevyn war abak and chaste Relevys agane to the bargane in haist
15.. Christis Kirk § 17 (L).
Sum fled and sum relived
(b) c1475 Wall. viii 247.
The flearis than with erll Patrik relefd To fecht agayn, quhar mony war myscheifd
Ib. ix 982.
c. c1450-2 Howlat 523 (A).
Feile of the fals folk, that fled of before, Relevit in on thir twa
(b) c1475 Wall. x 723.
Wald ye wyth men agayn on thaim raleiff …, I sall … Low yow fer mar

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"Relev v.1". Dictionary of the Scots Language. 2004. Scottish Language Dictionaries Ltd. Accessed 28 Sep 2023 <>



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