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Scottish National Dictionary (1700–)

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First published 1934 (SND Vol. I). Includes material from the 2005 supplement.
This entry has not been updated but may contain minor corrections and revisions.

BAG, n, v.  Also bug ( ne.Sc.). The verb bag, to dismiss; and the phrases, to get the bag, to be dismissed; to give the bag, to dismiss, are in common use in Eng. and Sc., and verge on slang. Note the following Sc. usages. [bɑg]

I. n.
1. A small 1996 Graham Smith in Sandy Stronach New Wirds: An Anthology of Winning Poems and Stories from the Doric Writing Competitions of 1994 and 1995 63:
Its Christmas time an A'm a dug
Nae fir a while, bit fir life.
Fa wid've kent Ah'd end in a black bug
Nae for a while, bit fir life.
Abd. 1922 A. Tester in Bnffsh. Jnl. (19 Dec.) 7:

“Coals at fower shillin's a seck” is not Scots; we buy “coals at fower shillin's the bag.”

2. A poke, applied esp. to the wallet in which the beggar carried his provisions and goods.Ayr. 1786 Burns Jolly Beggars (Cent. ed.) ii.:
Weel brac'd wi' mealy bags.

3. The stomach; the paunch; the first stomach in ruminants.Sc. 1721 J. Kelly Sc. Proverbs 38:
A man may love a Haggish that wo'd not have the Bag bladed in his Teeth.
Sh. 1914 Angus Gl.:
Bag, the paunch; the first stomach in ruminants.
Ayr.4 1928:
Is yer bag no fou yet?
Rxb. 1923 Watson W.-B. 46:
Bags, the stomach; the entrails. The stomach as the seat of the appetite.

4. An epithet applied to a child, playfully or as a term of reproach.Abd.2 1932:
A fond Auntie fifty years ago might have tickled her wee niece under the chin saying: “O, you dear little bag,” or she might have said of a boy: “That loon's a coorse bag.”
[See Baggit, n., and Baglin.]

5. The bagpipes.Sc. 1816 Scott O. Mortality iv.:
But in nae event cry on me, for I am wearied wi' doudling the bag o' wind a' day, and I am gaun to eat my dinner quietly in the spence.
Mearns 1844 W. Jamie Muse of the Mearns 102:
He quickly gied the bags a hease, The chanter round did gently fease.

6. “A purse” (Sh. 1908 Jak. (1928)). [ba:g]

II. v.  In phr. to bag oaf, also n. bag-off, (To begin) a sexual relationship.Sc. 2003 Sunday Times 15 Jun 5:
Where I live, a young man might express his interest by requesting a cop-off, a bag-off, a pull or a snog.
Sc. 2004 Scotsman 17 Jan 4:
Too many smokies, and the local loons will struggle to squeeze into those 60ins trousers. Then they'll never get a bag-off down the carpet disco.
Edb. 1995 Irvine Welsh Marabou Stork Nightmares (1996) 152:
The boys tried tae git ays tae take an ecky, bit ah wis jist intae Becks, eh. Besides, clubs wir jist a place tae come doon n talk aboot the swedge n mibbe bag oaf wi some fanny as far as ah wis concerned.

[O.N. baggi, a purse. The Sc. bag has a short vowel.]

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"Bag n.". Dictionary of the Scots Language. 2004. Scottish Language Dictionaries Ltd. Accessed 1 Jun 2023 <>



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