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Scottish National Dictionary (1700–)

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First published 1956 (SND Vol. IV). Includes material from the 1976 and 2005 supplements.

GOLLER, v., n. Also gollar, -or, guller, -ar, ¶galler (Abd. 1900 J. Milne Poems 19); golder, gulder, -ar; geoldar (Ork.), guldher (Uls.); galor (Edb. 1826 M. & M. Corbett Odd Volume (Ser. 2) 222). [Sc. ′gɔl(d)ər, ′gʌl(d)ər, I.Sc. ′g(j)ɔlder]

I. v. 1. To roar, shout, howl, bawl (Sh.10 rare, Abd. Ayr., Gall., Dmf., Rxb., Uls. (gulder) 1954); to speak thickly and vehemently or threateningly (Gall. 1825 MacTaggart Gallov. Encycl. 245), to scold; to laugh noisily (Ork. 1929 Marw., Ork.5 1954). Of a dog: to growl, bark violently (Gall., Dmf., Rxb. 1825 Jam.; Rxb. 1923 Watson W.-B.). Also fig. Formerly Gen.Sc. Also in n.Eng. dial. Vbl.n. gulderin', a noisy scolding.Sc. 1732 P. Walker in Six Saints (Fleming 1901) II. 25:
Their voices were changed in their gronings and gollerings with pain of hunger.
Abd. 1813 D. Anderson Poems 79:
Then wi' the lockin' tree did curse, And gullart roun' the town In rage that night.
Fif. 1827 W. Tennant Papistry Storm'd 218:
As the re-loadit sister-pair Aye guller't out wi' awfu' rair Their charges ilka time.
Sc. 1831 Wilson Noctes Amb. (1855) III. 110:
[Lawyers] gullerin at the bar, and flytin on ane anither like sae mony randies.
Bwk. 1876 W. Brockie Confessional 184:
She'll gie me nae supper, but gollar an' flyte; Of a' her mischanters she'll gie me the wyte.
Ayr. 1887 J. Service Dr Duguid 250:
I . . . cam hame in the gloamin', expectin' a guid gulderin' . . . for bydin' sae late.
Kcb. 1895 Crockett Moss-Hags ix.:
Westerha' rode forward . . . “gollering” and roaring at the bit things to frighten them.
Sh. 1898 Shetland News (31 Dec.):
Lie doon, doo gulderin füle.
Ayr. 1901 “G. Douglas” Green Shutters xxiv.:
“He's simply in debt in every corner,” goldered the keener spirits.
Uls. 1920 P. Gregory Songs & Ballads 9:
My father guldhers, night an' morn: “There's corn tae cut. There's dykes tae build.”
Gsw. 1943 C. M. Maclean Three for Cordelia 142:
Wha' 're ye' gollarin' at, Tykie?
Bnff. 1954 Banffshire Jnl. (24 Aug.):
I'll learn ye better mainners than tae stan' an' guller an' roar there.
Ayr. 1998:
Gulder at someone - to bawl menacingly at someone. If Charlie wiz there he'd be gettin a gulderin oot frae wee Rab.

Hence †guldersome, “boisterous, passionate” (Dmf. 1880 Jam.); rampageous.Dmf. 1838 R. Chambers Life Burns (1852) III. 141:
If anything put him out of humour, he was gey guldersome for a wee while.

2. “Of wind: to make a noise; to blow hard” (Sh. 1908 Jak. (1928), golder).

Hence guldersome, adj., howling, roaring.Gsw. 1879 A. G. Murdoch Rhymes 81:
I thocht that a blast o' the guldersome win' The gavel or back o' the hoose had blawn in.

3. (1) intr. To make a gurgling sound (Rxb. 1825 Jam., 1923 Watson W.-B.; Sh. (gulder), Rxb. 1954), “to make a noise, like water forcibly issuing at intervals through a narrow opening, or as when one gargles the throat” (Sc. 1808 Jam., guller); to gobble, of a turkey (Wgt. 1954). Vbl.n. guldering, “the noise made by a turkey cock” (Ant. 1892 Ballymena Obs. (E.D.D.)).Slk. 1801 Hogg Sc. Pastorals 21:
At first he spurr'd, an' fell a bocking, Then gollar'd, pisht, and just was choaking.
Fif. 1827 W. Tennant Papistry Storm'd 161:
Aboon the brig the fludes stand heapit; . . . Though down they guller fast.
Sc. 1828 Wilson Noctes Amb. (1855) II. 94:
His chest heavin, as if the waters o' the deep sea were gullering in his throat.
Lnk. a.1832 W. Watt Poems (1860) 239:
Till, wi' a hurl, on Annie's lap, He's gullerin' and spewin'.
Dmf. 1836 A. Cunningham Lord Roldan II. ii.:
Then it [flood] gullered belly-flaught out.
Ags. 1856 W. Grant Poet. Pieces 85:
Then o'er his head the torrents thud, . . . Blash'd 'tween the crags wi' horrid scud They backlins guller.
Lth. 1885 “J. Strathesk” Blinkbonny xv.:
Its wee stream gullers round the Carlin Stane.
Ayr. 1913 J. Service Memorables xxiii.:
The only answer, gullering frae the dam, was the Water Kelpie's roar.
Abd.8 1917:
Water gullers out of a jar when the mouth is turned straight down. †(2) tr. To eject with a gurgling sound.
Sc. 1821 Blackwood's Mag. (Aug.) 41:
As sure as I'm on this spot, the puir beast has eaten the flee-hook, and she's golloring up blude.

II. n. 1. A shout, a roar, a suppressed yell (Bwk. 1942 Wettstein, guller; Kcb., Rxb., Uls. 1954); “a sudden, intemperate, angry expression of resentment, rebuke, or admonition” (s.Sc. 1825 Jam., gulder); a growl, a howl, of a dog (Dmf. 1825 Jam.; Rxb. 1923 Watson W.-B.). Also in n.Eng. dial.Rxb. 1808 A. Scott Poems 167:
A grousome tyke, wi' triple head, Sic a tremendous gollar gied.
Sc. 1819 J. Rennie St Patrick III. viii.:
It's eneugh tae gar a sow scunner tae hear your golders.
Sc. 1826 Wilson Noctes Amb. (1855) I. 207:
Something atween a grunt, a growl, and a guller, like the skraich o' a man lyin on his back, and dreamin that he's gaun to be hanged.
Abd. 1871 W. Alexander Johnny Gibb xviii.:
Wobster gies a guller oot o' 'im, and some ane cries, “Ye're killin' a man!”
Uls. 1879 W. G. Lyttle Readings by Robin 11:
I got haud o' his ear. He gied a jump, an' a gulder at me as if I had struck him.
Gall. 1901 Trotter Gall. Gossip 230:
The minute it saw whut wus kittlin't, it loot an awfu gulder, an made a dab at him.
Abd. 1903 W. Watson Auld Lang Syne 12:
The coo “gie'd a guller o' a roar and nearly loupit ower Baubie's heid.”
Kcb. 1909 Crockett Rose of the Wilderness xxii.:
An organ-grinder rang the area bell, but retreated at the sound of Tamson's deep-throated “golder” of rage.

2. Cf. Galder.

(1) “Noisy, unintelligible talk” (Sh. 1908 Jak. (1928), Sh. 1954); a verbal outburst (Abd. 1916; Ork., Wgt. 1954); a scolding (Ayr.9 1954).Ags. 1896 Barrie Sentimental Tommy xi.:
A perfect guller of clarty language came pouring out of her.
Ork. 1929 Marw.:
He cam oot wi' a golder o' oaths.
Dmf. 1954:
I heard a man with muddy boots say “I'd better no come in or ye'll gie me a goller.”

(2) A loud, noisy laugh (Ork. 1929 Marw.; Ork., Wgt., Uls. 1954).Ork. 1909 Old-Lore Misc. II. i. 30:
Shu . . . geid a gret geoldar o' a liach.

(3) A strong sudden outburst of wind, a noisy blast or gale of wind (Sh. 1908 Jak. (1928); Sh., Ork. 1954).Ork. 1929 Marw.:
We'll hae a golder o' wind soon.

3. A gurgling noise, such as that produced by someone choking or the boiling of water (s.Sc. 1825 Jam., guller; Rxb. 1923 Watson W.-B., guller); “a rushing noise from a quantity of water” (Jak.); the noise made by a turkey-cock (s.Sc. 1825 Jam., gulder; Ant. 1892 Ballymena Obs. (E.D.D.)).Sc. 1808 Scots Mag. (Sept.) 715:
On the afternoon of the 21st Jan. they had both got drunk, and they quarrelled; the neighbours heard her scream violently, and give a guller, as if she was choaking.
Edb. 1812 P. Forbes Poems 67:
Linton linn, wi' dinsome guller.
Dmf. 1836 A. Cunningham Lord Roldan III. x.:
Just in the midst o' the guller, where the saut faught wi' the fresh . . . right bolt in I went.
Gsw. 1868 J. Young Poems 64:
We hae at times our “bubbly Jock” . . . To deave us wi' his bluitterin guller.
Ags. 1894 J. B. Salmond B. Bowden (1922) xi.:
Sandy . . . sookit in a muckle bloo-flea . . . sudintly gae a hauch an' a guller.

Hence ¶(1) gulleral, the noise or feeling of choking (as in a nightmare). Cf. 1826 quot. s.v. 1; (2) guldhercock, a turkey-cock.(1) Sc. 1834 Wilson Noctes Amb. (1864) IV. 158:
I flang mysel on them [the eaglets] — and I hear them yet in the gullerals. They were eatin intil my inside.
(2) Uls. 1856 Chambers's Jnl. (Mar.) 138:
Neddy the Guldhercock.

4. A noisy gulp.Ags. 1894 J. B. Salmond My Man Sandy (1899) xiii.:
We feenished up wi' ice-cream. Sandy took a gullar o't afore he kent, an' I think he thocht he was brunt.

5. (1) A blustering person (Dmf. 1954); “one who cannot keep a secret”, a blabber (Gsw. 1916 T.S.D.C. II., gulder). Cf. 2. (1) above.

(2) “A rough untidy person” (Cai. Ib., guller).

6. In comb.: guller's spree [< goller-spree], a heavy drinking-bout (Sc. 1911 S.D.D.). Cf. 3., 4.

[Echoic: cf. Gollie. For similar variants, cf. Buller, bulder and Galder. ]

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"Goller v., n.". Dictionary of the Scots Language. 2004. Scottish Language Dictionaries Ltd. Accessed 25 Sep 2022 <>



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