Scottish National Dictionary (1700–)

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KYPE, n. Also kip(e), keyp, cype, cuyp, and dims. in -ie. [kəip]

1. (1) A small scooped-out hollow in the ground, gen. for use in the game of marbles (Abd. 1825 Jam., Abd. 1956 J. Murray Rural Rhymes 33; n.Sc., Ags. 1960). Also fig. Abd. 1831 Aberdeen Mag. 398:
The remains of several kypes which we well remember to have dug with our own particular fingers.
Abd. 1840 W. D. Geddes Mem. J. Geddes (1899) 20 Note:
There was in old time a flaw in the stone which made a cup-like hollow, which we boys used as a “cuypie” in playing at marbles.
Abd. 1891 Trans. Bch. Field Club II. 15:
Pirlin' aboot the kype with their bools.
Abd. 1928 Word-Lore III. vi. 149:
The snawbree in kypes a' ower the fleer.
Bnff. 1946 Abd. Press & Jnl. (21 Sept.) 2:
The one [cottage] I was born in had a tiny floor, and on wet days my chums and I used to “howk a kypie” and play “bools” at the fireside.

(2) A game played with marbles aimed at a hole in the ground (Abd. 1825 Jam.; Bnff. 1857 Banffshire Jnl. (25 April 1916) 3; ne.Sc., Ags. 1960). Comb. kypie-holie, id. Cai. 1891 D. Stephen Gleanings 87:
Adam was never away frae among the men since the day that Eve and himself played at the Kypie hole.
Abd. 1903 W. Watson Auld Lang Syne 31:
We all played . . . with the “bools” at the “winning ring”, “kypie”, and “hard nickle doon”.
Abd. 1929 J. Milne Dreams o' Buchan 19:
Eidently they ply the bools at ringie an' the kype.

2. A game played with a wooden bat and a soft ball, a hole in the ground being guarded by the batsman who must give up the bat to anyone succeeding in pitching the ball in (Sh. 1866 Edm. Gl.; Cai. 1907 County of Cai. (Horne) 77, Cai.1 c.1920).

[O.Sc. kype, a game of marbles or of ball, 1647. Prob. O.E. cýpe, a basket, L.Ger. kipe, id., extended to anything of a hollow concave shape. Cf. Eng. dial. kipe, a basket of this shape.]

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"Kype n.". Dictionary of the Scots Language. 2004. Scottish Language Dictionaries Ltd. Accessed 8 Jul 2020 <>



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