Scottish National Dictionary (1700–)

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PALM, n.2 Also pawm (Sc. 1828 Wilson Noctes Amb. (1863) III. 105), pam-. Sc. forms and usages: 1. One of a number of trees or shrubs the foliage of which is used by Roman Catholics and Episcopalians in their religious observances on Palm Sunday as a substitute for the true palm, specif. the willow, Salix caprea (Rxb. 1923 Watson W.-B.; ne.Sc., Ags., Lnk., s.Sc., Uls. 1965), the silver fir, Pinus picea (Uls. 1886 B. and H.), the spruce fir, Abies excelsa (Uls. 1880 Patterson Gl.), the plane tree, Platanus (Ayr. 1923 Wilson), the hazel, Corylus avellana; a sprig or branch of one of these trees so used, esp. a budded branch of the female willow, willow catkins (Rxb. 1825 Jam.; Uls. 1880 Patterson Gl.; Rxb. 1923 Watson W.-B.; ne.Sc., Ags.. Lnk., s.Sc., Uls. 1965), less commonly a sprig of the spruce fir (Uls. 1880 Patterson Gl.). Adj. palmy, bearing many catkins, abounding in catkins. Sc. 1713 R. Wodrow Analecta (M.C.) II. 181:
When he was a child about eight or ten years [old], going out with his comerads on Palm Munday, with palms in his hands.
Bwk. 1853 G. Johnston Botany E. Borders 181:
The twigs [of salix caprea] loaded with bursting catkins are called Palms, and children go out annually to gather them on or before Palm-Sunday. . . . Almost every member of the Roman Catholic church carried one or more palms on their dismissal from their chapel. Some of them preserve these palms, hung below the ceiling or over the chimney-piece, until the following Easter.
Lnk. 1881 D. Thomson Musings 92:
The palmy saughs attract the bees.
Dmf. 1962 Stat. Acc.3 297:
A custom still found in a few families is the gathering of willow catkins or “palms” as they are called, for decorating homes on Palm Sunday.

2. Combs. and attrib. uses: (1) hazel-palm, see Hazel, n., I. 2.; (2) nut-palm, n., see Nit; (3) pam-bus, the willow (Slg. 1886 B. and H. 366); (4) Palm Fair, a two-day fair formerly beginning on the fifth Monday in Lent; (5) Palm Saturday, n., the day before Palm Sunday (see quot.); (6) palm-tree, -trei, pawm-, = 1. (Ayr. 1923 Wilson, specif. of the plane-tree; Rxb. 1923 Watson W.-B.). (4) Wgt. 1701 Session Bk. Wgt. (1934) 10:
Being interrogate as to the time when she was guilty with the forsaid Alexander Lawson, answered that it was about the Palme Fair last bypast and in her fathers house.
Ayr. 1800 Edb. Weekly Jnl. (9 April) 119:
At the Palm Fair, Ayr, on Tuesday last, an unusual number of woollen webs were brought to market.
(5) Lnk. 1795 Stat. Acc.1 XV. 45:
The first is a gala kept by the boys of the grammar school, beyond all memory, in regard to date, on the Saturday before Palm Sunday. They then parade the streets with a palm, or its substitute, a large tree of the willow kind, salix caprea, in blossom, ornamented with daffodils, mezereon and box-tree. This day is called Palm Saturday.
(6) ne.Sc. a.1914 Greig & Keith Last Leaves (1925) 264:
They found it on the bonnie palm-tree That grows in the plantins o Airlie.

3. The uppermost grain in a stalk of corn (Sc. 1911 S.D.D.).

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"Palm n.2". Dictionary of the Scots Language. 2004. Scottish Language Dictionaries Ltd. Accessed 1 Jun 2020 <>



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