Show Search Results Show Browse

Scottish National Dictionary (1700–)

Hide Quotations Hide Etymology

Abbreviations & symbols Cite this entry

About this entry:
First published 1968 (SND Vol. VII). Includes material from the 1976 and 2005 supplements.

PARK, n., v. Also pairk (Fif. 1864 St. Andrews Gazette (20 Feb.)), paerk (Ork. 1920 J. Firth Reminisc. 52), paurk, perk. Sc. forms and usages: “Park, in the acceptation of the English law, is a large extent of ground inclosed and privileged for wild beasts of the chase, by royal grant, or by prescription. In Scotland, park has no such signification, the synonymous term being forest, whereby is meant a large tract of inclosed ground where deer are kept” (Sc. 1838 W. Bell Dict. Law Scot. 702). [pɑrk, perk; Ork., s.Sc. pærk]

I. n. 1. An area of enclosed farm-ground. a field in gen., as a park o corn, gress, neeps, tatties (Sc. 1782 J. Sinclair Ob. Sc. Dial. 192). For historical development see 1950 quot. Gen.Sc., and n.Eng. dial. Sometimes restricted to a meadow or old pasture, esp. in Fif. (Fif. 1893 N. & Q. (Ser. 8) IV. 525). Combs. park-breed, -breath, a field's breadth. See Breed; park-dyke, a field-wall; park-foot; park-lamb, -sheep, a sheep or lamb reared in a field as opposed to moorland pasture (Cai. 1965).Sc. 1701 in Harleian Misc. VII. 359:
Upon Inquiry how many Deer his Father had in his Perk, the Truth will out, . . . that they call an Inclosure a Perk, in his Country.
Sc. 1715 T. Boston Memoirs (1853) 257:
I was told that one was a-dying at the park-foot.
Sc. c.1730 E. Burt Letters (1815) I. 235–6:
He asked me, “Where are these Parks? for, says he, there is nothing near in View but Heath . . . I pointed to the inclosure . . . I should have told you, that every one of the small Divisions above mentioned, is called a separate Park.
Dmf. 1777 Dmf. Weekly Mag. (11 March) 2:
Three Inclosures or Parks called Gaysgill, rented at £4. The Park called Picked Acre. . . . the Parks above-mentioned are mostly inclosed with sufficient hedges, all in good order.
Ayr. 1788 Boswell Letters (1924) II. 471:
I have no objection to indulge him in having nine parks, and carrying on the mode of labour which he wishes. He says he is indifferent about having fences as he must herd at any rate. . . . Pray let Mr. Halbert measure the nine divisions.
Sc. 1816 Scott B. Dwarf i.:
Your father . . . wad hae been sair vexed to hae seen the auld peel-house wa's pu'd down to make “park-dykes”.
Per. 1819 Edb. Ev. Courant (1 April):
Sheep Parks, completely enclosed for sheep, affording early and fine summer pasturage and abundant winter foggage, and well watered.
Inv. 1839 Ib. (14 Sept.):
Now, whether sold as lambs or as fifteen months' sheep, no more profitable stock can be reared on low-lying farms, or as what may be termed park sheep.
Fif. 1864 W. D. Latto T. Bodkin ix.:
A bit clumpie o' trees, within twa park-breeds o' Buttonhole.
Abd. 1875 G. Macdonald Malcolm xvii.:
What it was he hed in's han' whan he lap the park-wa'.
Inv. 1884 Crofters' Comm. Evidence I. 704:
We were obliged to make potato parks to the proprietrix on our rented land.
Ags. 1893 F. Mackenzie Cruisie Sk. vii.:
There's a farm toon only two parkbreaths awa', gang there an' ye'll get shelter.
Fif. 1899 Westminster Gaz. (13 March):
“Old Kirsty” . . . lived all alone, far up in the “parks”, as we say of the wide stretches of old pasture which reach away inland till they merge into gorse and heather.
Lnk. 1919 G. Rae Clyde and Tweed 95:
Doon through the perks wi' stummlin' feet I gang, The wee burn seems to sing a last fareweel.
Rxb. 1925 E. C. Smith Mang Howes 16:
Bonnie Teviot, wumplin bye paster an pairk.
Abd.16 1950:
Park. Until about 1700 this word was used in Scotland as in England, meaning land enclosed and reserved. In the 18th cent. any enclosed land in Scotland was called park, pronounced perk (unenclosed cultivated land was at that time called field). In the late 18th cent. when Scottish agriculture changed over to modern rotational farming with enclosed fields, park became the Scots word for every enclosed field, and is the word used in the dialect for such.
Sc. 1956 Scotsman (14 Aug.) 3:
Apart from a few lots of park lambs the entry consisted of lambs direct off the hill.
Ork. 1995 Orcadian 28 Dec 13:
When I opened the door at seven, it was hazing along the brigstones, and as the sky brightened we saw curls and streamers of it in every hollow. Hannatoft was isolated on its brae, Hamar appeared between two gossamer trails. Our park dyke rose above and between the ice-cold swirls.
Abd. 1996 Sheena Blackhall Wittgenstein's Web 4:
"Dammit tae Hell, I kent yon wad happen!" the fairmer banned, kinnlin anither fag an tossin the deid spunk doon in the strae fleer o the park tae crush it aneth the tacketty buits he ay wore day in, day oot.
m.Sc. 1998 Bruce Leeming in Neill R. MacCallum Lallans 51 22:
I' the mirknin paurk
hielant beasts staun lown:
gaffs frae the chynge.
Abd. 2000 Herald 2 Oct 21:
It is great here in the neuk of the park just up the hill from the family farm. He can see the seasons come and go. He can see everything being done right without having to do it himself.

2. An enclosure of trees, a wood (Sc. 1808 Jam.), usu. in comb., as fir-park, etc.

3. As in Eng., a public recreation park. Hence parkie, a child's word for a park-keeper or attendant.Edb. 1931 A. A. MacGregor Last Voyage 256:
This ploy ended abruptly when I realized that the “parkies” [of the King's Park] were manoeuvring to capture me red-handed.
Lnk. 1965 Rutherglen Reporter (5 Nov.) 1:
Guard Dogs for E[ast] K[ilbride] “Parkies”.
Rxb. 1985 Alistair Moffat Kelsae: A History of Kelso from Earliest Times 204:
At the lodge where they now keep the putting sticks there was a resident parkie. By Jove he used to chase us.
m.Sc. 1989 James Meek McFarlane Boils the Sea 9:
'They weren't disturbing me at all. Do you always take it on yourself to be the crabby old parkie of trains?'
Sc. 1998 Herald 10 Oct 56:
Rothesay was impressive: sweeps of sandstone villas and the resplendent Glenburn Hotel ... Nice palm trees. Nice lawns. Nice enough for a game of football, thought the boys, producing the traditional ball and jerseys for goals. This traditional act produced the traditional parkie, who gave us the time-honoured greeting: "Nae footie."

II. v. 1. Of land: to enclose, form into (a) field(s) (Sh. 1965). Vbl.n. parking, enclosed land, an area of land divided into fields. Obs. in Eng.Sc. 1703 Acts Parl. Scot. XI. App. 12:
The Petitione for the Lord Ross anent the altering of the common road about his house in the country in favours of his Parking and Policy.
Sc. 1723 Account of some People in Gall. (Broadsheet):
By the Inclosures of Mr. Basil Hamilton, there is no less than twenty-eight Plough-Stilts of arable Ground parked.
Gsw. 1754 Burgh Rec. Gsw. (1911) 411:
They agree to give to the said John Finnie the said little piece of ground and allow him to park and take in the same with his own ground in Gallowmuir.
Abd. 1832 W. Scott Poems 68:
Their houses down, their haddins parkit clean, Ye'd never ken a livin' soul had been.

2. Of animals: to rear in a field or enclosure instead of on free range (Sh. 1965). Ppl.adj. parking, suitable or destined for field-rearing, sc. fat-stock.Ayr. 1795 Stat. Acc.1 XII. 88:
40 score of long sheep cast off annually for sale, fat wedders and ewes, and parking ewes 10 score.
Abd. 1845 G. Murray Islaford 118:
A braw improvement wi'a vengeance! . . . That tines a herd by parkin' nowt.

3. To drive out to pasture in a field (Abd. 1965).Abd. 1917 C. Murray Sough o'War 41:
[To] park the kye, an' cogue the caur.

You may wish to vary the format shown below depending on the citation style used.

"Park n., v.". Dictionary of the Scots Language. 2004. Scottish Language Dictionaries Ltd. Accessed 14 Aug 2022 <>



Hide Advanced Search

Browse SND: