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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 since then but may contain minor corrections and revisions.

ALANG, prep. and adv. Along. Gen.Sc. Used like St.Eng. along. [ə′lɑŋ]

1. prep. Along. Gen.Sc.Sc. [1827] Wilson Noctes Amb. (1855) I. 347:
Doun wi' a plunge four fathom deep i' the pool, or awa like the shadow o' a hawk's wing alang the shallows.
Sc. 1999 Herald 21 May 19:
... she insists she has spent the day wandering "up Sauchie, doon Buchie, and alang Argyle".
Sc. 2002 Herald 18 Jul 14:
The barmaid told them: "Naw hen, wi canny serve fid in here - health and safety bams, naw wit a mean? Ye kin bring sommit in fae the chinkies alang the street, or the chippy next door, an huv it in the corner there, nae bother."
ne.Sc. 2004 Press and Journal 26 Jul 12:
It's nae fair tae highlicht ower mony individual cases an, lookin at the broader pictur, I tend tae gyang alang the road a thochtie wi the chief constable doon sooth fa feels maist strongly that policin is ower saft in some areas.
Abd.(D) [1788] J. Skinner Christmas Ba'ing, Amusements, etc. (1809) vi.:
A meikle man . . . Rax'd me alang the chafts a wham.
Ags. 1990s:
Alang: prep., along.
Edb. 1894 P. H. Hunter J. Inwick v.:
Ye'll hae to tak unco care that ye dinna jaup yoursel, as ye gae alang the clarty road o' this sinfu' warld.
Ayr. 1789 (publ. 1797) Burns To the Toothache i.:
My curse upon your venom'd stang, That shoots my tortur'd gooms alang.
w.Dmf. 1908 J. L. Waugh Robbie Doo (1912) 49:
The Pass wi' its thin string o' a road runnin' alang the hillside.
Rxb.(D) 1925 E. C. Smith Mang Howes an Knowes 11:
[He] staapeet alang the Jethart road wui a taatih-steppin streide.

2. adv. Along. Gen.Sc.Sc. 1728 Ramsay Poems II. 201:
See with what Gayety, yet grave, Serena swims alang.
Sc. 2003 Herald 5 Jul 12:
This charming short novel for teenagers birls alang at a pace that will sweep up even those new to the medium.
Ags.(D) 1894 J. B. Salmond My Man Sandy (1899) xvii. 121:
I juist edged alang a bittie.
m.Sc. 1998 Lillias Forbes Turning a Fresh Eye 6:
'Twixt Warbla Knowe an' Ruberslaw
Twas there we gaed alang -
The waters yet ding doon the dales
But there's nane that mind the sang.
Fif. 1893 “G. Setoun” Barncraig (2nd ed.) 55:
I'll be alang at night.
Edb. 1773 R. Fergusson Sc. Poems (1925) 39:
'Twas this that . . . Laid Denmark's daring sons on yird alang.
wm.Sc. 1991 Liz Lochhead Bagpipe Muzak 5:
Had always attracted the Ladies' Glances,
And nothing wrang wi it, they'd aye gone alang wi it
And encouraged them to take their chances?
Uls. 2003 Belfast News Letter 4 Oct :
Tha man hissel will be alang tae tell us mair.

[O.E. and-lang, and- = against, in an opposite direction + lang = long. Alang is very rare in O.Sc. (one example in D.O.S.T., from Knox). The O.Sc. word was endlang, perhaps from O.N. endelangr, adj., or by pop. etym. substituting end, n., for the and- of the O.E. and-lang.]

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"Alang prep., adv.". Dictionary of the Scots Language. 2004. Scottish Language Dictionaries Ltd. Accessed 21 Jul 2024 <>



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