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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 but may contain minor corrections and revisions.

BACKAR'T, BACKARTS, BACKARTIES, adv. Backward(s).Sc. [1831] Wilson Noctes Amb. (1855) III. 266:
Keeps stoiterin and stacherin, and tumblin, . . . and feenally fa'in backarts on a sack.
Abd.(D) 1871 W. Alexander Johnny Gibb xxxiv.:
It wud 'a requar't only twa scrapes o' the pen fae me fan aw was makin' oot my report to gar Sir Simon tak' a vizzy backar't.
Ags.1 1932:
Ye're wrang wi' the date; we're gaein' backarties.
Ags. 1993 Mary McIntosh in Joy Hendry Chapman 74-5 113:
He wis gaen wrang aa thegither, it maun be aa the bluid he had tint. His guid haund gruppit the braig i his belt. The wummin taen a stap backart.

[Back + ward; s and es (ies) originally an adverbial gen. In backarties, es was prob. preceded by a dim. ending ie, for which cf. Backies and Backerty-wyes. O.Sc. bakwardis, bakwartis.]

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"Backar't adv.". Dictionary of the Scots Language. 2004. Scottish Language Dictionaries Ltd. Accessed 1 Jun 2023 <>



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