Show Search Results Show Browse

Scottish National Dictionary (1700–)

Hide Quotations Hide Etymology

Abbreviations Cite this entry

About this entry:
First published 1941 (SND Vol. II). Includes material from the 1976 supplement.
This entry has not been updated since then but may contain minor corrections and revisions.

BONNETIE, BONNETY, Bonnadie, n.1 A boys' game. This game varies considerably in different districts (see quots.), but the common feature is the use of the boys' “bonnets.” It is mentioned for Ags. by G. M. Martin in Dundee Courier (Feb.) 1933, and for Ayr. by J. Service, Dr Duguid, 1887, pp. 55–56. It is uncertain, however, to which of the following forms of the game these writers refer.1. Nai. 1894 W. Gregor in A. B. Gomme Trad. Games of Eng. Sc. and Ir. I. 43; Abd.9 1935; Gsw.1 1875:
Bonnety. The players place their bonnets or caps in a pile. They then join hands and stand in a circle round it. They then pull each other, and twist and wriggle round and round and over it, till one overturns it or knocks a bonnet off it. The player who does so is hoisted on the back of another, and pelted by all the others with their bonnets.
2. Abd. 1905 E.D.D. Suppl.:
Bonnety. The lads place their bonnets (caps) on the ground against a wall in such a way as easily to receive a ball rolled or pitched into one of them by a boy with shut eyes. He rolls or pitches from a stance three or four yards from the wall. When he manages to get the ball into one of the bonnets, the owner of that bonnet seizes the ball and hits one of the rest now scampering off. The lad thus hit has a small stone put into his cap. If no one be hit, the boy that missed gets a stone put into his cap. Three stones in the cap excludes the owner from the game, which goes on till only one is left.
[Known also to Bnff.2, Abd.2, Ags.1, Fif.1, Ayr.8 1935.]3. n.–w.Rxb. 1923 Watson W.-B.; Abd.19, Lnk.3, Gsw.1 1875:
Bonnetie. The game of leap-frog as played by the boys successively piling “bonnets” on the back of the stooper, whose place is taken by the boy who' in vaulting, first knocks off a cap or caps.

Combs.: (1) bonnety-blin', = (1); (2) bonnety-toe (see quot.). “Called in Cai. bonnadie and played still or till very recently” (Cai.7 1935).(1) Rnf. 1875 D. Gilmour Paisley Weavers 110:
Is't tae be bonnety-blin' or Andrew Barry till the tawtaes are riven?
(2) Ags.9 1926; Ags.2 1935:
Bonnety-toe, a game played in the following manner — a boy stands with his cap lying between his feet, while the crowd around him try to snatch it away. Should one succeed in doing this without being touched by the guardian of the cap, it is kicked about by the crowd, pursued by the guardian. Whoever is touched by the pursuer becomes guardian in his turn, as also does anyone who is touched while trying to snatch the cap away. Not played now.

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

"Bonnetie n.1". Dictionary of the Scots Language. 2004. Scottish Language Dictionaries Ltd. Accessed 14 Apr 2024 <>



Hide Advanced Search

Browse SND: