Scottish National Dictionary (1700–)
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First published 1941 (SND Vol. II).
This entry has not been updated but may contain minor corrections and revisions.
CA' THROUGH, —THRO(O) , —THROU', —THROW, v.phr. and n.phr.
(1) To display great energy in getting work done, to work away (Bnff.2, Abd., Ags. and Fif. correspondents, Lnk.3 1938).Sc. 1931 J. M. Bulloch in Times (30 Dec.):
May I suggest that we might honour the centenary of their author's [Scott's] death by introducing the fine phrase “Ca' through” . . . because it forms a counsel of perfection for the New Year?Ayr. 1792 Burns Hey, ca' thro' (Cent. ed.) ll. 1–2:
Hey, ca' thro', ca' thro', For we hae mickle ado!
(2) To pull through (an illness). Known to Bnff.2, Ags.1, Fif.1 1938.Ags. 1893 Arbroath Herald (8 June) 2/4:
We got him hame a' richt, an' he'll mebbe ca' throo't.
(1) Drive, “push” (used of work). Known to Bnff.2, Abd. and Ags. correspondents, Fif.10 1938.Bnff. 1866 Gregor D. Bnff. 23:
He's a servan' it hiz a ca-through we's wark.
(2) Disturbance (Bnff.2, Abd.9, Ags.1, Fif.10 1938).Sc. 1816 Scott Antiquary (1818) xxiv.:
There was siccan a ca'-thro', as the like was never seen.Ags. 1934 R. C. Buist in Scots Mag. (Nov.) 142:
Wi' this an' that, they'd a gey ca' thro'.
(3) Of clothes: a slight or preliminary wash (Bnff.2, Abd.2, Ags.1, Lnl.1, Lnk.3, Kcb.9 1938).Rxb. 1923 Watson W.-B.:
A gaed the colour't things a ca'-throw.
(4) A search (Abd.19, Ags.17, Fif.10 1938).Bnff.2 1937:
I'll gie the press a ca' throu', bit I dinna think yir glesses are there.Abd.2 1938:
“Man, Jimmie, ye sud tak' a wife; she wud be chaper than a hoosekeeper.” “Weel, gin a hed the hairst by, a'll yoke the shalt an' hae a ca'-throw.”
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"Ca' Through v. phr., n. phr.". Dictionary of the Scots Language. 2004. Scottish Language Dictionaries Ltd. Accessed 3 Oct 2023 <http://www.dsl.ac.uk/entry/snd/ca_through>