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Scottish National Dictionary (1700–)

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First published 1952 (SND Vol. III). Includes material from the 2005 supplement.
This entry has not been updated since then but may contain minor corrections and revisions.

CLEED, CLEID, CLEAD, CLED, Claithe, Cleethe, Cleath, v. Sc. forms and meanings of Eng. clothe. The forms are illustrated under I. and the meanings under II. [Pr.t. and inf.: klid Sc., but Sh., Bnff., Abd., Kcb. (Kcb.1) + klɛd, Cai. (Cai.7) + kləid, ne.Sc. + klɛd, kled, Abd. + klɛd, kled, kli:ð, Peb. + kli:ð, wm.Sc. and s.Sc. + kle:ð. Pa.t. and pa.p.: klɛd Sc., but I.Sc. + kled, Abd. + klid, kled, Ags. + kled, Lnk. + klid, kleðd, s.Sc. + klid, klidət]

I. Forms.

1. Pr.t. and inf. For Abd. ex. of cled, see Claw, v., 2.Bnff.2 1943:
It's nae an easy job to shod and cled a faimly o' half-a-dizzen as I hiv t' dee.
Abd. 1928 Mains and Hilly in Abd. Weekly Press (20 Sept.) 6/3:
Bit there's aye a great sale for mutton, an' we canna cleethe wirsels withoot ‘oo'.
Mearns 1822 G. Menzies Poems (1854) 135:
Far, far frae hame, without a plack, To synd my craig or cleid my back.
Edb. 1796 H. Macneill Waes o' War 23:
Traveller, waken! — night advancing Cleads wi' grey the neebo'ring hill!
Ayr. 1792 Burns O Leeze me on my Spinnin-Wheel (Cent. ed.) i.:
And leeze me on my rock and reel, Frae tap to tae that cleeds me bien. Rxb. 1847 J. Halliday Rustic Bard 155: Wiles gladness claithes, then weeds o' grief Disguise the ranks.

2. Weak pa.t. and pa.p.Sc. 1728 Ramsay Poems II. 48:
Th' immortal Mind, serene and pure, Is cleath'd aboon the Clouds.
wm.Sc. 1985 Liz Lochhead Tartuffe 53:
Furst Ah took him in,
Fed him, claithed him - if he'd been ma kin
Ah couldny have done mair fur him.
s.Sc. 1856 H. S. Riddell St Matthew xxv. 36:
I was ane stranger, an' ye tuik me in; Naket, an' ye cleedet me.

3. Strong pa.p.Sh.(D) 1898 “Junda” Echoes from Klingrahool 10:
An saw da sea, below dee spread, Wi things o life an beauty cled.
ne.Sc. 1929 M. W. Simpson Day's End 41:
She gangsna girt in a goon o' grey, Nor cleid in the cramasie.
Ags. 1870 Brechin Advertiser (24 Jan.) 4/6:
How grand to see the woods an' dells, The hills and mountains claid wi' sna'.
m.Sc. 1988 William Neill Making Tracks 27:
Messans an thair bit whalps aw brawlie cled,
wi whirligiggums steekit in their duds.
Lnk. 1922 T. S. Cairncross Scot at Hame 30:
Puir man, he's no' that strong, and he wad need To be looked efter and weel fed and cleed.

II. Meanings.

1. To dress, put clothes on (Bnff.2, Abd.2 1937), to robe.Lnk. 1930 T. S. Cairncross in Scots Mag. (Jan.) 302:
I've got to claithe the Doctor, gurl a wee, And ring the bell forby, and syne to see The folk a' in.

2. Of a tailor: to make a suit of clothes (for) (Abd.22 1937).m.Sc. 1870 J. Nicholson Idylls o' Hame 46:
While oor tailor to cleed us is at muckle pains.
Rxb. 1922 Kelso Chron. (27 May) 4/1:
It was the product of a whip-the-cat tailor — who, with his apprentice carrying the “goose,” journeyed from cottage to cottage to “cleed” the rustics.

3. To provide a covering for (the feet). Ppl.adj. claed, shod.Sh.(D) 1922 J. Inkster Mansie's Röd 73:
Dey wirna sae mony claed feet, an' few hed what claes dey wid a' needid apo' der bodies.
Ags. 1880 P. Whytock in Edwards (ed.) Mod. Sc. Poets (Series 1) 28:
To cleed the bairnies' feet.

4. To cover; fill, throng. W. H. Patterson Gl. Ant. and Dwn. (1880) gives cled, “thickly covered, as a branch with fruit.”Abd.(D) 1920 G. P. Dunbar Guff o' Peat Reek 24:
He wis cled wi' fern-tickles.
Edb. 1915 T. W. Paterson Auld Saws 51:
A coloured bit o' chintz to cleed The bottom o' a chair.
Ayr. 1822 H. Ainslie Pilgrimage, etc. 240:
When apples cleed the hawthorn tree.
Rxb. 1923 Watson W.-B.:
The street's cled wi' folk.
Rxb.(D) 1927 E. C. Smith Braid Haaick 10:
A gairdeen cled wui bonnie flooers.

5. “To heap (a basin, etc.) with anything; to pile up (gooseberries, etc.) in a measure” (Rxb. 1923 Watson W.-B., obs.). Ppl.adj. cled, “of a measure: rather full, heaped” (Ib., obsol.); of weight: full. Known to Kcb.11937.Rxb. 1825 Jam.2:
A cled bow, the measure of a boll heaped.
Slk. 1733 in T. Craig-Brown Hist. Selkirkshire (1886) I. 227:
13 stone of cheese, cled weight.

Comb.: cled score, cladscore, “twenty-one sheep. (Highland black-faced sheep are numbered 21 to the score)” (w.Dmf. 1899 J. Shaw Country Schoolmaster 345, cladscore; Kcb.9 1937). Transferred in quot. to human beings. Also in n.Eng. dial. (E.D.D.).Kcb. 1795 Stat. Acc.1 I. 187:
He was four times married, had children by all his wives, and at the baptism of his last child . . . expressed his thankfulness to his Maker for having “at last sent him the cled score,” i.e. 21.
Kcb. 1988 W. A. D. and D. Riach A Galloway Glossary :
clad-score twenty-one (used in counting sheep).

[O.Sc. cleth(e), cleith, cleath, later cleid, to clothe, cover, invest with (first date for cleth, a.1400; for cleid, 1530) (D.O.S.T.). The vowels ee, ea [i] in the pres. stem are due to levelling and assimilation to the type feed, breed, etc. (N.E.D.). Both the weak pa.t. and pa.p. in -it and the strong forms, cled, clead, claid, are found in O.Sc., but the strong forms are much more common. It is not quite certain whether the Sc. form is to be derived from the rare O.E. clǣðan, or taken directly from O.N. klæða. On the whole the authorities regard the O.N. as coming from O.E. The forms with -d in the present are due to the influence of the pa.t. and pa.p.]

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"Cleed v.". Dictionary of the Scots Language. 2004. Scottish Language Dictionaries Ltd. Accessed 24 May 2024 <>



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