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Scottish National Dictionary (1700–)

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First published 1956 (SND Vol. IV). Includes material from the 1976 supplement.
This entry has not been updated but may contain minor corrections and revisions.

GREESH, n.1 Also greece. A stone abutment built against the gable wall inside a cottage, forming the back of the fireplace, “so that the fire might be thrown forward a foot or so into the room and still be under the ‘box,' a wooden erection carrying the smoke out of the room.” (Mry. 1909 Colville 150; ‡Inv. 1955). Dim. greeshie. Comb. kiln-grish. Also kill-grece. Cf. Greeshoch.Sc. 1763 "Theophilus Insulanus" in R. Kirk Secret Commonwealth (1815) App. 88:
None of the Mrs of Garafad's Women would stay in her Kiln, because of a Corpse in its Linens they frequently saw on the Kiln-grish, or where Corn is dried, a very unusual Place indeed to lay Corpse on!
Ayr. 1790 J. Fisher Poems 149:
Within the same [a kiln pot] she made it [clue of yarn] stot. An' wall'd sae weel her arm That on the greesh she maist it broke.
Lnk. 1832 C. Thomson Lesmahagow Martyrs (1928) 11:
The corpse was lifted, streaming with blood, and laid upon the kill-grece.
Mry.1 1916:
The lugs o' the greeshie were formed by a flat stone projecting like a mantelpiece.

[Gael. grìs, Ir. gríos, fire, heat.]

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"Greesh n.1". Dictionary of the Scots Language. 2004. Scottish Language Dictionaries Ltd. Accessed 8 Jun 2023 <>



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