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Scottish National Dictionary (1700–)

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First published 1956 (SND Vol. IV).
This entry has not been updated since then but may contain minor corrections and revisions.

GUID-DAME, n.comb. Also gude-, guidam(e), gudame, goodam, -um, giddim. A grandmother. ¶In 1897 quot. = Guidwife, 2.Sc. 1721 J. Kelly Proverbs 323:
Tell your old gly'd Giddim that. Spoken to them that tell us something that we do not like.
Edb. 1773 R. Fergusson Poems (1925) 40:
Frae gudame's mouth auld warld tale they hear, O' Warlocks louping round the Wirrikow.
Lnk. c.1779 D. Graham Writings (1883) II. 55:
An' de'il stick pride, when our auld goodum ran barefoot, and our gutchers gaed wi' bare hips.
Kcb. 1789 D. Davidson Seasons 50:
The guid-dame, rinning to the herd Spear'd whar she last was seen.
Sc. 1816 Scott B. Dwarf ii.:
I wanted some venison to our auld gude-dame.
Slg. 1885 W. Towers Poems 161:
Deck him wi' gutcher's boots and hat, And guid'am's book and glasses.
Bwk. 1897 R. M. Calder Poems 273:
I'm tethered at hame, Wi' the ties o' my bairns, an' my couthie guid-dame.

[O.Sc. has gude dame, gudame, guidame, etc., from c.1420, in n.Mid.Eng. 1483. For similar use of good in terms of relationship, cf. Fr. bonne maman.]

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"Guid-dame n. comb.". Dictionary of the Scots Language. 2004. Scottish Language Dictionaries Ltd. Accessed 23 Jun 2024 <>



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