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Scottish National Dictionary (1700–)

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First published 1956 (SND Vol. IV). Includes material from the 2005 supplement.
This entry has not been updated since then but may contain minor corrections and revisions.

HAINGLE, v., n., adj. Also haingal, hingel, hingle, hangil, hangle, hangel; han(g)yel, hanziel, hanyiel, haanyal, han(n)iel, hynail. [heŋl, hɪŋl, hɑɲɪl]

I. v. 1. To go about in a feeble, languid fashion, as during convalescence; to hang about, loiter aimlessly (Sc. 1808 Jam., haingle; Abd., Fif. 1825 Jam., hingle; ‡Ags., Fif. 1956); of time: to pass slowly.Bch. 1804 W. Tarras Poems 16:
Whan artless tales, an' sangs uncouth, Shamm'd aff the hinglin hours.
Fif. 1864 W. D. Latto T. Bodkin xviii.:
To haingle aboot through the streets o' a big city like Lunnon . . . that is the bluest look-out.
Sc.(E) 1871 P. H. Waddell Psalms 4:
Till hilch an' haingle thro' some feckless tune till His gree.
Sc. 1928 J. G. Horne Lan'wart Loon 15:
Syne, when he hainglt, like to drap, An' stachert dweebly ower the tap.

2. “To have a jaded appearance from extreme fatigue” (Upp. Lnk. 1825 Jam.).

II. n. 1. An idle loutish fellow, a lazy slovenly good-for-nothing (Sc. 1825 Jam.; Rxb. Ib., haniel, hanyel; Cai. 1902 E.D.D., haanyal; ‡Rxb. 1923 Watson W.-B.; Tyr. 1931 North. Whig (15 Dec.) 10, hingel); also applied to a greedy or lazy dog (Slk. 1825 Jam.; Rxb. 1923 Watson W.-B.). Used attrib. = slovenly, careless.Abd. 1755 R. Forbes Jnl. from London 34:
In came sik a rangel o' gentles an' a lithry o' hanziel slyps at their tail.
Edb. 1791 J. Learmont Poems 66:
Tam Pucker's sic anither hynail: And vends about diurnal scandal.
Slk. 1818 Hogg B. of Bodsbeck iii.:
Sae little kend the haniel about fencing, that . . . he held up his sword-arm to save his head.
Sc. 1819 J. Rennie St Patrick I. xiv.:
Ye wilyeart haingle, an' ye gi'e me sic a fright this towmont.

2. A state of boredom or laziness; only in phr. to be in or hae the haingles, to be in a lazy mood (Ags. 1808 Jam.).Abd. 1920 A. Robb MS.:
Somebody tauld her he was some in the hangles after his streen's wark so Mallie was sent out wi' a jug o jessop and sage till him.
Abd.15 1940:
Aw'm jist i' the hangils the day, aifter the streen's rackit.
Abd. 2004:
Is aafa virus his left me in e hingles, aye wintin tae sit doon.

3. In pl. Influenza, “perhaps from hanging so long about those who are afflicted with it, often without positively assuming the form of a disease” (Ags. 1808 Jam.).Sc. 1936 J. G. Horne Flooer o' the Ling 49:
When in the haingles' grip In airly Spring.
Ags. 1947 Forfar Dispatch (30 Jan.):
I'd haen the haingles owre the New Year ye ken.

III. adj. Lazy, slack, disinclined to work (Mry.1 1925, hanyel).Bch. 1832 W. Scott Poems 114:
The langer that it's pitten back, We grow so haingal an' so slack — At last we say it disna mak'.
Abd. 1923 H. Beaton Benachie 232:
Forehan' payment mak's hangel wark.

[For *hengle, freq. form of Hing, q.v.]

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"Haingle v., n., adj.". Dictionary of the Scots Language. 2004. Scottish Language Dictionaries Ltd. Accessed 21 Jul 2024 <>



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