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Scottish National Dictionary (1700–)

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First published 1960 (SND Vol. V).
This entry has not been updated since then but may contain minor corrections and revisions.

HEMLIN, n. Also hemling (Ork. 1957), hemlock (Ork. 1929 Marw.) and †helmin. A sheepmark used by Ork. shepherds, made by removing a semi-circular piece from one of the ears (Ork. 1922 J. Firth Reminisc. 110, 1929 Marw.). Cf.Forehelman. [′hɛmlɪn]Ork. 1813 Old-Lore Misc. IV. i. 5:
A helmin before and one behind on the left lug, a hole in the right and a bit before, and a skirt in the right nose.
Ork. 1827 Ib. I. v. 164:
Robt. Balantine, Gossaquoy, crop on right lug, a bit behint on right lug and a hemling before on the left.

[Met. form of Norw. helming, O.N. helmingr, a half part. Cf. Half, n., 4.]

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"Hemlin n.". Dictionary of the Scots Language. 2004. Scottish Language Dictionaries Ltd. Accessed 22 May 2024 <>



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