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Scottish National Dictionary (1700–)

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About this entry:
First published 1960 (SND Vol. V). Includes material from the 1976 and 2005 supplements.
This entry has not been updated since then but may contain minor corrections and revisions.

HITHER, adv., prep. Also hidder. Sc. usages:

I. adv. 1. In combs.: (1) hither-an'-yon(t), — yonder (Ork.5 1957), hither and thither, this way and that, in opposite or in various directions (Sh. 1914 Angus Gl.), in 1870 quot. with euphemistic force = into dissipation, on the spree. Also used adj., in a disorderly state, untidy (Sc. 1808 Jam.; m.Lth.1 1957); careless, off-hand; estranged, separated; scatter-brained, muddled (Mry. 1957); (2) hidderawa, to this place (Sh. 1914 Angus Gl., ‡Sh. 1957). Cf. Hereawa; (3) hithercome, arrival, hence by extension, lineage, ancestral descent. Obs. in Eng. since c.1440; (4) hiddertil, hitherto (Sh. 1957). Rare.(1) Sc. 1721 James Kelly Proverbs :
What you want up and down, you have hither and yont. "Spoken to them who are low of stature, but broad and squat."
Ayr. 1822 Galt Sir A. Wylie xxxv.:
Noo that they're hither and yont frae ane anither, it behoves a' that wish them weel . . . to take tent that a breach is no opened that canna be biggit up.
wm.Sc. 1837 Laird of Logan 56:
After we had cracked hither and yont about the clashes in the kintra side.
Rnf. 1870 J. Nicholson Idylls 123:
On me she brak' oot like a limmer Whene'er she gaed “hither and yon”.
Per. 1881 D. MacAra Crieff 164:
It's jummel'd ma brains a' hither an' yont.
Edb. 1882 J. Smith Canty Jock 82:
“Weel, weel, then,” says she, in a kind o' hither-an'-yont way, as if she didna care muckle aboot it.
Sc. 1999 Herald 22 Aug 14:
Behind and around him, club members scuttle hither and yon, from bar to car park, from locker room to links, in various states of excitement and concern.
Edb. 2004:
Ah've been hither an yont tae find that book.
(2) Sh. 1898 “Junda” Klingrahool 9:
Did du soom or did du flee Whan du cam hidderawa ower da sea?
(3) Abd. 1863 G. Macdonald D. Elginbrod xiii.:
An' I wat, for yer lords and ladies, it's no a' to their credit 'at's tauld o' their hither-come.
(4) Lnk. 1833 Whigs of Scot. I. ii.:
I hae perceived, hithertil, no great ground o' quarrel.
s.Sc. 1857 H. S. Riddell Psalms lxxi. 17:
O God, thou hest taucht me frae my youdith; an' hiddertil hae I spokin furth thy wunderfu' warks.

2. On this side, on the nearer side. Cf. II.Sc. 1864 Carlyle Fred. the Great xii. ix.:
At Steinberg his hithermost post, some twenty miles hither of Olmütz.

II. prep. To this side of, to the nearer side of.Gall. 1738 Session Bk. Penninghame (1933) II. 308:
He desired him to stop otherways he would lay him in the mire, to which he replyd, Do it, and came leaping hither the mire.

[O.Sc. hyddir, adv., from a.1400, Mid.Eng. hid(d)er, O.E. hider, id.]

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"Hither adv., prep.". Dictionary of the Scots Language. 2004. Scottish Language Dictionaries Ltd. Accessed 29 Feb 2024 <>



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