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Scottish National Dictionary (1700–)

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

HOPE, n.1 Also †hop, houp, howpe; †hoip (Twd. 1887 Jam.); whope (s.Sc. 1787 Burns Border Jnl. (Fitzhugh 1943) 122), whup (Rxb. 1923 Watson W.-B.). [hop, ‡xwʌp, †huəp]

1. A small upland valley or hollow enclosed at the upper end by green hills or ridges (Lth., s.Sc. 1808 Jam.; s.Sc. 1957). Also in n.Eng. dial. Very common in Border place-names, e.g. Hopehouse, Kershope, Hobkirk, Phaup (Fawhope), Hislop (Hazelhope), etc. Combs. hope-fit, the foot or lower part of a hope (s.Sc. 1825 Jam.); hope-heid (Lth., s.Sc. 1808 Jam.), whup-heid, the head of a valley (Watson).Dmf. 1763 Caled. Mercury (17 Sept.):
The farm consists . . . of several rigs and howpes or straths, and each part may have arable ground, and pasture of the several kinds.
Abd. p.1768 A. Ross Fortunate Shep. MS. III. 121:
And wi auld Dick thro' hill and houp did gang As happy as the summer day was lang.
s.Sc. a.1784 G. Caw Poet. Museum 195:
He's guided them o'er moss and muir, — O'er hill and houp, and mony ae down.
Slk. 1794 T. Johnston Agric. Slk. 8:
By the hills being everywhere intersected by small burns, glens or hollows are formed, provincially called hopes, which are of great advantage in sheep-walks, as they afford shelter in stormy weather.
Sc. 1862 J. Brown Horae Subs. (1882) 244:
We listened for the hunt, but could only hear the wind sobbing from the blind “Hopes.”
Lnk. 1910 C. Fraser Glengonnar 12:
Them in the hope, at the far end o' the hirsel' maun be gethered and brocht nearer han' hame.
s.Sc. 1923 A. Lang Poet. Wks. I. 29:
Through glen and heugh, and hope and shaw.
Gall. 1932 A. McCormick Galloway 155:
It was not yet daylight when he stoutly assailed the last "whup" - the crown of Curleywee.

2. A hill (Rxb. 1957). Also found in n.Eng. dial.Peb. 1715 A. Pennecuik Works (1815) 50:
Hills are variously named, according to their magnitude; as . . . Kaim, Bank, Hope.
Kcb. 1911 Crockett Rose of the Wilderness i.:
High above all were heathery knowes and hopes looking down so as to keep a hill girl from feeling lonesome.

[O.Sc. in place-names c.1190, in liter. texts from c.1420 = 1.; n.mid.Eng. hope (a.1400); O.E. hop, a piece of enclosed land. Hill and hope occurs as a liter. phr. from 1535.]

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"Hope n.1". Dictionary of the Scots Language. 2004. Scottish Language Dictionaries Ltd. Accessed 21 Jul 2024 <>



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