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Scottish National Dictionary (1700–)

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First published 1965 (SND Vol. VI). Includes material from the 2005 supplement.
This entry has not been updated since then but may contain minor corrections and revisions.

LIPPIE, n.1 Also lipp(e)y, leppie, lypy; leepy, -ie; libby. Dim. leepichie. [′lɪpe, ne.Sc., Fif. + ′lipi]

1. In dry measure: the fourth part of a Sc. Peck, esp. used in measuring oats, barley, and potatoes, and varying in weight according to the district and commodity (Sc. 1808 Jam.; Cai., Inv. 1902 E.D.D.; Per., Fif., Lth. 1915–26 Wilson; n.Sc., Ags., Per., Clc., Fif., Lth. 1961), a Forpet, q.v. Where still used, the word usually connotes 1¾ lbs. or ⅛ stone, sometimes 7 lbs., where the goods are sold by weight. .Deriv. lippiefu.Abd. 1713 Monymusk Papers (S.H.S.) 186:
And for the saids crops of meal … and of bear for the saids crops fourteen bolls, two firlots, on peck and on lippie.
Slg. 1722 Trans. Slg. Nat. Hist. Soc. (1925) 119:
To John Laing, tennent in Logie, for twenty lippies of corn to the minister's horse that came here to preach during our vacancie, £2.
Sc. 1729 W. Macintosh Inclosing 123:
Their Subsistance costs, at a Fourpeth or Lippie of Meal per Day, which commonly is these Peoples Allowance.
Per. 1737 Ochtertyre Ho. Bk. (S.H.S.) 7:
For a lippy of salt … 1½d.
Sc. 1746 Lyon in Mourning (S.H.S.) III. 378:
I had a leepy of groaten meal wrapt up in a Nepkin in my pocket.
Lnk. a.1779 D. Graham Writings (1883) II. 35:
A libby o' groats an' a furlat o' meal.
Sc. 1800 Mrs Frazer Cookery 236:
Lay four dozen of cucumbers, and one half lippie of beans.
Ags. 1818 Scots Mag. (Aug.) 126:
The maid-servants have also a sum of money, some ells of harn, also fine linen, an apron and a lippie of lintseed sown on the farm. These are termed their bountith.
Nai. 1828 W. Gordon Poems 242:
A cog that hauds a lippie.
ne.Sc. 1881 W. Gregor Folk-Lore 178:
A peck or two from this one, a leppie from the next one, a hathish-cogful from the next one.
Sc. 1889 H. Stephens Bk. of Farm II. 412:
The lippy measure — which is the fourth part of a peck — when horse-corn is dealt out, is not striked, but heaped, or at least hand-waved, so that the full allowance will weigh even more than this.
m.Lth. 1894 P. H. Hunter J. Inwick 171:
A faur-seein chiel, wha kent hoo mony lippies gae to the peck.
Bch. 1930 Abd. Univ. Mag. (March) 105:
He pat near a hale lippiefu' o' corn in tull's seck.
Sc. 1935 Scotsman (31 May) 15:
Some smaller communities, especially in the East of Scotland, where you may still be served with a “lippie” of flour or potatoes.
Ags. 1995 Courier 5 Sep :
...The general consensus seems to be that a lippie constituted seven pounds and a half-lippie, therefore, three and a half pounds, although there have been some geographical variations.....

Phr. and combs.: (1) a lippie in the bonnet, something extra, a little more; (2) leepie cog, a square wooden measure holding a lippie (Abd.4 1930). See 3.; (3) lippie's bound, the amount of ground to be covered by a lippie of seed, orig. of flax, as one of the perquisites of a farm-servant, later of potatoes, etc., as in an allotment (Fif. 1961). See Boun', 2., Boons; (4) lippie's sawing, id.(1) Ags. 1896 Barrie Sentimental Tommy 335:
My certie, he does, and a lippie in the bonnet more than that.
(3) Ags. 1858 People's Jnl. (15 May) 2:
An additional twa or three lippies' boun's o' tawtie-land.
Fif. 1863 St Andrews Gaz. (25 July):
He was also to have a free house and garden and ten lippies' bounds of potatoes, which were afterwards converted into three cartloads, to be delivered when they were ready for lifting.
Fif. 1876 A. Laing Lindores 300:
Domestic servants had a small patch (two lippies-bounds, equal to about five and a half poles) allotted to them.
Fif. 1894 J. Menzies Our Town 234:
The custom common among our people of taking from a neighbouring farmer a field, in which they planted potatoes for the winter's consumption. The “lippie's bounds” in this connection was therefore the portion allotted to each of the hirers of the field.
Fif. 1935 St Andrews Cit. (9 March) 11:
The ground on the east side of Melbourne Brae [St Andrews] was let out as garden plots. … It was let out in “lippies bounds.”
(4) Sc. a.1838 Jam. MSS. XII. 136:
Lippie's Sawing. As much ground as is sown by a lippie or quarter peck, esp. of flax-seed, “being the portion allotted to a female servant as part of what is called her Bounties.”

2. The amount of bread baked from a lippie of flour or meal.Ags. 1888 Barrie Auld Licht Idylls xi.:
They got to eat and drink to the extent, as a rule, of a “lippy” of shortbread and a “brew” of toddy.
Slg. 1896 W. Harvey Kennethcrook 176:
A “lippy” was a small baking scarcely worth noticing.

3. A wooden, usually box-shaped, measure holding a lippie, used esp. in stables to measure the amount of corn for a horse's feed (n.Sc. 1961).Ags. 1714 B. M. W. Third Sc. Lowlands (1953) I. App. 71:
Eight trodwiddies … a wheat firlot peck and lippie.
Inv. c.1740 Memoirs Highl. Lady (Strachey 1928) 187:
It was brought to him in a covered wooden vessel, a cogue or lippie.
n.Sc. 1847 H. Miller First Impress. 186:
A capacious oaken measure, much like what in Scotland we would term a meal lippy.
Fif. 1893 G. Setoun Sunshine and Haar viii.:
Dinna be measurin' your neighbour's corn wi' your ain lippey.
Bch. 1929 J. Milne Dreams o' Buchan 42:
An' took the lippie aff the nail Tae measure oot her feed.
Abd. 1957 Bon-Accord (28 March) 8:
He wid shiv his muzzle deep intae the full o' a leepie o' bruis't corn.

4. Fig. A measure or rationed amount of anything.Sc. p.1688 Jacobite Relics (Hogg 1819) I. 19:
You'll God beseech, in homely speech, … Seek lippies of grace frae his gawcie face.

[O.Sc. lipie, = 1., from 1542, dim. form of leap, in Eng. dial. a basket, a measure, O.E. lēap, id.]

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"Lippie n.1". Dictionary of the Scots Language. 2004. Scottish Language Dictionaries Ltd. Accessed 24 Jul 2024 <>



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