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Scottish National Dictionary (1700–)

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

MIRD, v., n.1 [mɪrd]

I. v. 1. intr. To meddle, to have dealings, to have to do with (n.Sc. 1808 Jam.); to associate, be intimate, dally with; to fawn, to be obsequious. Hence ppl.adj., vbl.n. mirdin(g), fawning, obsequious(ness) (Ayr. 1880 Jam.); ¶intercourse. Also tr. in phr. to mird moggans wi, to be intimately associated with, to share together. Cf. Moggan, n., 4. (4).Abd. 1768 A. Ross Helenore (S.T.S.) 98:
'Tis nae to mird wi' unko fouk ye see.
ne.Sc. 1782 Caled. Mercury (4 Sept.):
She manna middle, na mak, ti' mird An' houp ti' thrive.
Dmf. 1825 Jam.:
Mird wi' your maiks, ye smatchet.
Abd. 1832 A. Beattie Poems 131:
And though he couldna speak a word, (Nor wi' their matters did he mird.)
Abd. 1868 W. Shelley Wayside Flowers 183:
Poor, hameless lintie, left thy lane, Wi' nae bit mirdin' mate to cheer thee.
Ayr. 1880 Jam.:
Aye, ye dinna mird about her for naething.
Edb. 1928 A. D. Mackie In Two Tongues 40:
Bein gotten as men are gotten Wi' mirdin' o' flesh and bane.
Ags.19 1962:
“She'll no mind mirdin moggins wi me” — said when someone shares the same toilet.

2. tr. or with inf. To venture, to dare, to make an attempt at (n.Sc. 1808 Jam.).Abd. 1739 Caled. Mag. (1788) 499:
He squeel'd to her like a young gyte, But wad na mird to gang Back a' that day.
Abd. p.1768 A. Ross Fortunate Shep. MS. 114:
They will not mird to play sick pranks again.
Sc. 1806 R. Jamieson Ballads II. 199:
But thee to clip nae ane o' them For me wad mird I trow.
Bnff. 1853 Banffshire Jnl. (21 June):
But when to travel now we mird, We needna waddle i' th' yird.
Lnk. 1863 J. Hamilton Poems 300:
But the nameless, though giftit, are caul' i' the yird, Ere a sang or a word i' their praise she wull mird.

II. n. Fuss, obsequious attention, flattery.Sc. 1819 Jacob. Relics (Hogg) 102:
Donald was mumpit wi' mirds and mockery.

[O.Sc. mird, to meddle, from 1614. Of doubtful orig., phs. a back formation from merdle, Mardle, with semantic influence from Middle, v.]

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"Mird v., n.1". Dictionary of the Scots Language. 2004. Scottish Language Dictionaries Ltd. Accessed 30 Nov 2023 <>



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