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Scottish National Dictionary (1700–)

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First published 1965 (SND Vol. VI). Includes material from the 1976 and 2005 supplements.
This entry has not been updated since then but may contain minor corrections and revisions.

MORN, n. Also morne, moarn, moarrin, morran. With def. art.: 1. The following day, tomorrow (Sc. 1787 J. Beattie Scoticisms 53). Hence the morn's efternune, -morn(in), -nicht, etc., tomorrow afternoon, etc., gen. used adv. Gen.Sc.m.Lth. 1715 J. Monro Letters (1722) 109:
I was taken the Night, and executed upon the Morn.
Sc. 1719 Ramsay Poems (S.T.S.) I. 132:
Grip fast the Hours which hasty hurl, The Morn's the Morn.
Edb. a.1774 Fergusson Poems (S.T.S.) II. 223:
The day looks gash, toot aff your horn, Nor care yae strae about the morn.
Ayr. 1786 Burns Cotter's Sat. Night ii.:
Hoping the morn in ease and rest to spend.
Sc. 1819 Scott Bride of Lamm. x.:
He'll ken himsell better the morn's morning.
Lnk. 1838 McIlwham Papers (Morrison) i. 14:
He has written every word o' this letter frae my ain mouth, an' says, he'll get the maister to men' the grammer i' the morn.
Abd. 1871 W. Alexander Johnny Gibb xxxii.:
He would be “athort the morn's gloamin” without fail.
Sc. 1876 S. Whitehead Daft Davie 314:
And just the promise of a . . . jiggot o' mutton the morn's afternoon.
Edb. 1876 J. Smith Archie and Bess 56:
Ye'll sleep fine ben the room there till the morn.
Ags. 1889 Barrie W. in Thrums xx.:
Ay, Jamie, I'll no hae ye to sit aside me the morn's nicht.
Fif. 1894 J. W. M'Laren Tibbie and Tam 116:
The rabbit I bocht this afternoon for the morn's dinner?
Kcb. 1897 Crockett Lad's Love xxiv.:
The morn's the Dumfries fast, and so he's hame a day earlier.
s.Sc. 1897 E. Hamilton Outlaws xiii.:
It'll no be my fault if your lassie bena in my place the morn's noon.
Sh. 1922 J. Inkster Mansie's Röd 137:
I min get da swills an' da staiks fir yon twa cring o' lambs, sae at dey win furt i' da moarrin.
Lth. 1925 C. P. Slater Marget Pow 55:
As soon as we've put past the night, then it's off to the cathedral the morn's morn as fast as we can go.
Ags. 1942 Scots Mag. (Sept.) 460:
Yer field wud dae wi' cuttin' the morn's morn, Drimmiesdub?
Bch. 1949 W. R. Melvin Poems 52:
They're unco smairt, bit 'am cocksure As the day's afore the morn.
ne.Sc. 1979 Alastair Mackie in Joy Hendry Chapman 23-4 (1985) 65:
Mebbe the morn or next day ....
Mebbe it will lift a wee
the hotchin wraiths, the blae skyscape o my heid.
m.Sc. 1986 Colin Mackay The Song of the Forest 45:
(Una watched him, missing nothing.) "They'll spend the night licking their wounds," he said, "and be here the morn. The morn's morn we'll all be dead. The thing to do the night is make for the forest. There are plenty of places I ken of where I could hide you."
Abd. 1990 Stanley Robertson Fish-Hooses (1992) 57:
Decky, me and Tessa aye walked hame taegither while the rest of the workers wid jist say a cheerio and "See ye the morran."
Sc. 1995 James S. Adam New Verses for an Auld Sang 22:
Come morn's morn ye'll feel mair sain,
an fidgin for a fecht again;
but, Ian lad, ye'll bide forfochen
until wi malt your flu ye slocken.
Edb. 1995 Irvine Welsh Marabou Stork Nightmares (1996) 15:
Like yir Ma sais, that's us sayin cheerio. See ye the morn though son. Ah'll be in in the morn.
Abd. 2000 Herald (20 Mar.)  19:
Mossie has every spray and manure application timed to the day, and sometimes even to the six hours. "That's what you've to put on and be sure it's done before dinnertime the morn."

2. Used adv., tomorrow, on the morrow. Gen.Sc.Sc. 1700 Burgh Rec. Gsw. (1908) 301:
The magistrates and toune counsell commissionats and appoynts Matthew Cuming . . . and George Buchanan . . . to repaire to Lanerk the morne.
Sc. 1725 Ramsay Gentle Shep. iii. iii.:
Let's steal frae ither now and meet the Morn.
Ayr. 1788 Burns Duncan Davison ii.:
But Duncan swoor a haly aith, That Meg should be a bride the morn.
Sc. 1824 Scott Redgauntlet Letter x.:
To dance a' night, I'se warrant, and no to be fit to walk your tae's-length the morn.
Abd. 1871 W. Alexander Johnny Gibb xvii.:
Gae to the Place an' see Sir Simon 'imsel' the morn.
Sc. 1886 Stevenson Kidnapped v.:
I'll tell ye the morn.
Rxb. 1927 E. C. Smith Braid Haaick 16:
It's duist an off-pit o teime hevin ti gaun there the morn.
Slg. 1929 Scotch Readings (Paterson) 9:
If ye post it the nicht, they can write me an answer the morn.

3. Phrs.: (1) here the day and awa the morn, said of someone unreliable or changeable. Gen.Sc.; (2) the morn-come-never, lit. the morrow that never comes, the end of time (Edb. 1963), ¶-nevertheless (Ags. 1853 W. Blair Aberbrothock 34); (3) (the) morn i'e morning, mornie-mornin, daybreak, the first glimmers of morning light (Kcb. 1963); (4) the nicht afore the morn, the eve of an important occasion, specif. of the (celebrations held on the) night preceding the Common Riding in various Border towns (s.Sc. 1962), and the Lammas Fair in Kirkwall (Ork. 1963).(2) Dmb. 1844 W. Cross Disruption vii.:
Auld Migummery may stand between you and the young lady till the morn-come-never.
Bwk. 1859 P. Landreth Joseph Spindle (1911) 68:
Deferrin' the beginnin' o' his ain an' their happiness till the morn-come-never.
(3) Gall. 1824 MacTaggart Gallov. Encycl. 350:
Morn i'e morning, in the dead of winter, begins not until near eight o'clock.
Kcb. 1893 Crockett Raiders xxxvi.:
She micht want a drappie, pitten ower the dyke as the Freetraders gaed by afore the mornie-mornin'.
(4) Rxb. 1897 in R. Murray Hawick Songs 86:
The last poem, “The Nicht afore the Morn”, which, as a Common Riding worthy says, “is simply grand.”
Slk. 1931 Proc. Bwk. Nat. Club XXVII. 296:
“The nicht afore the morn,” as the first evening (of the Common Riding) is known to all who can claim to be Souters o' Selkirk.
Rxb. 1938 G. Burnett Companion to Tweed 241:
A “Nicht Afore the Morn” concert is held in the Town Hall on the Thursday evening, at which the flag is bussed.
Slk. 1954 Scotsman (18 July):
The Selkirk Common Riding “Nicht Afore the Morn” was celebrated in the Royal Burgh last night.
Rxb. 1956 Scotsman (8 June) 5:
Last night was “the nicht afore the morn” of the Hawick Common Riding, which opens to-day.
m.Sc. 1990 Scotsman (8 May)  9:
One of the bad sights and sounds of the Regional elections campaigns was the ubiquitous Mr Michael Forsyth (without Punch, the Conservative Party in Scotland would have no show) telling fibs in the party election broadcast the nicht afore the morn.

[O.Sc. on the morne, to morn, on the morrow, 1375, the morne, tomorrow, c.1470.]

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



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