Scottish National Dictionary (1700–)
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First published 1968 (SND Vol. VII). Includes material from the 1976 supplement.
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PURFLE, v. Only in ppl.adjs. purfling, causing shortness of breath (Sc. 1911 S.D.D. Add.) and purfled, purfillit (Sc. 1808 Jam.), purfl't. Of persons: fat and asthmatic, of a corpulent build, plump and wheezing, “short-winded, especially in consequence of being too lusty” (Sc. 1808 Jam.; Rxb. 1942 Zai). Also in altered forms purfet (Bwk. 1942 Wettstein), purfeit, purfittie (Rxb. 1825 Jam.), purfly, id.Sc. 1736 Ramsay Proverbs (1776) 7:
Ilka ane whase saul is not sand-blind or purfled with Pride.Edb. 1791 J. Learmont Poems 179:
Thae purfeit chiels that clean coach graith, Wi' mony a vile blasphemous aith.Sc. 1826 Wilson Noctes Amb. (1863) I. 15:
The language is out of condition — fat and fozy, thickwinded, purfled and plethoric.Dmf. 1832 Carlyle in Froude Early Life (1882) II. 231:
Came upon Shepherd, the Unitarian parson of Liverpool, yesterday for the first time at Mrs. Austin's. A very large, purfly, flabby man.Fif. 1875 Border Treasury (1 May) 460:
“I tell ye, man, that for as fat and purfeit as I am,” — and he folded his hands over his boardly paunch — “I could do the same thing, man . . . wi' the same help.”Bwk. 1876 W. Brockie Leaderside Leg. 5:
Nae doot they've herriet a' the bykes O' purfeit Monkish drones.Rxb. 1923 Watson W.-B.:
He looks purfl't, . . . breathless and short-winded, as from asthma.
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"Purfle v.". Dictionary of the Scots Language. 2004. Scottish Language Dictionaries Ltd. Accessed 4 Jun 2023 <http://www.dsl.ac.uk/entry/snd/purfle>