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Scottish National Dictionary (1700–)

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First published 1971 (SND Vol. VIII).
This entry has not been updated since then but may contain minor corrections and revisions.

SAUTIE, adj., n. Also sauty, sattie. Sc. forms of Eng. salty. [′sǫte, ′sɑte]

I. adj. 1. As in Eng., salt, salt-tasted, brackish. Gen.Sc.Ags. 1866 Arbroath Guide (13 Jan.) 2:
Till the sautie bree fell frae his e'e.
n.Sc. 1911 T. W. Ogilvie Poems 3:
The tears doon fa', I canna read Your gravestanes through this sauty mist.
Abd. 1916 G. Abel Wylins 52:
He swithered till the sautie tears Did on her weet cheeks fa'.

Combs.: (1) sautie backit, a salt-box (Ork. 1969). See Saut, n., 2. (1); (2) sautie bannock, an oatmeal bannock with various ingredients, including salt, specially baked on Shrove Tuesday (Sc. 1855 N. & Q. (1st. Ser.) XI. 245). Now hist. Hence sautie bannock(s) (Tues)day, Shrove Tuesday (†Abd. 1957).(1) Abd. 1906 Banffshire Jnl. (22 May) 10:
An' hoo we teas't lang Geordie Halkett Aboot his “hodgin” sautie backit.
(2) Sc. 1823 W. G. Stewart Superstitions 256:
Soon as the evening circle convenes, the Bannich Junit, or sauty bannocks, are resorted to. The component ingredients are eggs and meal, and a sufficient quantity of salt, in order to sustain their ancient and appropriate appellation of sauty. They have a charm attached to them, which enables the happy Highlander to discover the object of all his spells — his connubial bed-fellow.
Abd. 1865 R. Dinnie Birse 31:
Afterwards the bannocks were proceeded with, called “sautie bannocks”, which were composed of milk, water, meal, eggs, and salt well mixed and stirred together in a vessel, and put on a hot griddle with a spoon, in a half liquid state, where it was soon converted into a more solid body. . . . This custom is not yet obsolete in the Parish.
Abd. 1960 Stat. Acc.3 372:
“Meal Monday” and “Meat, brose and sauty bannocks Tuesday” are no more.
Abd. 1961 Buchan Observer (14 Feb.):
Sometimes charms were hidden in the knotty tams, a wedding ring was certainly popped into the first sauty bannock.

2. Tart, cutting, sarcastic.Abd. 1932 D. Campbell Bamboozled 21:
“Ye wad feel a heap mair at hame wi' the dogs up by in yer ain kennels.” Benjie (smiling) — “That's a sauty ane, Meg.”

II. n. Short for sautie-fleuk, the dab, Limanda limanda (Lth. 1811 Wernerian Soc. Mem. I. 11; Kcd., Lth. 1825 Jam.; ne.Sc. 1878 Trans. Nat. Hist. Soc. Abd. 92; Fif., Lth. 1926 Wilson Cent. Scot. 263; Bnff. 1969). The bastard sattie is the long rough dab, Hippoglossoides limandoides (ne.Sc. 1884 G. Sim Food of Fishes 38).Abd. 1889 Bon-Accord (22 June) 11:
Little boats spread away to the northwards, all busy “bobbing” for “sauties”. whitings, saithe, and codlings.

[From Saut + -ie, suff.]

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"Sautie adj., n.". Dictionary of the Scots Language. 2004. Scottish Language Dictionaries Ltd. Accessed 14 Apr 2024 <>



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