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Scottish National Dictionary (1700–)

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First published 1974 (SND Vol. IX).
This entry has not been updated since then but may contain minor corrections and revisions.

TRINTLE, v., n. Also trint(e)l (Sh. 1908 Jak. (1928)); truntle; trantle. [trɪntl, trʌntl]

I. v. 1. intr. (i) To roll, trundle, spin along (Lnk. 1880 Jam., trantle, truntle; Uls. 1953 Traynor; Slg., wm.Sc. 1973), ppl.adj. trintlin, spinning, rolling; also connoting the sound of such motion (Lnk. 1880 Jam.).Ayr. 1790 A. Tait Poems 264:
Then she'll truntle in a howe.
Sc. 1796 Poet. Orig. and Sel. I. xii. 6:
The crash o' crock'ry ware resounded, Plates truntlin' — ilka ane confounded!
Ayr. 1817 D. McKillop Poems 106:
Let them, in a trintlin' whirl, Come aff to Reekie.
Dmf. 1874 R. Reid Moorland Rhymes 57:
We kent that the warld wad trintle and turn Wi' mickle o' pleasure and mair o' wae.
em.Sc. 1888 Anon Archie MacNab 23:
Every blessed curdie o' my pocket money trintlin' oot on to the middle o' the flair.
Edb. 1915 T. W. Paterson Auld Saws 68:
Opportunities, lat slip, Trintle yont the grup.

(ii) To hang down loosely, to dangle.wm.Sc. 1837 Laird of Logan 196:
The weavers, wi' their quiles o' yarn on their backs, and their hecks trantling ower their shouthers.

2. tr. To cause to roll or spin or flow, to trundle (Sc. 1808 Jam.; Uls. 1953 Traynor; Slg., Fif., Ayr. 1973, e.g. of marbles).Ayr. 1823 Galt R. Gilhaize I. xii.:
The river trintled its waters with a silvery sheen.
Ayr. 1887 J. Service Dr. Duguid 14:
I trintled the pills alang the flure.

3. To flow in small drops or streams, to trickle, to ripple onwards (Abd. 1973).m.Lth. 1787 MS. Poem:
A truntling brook . . . that ca's our mill.
Lnk. 1796 R. Lochore Patie & Ralph 3:
The tears ran truntlin' down their ilka cheek.
Lnk. 1816 G. Muir Minstrelsy 3:
The water owre their curpin trintles down.
Ayr. 1882 A. L. Orr Laigh Flichts 13:
The sweat gaed trintlin' owre his cheeks.
Slg. 1898 J. M. Slimmon Dead Planet 32:
A waucht to him that tapped the rock And gar't you trintle.
Abd. 1922 Swatches o' Hamespun 78:
Doon the wee glen trintles a bonnie burnie.

4. intr. To walk or drive at a steady pace, to amble or bowl along, to saunter (Sh. 1908 Jak. (1928)), to drop in casually, straggle one by one, go or gad about aimlessly or restlessly (Jak.; Abd. 1973).Rnf. 1813 G. MacIndoe Wandering Muse 109:
By his board-en', my bag to loose, I trintl'd yont.
wm.Sc. 1832 Whistle-Binkie I. 54:
Since time took his scythe frae the post, An truntled awa to the shearing.
Ayr. 1834 Galt Stories of Study III. 16:
We had gone trintling before the wind,.
Bnff. 1845 in W. Barclay Schools Bnff. (1925) 288:
There they go' trintlin' up een efter anither, tae the “Loch Kirkie”.
Gsw. 1889 J. Houston Autobiography 109:
He comes trintlin' hame about sax o'clock for his supper.
Abd. 1940:
He was on nettles, trintlin out and in.

5. To dawdle, to potter about in an inept or lazy manner (Sh. 1908 Jak. (1928); Mry. 1973). Ppl.adj. trintlet, pottering, dawdling (Jak.).

II. n. 1. A rolling or flowing motion, the movement or sound of anything being revolved or trundled (Lnk. 1880 Jam.); a turn in dancing; the hub or axle of a wheelbarrow (Uls. 1953 Traynor).Ayr. 1834 Galt Liter. Life III. 123:
It could not be said that time ran so smoothly on the trintle with me as when my head was green.
wm.Sc. 1854 Laird of Logan 310:
They might jee awa to this side and that side, with a bit trintle and a step weel eneuch.

2. A drop, trickle, small runlet of water (Bnff. 1866 Gregor D. Bnff. 198; Cai. 1973).

3. A straggling group of followers, a train or retinue.Abd. 1925:
When a mother is out with her numerous offspring it will be said “here's Mary Broon an' a' the trintle.”

4. Freq. in dim. forms trintlet, trintlock, any round globule, a small ball or pellet in gen., specif. of sheep's dung (Per., Slg., wm.Sc. 1973), poss. due to assimilation from Tartle.Sc. 1925 Scots Mag. (Jan.) 277:
Clapin' an' rowin' them into wee trintlets o' peels.

5. A deep rut made by a cart-wheel (Ags. 1808 Jam., the trantle of the wheel).

[A variant of trindle, Trinnle, v.1, n.2 adv.]

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"Trintle v., n.". Dictionary of the Scots Language. 2004. Scottish Language Dictionaries Ltd. Accessed 16 Jun 2024 <>



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