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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.

TROON, n., v., adj. Also trooan, truan; trowant (Rxb. 1942 Zai); tron(e), troan, with dim. forms tron(n)ie, trony (Kcb., Dmf.), and reduced forms, esp. in n.Sc., troo, tru(e), trow, dim. trooie (Abd. 1825 Jam.). Sc. forms and usages of Eng. truant. [Fif., Rxb. ′tru(ə)n; Rxb. + ′trʌuənt, sm.Sc. tro:n(e); ne.Sc. tru; Cai. Trʌu]

I. n. As in Eng., an absenter from school (Gall. 1824 MacTaggart Gallov. Encycl. 452, tronnie; Rxb. 1923 Watson W.-B., trooan, trowant; Slk. 1929, trone). In phr. to play the troon, etc., the pl. form trooins is sometimes found referring to a sing. subject (Abd. 1952). Comb. †trowant-clog, a block of wood tied to a truant in derision when escorted back to school by his classmates (Rxb. 1923 Watson W.-B.).Ags. 1821 D. Shaw Songs 18:
I entert school at twal year auld, But aft the truan' did play, sir.
Fif. 1848 Feast Liter. Crumbs (1891) 45:
Ae week when I played the truan.
Ags. 1866 R. Leighton Poems 344:
On bonnie simmer days I'd liked to play the troon.
Sc. 1928 J. G. Horne Lan'wart Loon 10:
First to hail 'im was his crony, His marrow, Dod, an' neebor trony.

II. v. tr. and intr. To play truant (from), esp. in phr. to troon the schule (Abd. 1825 Jam., troo; Dmf. 1867 Trans. Dmf. & Gall. Antiq. Soc. 56; Cai. (trow), Bnff., Abd. (troo), wm.Sc., Kcb., Dmf. 1973, trone). Ppl.adj. trowan, playing truant (Cai. 1969 Cai. Courier (8 Jan.) 3).Gall. 1824 MacTaggart Gallov. Encycl. 244:
The bairnies winna gang tae school, They trone it ane and a'.
Abd. 1861 J. Davidson Poems 128:
Or for truan' the skweelie, or tellin' a lie, Sayin' he had been “nae way”, fan troutin' was he.
Kcd. 1889 Stonehaven Jnl. (7 March):
Warst o' a' truin' the schule.
Dmf. 1903 J. L. Waugh Thornhill 142:
We troned frae the skule twice a week.
Cai. 1922 J. Horne Poems 10:
Div ye mind 'e jolly schooldays fan ye trowed till play “Sky-high?”
Lnk. 1928 W. C. Fraser Yelpin' Stane 66:
There's an account keepit o' a' the days ye trone frae the schule.
Wgt. 1951 Gall. Gazette (27 Oct.):
The word “tronan” is used in the eastern end of the Stewartry.
Abd. 1963 Abd. Press and Jnl. (28 Nov.):
I us'd tae tru' the squeel aften.

III. adj. Perverse, obstinate, sluggish, lazy (I.Sc. 1973). Cf. Eng. dial. †troant, a lazy loiterer.Ork. 1929 Marw.:
A trooan ting o' a boy.

[O.Sc. trowan, trivial, idle, a.1572. Forms without -t are also common in n.Eng. dial. The n.Sc. forms are back formations from trooan thought of as a ppl. or vbl.n.]

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"Troon n., v., adj.". Dictionary of the Scots Language. 2004. Scottish Language Dictionaries Ltd. Accessed 13 Apr 2024 <>



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