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Scottish National Dictionary (1700–)

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First published 1976 (SND Vol. X).
This entry has not been updated since then but may contain minor corrections and revisions.

WARROCH, n., v. Also warrach, waroch; warroch, -ack; whirrock, and misprinted wanrack (Sc. 1912 Scotsman (19 Jan.) 10). [′wɑrəx]

I. n. 1. A knotty stick (Ags. 1825 Jam., warroch, -ach); a knot in wood (Peb. 1825 Jam., whirrock). Deriv. warrachie, rough and knotty, of the trunk of a tree (Kcd., Ags. 1825 Jam.).

2. Fig. A person of stubborn temper (Bnff. 1866 Gregor D. Bnff. 107, warrock).

3. A stunted, feeble, ill-grown person, plant, etc.; a worthless fellow, a ne'er-do-well, freq. in phr. a weary warroch (Kcd., Ags. 1825 Jam.).Abd. 1839 A. Walker Deil at Baldarroch 4:
They say the De'il's come to Baldarroch, Or some unearthly Devilish warroch.
Kcd. 1842 Scotsman (31 Jan. 1912) 11:
When looking at a field of turnips in the Mearns, in which finger-and-toe was developing, the writer heard one of the plants described as a “warrack o' a thing, wi' a fuff o' a heid.”
Fif. 1864 W. D. Latto T. Bodkin vii.:
Naebody likes to be made a fule o', mair especially by a weary warroch like Whistlin' Willie.
Per. 1878 R. Ford Hame-Spun Lays 21:
An ill-fashioned warrach was ne'er-do-weel Jock.
Ags. 1897 Arbroath Guide (17 July) 3:
When we see some wee warroch o' a craiter ging aff wi' a bang in that same battle.
Ags. 1914 I. Bell Country Clash 193:
He wad never hae fended for himsel', the weary waroch that he is!

II. v. To scold, to use abusive language (n.Sc. 1808 Jam.). Ppl.adj. warrachand (Ib.). Poss a different word.

[Dim. of O.Sc. war, a knot in timber, 1513, O.E. wearr, + -Och, suff., 2. (4), variant of -Ock. See also Waur-knot.]

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"Warroch n., v.". Dictionary of the Scots Language. 2004. Scottish Language Dictionaries Ltd. Accessed 23 May 2024 <>



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