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Scottish National Dictionary (1700–)

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About this entry:
First published 1976 (SND Vol. X). Includes material from the 2005 supplement.
This entry has not been updated since then but may contain minor corrections and revisions.

WINDOW, n. Also Sc. forms winda (Mry. 1830 T. D. Lauder Moray Floods (1873) 99; Ags. 1894 J. B. Salmond My Man Sandy (1899) 16: Dmf. 1914 J. L. Waugh Cracks wi' R. Doo 49; Abd. 1928 Abd. Weekly Jnl. (8 Aug.) 6; ne., wm.Sc. 1974), windae (Lnl. 1910 J. White Eppie Gray 6, Abd. 1931 D. Campbell Uncle Andie 6, Gsw. 1950 H. W. Pryde McFlannel Family Affairs 47; Lth. 1974), windi; windie (Sc. 1745 T. L. K. Oliphant Lairds of Gask (1870) 128, 1799 Scots Mag. (July) 470, Gay Goshawk in Child Ballads No. 96 D. iii., Peb. 1929 Sc. Readings (Paterson) 85), windy (m.Sc. 1927 J. Buchan Witch Wood vii.; Fif. 1933 J. Ressich Thir Braw Days 99; Fif. 1974), windey (Rnf. 1923 G. Blake Mince Collop Close i.); wundaw (Sc. 1858 H. S. Riddell Song of Solomon ii. 9), wunda (Rxb. 1923 Watson W.-B.), wundow (Kcb. 1893 Crockett Raiders xxxvi.; Abd. 1926 Abd. Univ. Review (July) 222), wundo (Mry. 1830 T. D. Lauder Moray Floods 256), wundae (Lnk. 1923 G. Rae Lowland Hills 70; Fif., Lth. 1926 Wilson Cent. Scot. 275; Bwk. 1942 Wettstein, Rxb. 1942 Zai; em.Sc. (b) 1974); wundy (Edb. 1866 J. Smith Merry Bridal 25; Per. 1915 Wilson L. Strathearn 276: Rxb. 1942 Zai), wundey (Uls. 1879 “Robin” Readings 20); ¶wondy (Rnf. 1930 A. M. Stewart Stickleback Club 323): †vindo (Bnff. 1702 Ann. Bnff. (S.C.) I. 173). Double dim. forms windockie (Abd. 1905 W. Watson Auld Lang Syne 174), wundockie (Abd. 1955 W. P. Milne Eppie Elrick xxx.). For other Sc. forms see Winnock. [′wɪndə, ′wʌndə; em.Sc. (b) ′wɪnde, ′wʌnde; ′wɪndi, ′wʌndi]

I. Sc forms of Eng. window. s.Sc. 1979 Lavinia Derwent A Border Bairn (1986) 100:
Or the Janny would knock at the door to announce that a laddie had broke a windy.
wm.Sc. 1984 Agnes Owens Gentlemen of the West 44:
His first wife ran away wi' the insurance man and his second wife left him efter he pushed her oot the windae.
Dundee 1990 Sheila Stephen in Joy Hendry Chapman 60 51:
"Eh'd jist haen a wee leh doon an' whin Eh woke up it wiz eftir twa, the time the fishman aye comes, so Eh ran ti the windy ti see if Eh could see heez van cumin. ... "
wm.Sc. 1991 Liz Lochhead Bagpipe Muzak 17:
Well, taking baths in the bathroom
Or boiling kettles in the kitchenette
Or shutting-up the windaes in winter to keep the heat in
Fif. 1994 Nellie Watson in Joan Watson Memories and Reflections: An East Neuk Anthology 15:
I mind the time when first I brocht
A LAUD up tae the door,
Her head popped oot the wundae, and -
Afore I cid coont fower - ...
ne.Sc. 1996 Lindsay Paterson in Sandy Stronach New Wirds: An Anthology of Winning Poems and Stories from the Doric Writing Competitions of 1994 and 1995 16:
She wis aboot ti gyang oot fin a sma copy o a pintin took her ee. It wis aa in black an fite. Sittin at a table wis twa faceless fowk leukin at an impty beuk. The room wis affa dark an in the backgrun wis a winda.
ne.Sc. 1996 W. Gordon McPherson in Sandy Stronach New Wirds: An Anthology of Winning Poems and Stories from the Doric Writing Competitions of 1994 and 1995 21:
Aa gid throwe ti the windi; the street wis teem an quaet;- nae Police, nae car, nae carrunt o ony kin.
m.Sc. 1997 Liz Niven Past Presents 18:
Huv ye ever hid a guid hing?
Dae ye ken whit a guid hing is?
Weel, ye fling open yer windae,
Plant yer elbows ower the ledge
An hae a guid gowp oot.
em.Sc. 2000 James Robertson The Fanatic 198:
'I nearly fainted. An auld guy got angry at me through his windae. I could - I don't need tae but I could - go and chap his door and ask him if he'd iver seen me before.'

II. Sc. usages: 1. In combs.: (1) window-bink, a window-seat or bench. See Bink, n.1, 2.; (2) window-bole, an opening in an outer wall of a house to admit light, the lower half of which was freq. unglazed with wooden shutters only (Sc. 1825 Jam.: Ags., Per. 1974). See Bole, n.1, 2.; (3) window-bro(a)d, -board, a window-shutter (Sc. 1825 Jam.; Abd., Per. 1974). Also in Eng. dial.; (4) window-cheek, the side of a window (ne.Sc. 1974). See Cheek, n., 1.: (5) wunda-chess, a window-sash (Rxb. 1923 Watson W.-B.; Sh., Fif., Lth., Lnk. 1974). See Chess, n.2, 2.; (6) window-claith. a curtain for a window, gen. covering the lower half only. Also in Eng. dial.; (7) windaehingin, leaning out of a window, watching the world go by; (8) window-pace, a sash-weight in a window; (9) windy-sneck, a window-catch (I., ne.Sc. 1974); (10) window-sole, a window-sill. Gen.Sc. See also Sole, n., 4.(7); (11) window-stane, a stone window-sill (Ork. 1974). Also U.S.; (12) wunda-swalla, the house-martin, Delichon urbica (Rxb. 1923 Watson W.-B.; Fif., Lth. 1974). Also in Nhb. dial.; (13) window-watcher, a kind of hard-biscuit. Of unexplained orig.(1) Fif. 1831 Fife Herald (21 April):
That widely circulated register, which is to be seen lying on the window-bink of almost every cottage.
(2) Sc. 1816 Scott O. Mortality vii.:
I was out at the window-bole when your auld back was turned.
Sc. 1827 C. I. Johnstone Eliz. de Bruce I. ix.:
Taxing the very blessed light, whilk the Almighty sends down free frae His heavens through a puir widow's window bole!
Rxb. 1897 E. Hamilton Outlaws xiii.:
My lord walked to the window-bole and looked out.
(3) Wgt. 1712 Session Rec. Whithorn MS. (22 June):
The said Ballie did come to the back window of her house and thrust up the window broads and asked for William Kniblo.
Sc. 1776 D. Herd Sc. Songs II. 215:
It was in and through the window-broads, And a' the tirlie wirlies o'd.
Sc. 1823 J. Baillie Poems 295:
The seam'd window-board betrays Interior light.
Ags. 1860 A. Whamond James Tacket iii.:
The window consisted of four small panes and two “window brods.”
Ayr. 1913 J. Service Memorables 2:
The wind was tirlin' at the pin, an' rattlin' on the window-brod.
(4) Abd. 1924 Gsw. Ballad Club IV. 31:
Hither cam ane to his window cheek.
(6) 1817 Blackwood's Mag. (Sept.) 619:
A ‘grim visage' staring out past a window-claith, or sort of curtain.
(7) Gsw. 1990 John and Willy Maley From the Calton to Catalonia 1:
Picture it. The Calton. Fair Fortnight. 1937. Full of Eastern promise. Wimmen windaehingin. Weans greetin for pokey hats. Grown men, well intae their hungry thirties, slouchin at coarners, skint as a bairn's knees.
Sc. 1997 Scotsman (8 Aug) 24:
A Scottish council has officially bracketed "windae hingin" with drug dealing, neighbours from hell, owners of large uncontrollable dogs and those who party till dawn while playing their stereos to the max. ... And, in the parlance of the tennies, it has caused a "stairheid rammy" especially as tenants who do not comply face eviction.
(8) Sc. 1781 Caled. Mercury (1 Dec.):
Coal-backets and Fire-pans, Clock and Window Paces.
(9) Ags. 1921 V. Jacob Bonnie Joann 37:
Lowse ye the windy-sneck a wheen.
(10) m.Lth. 1828 D. M. Moir Mansie Wauch xxv.:
All the window-soles white washed over with frost rind.
s.Sc. 1837 Wilson's Tales of the Borders IV. 34:
Lilly Hume took away his wallets, and laid them in a window-sole at his back.
Kcb. 1897 Crockett Lad's Love xiii.:
She'll rise wi' a licht heart to speak doon to ye frae her window-sole.
Sh. 1898 J. Burgess Tang 29:
Here upo da window-sole or ower yondru.
Ags. 1948 Forfar Dispatch (21 Sept.):
She puit it oot on the winda-sole tae cuil and it disappeared.
(11) Bwk. 1862 J. G. Smith Old Churchyard 87:
Sae waesomely the robin chirp'd Upon our window-stane.
(13) Edb. 1870 J. Smith Jenny Blair 11:
A peck o' peese-meel to mak brose, six window-watchers as hard as airn.

2. Any opening in a room other than a door; a small recess in the wall of a room used for storing small articles (Cai. 1905 E.D.D.).

[O.Sc. windo-bredd, 1558.]

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"Window n.". Dictionary of the Scots Language. 2004. Scottish Language Dictionaries Ltd. Accessed 12 Jun 2024 <>



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