Glossary of Scottish Words

A Glossary of Scottish words and terms used on this website. The words include definitions and explanations. These Scottish words are listed here to assist you in your wedding planning.

On other pages, when Scottish or Gaelic words are used, with no clarification, the word will link to this page for easy reference. Often unfamiliar words can be confusing, hopefully this glossary will help you clarify such words.

And just think, when you complete your Scottish wedding plans, you will have added a number of Scottish words to your vocabulary.

You can readily return to where you encountered the unfamiliar word by closing this Scottish Words page.

A ~ B ~ C ~ D & E ~ F ~ G ~ H ~ I & J ~ K ~

L ~ M ~ N & O ~ P ~ Q ~ R ~ S ~ T ~ U ~ W ~

Scottish Words

A ~ Scottish words

Agley ~ awry. If a plan goes agley, it doesn't go according to plan.

Arasaid ~ ladies’ tartan wrap, secured with an Arasaid belt.

Argie-Bargie ~ a dispute or quarrel. To argie means to argue.

Armseye ~ originally spelled armscye, the armhole opening in a garment.

Arrhae ~ 13 silver coins given to the minister or priest by the groom as part of the wedding ceremony. In any situation something given to bind a bargain between parties.

Àrsaidh ~ old, ancient.

Auld Claes an Parritch ~ after a holiday we return to old cloths and porridge.

~ Return to top of Glossary page ~

B ~ Scottish words

Bailie ~ justice of the peace.

Barmekin, barmkin, or barnekin ~ a Medieval defensive enclosure found around smaller castles, tower houses, pele towers, and bastle houses in Scotland. As well as the residence, outbuildings were also included, plus a place to protect livestock during cattle raids. From the Roman barbican, meaning an outer fortification of a city or castle. Kirkhope and Smailholm are castles on the Scotttish borders that had a barmekin.

Bawbee ~ sixpence old Scots or half-penny sterling, named after mint-master Alexander Orrock, Laird of Sillebawbe. Also see Sia sgilligean.

Ben ~mountain, also inside or within, as ‘come ben the hoose’.

Beukin’ ~ asking for her hand.

Biggin ~ building.

Birl ~ spin or whirl around as in Scottish country dancing.

Bock Yuan Fannee ~ Manx Gaelic for "John the Flayer's Pony", on foot, shank’s pony or shank’s mare in English dialect.

Bodhran ~ (much disputed, bow-rawn, rhyming with cow brawn) a drum, popular in Scottish and Irish music, originally used to provide cadence for both pipers and warriors. Usually 14” to 18” in diameter and 3” to 8” deep. Played with a double headed stick called a cipin, tipper, or beater.

Boineid ~ (bonaje) originally the name of the Tam o' Shanter, man’s bonnet.

Boinead biorach ~ (bonaje beerach) Balmoral bonnet.

Bonnets ~ traditionally blue
Glengarry ~ modern military cap.

Balmoral ~ older style bonnet, boinead biorach.
~ Return to top of Glossary page ~

Brae ~ hill.

Brat ~ simply a piece of woolen cloth that one would wear over other clothing. It was often worn like a cloak, but was also used like a sash or shawl. The length of the Brat was entirely dependent upon the wearer and the style at the time. The average Brat would have been 1 to 1.5 yards long from doubled cloth (up to 60" wide). Today the Brat is known as the Fly Plaid.

Braw ~ something good, a braw day is a great weather day.

Breacan ~ old style kilt or philamor, a flat piece of fabric, pleated by hand each time worn.

Breacan feile ~ big kilt, see brecan.

Breid tri chearnach ~ also curtch, kertch, breid, a three-cornered kerchief of white linen, tied under the chin. Often the point hanging down the back was embroidered elaborately, to show off the woman’s needlework skills. Worn only by married women. Young, unmarried girls wore a Cockernonie.

Bridal Concomitant ~ a bridal flag or ensign, flown from the housetop on the wedding day. Embellished with wedding symbols, such as the claddaugh or lukenbooth.

Bridie ~ originating in the town of Forfar, also called Forfar bridie, a baked shortcrust pastry with minced beef, onions, and spices. One hole on top signifies no onions, two holes signify onions have been added.

Brigadoonery ~ gaudy, beyond good taste. The exaggerated Scottishness of the movie ‘Brigadoon’.

Brog, Brogan ~ simple deerskin shoes, the forerunners of today's brogues where the decoration is an outer layer of leather in which holes have been punched.

Brogues ~ footwear made of skin, light weight, with holes punched in to let out the water from streams and rivers.

Bubba ~ derived from brother, a nickname given to boys , especially the eldest son, often replacing their given name. Outside the family, it is a term of affection for a buddy. Outside the southern states, it can mean someone of low economic status and limited education, or apply to a good-ol-boy who doesn’t function well in business or social relationships due to a self-absorbed outlook on life. While not a Scottish word, Clan MacBubba necessitates an explanation.

Bumbee tartan ~ a fabric woven to look like a tartan, but isn’t, a bumbee is a bumblebee. Tartans designed with a complete lack of taste, no sense of history, and incorrect weaving patterns which should have no place in tartan history.

Burn ~ stream.

Burning the Water ~ when salmon lighting was a legal fishing technique, a heather torch was held above the water’s surface to attract the salmon to the surface.

~ Return to top of Glossary page ~

C ~ Scottish words

Cantle ~ the metalwork clasp on a dress sporran.

Cath dath, Cada ~ war pattern on hosiery, tartan hose.

Ceety Haw ~ city hall.

Ceilidh ~ ('kel or Kay’-lay) dance, social gathering. A Scottish Gaelic word for “visit”, as these began as informal gatherings in individual’s homes.

Ceilidh Dancing ~ informal, cheerful, lively dancing to Celtic music played on the fiddle, flute, tin whistle, accordion, bodhran, small bagpipes, usually performed in lines of 2 or more dancers.

Celtic Knots ~ decorative knots that are interwoven with no beginning and no end.

Ceud mile failte, cuad mile failte ~ a hundred, thousand welcomes.

Chaipel ~ a wedding chapel.

Chantie ~ chamber pot, used in Bridal hazing.

Clan ~ actually derives from the Gaelic clann, meaning 'children' or 'stock'. In Scotland, it's meaning can be a tribe, race, or family unit.

Clan Badge ~ clan symbol and motto, now worn on the bonnet.

Clan Motto ~ war cry, used in battle.

Cockade ~ an ornamental ribbon on headgear. Can be a rosette, ribbon, or other ornament. Worn as an identifying badge or as part of a livery. From the mid-17th century, French bonnet à la coquarde meaning a bonnet worn proudly, from an obsolete word, coquard, meaning proud. The colloquial word was coq, pronounced cock.

Cockernonie ~ gathering of a woman’s hair into a snood.

Come ben the hoose ~ come in the house, welcome.

Concomitant ~ a flag or banner.

Coor [also cour, cure, cuir] ~ to cover or protect. When referencing a stallion it means to cover.

Cota fiaraidh ~ tartan jacket cut on the bias.

Cota gearr ~ man’s plain cut doublet or jacket.

Covenanters ~ a 17th century Presbyterian religious movement to free Scotland of Catholicism, to develop the character and operation of the Scottish Parliament, and began a revolution throughout the British Isles.

Image courtesy Wikipedia

Crag and tail ~ crag is a rocky block protruding from the surrounding terrain. As a glacier retreats, softer material remains as a gradual fan or ridge that forms a tapered ramp, called a tail, up the leeward side of the crag.

Craiker ~ originally a boaster, evolved into cracker, which is now anyone residing in Georgia.

Cranachan ~ pottage dessert.

Creelin’ ~ a creel is a basket to hold fish. Creeling is part of the groom’s hazing. A creel was filled with rocks and strapped on the groom’s back. He had to walk the town until his bride kissed him, or he completed a circuit of town.

Crow Road ~ a popular road in Campsie Fells

Due to steep slopes and prior accidents, a local expression for death is "He’s away the Crow Road".

Cuaran ~ boot.

Cuiridh mi clach air do chàrn ~ an old Scottish Gaelic blessing meaning “I’ll put a stone on your cairn.”

D & E ~ Scottish words

Dealg ~ pin, fastener.

Diced ~ ribbon band on bonnets, usually red, black, and white check flashes. A Hanoverian (English) military fashion.

Didgeridoo, didjeridu, didj ~ claimed to be the world’s oldest wind instrument, used by the indigenous tribes of Australia. Described as a wooden trumpet, it’s a cylinder about 30 to 60 inches in length.

Diggings ~ useless parts of sheep fleece

Dinnlin ~ vibrating, tingling.

Dirk ~ a Scottish long dagger, with a blade length of 7 to 14 inches. Its blade length and style varied, but it was generally 7-14 inches. A weapon of offense, used with the targe and sword.

Scotsmen would swear oaths on their dirk. After the Battle of Culloden, the English forced the following oath of fealty, to never “…possess any gun, sword, or pistol, or to use tartan…and if I do so may I be cursed in my undertakings, family and property, may I be killed in battle as a coward, and lie without burial in a strange land, far from the graves of my forefathers and kindred; may all this come across me if I break my oath."

Scottish Wedding Dreams ‘Wedding Ceremony Customs’ The Pledge to Provide and Protect tells the significance of a dirk in the wedding ceremony.

Dool ~ see Dule

Dram ~ a small unit of volume, referring to a drink of Scotch whisky.

Drover ~ one who drove cattle to distant markets, using their Border Collies. Drovers from Scotland were licensed in 1359 to drive stock through England.

Image courtesy of The Border Collie Museum.

Dule, dool ~ to grieve or sorrow. To ‘thole the dule’ is to bear the evil consequences of anything.

~ Return to top of Glossary page ~

F ~ Scottish words

Fairings ~ love tokens. Small gifts as tokens of affection, such as sweets, hair ribbons, or small jewelry items.

Fantoosh ~ posh, swanky, possibly above one’s class.

Fede Ring ~ during the Middle Ages, Scots gave a silver fede ring. This ring was consigned to the kirk, when arranging for their proclamation of marriage.

Feile ~ kilted.

Feileadh-beag ~ (feela beg) the small kilt, with no tartan above the waist. Today’s modern kilt.

Feileadh-mor ~ big wrap, or plaid.

Flashes ~ decorative fabric, attached to the garters, to show below the fold of men’s hose when wearing a kilt.

Foreland or Foreshore ~ the beach.

Friggle-Fraggles ~ trifles, useless ornaments of dress.

~ Return to top of Glossary page ~

G ~ Scottish words

Gairden ~ garden.

Geegaw, gewgaw, guie-gaue ~ a worthless ornament, a toy, broken fragments of china used as toys.

Ghillie Brogues ~ men’s shoes, commonly worn with a modern kilt.

Glen ~ a small, narrow, secluded valley.

Glif ~ a sudden fright or scare.

Growthiness ~ fertility.

Guid-man ~ husband.

Guid-wife ~ wife.

guie-gaue ~ see geegaw.

H ~ Scottish words

Hackle ~ a feather plume attached to the military headdress, sitting above the cockade, with the color designating the regiment.

Haggis ~ a traditional Scottish dish made of sheep’s pluck, oatmeal, onion, suet, spices, salt and stock.

Hain ~ husband.

Hather ~ heather seller

Hather Fesgar ~ a facing of heather fastened with boards around the outside of the house to correct leaks of rain water, also a strengthening the rim of straw or heather baskets

Haudin ~ home, house, holding.

Heather-An-Dub ~ heather and daub, sometimes called spelt dab, a mud slurry used with sticks for wall construction

Heather Beetle ~ an insect

Heather Bill ~ the Dragon-Fly in Banffshire

Heather Birns ~ charred sticks of heather used as writing instruments

Heather Blindness ~ a disease of sheep

Heather Caissie ~ on Orkney, a basket to hold fish, fishing line and bait. Lobsters were sent from the Hebrides to London, packed in heather and heather caissies.

Heather Cat ~ the common wild cat

Heather Cling ~ a disease prevalent among sheep that have been grazing too long on heather

Heather Claw ~ a dog’s dew claw, which is often cut off to prevent it’s catching in the heather

Heather Clout or Clu ~ the horny substance protecting a horse’s fetlock

Heather Cubby ~ woven from long straight heather stalks, a basket for carrying turnips to feed the cattle

Heather-fish ~ frog tadpoles in Caithness

Heather Gall Midge ~ an insect

Heather Goose ~ a dolt or ninny

Heather Heidit ~ heather headed, disheveled hair, a bad hair day, indicating a country or rustic background

Heather Ill ~ constipation of the bowels

Heather Jennys ~ women who sold heather goods

Heather Jocks ~ men who sold heather goods

Heather Lamp ~ a springy step common among people accustomed to walking over heathery ground

Heather Lamping ~ lifting feet high when walking

Heather Legs ~ walking with a high and wide step, as on the heather

Heather Lowper ~ hill dweller, countryman

Heather Man ~ heather seller

Heather Piker ~ a contemptuous name for one living in poverty or a miserly way

Heather Range or Reenge ~ equal lengths of heather stems bunched and firmly bound for pot scrubbers and chimney cleaning brushes

Heather Scratter ~ see Heather Range

Heather Step ~ another name for heather lamping

Heather Stopper ~ a Perth term for a heather lowper, a hill dweller or countryman

Heather Taps ~ fresh heather clan badge

Heather Theekit ~ thatched with heather

Heather Wight ~ a Highlander

Heather Wuddie or Widdie ~ see Heather Caissie

Heatherer ~ a thatcher of roofs

Highland Games ~ Highland games are festivals held throughout the year in Scotland and other countries as a way of celebrating Scottish and Celtic culture and heritage, especially that of the Scottish Highlands. While centered on competitions in piping and drumming, dancing, and Scottish heavy athletics, the games also include entertainment and exhibits related to other aspects of Scottish and Gaelic culture. [a direct quote from]

Houlies ~ wild, drunken brawls, especially at Penny Weddings.

I & J ~ Scottish words

Ilk ~ same, kind, class, family.

Jacobite ~ a partisan of the Stuarts, from the revolution of 1688.

Jacobite shirt ~ a casual kilt shirt of cotton or linen, usually with leather cording to lace to neck opening.

Jeddart, Jethart ~ originating on the Jedburgh Castle estate, a type of justice in which a man would be hanged first, then tried afterward.

~ Return to top of Glossary page ~

K ~ Scottish words

Kailyaird ~ backyard,cabbage patch.

Kebbuck ~ cheese.

Kilt ~
A kilt is a pleated tartan fabric garment.

To kilt is to pleat a tartan fabric so it can be worn as a garment.
Kilt belt ~ belt worn with a kilt, of heavy leather, usually with a decorative buckle.

Kirk ~ church.

Kirtle ~ a Medieval long ladies dress.

L ~ Scottish words

Leine, varied spellings ~ (lean or lean-e) shirt, shift, smock.

Leine-croich ~ saffron shirt, war shirt, worn by ancient Highlanders.

Lhiam-Lhiat [lyam-lyat] ~ an inconsistent person who changes sides easily. From Manx Gaelic for "with me - with you".

Linn ~ waterfall.

Loch ~ lake.

Luckenbooth Brooch ~ a decorative brooch with intertwining hearts, topped with a crown symbolic of Mary Queen of Scots.

Lucky Sixpence/Bawbee ~ sixpence old Scots good luck piece.

~ Return to top of Glossary page ~

M ~ Scottish words

MacBubba ~ a clan affiliation formed in South Carolina, tongue-in-cheek, combining a celebration of Scottish ancestry with Southern redneck humor. A certificate of membership is provided, as with joining any other clan. Bubba is a southern term meaning brother, an endearment for close friends, or a slur used by a non-southerner and aimed at men of low economic status and limited education ~ the good-ol-boy who has difficulty maintaining business and social relationships. Obviously, clan MacBubba is meant as a friendly, endearing term.

Mackintosh ~ a waterproof raincoat made of rubberized fabric invented by Charles MacIntosh in 1824.

Mairiage ~ marriage.

Maisie ~ a rope panier for carrying sheaves and peat

Meenister ~ minister, preacher, pastor.

Mindin’ ~ a small gift or momento as a reminder of the giver.

Mo chasen ~ rough deerskin footwear, which the American Indians turned into mocassins.

Modesty piece ~ a decorative piece of cotton, linen or lace , worn over a woman’s bosom for modesty or warmth.

Mogan ~ footless wool hose.

Moor ~ an expanse of open rolling infertile land, possibly boggy, dominated by sedge and grass, often a source of peat.

N & O ~ Scottish words

Neeps and Tatties ~ mashed turnips and potatoes, mashed and served separately

Ootby ~ out of doors.

Osian ~ hose, stockings.

~ Return to top of Glossary page ~

P ~ Scottish words

Pantalettes ~ undergarments covering the legs of women and girls in the 1800's. Originating in France, later called pantaloons, they were of fine cotton with lace trims that would look pretty, if accidentally revealed. Sometimes hems were shortened to deliberately reveal the handiwork on the pantalettes.

Peallagan ~ young heather used to weave doormats on Islay

Peitean ~ Gaelic for waistcoat, a sleeveless jacket or vest.

Philabeg ~ kilt, from feile, which means kilted.

Philamore ~ big kilt, breacan feile.

Plaid ~ (plade)
Fly plaid ~ simply a piece of woolen cloth that one would wear over other clothing. It was often worn like a cloak, but was also used like a sash or shawl. The length of the Brat was entirely dependent upon the wearer and the style at the time. The average Brat would have been 1 to 1.5 yards long from doubled cloth (up to 60" wide). Today the Brat is known as the Fly Plaid.

Piper’s plaid, long plaid ~ made from 3½ yards of tartan, fringed at both ends.

Drummer’s plaid, formal plaid, small plaid ~ made from 2 yards of tartan, fringed on one end and both sides. The remaining end is pleated. Allows more freedom of movement.
Plinth ~ stand to display a quaich.

Pluck ~ sheep heart, liver and lungs, used in haggis

Polonnaise ~ a fashion from the 1770’s, the skirt is gathered from the waist down. There can be one gather, three, or several, forming poufs along the hemline of the garment.

P.O.S.H. ~ Port Out, Starboard Home, a term derived from the British Empire in India. Traveling to India, the left, North, or port side of the ship was the coolest. When returning to England, the right, North, or starboard side was the coolest. To be assigned a room on the North side of the ship became a luxury…it was posh, elegant, fashionable, luxurious.

Powl ~ pool or pond.

Prince Charlie Jacket ~ formal evening wear, usually worn today for weddings.

Puirt-a-beul ~ mouth music.

~ Return to top of Glossary page ~

Q ~ Scottish words

Quaich ~ ancient drinking cup with two handles and used with both hands.

R ~ Scottish words

Reiver ~ border raiders from both sides of the English- Scottish border, who stole cattle back and forth from the 13th through the 16th century. The Borders people were always poor and often devastated by armies. The terrain is mountainous or open moorland, but good for grazing. The winter months, with long nights and cattle fat from summer grazing were the most popular reiving months. As soldiers the reivers were considered among the finest light cavalry in all of Europe.

Robert Burns ~ the poet laureate of Scotland, a cultural icon among Scots worldwide, authored Auld Lang Syne

Robert Burns Dinner ~ a celebratory dinner on the evening of Robert Burn’s birthday, January 25th. Haggis is the main entrée, marched in with music and flair. Lots of Scotch whisky flows. Everyone wears sundry interpretations of Scottish national costume ~ the men wearing kilts and the ladies tartan scarves and kilted skirts. There’s usually bagpipes, singing and dancing. The evening closes with reading of Burn’s poetry and a singing of Auld Lang Syne (his poem) which means old, long ago.

Ruana ~ ladies shawl or poncho.

S ~ Scottish words

Salmon Lighting ~ a fishing technique where a few kiln-dried heather bunches were tied together to make a heather torch. This special basket was held down by the water’s edge.

Saltire ~ Scottish flag.

Sasannach, Sassenach ~ Englishman.

Saunds ~ beach.

Scarf ~ ladies’ tartan plaid, see sgarfa.

Schenachy ~ bard, storyteller who told sgeulachds and sgeulachd bheag.

Scone ~ (99% of Scotland pronounces scone to rhyme with gone), a Scottish quick bread, usually cut into triangles, then cooked on a griddle or baked on a sheet. They also serve fried tattie scones, similar to Jewish latke, in a full Scottish breakfast.

Scotch eggs ~ a cold, peeled hard-boiled egg, wrapped in a sausage mixture, coated with breadcrumbs, then deep-fried. Actually created in Fortnum & Mason, a London food shop in 1738. Common picnic fare.

Scotch Verdict ~ better described as splitting hairs, in the vernacular of Scotland, it’s saying, “We’ll no’ say you did it, but then we’ll no’ affirm ye didna either." Another way to express the verdict is, "awa’ ye gae and dinna dae it again".

Scotch Woodcock ~ an egg entrée of buttered toast spread with anchovy paste, such as The Gentleman's Relish. Creamy, softly scrambled eggs (often with milk and butter added), and sometimes bacon, are layered on top.

Scotch Woodcock Image courtesy Wikipedia

Scottish Country Dancing ~ a more formal style of Scottish dancing than found at a Ceilidh. The participants are grouped into sets of 3, 4, or 5 couples who work together to dance a sequence of formations.

Sea Cubby ~ a basket used to carry fish home

Sealie-Hoo ~ a child’s call, thought to bring luck to it’s possessor, also any unusual headdress.

Seomain Fraoich ~ heather rope

Sept ~ Irish for Clan, modern meaning a subsidiary of a clan.

Sett ~ the color and pattern on a tartan.

Sgal ~ strong wind, gale.

Sgarabhaigh ~ pronounced scaravay, cormorant island, one of the Outer Hebrides, a newly minted collectible coin.

Sgarfa ~ scarf, a ladie’s tartan plaid.

Sgeadasachadh ~ to tidy up, as in the best man whitewashing the groom’s home.

Sgeulachd ~ story.

Sgeulachd bheag ~ anecdote.

Sgian Dubh ~ short ceremonial dagger, worn with a kilt inserted in the top of the stocking.

Shamrock ~ a potted plant kept in every house for luck.
Image courtesy of

Shaw ~ a woodland, the woods, a stand of trees.

~ Return to top of Glossary page ~

Shoon ~ shoes.

Sia sgilligean ~ sixpence.

Siller ~ silver money.

Sixpence ~ a coin of the realm, see bawbee and sia sgilligean.

Skarrach ~ swiftly passing shower of rain or a light snowfall.

Skirl ~ musical sounds from a bagpipe.

Slàinte ~ (slawn-cha), health, salvation, Deoch-Slàinte, a toast. Slainte Mhach, to your very good health.

Slighted ~ destroying a structure so an opposing enemy cannot utilize the location.

Smuirich ~ kiss.

Snaoim gatrain ~ special knots used to tie garters.

Speerin’ ~ asking the father for his daughter’s hand in marriage.

Sporran ~ man’s purse, worn around the waist.

Sporan Molach ~ hairy purse worn with the kilt.

Spredith ~ cattle or livestock of any kind, hence our ranching term “spread”.

Spreid ~ a flock of sheep, see spredith.

Spuin ~ spoon.

Steading ~ a farm building which combines stables and a dairy

Stonack, stonach ~ a large brown glazed earthenware marble

Stone, stoan, stown ~ 1. a trunk or stump of a tree, the cluster of new suckers that spring from a cut tree 2. to cut away the suckers, to trim, to lop 3. to go to church, "Have you been at the stones?" means have you been to church 4. the telling of a calamitous event indirectly instead of a direct address, "To the stones be it told!" 5. testicle

Backstane, backstone ~ 1. a stone at the back of the fireplace in cottages which projects and is set on edge, sometimes wide enough for taking a nap. 2. a pessimist

Band-stane ~ a bonding stone going through the whole thickness of a wall, adding strength and solidity to the wall

Bannock-stane ~ for baking bannocks, either a rounded stone placed before the fire or a small flat stone laid among the hot ashes. Also used for warming feet. In the Hebrides, folklore tells of a giant's soul hidden in the bannock-stone

Black stone ~ 1. a black stones horse of English breed, fit to get foals for the coach 2. a slab of black marble placed upon a chair or stool where a student sat for examinations at Glasgow, St. Andrews, Aberdeen, and Edinburgh Universities. ‘Blackstone chair’ and ‘sit the Blackstone’ came to mean an examination.

Bore-stane ~ 1. a stone bored out to receive a flagstaff 2. a boundary stone, either single or one of a series

Caitrin stone ~ a soft shale found in the coal-pit near Cambeltown, used in place of an ordinary slate pencil

Channel stane ~ a curling stone, which were originally channel stones from a river with no particular shape

Chuckie-stane ~ 1. small flat stone for skimming across the water surface, a skipping stone 2. a curling stone 3. Quartz nodules of various colors

Chuckie-stanes [check-stones] ~ a girl's game, similar to jacks. Four pebbles are placed on a rock and while a fifth pebble is tossed up in the air, the other 4 must be quickly picked up, then the descending 5th stone caught in the same hand.

Cooling stone ~ in or near a school, a stone where a boy is sent to cool himself after a whipping

Cow-lady-stane, colladie stone, collady stone ~ a kind of quartz with coloring suggesting a beetle, often found in water-worn river beds. Some are large enough to be used as seats.

Crocking stone ~ a stone with a hollow used for husking barley, from the provincial Gaelic croc, meaning to beat or pound

Dog stone ~ a piece of stone suitable for making a millstone

Kapestane, kalpstene, kaping-stane, kepstone, capestone ~ 1. the stone caping a burial vault 2. full perfection, as in "The house of God shall not lack the kaipstone"

Knoking-stane ~ 1. a stone hollowed out for husking or knocking-out barley 2. a flat stone where linen cloth or washing was 'knocked' or pounded

Paving Stone ~ a flat, heavy cookie with a little icing on top

Pend-stane, pend-stannis ~ a building stone cut to form part of an arch, a vault-stone

Penny-stane ~ 1. a game, similar to quoits, played with a pennystone, or flat round stone. Referred to as "play at the penny-stane". 2. the stone used to play penny-stane 3. penny-stane cast is the short distance a penny-stane can be cast 4. a large stone shaped like a penny-stane, usually four or five foot in diameter, and believed to have money hidden underneath.

Semy stane ~ a semi-precious stone

Serpent-stane ~ 1. an artificial stone used as a remedy for the poison of serpents, sometimes bordered with a gold band 2. a piece of serpentine, often blue and white

Splene stone ~ a stone believed to cure disorders of the spleen

Standard stone ~ a standing stone or obelisk near old churches, about 12 foot high x 5 foot wide and 2 foot thick

Stepestane, stepestone, steepston ~ a stone vat for soaking brewing barley or wool

Stoned ~ 1. uncastrated male animal, still having its stones 2. to set with precious stones, of jewelry

Stoner, stonern ~ made of stone

Stone-thrust ~ a small pier or quay

Stonie ~ varieties of the game of tig

The Stone of Destiny ~ also known as the Coronation Stone. A block of sandstone, originally it was at the Abbey of Scone. Kenneth MacAlpin, the first King of Scots, was seated on the stone for his coronation ceremony around 847. From then until 1292, when John Baillol was crowned king, the Scottish king sat upon the stone for his coronation.

In 1296 the Stone was captured by Edward I of England and removed to Westminister Abbey. The stone was fitted into the old wooden chair. This chair came to be called St. Edward's Chair. From the coronation of Edward II onward, following the custom in Scotland, the English sovereigns sat upon the stone to be crowned.

In 1950, a group of Scottish students removed the Stone from Westminster Abbey. Their plan was to return it to Scotland. They accidentally broke it into two pieces. They smuggled both pieces north into Scotland. A Glasgow politician arranged for it to be professionally repaired by a stonemason. After four months the stone was left on the altar of Arbroath Abbey. The Stone was then returned to Westminster Abbey.

In 1996 the British government returned the Stone to Scotland. It now sits in Edinburgh Castle. Many Scotsmen feel this is not really a returning, as the castle is the military headquarters of the British Army in Scotland.

There is an understanding that the stone will be taken to Westminister Abbey whenever needed for a British coronation.

Surname - last name, usually derived from the father.

~ Return to top of Glossary page ~

T ~ Scottish words

Targe, Targaid ~ a Scottish word meaning target or shield, a weapon of war. With a spike attached in the center, and a dirk in hand, the two made a double slashing combination, that could be followed by the sword in the other hand.

Tartan ~ a woven fabric, of which kilts are made.

A Tartan identifies a clan, sometimes a clan has several tartans.

The Tartan is a symbol of Scotland, like the bagpipes.

Sett ~ the pattern of a tartan.

Military or Regimental Sett ~ to the stripe, a dominant color stripe is seen in the same place on each pleat.

To The Pleat Sett ~ the sett pattern is seen across the pleats.

Bumbee tartans ~ fabric woven to look like a tartan, but isn’t.
Tartan Day ~ in the United Sates, April 6th is our National Tartan Day, designated to recognize the contributions that were made by Scottish-Americans to the development of the United States.

Tatties ~ potatoes, see neeps and tatties

Thareoot ~ out of doors.

Thigging ~ fowl feathers washed and saved for pillows and comforters. Possibly evolved into ‘ticking’, the stripped cotton fabric used to hold the feathers.

Thistle ~ the national flower of Scotland.
Image courtesy

Tonag Mhor, Tonnag ~ big shawl, woman's shoulder shawl, poncho.

Toon Green ~ town square.

Toorie ~ little pompom atop the Glengarry and Balmoral bonnets, often red, also a small tower.

Toorie Bunnet ~ another name for a tam o’ shanter.

Torq, torque, torc, muntorc ~ neckpiece, jewelry from ancient Celt times, of various metals, plain or woven, sometimes with knotwork designs and elaborate end caps.

Traa-dy-Liooar [Trah the looar] ~ Manx for "time enough", either an incitement to take things easier or as an insult for a lazy person. An equivalent of the Spanish "Mañana", but without the same sense of urgency.

Trews ~ tartan trousers, more like a pair of heavy tights with foot stirrups, worn for riding horseback.

Triubhas ~ trews, trousers.

Tryst, Tryste ~ an appointment to meet, a rendevous, a cattle market or fair, an engagement or betrothal.

~ Return to top of Glossary page ~

U ~ Scottish words

Unicorn ~ a mythical animal, held in great reverence by the Celts, depicted with the body and head of a horse, hind legs of a stag, tail of a lion, and a single horn in the middle of the forehead.

Usquebagh also usquebaugh (oos-kew-baw) ~ water of life, Scotch whiskey. From the Gaelic uisce beatha which derived from the Medieval Latin aqua vitae.

W ~ Scottish words

Waddin ~ wedding.

Washbacks ~ heather branches used to clean the fermentation stills. In a new still, bundles of heather would be boiled in water in the still to sweeten it before distillation began.

Weskit ~ vest

Whistle Benkie ~ itinerant musician,
piper, harper, or fiddler who plays at
weddings or gatherings for loose change
as payment.
Image courtesy of

Wifie ~ wife.

Wuddie ~ a noose used on the dule trees and gallows.

End of Scottish Words Glossary, new Scottish words are being added regularly.

Many of the words listed in the Scottish Words Glossary are used on more than one page in Scottish Wedding Dreams.

When through using the Scottish Words Glossary, simply close the page to return to where you were reading before you accessed the Glossary.

~ Return to top of Scottish Words page ~

To Leave Scottish Words and Return to Scottish Wedding Dreams Home Page