[Ads-l] James Hogg's "brankie," n.

Jonathan Lighter wuxxmupp2000 at GMAIL.COM
Mon May 11 12:04:39 UTC 2015

The discussion of "making sillar" reminds me of this textual point which
seems to be worth mentioning.

James Hogg's additional verses to Burns's "Killiecrankie" includes this

O fie, Mackay, what gart ye lie I' the bush ayont the brankie, O? ("Dammit,
Mackay, what made you hide in the bush beyond the brankie O?")

Burns's stz. 1 prominently includes the adj. "brankie," meaning 'gaudy,
finely dressed.'  Obviously not the sense here.

I find no dictionary or glossorial explanation for "brankie," n.  OED
includes "brank" as a "dial." syn. of "buckwheat," but no Scots dictionary
mentions this.  Editors seem to ignore this "brankie."

SND includes only the sense 'a utensil for turning griddle cakes.' with
20th C. exx. only.

My SWAG is that Hogg's "brankie," n., is a petrified a first-ed. error for
"bankie" ('a low bank'), poss. coined by Hogg - perfectly regularly and
intelligibly - to rhyme with "Killiecrankie."


"If the truth is half as bad as I think it is, you can't handle the truth."

The American Dialect Society - http://www.americandialect.org

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