"scotty cooley"

Alan H. Hartley ahartley at D.UMN.EDU
Sun Feb 27 02:18:30 UTC 2005

David Robertson wrote:

> One CJ term in this manuscript is "scotty cooley" for "wander".
> Now, "cooley"~/kuli/~/kuri/ is a standard word throughout CJ, meaning "to
> run; to travel".  And we've previously discussed Hibben's dictionary on
> this list, which was created in Victoria, BC, and which contains a
> term "scotty" for "crazy".  (Thus a synonym for "pelton / piltEn".)  In our
> previous discussions (for which, search our archive at
> listserv.linguistlist.org/archives/chinook.html), I think we got no further
> than a theory that Scottish people were stereotyped as nuts in the 19th c.

 From the OED:

SCOTTY adj.  a. Having the characteristic temperament of a Scot. b.
(With lower-case initial.) [Cf. SCOT n.1 4.] Angry, 'cross'.

1892 STEVENSON Let. to J. M. Barrie (1899) II. 247 We are both Scots
besides, and I suspect both rather Scotty Scots. 1901 Blackw. Mag. Feb.
220/2 It made me scotty with every one and every thing. 1896 E. TURNER
Little Larrikin xvii. 191 I'm blessed if I know what I've done this
time... Don't be scotty, Marcia. 1936 M. FRANKLIN All that Swagger xxxv.
334 Uncle William is as scotty as a French hen with her feathers the
wrong way.

SCOT noun1, sense4. slang. Also as adj.

1812 J. H. VAUX Flash Dict., Scot, a person of an irritable temper, who
is easily put in a passion, which is often done by the company he is
with, to create fun, such a one is declared to be a fine Scot. 1823 'J.
BEE' Dict. 155 Scot, a butcher's designation of a fractious man, the
small Scots oxen coming to their doom with little resignation to fate;
indeed, all animals try harder to retain life than man. 1859 Hotten's
Slang Dict. 87 Scot, temper or passion; 'oh! what a scot he was in'.
1864 E. A. MURRAY Ella Norman II. 53, 'I am tired.'--'Yes and in a
greater scot than I ever saw you. Why, we can raise you worse than Ma!'
1916 W. OWEN Let. 9 Dec. (1967) 417 Major Melville, a snotty, acid,
scot, impatient, irritated wretch.


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