Scottish Genealogy

Monday, 18 June 2012

Old Scots Words - Afaldly or Afauldly

Today is the first in what will be a (semi) regular look at some of the more unusual words that I have come across in my research.  It makes sense to start with 'A', so today we have:

'Afaldly' (or 'Afauldly')

An odd looking word to modern eyes, but it crops up quite often in some older texts.  It means something along the lines of 'sincerely' or 'honestly' or 'faithfully' and you might find someone swearing 'afaldly' to abide by something.

You might see it used in a sentence like the following from the Aberdeen Burgh Records from 1494:

'the aldirmane, balʒeis…schew that tha wald ayfaldly defende thair landis and heretage'

[the aldermen, bailies, that they would sincerely defend their lands and heritage] 

or in this example from a bond of manrent from the charter chest at Gask: September 5th 1471 (full extract available here):

'sal serf hym afauldy in peise and in vayr for al the tym and spaise befor vrittyn'

[shall serve him faithfully in peace and in war for all the time and space before written]

It might crop up in all sorts of places, especially in earlier documents.  The Dictionary of the Scots Language has examples of its use dating from the 1400s to the 1600s, so it is one to look out for in those early records. 

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