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dreich ‎(comparative more dreich, superlative most dreich)

  1. (Northern England, Scotland, Northern Ireland) Bleak, miserable, dismal, cheerless, dreary.
    • 1932, Lewis Grassic Gibbon, Sunset Song, Polygon 2006 (A Scots Quair), p. 243:
      It looked a dreich, cold place as you rode by at night, near as lonesome as the old Mill was, and not near as handy.
    • 2002, Glasgow's ambassadors receive a dreich welcome in Havana — title of article in The Scotsman, 14 Nov 2002
    • 2004, but driving home at this dreich hour and at the end of a difficult shift, she found the ectoplasmic fog unnerving — Susan Hill, The Various Haunts of Men (2004) page 4.
    • 2008 used in BBC Radio 4 Weather forecast as interchangeable with "dreary/dismal" 4th Nov 2008 12:57

Related terms[edit]



From Old English *drēoh. Alternatively from Britonnic, cognate with "Drycin" also spelt "Drychin" meaning "Foul Weather".



dreich (comparative mair dreich, superlative maist dreich)

  1. persistent, continuous, relentless
  2. slow, tardy
  3. dismal, dowie, dreary, bleak
    • 2000, Matthew Fitt, But n Ben A-Go-Go, Luath 2000, p.132:
      The dreich inhuman blue on Nadia's lang-wheesht thocht-screen fizzed intae life.
  4. tedious, wearisome, drawn-out
  5. reluctant, tight-fisted, driving a hard bargain

Derived terms[edit]