Man with napkin knife and fork looking at a plate of rat on peas with a small apple in its mouth.
The Scottish Word:


“This is bealin!” (animated)


bealin: rotten/awful/vile/festering.

“I am not eating this, it is awful.”

The Scottish Word: bealin with its definition and its meaning illustrated and captioned with the word used in context in the Scots language and in English.

7 thoughts on “Bealin.

  1. I have used bealin/beelin (bealing/bealing) in both contexts of spoken word. Right now, I have a bealin spot (how I came caross this site!) but I remember my mum being fair bealin at times and that meant she was angry. Spelling I am not sure of.

  2. I have an ancestor who was referred to as bealin (bylin)Jim. They say that he was a mean man, who bit off another man’s ear in a fight!. What do you think brain meant in this case?

  3. No, you’re thinking of boiling. The Scots never bothered with correct spelling, it’s more an expressive spoken language than it is written. Bealing is to swell with suppurating matter. Like a festering sore or a swollen rotten rat. from the dictionary of the Scottish Language (dsl)

      1. Beal is to fester as the first definition and swell with rage as the second in the Scottish National Dictionary. My personal experience of the word growing up on farms across the country was of references to angry hot pulsing sores gone bad from some cut or injury which in my youth were common, and also applied to such things as dead festering rats, not so common although I was bit by a live one. My fault I should never have picked it up by the tail when the dog had it cornered.

        That was a lesson in itself. That rat got shredded for its trouble by the dog. Literally and I was so stunned in seeing our trusted family pet behave so, I entirely forgot my shredded thumb until the farmer poured raw undiluted udder disinfectant on it. I swear I levitated with the pain.

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