byspel

EnglishEdit

Alternative formsEdit

EtymologyEdit

From Middle English bispel, byspell, from Old English, bīspel, biġspel (proverb, parable, example, story), from bī- (by) + spel (talk, story), equivalent to by- +‎ spell. Cognate with Middle Dutch bijspel (proverb, parable), Low German bispeel (example), German Beispiel (example). More at by-, spell.

NounEdit

byspel (plural byspels)

  1. (obsolete except UK dialectal) A proverb.
    • 1845, Henry Hammond, A paraphrase and annotations upon all the books of the New :
      [...] signifies a byword or proverb, or, as it is still used in the north, byspell.
  2. (now chiefly dialectal) An example.
    • 2011, Michael Everson, The Oxford English Dictionary on eð:
      I don't like using ð for most words at the beginning of the word simply because ð looks like a d and huru Ð looks like a D and would encourage people using the “d” instead of “th” for byspel: “dat” instead of “that” … and others.
    • 2011, EnglishGBTranslation
      As byspel, encyclopædia instead of encyclopaedia; ... As byspel, færie is actually wrong, thus faerie should be used.
    • 2012, Yahoo! Canada Answers - What does the Bible say about a Christian going into debt?
      Jesus even gave a byspel.
  3. (obsolete except UK dialectal, by extension) A person used as an example, either positively or negatively; one who has become a byword for any remarkable quality.
  4. (obsolete except UK dialectal) An exceptional or wonderful character.
  5. (obsolete except UK dialectal) A family outcast; bastard.
    • 2001, Peter Novobatzky, Ammon Shea, Depraved and Insulting English:
      "The byspel of his rich and landed clan, young Norton lived alone in a shed, by the woods on the edge of the estate. [...]"
  6. (obsolete except UK dialectal) An accidental piece of good fortune; a wonderful stroke of luck or dexterity.
  7. (obsolete except UK dialectal) A mischievous person (usually applied to youngsters); an awkward figure.
  8. (obsolete except UK dialectal) A natural child.

Usage notesEdit

  • Neither this term nor any of its alternative forms can be found in COCA or BNC, two of the largest corpora of contemporary usage, American and British respectively.

Derived termsEdit

  • byspell book
  • byspell of wisdom

Related termsEdit

ReferencesEdit

  • Wright, The English dialect dictionary, Byspel(l).

AnagramsEdit


ScotsEdit

Alternative formsEdit

EtymologyEdit

From Old English biġspel, bīspel (example, pattern, proverb), from bī- (by) + spel (tale, story), compare Old High German bīspel (German Beispiel)

NounEdit

byspel (plural byspels)

  1. a rarety, someone or something of rare, unique, or exceptional qualities (often used ironically)
    She's just a byspale.
    • a 1811, reported in Jameson.
      He's nae byspel mair than me.
      He's no better than me.

AdverbEdit

byspel

  1. very, extraordinarily, exceedingly, exceptionally
    byspel weel ("very well")
Last modified on 13 December 2013, at 20:02