English Edit

Pronunciation Edit

  • IPA(key): /ɡlɛɡ/
  • (file)
  • Rhymes: -ɛɡ

Etymology 1 Edit

Verb Edit

gleg (third-person singular simple present glegs, present participle glegging, simple past and past participle glegged)

  1. (Northern England) To glance.
Synonyms Edit

Noun Edit

gleg (plural glegs)

  1. (now rare, Northern England) A look or glance.

Etymology 2 Edit

Variant forms.

Noun Edit

gleg (plural glegs)

  1. Alternative form of cleg

Etymology 3 Edit

Adjective Edit

gleg (comparative glegger, superlative gleggest)

  1. (Scotland) smart; quick; brisk
    • 1856, Thomas Hamilton, The Youth and Manhood of Cyril Thornton, page 279:
      One patted her neck, and assured her she was the gleggest and bonniest young thing she had ever seen.

Anagrams Edit

Scots Edit

Etymology Edit

Possibly ultimately related to Irish glicc (shrewd, acute), Ancient Greek καλχαίνω (kalkhaínō, to ponder), Proto-Germanic *klōkaz (quick, smart), Middle English begalewen (to frighten, stupefy).[1][2]

Adjective Edit

gleg (comparative mair gleg, superlative maist gleg)

  1. smart, quick, brisk
  2. alert, quick-witted, keen in sight, hearing, etc.
    • 1836 Joanna Baillie, Witchcraft. Act 1. p13.
      'When she begins to mutter wi' her white wuthered lips, and her twa gleg eyen are glowering like glints o' wildfire frae the hollow o' her dark bent brows, she 's enough to mak a trooper quake; ay, wi' baith swurd and pistol by his side.'
      (please add an English translation of this quotation)
  3. intelligent, adroit, skilful
  4. (of blades, points, etc) sharp

Derived terms Edit

References Edit


  1. ^ MacBain, Alexander; Mackay, Eneas (1911), “gleg”, in An Etymological Dictionary of the Gaelic Language, Stirling, →ISBN, page glic
  2. ^ van der Sijs, Nicoline, editor (2010), “kloek2”, in Etymologiebank, Meertens Institute