Definitions

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • n. Brains.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • n.pl. The brains.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • Brains.

Etymologies

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

From Middle English hernes, from Late Old English hærnes ("brains"), plural of hærn ("brain"), from Proto-Germanic *hirznijan (“brain”), from Proto-Indo-European *ḱara-, *ḱeras-, *ḱrās- (“head”). Cognate with Scots harn, harnis ("brain; brains"), Dutch hersenen or hersens ("brain"), German Hirn ("brain"), Swedish hjärna ("brain"), Latin cerebrum ("brain"), Ancient Greek κάρα (kára, "head").

Examples

  • One minute a bride, and the next, if I pull this trigger, she'll put a smile on her face and scoop her husband's harns off the ground into a napkin.

    Cold Mountain

  • 'Tis an 'ould sayin': 'Whin ye meet th' divil du not turn tail but take um by th 'harns.' ...

    The Luck of the Mounted A Tale of the Royal Northwest Mounted Police

  • It wad be sair news to the auld wife below the Ben of Stuckavrallachan, that you, ye Hieland limmer, had knockit out my harns, or that I had kilted you up in a tow.

    Rob Roy

  • Stuckavrallachan, that made some mixture of our bluids, to my own proper shame be it spoken! that has a cousin wi 'accounts, and yarn winnles, and looms and shuttles, like a mere mechanical person; and lastly, Bailie, because if I saw a sign o' your betraying me, I would plaster that wa 'with your harns ere the hand of man could rescue you!' '

    Rob Roy

  • There's Maister Donal, the factor, gaein aboot like are in a dilemm as to cuttin 's thro't or blawin his harns oot!

    Heather and Snow

  • I wad care no more to caw oot yer harns nor I wad to kill a tod (fox).

    Sir Gibbie

  • Luke at that there homnibus; why, darn me -- "and now, in his eloquence at this peculiar point, my friend became more loud and powerful than ever --" why, darn me, if maister harns enough with that there bus to put hiron on them 'osses' feet,

    Doctor Thorne

  • He that gies a 'his gear to his bairns, tak up a beetle and ding out his harns.

    The Proverbs of Scotland

  • Stuckavrallachan, that you, ye Hieland limmer, had knockit out my harns, or that I had kilted you up in a tow.

    Rob Roy — Volume 02

  • “Indeed, Robin, I’ll be better advised before I gie it back to you; it is a wanchancy weapon in a Highlandman’s hand, and I am thinking you will be about some harns-breaking.”

    Chronicles of the Canongate

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