A Scottish word for bugbear, hobgoblin, sprite, boggle, apparition, etc. The compound word worrie-cow (worricow) or bu-kow means any frightful object, and cowman was sometimes given to the Devil, especially to frighten children. To play kow is to act the part of a goblin.

See also Hedley Kow.



  • Jamieson, J. (1880). An Etymological Dictionary of the Scottish Language. Vol. 1. Paisley: Alexander Gardner.
  • Wright, J. (1898). The English dialect dictionary. Vol. 1. London: H. Frowde.