Meaning of ach in English:


Pronunciation /ɑːx/


mainly Scottish
  • Used to express a range of emotions including surprise, pleasure, sympathy, and regret.

    ‘ach well, win some lose some’
    • ‘One had to laugh last year when a Scottish golf magazine that shall remain nameless - ach, let's call it Bunkered for the sake of argument - ran a competition asking readers to vote for what they reckoned was the best course in the nation.’
    • ‘Generally I am extremely acquisitive myself, and therefore more than willing to add to the momentous piles of stuff in the world, especially when it means my own stuff pile is going to get bigger - but this year… ach, I dunno, who needs stuff?’
    • ‘I've realised that quite a few of my friends are youngest children, I think somehow it produces some kind of… ach, I don't know.’
    • ‘Reading your first post immediately made me think of Hawking's Brief History Of Time, but… ach I need to think about this in detail!’
    • ‘That's what caused your Daddy, ach God bless him, to beg at the end.’


Late 15th century from Scottish Gaelic, Dutch, and German; ultimately imitative. Compare with ah.