Is the word ‘bonstable’ still in use?

IN 1897-8 the author of the entertaining series Fireside cracksin the Shetland Times uses the dialect word ‘bonstable’ five times.

It seems to mean a period of rough weather before calm. I can’t find it in the Scottish National Dictionary, the English Dialect Dictionary, the Oxford English Dictionary, Jakobsen, Angus or Edmondston, or anywhere else.

Is anybody aware of it in Shetland today?

Brian Smith
Shetland Archives
brian@shetland-archives.org.uk 

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