(3 syl.). A sect of fanatics who appeared in the west of Scotland in 1783. They were named after Mrs. or Lucky Buchan, their founder, who called herself “Friend Mother in the Lord,” claiming to be the woman mentioned in Rev. xii., and maintaining that the Rev. Hugh White, a convert, was the “man-child.”
“I never heard of alewife that turned preacher, except Luckie Buchan in the West.” —Scott: St. Ronan's Well, c. ii.
Source: Dictionary of Phrase and Fable, E. Cobham Brewer, 1894