Sunday, July 20, 2008

July 20 - July 27 Word of the Week: quintal

July 20 - July 27 Word of the Week


Definition according to the Dictionary of Newfoundland English:

quintal n also cantal, kental, kintal(l) [phonetics unavailable]. OED ~ a. 'a hundredweight (112 lbs.)' (c1470-); DAE 'esp in measuring fish' (1651-); DC 1 esp Nfld (1712-) for senses 1, 2.

1 A measure of cod-fish caught by fishermen.

[1664] 1963 YONGE 67 Having sold our salt, and caught about 130 kentals of fish, for our 5 boats, we took aboard our trade and sailed for Torbay.

[1676] 1895 PROWSE 206 300 kintalls for each boat one year with another accounted with them an ordinary voyage.

[1711] 1745 OSBORNE 794 [The French] have also salt, and some fishing craft, cheaper than us; and generally kill one or two hundred quintals per boat more than the English kill.

1787 PENNANT Sup 45 A banking vessel of ten thousand fish ought to be filled in three weeks, and so in proportion; and eighty quintals (112 lb. each) for a boat in the same time.

1888 STEARNS 185 'How much is a quintal?' asked Allic. 'Oh, a quintal is different, according,' laughed Mr Godard. 'It's 212 pounds of wet fish, just out of the water, and, as fish shrink one-half in drying, it's 112 pounds of dry fish. We measure all our fish, dry or wet, by quintals, because that's the way we sell it.

1912 CABOT 79 The Spracklins had a few hundred quintals (said 'kintle') of fish, taken in the last few days.

1966 FARIS 221 The amount of catch each time is measured roughly in 'drafts' or 'quintals,' simply by visual judgment. Fishermen can see a boat approaching, and judge by the amount of water the boat is drawing how far down it is in the water the number of drafts (or quintals) of fish caught.

2 A measure of dried and salted cod-fish ready for the market; 112 lbs (50.8 kg); cp DRAFT.

1623 WHITBOURNE 79 The foresaid two hundred thousand of Fish, loading the said ship, it will then make at Marseiles aboue two and twenty hundred Kentalls of that waight.

[1698] CHILD 222 The current price of our Fish in that Country, was ... seventeen Rials which is eight shillings six pence per Quintal.

1787 PENNANT Sup 46 A heap of dried fish twenty feet long, and ten wide, and four deep, contains three hundred quintals. Such an heap settles, in the course of forty-eight hours after it is made, about 1/12th.

[1806] 1951 DELDERFIELD 82 Most interesting is an account of the sale of 1,147 Portuguese quintals of Newfoundland fish in 1806. It was listed:- '661 Qtls large, 208 Qtls small, 278 Qtls dumb, wet and broken.'

1882 TALBOT 13 About one hundred twenty fishes of fair size go to make up a hundredweight [or quintal] of dry or cured fish. T 36/8-64 And when the tub was full they'd have an idea how much fish they had—a tub would hold about a kantal; that would be a hundred and twelve pounds. T 41-64 A hundred and twelve pounds [would be] a quintal o' fish, dried fish.

1977 Inuit Land Use 332 [Fish] would be about $1.50 a quintal then. A quintal used to be 112 pounds. We worked hard for that.

3 A measure (of bread, flour, seal 'pelts', bark, etc); 100 or 112 pounds of a commodity.

1813 CARSON 15 One hundred and forty thousand quintals of bread and flour, are required for the support of the people in this island.

1895 Outing xxvii, p. 23 The values [of the sculps] range from $2.75 to $5.50 per quintal, the old hoods bringing the lowest and the pups the highest prices.

1916 MURPHY 19 [In 1859] the crew of the Zambesi made £40 19s a man, seals fetched 27 shillings per quintal and the rise.

1924 ENGLAND 248 Not so many years ago—three thousand sealers struck for a minimum of $5 a quintal for their fat.

1944 LAWTON & DEVINE 79 This Company paid the sealers one dollar and twenty-five cents per quintal more than was offered by Bowring Brothers. T 66-64 In the summer time when there'd be no fish, they'd go rining. Birch rine was a dollar a quintal. 4 Attrib quintal drum, ~ fish drum: wooden container holding 112 lbs of dried and salted cod fish; DRUM. T 90-64 There was the quintal drum with twenty inches and the sixteen-inch head.

1977 RUSSELL 51 He was goin' to earn a few cents with it, by making it into a quintal fish-drum like they used to use in those days for the Brazil market. quintal faggot: 'pile' of dried cod-fish weighing 112 lbs; FAGGOT. T 36-64 Providing the next day was fine, you'll enlarge on your faggot [till] you got it in quintal faggots.

And from the online Supplement:

quintal n also kantle.

1 1931 Can Geog J ii, 399 In one year these hardy men took about 500,000 'kantles' of cod (a quintal is 112 pounds).

1983 WARNER 26 A thousand cantles...we fished, and we were all in the family for crew.

2 1987 POWELL 34 In late September my crew and I got the last of our codfish sun-dried. After it was all weighed we had a little less than two hundred quintals, 112 pounds per quintal.

3 1987 Evening Telegram 27 Apr, p. 7 The pelts were all weighed by the quintal. Then there were deductions of the weight of the fat for scraps of meat that was left on the [seal] pelts.

4 Comb ~ drum. 1987 FIZZARD 160 'We had several makes of barrels. There'd be half-quintal drums, quintal drums [etc].'

Now, we invite u to RELiVE, REMEMBER and REFRESH iT and/or even REDEFiNE iT!

The main thing is to RELiSH iT.

N.B. Any Word of the Week receiving more than 10 posts will trigger a prize from Rattling Books for our favourite.We also invite you to visit our facebook group .

The word of the week is released each Sunday morning on the Newfoundland and Labrador CBC Radio program Weekend Arts Magazine with host Angela Antle.

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