American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition
- n. Northeastern U.S. The pivoted horizontal crossbar to which the harness traces of a draft animal are attached and which is in turn attached to a vehicle or an implement. Also called singletree, swingletree; also called regionally whippletree.
Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia
- n. Same as swingletree.
- n. US a whippletree
GNU Webster's 1913
- n. Same as whippletree.
- n. a crossbar that is attached to the traces of a draft horse and to the vehicle or implement that the horse is pulling
- Variant of whippletree. (American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)
“A huge bat flew down, landed on the whiffletree, and turned into a leering vampire.”
“And the Bates family watched out the window while Coach Bob put little Win in the driver's seat, gripped the whiffletree in his hands behind his back, and heaved the sleigh into motion; the great sled skidded down the snowy yard and into the slippery street that was still lined with elms, in those days — 'As fast as a horse could have pulled it!' my mother always said.”
“This did not offend the young plowman, to judge by the expression of his face; but he said nothing, and, stooping down, loosened the chains of the whiffletree and turned the faces of the tired horses homeward.”
“So was I, with a girl to take care of, a tied-on pole and whiffletree, and practically no gun; for there was not a single loose cartridge in my pockets.”
“It's the whiffletree, I think," she said, as if she were used to wagons.”
“The pole was snapped, and the whiffletree smashed, so that the traces were useless.”
“I did some fair jury work with a lucky bit of spruce wood, the whiffletree, and the axle, and got the pole spliced.”
“Stuffed some deer skin sewed in due form for collars, fitted to them for harness crooked oak limbs, tied top and bottom with elk skin strings, then to these, straps of hide for tugs, which tied to the end of a stick for a whiffletree, and the center of this I tied to the drag, made from a crotch of a tree.”
“His face turned white with fear, and he tore a whiffletree from the wagon, which with a push he sent rolling into the thick of them, so that they fell back in confusion.”
“This made an open space between him and Erik, and Erik sprang quickly over the pole, with his knife ready to strike; but as he sprang, the whiffletree descended upon his head.”
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