from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License
- n. Any bean, but especially the hyacinth bean (Lablab purpureus).
- n. Food made from beans.
from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia
- n. In the West Indies, a name for several species of beans belonging to the genus Dolichos, especially D. sphærospermus.
The word garbanzo came to English as "calavance" in the 17th century, from Old Spanish
It is the custom on board slavers, I believe -- at least it was so on board the _Francesca_ -- to feed the slaves twice a day, the food consisting of a fairly liberal quantity of boiled rice, farina, or calavance beans -- these latter being used on account of their great fattening powers, whereby the slaves are maintained in a tolerably good condition of body -- with a pint of water at each meal.