Definitions

from The Century Dictionary.

  • noun A wooden plate or platter (originally a square piece of board or slice of wood) for the table or the kitchen.
  • noun A slice of bread used as a platter to lay food upon, as thin cakes of bread still are in some countries.
  • noun That which trenchers contain; food; hence, the pleasures of the table: often used attributively.
  • noun Same as trencher-cap.
  • noun One who carves at table; also, one who carves at a side-fable for the company.
  • noun One who cuts or digs trenches; a trench-digger or -maker.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English.

  • noun One who trenches; esp., one who cuts or digs ditches.
  • noun A large wooden plate or platter, as for table use.
  • noun The table; hence, the pleasures of the table; food.
  • noun the cap worn by studens at Oxford and Cambridge Universities, having a stiff, flat, square appendage at top. A similar cap used in the United States is called Oxford cap, mortar board, etc.
  • noun [R.] a person who haunts the tables of others; a parasite.
  • noun one who frequents the tables of others; a sponger.
  • noun a table companion; a parasite; a trencher fly.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License.

  • noun archaic A long plate on which food is served and\or cut.
  • noun One who trenches; especially, one who cuts or digs ditches.
  • noun A machine for digging trenches.

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • noun a wooden board or platter on which food is served or carved
  • noun someone who digs trenches

Etymologies

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

Middle English < Anglo-Norman trenchour < Old Northern French trencheor (French tranchoir), from trenchier ("to cut, to carve"). See trench (verb).

Examples

  • So people still ate off their wooden trenchers, and as a wooden trencher is about the best substance I know for holding germs and ferments, people died.

    Canada's Relations With China

  • For plates they used what was called a trencher made of wood or pewter.

    History of American Women

  • -- Ed. 18 In this country the introduction of earthenware plates has driven the less cleanly wooden plate, called a trencher, entirely out of use.

    Works of John Bunyan — Volume 02

  • If so, he can instantly transport himself to the times of the wooden "trencher," and the "pewter" mug and pitcher, to the days when iron rails for tramways were unknown, and when even the

    Steam, Steel and Electricity

  • NAWANSHAHR: In order to deal with the labour shortage faced by the farmers during installation of Drip and Sprinkler Irrigation System, the Soil and Conservation department has come up with a new device known as "trencher" for undertaking trenching work in the fields.

    PunjabNewsline News

  • Something larger than the black ones. those Sticks they place in defferent positions which they perform under a kind of trencher made of bark round and about 14 inches diamieter. this is a very intricate game and I cannot Sufficiently understand to discribe it. the man who is in possession of the Sticks &c places them in defferent positions, and the opposit party tels the position of the black Sticks by a motion of either or both of his hands &c. this game is Counted in the Same way as the one before mentioned. all their games are accompanied with Songs and time. at 3 P.

    The Journals of Lewis and Clark, 1804-1806

  • The bread soaks up the grease and the suety 'trencher' makes the neighborhood birds very happy. "

    Serious Eats

  • Using a damp cloth, I carefully sponged the days-old sweat from her body while Blood Thorn sat to one side, a beautifully carved trencher in his lap, spooning food to her by the bite.

    Fire The Sky

  • Several women tended a huge pot of bubbling hominy, while baked squash was piled on a long wooden trencher.

    Fire The Sky

  • Using a damp cloth, I carefully sponged the days-old sweat from her body while Blood Thorn sat to one side, a beautifully carved trencher in his lap, spooning food to her by the bite.

    Fire The Sky

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