Dictionary of Traded Goods and Commodities 1550-1820. Originally published by University of Wolverhampton, Wolverhampton, 2007.
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A TUB used by dyers, but within most contexts the term was probably general in meaning because dyers had need of a variety of vessels, as shown in an advertisement announcing the sale of 'winches, tubs, pails, and all other utensils belonging to the dyeing business' [Newspapers (1778)].
Not found in the OED online
See also LITTING TUB.
Sources: Inventories (late).