Salad sauce - Salver

Dictionary of Traded Goods and Commodities 1550-1820. Originally published by University of Wolverhampton, Wolverhampton, 2007.

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Salad sauce

[sauce for sallads; sallad sauce]

A PREPARED SAUCE containing, one of its makers claimed, 'all the Ingredients necessary for dressing a Salad' or to 'eat with Lobsters, Salmigundy, &c.' [Tradecards (1800)].

OED online earliest date of use: 1861 under Ravigote

Found in units of BOTTLE, CASE

See also RAVAGO.
Sources: Tradecards.


[sallett; sallat; salet]

In mediaeval ARMOUR, a light globular HEAD PIECE, with or without a vizor, and without a crest, the lower part curving outwards behind. Randle Holme described a sallet as an alternative name for a STEEL - CAP, that has 'bine of old termed a Sallad, and head peece, a Pot, a Bassenet, or Sculle' [Holme (2000)].

OED earliest date of use: c1440

Sources: Inventories (early), Rates.
References: Holme (2000).


An uncommon COTTON - TEXTILE imported from India. It is possible that this term was used only briefly in British trade in an attempt to avoid the heavy duties imposed on MUSLIN; a stratagem an act of 1700 was designed to thwart by defining sallows as MUSLIN [Acts (1700)]. Sallows may have been included among Milburn's INDIAN - PIECE GOODS imported from Bombay and Surat under the name of Saloopauts, in which the ending is merely the Hindi suffix 'pat' meaning a piece [Yule and Burnell (1886, pb 1996)]. However, sallows have not been noted in the shops in the Dictionary Archive, suggesting that if and when they were available for sale, it was probably under the generic term of muslin.

Not found in the OED

Sources: Acts.
References: Yule and Burnell (1886, pb 1996).

Salt beef

[salted beef; salt befe]

The most usual method of preserving MEAT in general, and BEEF in particular, was with SALT. The process involved a compromise between the impalatability of a heavily salted product and its keeping quality. Mentions of salt beef as such are rare, an exception being 'salt befe & baken' [Inventories (1541)]. However, most beef mentioned in sources like probate inventories would have been salted. A major retailer of food for export and use at sea claimed an 'effectual Method' of curing beef so that it would 'keep in any Climate for Eighteen Months, in an equal state of preservation and saltness with those only Fourteen Days in the common way' [Tradecards (18c.)], a claim similar to one made by a rival for CORNED BEEF [Tradecards (1800)].

OED online earliest date of use: 1674 under Honest

Found in units of BARREL

Sources: Acts, Diaries, Inventories (early), Tradecards.

Salt box

[salte box; salt-box; saltbox; salt boxe; sallt box]

A box for keeping SALT for domestic use. Most were probably of relatively crude construction but one cabinet maker included then among his list of 'Goods in the Cabinet Way' suggesting a much more decorative object [Inventories (1770)].

OED earliest date of use: 1611

Sources: Inventories (early), Inventories (mid-period), Inventories (late), Newspapers, Tradecards.

Salt of vinegar

There is a description in Rees's Manufacturing Industry of the formation of 'what are called the salts of vinegar', that appear in some vinegars when left exposed to air. He claimed that they 'seem to be what affects the tongue with the acid sharpness when we taste vinegar'. However, he did record recent research that suggested they were the immature states of a fly [Rees (1819-20, 1972 ed.)], but they could equally well have been 'Vinegar eels', minute nematode worms that breeds in vinegar. This explanation does not fit entirely with the product promoted by Thomas Greenough, which he described as 'volatile' [Tradecards (1790s)]. This was probably the 'salts of vinegar sold by the druggists as a reviving scent in sickness and fainting' described by Charles Tomlinson in the 1850s. These consisted of sulphate of POTASH impregnated with SPIRIT OF VINEGAR and scented with OIL OF LAVENDER or OIL OF ROSEMARY [Tomlinson (1854)].

OED online earliest date of use: 1686 under Corporify

Found described as Greenoughs, volatile

Sources: Tradecards.
References: Rees (1819-20, abridged 1972), Tomlinson (1854).

Salt of vitriol

[vitriolick; vitriol salis; sal vitrioli; sal vitriol]

According to the Dispensatory of the Royal College of Physicians (1746) salt of vitriol was prepared by boiling a POUND of WHITE VITRIOL and an OUNCE of SPIRIT OF VITRIOL in water and so dissolving it. It was then strained, reboiled to evaporate the water off and allowed to cook and the salt to 'shoot' or crystallize [Pemberton (1746)]. The result would have been a purified form of zinc sulphate. Its presence in the Dispensatory indicates that it was used medicinally and so it is sometimes found in the Latin form, Sal vitrioli. Like other SULPHUR compounds it was used for dealing with bad breath; hence the recipe for using it in a 'constant Daily Wash for your Teeth' [Recipes (Ketilby)].

OED online earliest date of use: 1684

Found in units of GRAIN, OZ Found rated by the POUND

Sources: Houghton, Inventories (mid-period), Inventories (late), Rates, Recipes.
References: Pemberton (1746).

Salt of wormwood

Although Pechey referred to the salt of wormwood, he was not impressed with it, writing that it 'differes nothing in my opinion, neither in taste nor virtue, from the fixed salt of any other plant'. However, he did recommend it taken in LEMON JUICE as a remedy for vomiting [Pechey (1694a)]. 'Sal Absinthe', or in English, salt of wormwood, remained in the Pharmocopoeia, and Pemberton included directions for making this salt by burning off all traces of OIL OF WORMWOOD from some wormwood ashes, then boiling the product in water, straining it and evaporating it 'to dryness' [Pemberton (1746)].

OED earliest date of use: 1641

Found in units of OZ

Sources: Tradecards.
References: Pechey (1694a), Pemberton (1746).

Salt tub

[saltub; salte tubbe; salt tubb]

A TUB in which to keep SALT, hence '2 Salt Tubs, a small quantity of Salt in one of them' [Inventories (1774)]. It does not appear to have been the same as a SALTING TUB.

OED online earliest date of use: c1420 under Pottage

Sources: Inventories (mid-period), Inventories (late).

Salting trough

[salting trow; salteynge troughe]

A large TROUGH, quite common in houses, in which to salt MEAT. It may have been made with a gutter or drainage hole to take away the liquid formed in the salting process. One listing of a 'salte trough' [Inventories (1636)] may have been no more than a variant, but the context indicates that it may have been somewhere to keep SALT like a SALT TUB.

OED earliest date of use: 1842 under Salting

Sources: Inventories (early), Inventories (mid-period), Inventories (late).

Salting tub

[saltinge tube; salting tubbe; salting tubb; salltinge tubb; sallting tubb]

A TUB in which to salt MEAT. In function, if not in appearance, it was identical with a SALTING TROUGH. It was confusingly known as a COOLER in some parts of the country, though that was a label usually applied to a different piece of equipment used in brewing.

OED earliest date of use: 1805 under Salting

Found described as with a COVER, SMALL

Sources: Inventories (early), Inventories (mid-period), Inventories (late).


[salvitory; salvatoryes]

A BOX for holding OINTMENT or SALVE, in the Dictionary Archive often associated with a PLASTER BOX, for example [Inventories (1694)]. It was probably the same as as the salve BOX noted, also in conjunction with 'a plaister box w'th instruments' [Inventories (1637)]. Randle Holme described a Salvatory as 'a Box with a Lid made generally of Latin or Tin, some more Rich have them of Silver, but that is for shew, more than good Profit; it hath six or more several divisions in it, which are furnished with so many several Unguents, which though each hold but a small quantity, yet it is sufficient for the present use' [Holme (2000)]. He suggested these might well include UNGUENTUM LINIMENTUM ARCEI, UNGUENTUM BASILICUM, UNGUENTUM APOSTOLORUM, UNGUENTUM AUREUM, UNGUENTUM DIAPOMPHOLIGOS, UNGUENTUM EX ALTHAEA, POPULEON, and UNGUENTUM ALBUM.

OED earliest date of use: 1549

Found described as OLD, Standing

Sources: Inventories (mid-period).
References: Holme (2000).


A healing OINTMENT for application to wounds or sores. One retailer included among the Salves 'In the Shoppe', DIAPALMA, MELILOT, OXYCROCEUM, and GRATIA DEI [Inventories (1663)]. Most of these could equally well have been labelled a PLASTER.

OED earliest date of use: a700

Found described as SHEEP

Sources: Diaries, Houghton, Inventories (mid-period), Inventories (late), Newspapers, Tradecards.


A TRAY, used for handing refreshments, or for presenting letters, visiting cards, etc. Most were made of metal, PEWTER being the most common, but GLASS salvers appeared occasionally.

OED earliest date of use: 1661

Found described as LARGE, SMALL Found made of GLASS, PEWTER, SILVER

Sources: Diaries, Inventories (mid-period), Inventories (late).