Scripture - Scuttle

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

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The sacred writings of the Old and the New TESTAMENTs, or (more usually) of both together; the BIBLE.

OED earliest date of use: a1300

Sources: Inventories (early).



A term not found in the dictionaries in this sense, except for Joseph Wright's Dialect Dictionary, in which it is described only as a 'weaving term' [Wright (1898-1905)]. The context of the only example in the Dictionary Archive suggests it was some sort of mechanism for rolling cloth, possibly to run it through the CALENDAR that was listed with it [Inventories (1720)].

Sources: Inventories (late).
References: Wright (1898-1905).

Scrow salt

An alternative name for FOUL SALT

Not found in the OED

Sources: Acts.

Scrubbing brush

[scrubbing do; scrubbing brushes]

A BRUSH with hard BRISTLES used for scrubbing and similar purposes.

OED earliest date of use: 1681

Sources: Inventories (late), Tradecards.


A unit of weight used for APOTHECARY and equivalent to 20 GRAIN. A fluid scruple is one third of a fluid DRACHM. By extension, a very small quantity or amount.

OED earliest date of use: 1564

Found describing WEIGHT

Sources: Houghton, Inventories (early), Inventories (late), Recipes.


[scrutore; scruetore; scrue door; screwtore; screw tore; escrutore; escruetore; escrewtore; escrewtor]

A WRITING DESK, more properly called an escritoire, designed to contain stationary and documents; in early use, often one of a portable size, hence one described as a TABLE escritoire - one to sit on a table [Inventories (1717)] or one 'without a fframe' [Inventories (1697)]. The term was particularly applied in the eighteenth century to one in which a writing drawer with a hinged front that lies flat when drawn out and provides a level surface for writing [Gloag (1952, revised 1991)]. Escritoires were invariably fashionable items of FURNITURE made of the best woods like WALNUT and MAHOGANY.

OED earliest date of use: 1665

Found described as NEW, TABLE, WAINSCOT, WALNUT

Sources: Inventories (mid-period), Inventories (late), Tradecards.
References: Gloag (1952, revised 1991).


A LIQUEUR or medicinal water known only by its inclusion in a list of similar drinks in an advertisement [Tradecards (1800)].

Sources: Tradecards.


The first meaning given in the OED, an obsolete one, is for a DISH, TRENCHER or PLATTER. This meaning does not appear to occur in the Dictionary Archive. The two secondary meanings of a BASKET for winnowing CORN and by extension a CASTING SHOVEL, and a large open basket for carrying also seem to be absent. Scuttles have been noted almost entirely in the shops either for sale by the DOZEN [Inventories (1702)], or as part of the shop equipment [Inventories (1660)]. They were invariably valued at a few pence at best, and so were unlikely to have been baskets. More likely they were scoops of no great size, probably made of wood.

Not found in the OED online in the sense noted in the Dictionary Archive

Found described as LARGE, OLD, SMALL

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