hogshead

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English[edit]

Etymology[edit]

From Middle English hoggeshed (literally, hog's head). More at hog, head. Often borrowed into other languages as "ox-head".

Noun[edit]

hogshead (plural hogsheads)

  1. An English measure of capacity for liquids, containing 63 wine gallons, or about 52 1/2 imperial gallons; a half pipe.
    • 1882, James Edwin Thorold Rogers, A History of Agriculture and Prices in England, p.205
      Again, by 28 Hen. VIII, cap. 14, it is re-enacted that the tun of wine should contain 252 gallons, a butt of Malmsey 126 gallons, a pipe 126 gallons, a tercian or puncheon 84 gallons, a hogshead 63 gallons, a tierce 41 gallons, a barrel 31.5 gallons, a rundlet 18.5 gallons.
  2. A large cask or barrel, of indefinite contents; especially one containing from 100 to 140 gallons.
    • 1922, Ben Travers, chapter 1, A Cuckoo in the Nest[1]:
      “[…] the awfully hearty sort of Christmas cards that people do send to other people that they don't know at all well. You know. The kind that have mottoes like
        Here's rattling good luck and roaring good cheer, / With lashings of food and great hogsheads of beer. […]”

Translations[edit]