Definition from Wiktionary, the free dictionary
buttload (plural buttloads)
- (obsolete, Britain, West Country dialect) A regional English measure of capacity of a heavy cart (a butt), containing 6 seams, or 48 bushels.
1819, Rees, Abraham, The Cyclopaedia, volume 31, Salting:
- The farmers near the fishing towns in the same district [Cornwall] likewise buy the refuse of bruised and small pilchards, which are rejected as unfit for curing or the market, and are called caff, four cart-loads of twelve bushels each being considered as the quantity proper for an acre. […] The butt-load formerly cost about 9s. or 10s. but they now fetch 15s. or 20s. the load.
1839 July 1, Edmonds, Richard, “A Statistical Account of the Parish of Madron, containing the Borough of Penzance, in Cornwall”, in Quarterly Journal of the Statistical Society of London, volume 2, page 211:
- The different kinds of manure usually employed in this neighbourhood are sea-weed, sand, stable-dung, ashes, and fish-dung. The quantities vary so much according to the condition of the land and other circumstances that it is impossible to state with any degree of accuracy what quantity is applied to the acre. In one of the conditions of leases previously quoted, it is stipulated that 10 butt-loads of good town or fish dung, and 10 butt-loads of sea-sand (to be mixed with the necessary quantity of earth) shall be carried for every acre broken up for tillage.
- (dated, Britain, Southern US, New England) A large amount carried in a butt.
- We spent all day Sunday and picked up a buttload of pecans.
- (by extension, mildly vulgar, slang) Any large but unspecific amount.
1999, Philip Greenspun, Philip and Alex's Guide to Web Publishing, page 267:
- You can collect a metric buttload of data about user activity on your site without too much effort.
2004, Theresa Alan, Spur of the Moment, page 264:
- Anyway, they are paying me a buttload of money to do this series, and I want to share my good fortune with you and that's that.
- (unspecific amount): For semantic relationships of this sense, see Wikisaurus:lot.
- assload (“amount carried by a donkey or any large, unspecified amount”), cartload (“amount carried by a cart or any large, unspecified amount”), and Category:English words derived from: load (noun)