hawk boy

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hawk boy (plural hawk boys)

  1. (dated) A plasterer's (male) attendant who supplied him with mortar.
    • 1867, Arthur Ashpitel, Treatise on Architecture:
      The hawk boy's server is about the size and shape of a common garden hoe, but the handle is in the direction of the instrument.
    • 1879, The Builder, page 1301:
      Whenever any mischief or damage was done, rightly or wrongly, the plasterers' hawk-boys always had the credit of it. The plasterers of London should rejoice that the hawk-boys are abolished.
    • 1905, William Millar, Plastering: Plain and Decorative, page 550:
      In London and the South of England plasterers formerly had attendants called "hawk-boys," each pair of plasterers having one to wait upon them. The hawk-boy's duty was to knock up and gauge all the materials, keep the men's tools clean, look after the warming of their meals, and serve the materials when gauged.