essenhout, noun

Forms:
Formerly also eschenhout.
Origin:
South African Dutch, DutchShow more South African Dutch, from Dutch eschenhout, esch, eschen ash + hout wood.
Either of two species of tree, especially Ekebergia capensis: a. Ekebergia capensis; Cape ash, see Cape sense 2 a. b. The Natal mahogany sense (a) (see Natal sense b), Trichilia emetica; occasionally with defining word, rooi-essenhout [Afrikaans rooi red], (see quotation 1984). In both senses also called essenwood.
[1786 G. Forster tr. of A. Sparrman’s Voy. to Cape of G.H. I. 311The name of Essen-bosch is given to a kind of woody tract along Essen-rivier, which, as well as the wood, has taken its name from the esse or ash-tree.]
[1789 W. Paterson Narr. of Four Journeys 80A tree very useful in making waggons, which the Dutch call Essen or ash.]
1798 S.H. Wilcocke tr. of J.S. Stavorinus’s Voy. to E. Indies II. 79Among the various sorts of timber, either unknown, or extremely rare in Europe, the following abound here, viz...essenhout, the ash (ekebergia capensis), which is hard and of a close texture, and is used for making of tools and implements of various kinds; [etc.].
1843 J.C. Chase Cape of G.H. 160Ash (Essen Hout)..Tough.
1860 Harvey & Sonder Flora Capensis I. 525The tree is called by the inhabitants ‘Eschenhout;’ the edible fruit, ‘Zuurebesges.’
1887 S.W. Silver & Co.’s Handbk to S. Afr. 132The tree of which there were fewest was the Essenhout. These and the Yellowwood were generally situated deep in the forest.
1950 Cape Argus 18 Mar. (Mag. Sect.) 7The Cape ebony, white stinkwood, flatcrown, essenhout and umzimbiti, trees that yield beautiful timber for furniture-making, grow in profusion in every kloof.
1961 Palmer & Pitman Trees of S. Afr. 277The essenhout or dog plum is a medium sized tree found in most of the forests of the country.
1975 Afr. Wildlife Vol.29 No.1An extensive forest of Ekebergia capensis (Essenhout) forms an ideal habitat for numerous birds, insects and other small forms of life.
1984 [see Cape mahogany Cape sense 2 a].
Ekebergia capensis; Cape ash, see Cape2 a.
The Natal mahogany sense (a) (see Natalb), Trichilia emetica; occasionally with defining word, rooi-essenhoutrooi red, (see quotation 1984). In both senses also called essenwood.

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17861975