Frontier, noun

Origin:
EnglishShow more Special senses of general English.
historical
a. The eastern districts of the former Cape Colony; the boundary zone between the area under the control of Xhosa-speaking peoples and the area under colonial rule. Also attributive. See also the Border (Border sense 1).
1812 J. Cradock in G.M. Theal Rec. of Cape Col. (1901) VIII. 435To..permanently establish the tranquillity of these distant districts I am under the necessity for a time to station the Cape Regiment upon the frontier and to sustain them by a considerable detachment of Europeans.
1819 Lord C. Somerset in G.M. Theal Rec. of Cape Col. (1902) XII. 193I have received advices from Lt. Col. Willshire of the 38th Regt., who commands on the Frontier, stating that..the Caffers, 10,000 at least in number, attempted to surprize Graham’s Town, the principal position on the Frontier.
1827 Reports of Commissioners upon Finances at Cape of G.H. I. 21A measure of this kind had become necessary, from the increased pressure of business and correspondence with the remoter districts on the Frontier, occasioned by the settlement of the English emigrants.
1828 T. Pringle Ephemerides 210Within these few years, five missionary institutions have been planted among the frontier tribes.
1832 Graham’s Town Jrnl 13 Apr. 62This brief sketch of the Frontier Trade, will serve to shew that the traffic with the colored tribes beyond the Boundary is a pursuit from which a large portion of the inhabitants of Albany derive their subsistence.
1839 W.C. Harris Wild Sports 345The insecure state of the eastern frontier, and the inadequate protection afforded by the English Government against the aggressions of their wily and restless Kafir neighbours..are the inciting causes assigned by the emigrants for the unprecedented and hazardous step they have taken.
1846 Natal Witness 10 Apr. 1With satisfaction, then, the operations of our Government may be viewed, when compared with Frontier affairs.
1847 A Bengali Notes on Cape of G.H. 20The word ‘frontier’ being used by the Cape town people to denote the eastern districts.
1868 W.R. Thomson Poems, Essays & Sketches p.xxvThere is something radically wrong with our colonial system; you must come to the Frontier to see that.
1875 J.J. Bisset Sport & War 11Fort Wiltshire..was the largest and one of the strongest outposts on the Frontier, and was under the command of Major Halifax.
1888 Cape Punch 29 Feb. 125A frontier paper tells us that on a recent occasion the hangman was detained..for a whole month waiting instructions from head quarters.
1897 G.A. Parker S. Afr. Sports 73The Transvaal, Griqualand West, Western Province, and the Frontier were the contesting Associations [in the soccer tournament].
1911 Farmer’s Weekly 15 Mar. 14Kingwilliams town and East London...Some of the cattle were considered the finest seen on the Frontier since the rinderpest.
1941 C.W. De Kiewiet Hist. of S. Afr. 49Encroachment..resulted in a confused and overlapping settlement that made all the frontier clamorous with charges and countercharges of trespass and cattle lifting.
1943 J. Burger Black Man’s Burden 18From about 1834 a few frontier farmers..began to trek round the Bantu areas, across the Orange River, and on to the High veld.
1955 L. Marquard Story of S. Afr. 79When Governor van Plettenberg visited the eastern ‘frontier’ in 1778 he found that, in fact, no real frontier was recognised either by Europeans or by Xhosa; cattle trading, cattle raiding, and cattle grazing by black and white frontiersmen were taking place on both sides of the Great Fish River.
1989 Reader’s Digest Illust. Hist. of S. Afr. 70The frontier burghers..were incensed at officialdom’s inability to ‘control’ the Xhosa.
1990 Weekly Mail 29 June (Suppl.) 2That fateful meeting point of history, the eastern frontier.
b. comb.
Frontier war, any of nine wars fought in the eastern areas of the Cape Colony in the period 1779–1878, between Xhosa-speaking peoples (and at times Khoikhoi) on the one hand, and the Dutch or British authorities and colonial inhabitants on the other; formerly offensively called Kaffir war (sense (a) see kaffir noun sense 2 e). See also War of the Axe.
1893 Brown’s S. Afr. 179The Amatola Mountains and forests..were the scenes of many conflicts with the natives during the frontier wars.
1968 F.G. Butler Cape Charade 22When did you first meet Frederick Rex? In 1838, after the Sixth Frontier war, in Grahamstown.
1979 E. Bradlow Somerville’s Narr. of E. Cape Frontier 13In April 1799..a combined Xhosa-Khoi (Hottentot) force fell upon the colonists in the south-eastern part of the Graaff-Reinet district, thus precipitating the 3rd Frontier War.
1981 A. Paton in Optima Vol.30 No.2, 91Both Afrikaner and tribesman were cattle owners and they each required land. So began the series of conflicts..called the Frontier Wars.
1989 Reader’s Digest Illust. Hist. of S. Afr. 70Van Jaarsveld’s blitz netted the colonists 5 330 cattle and led to the deaths of an unrecorded number of Xhosa. This came to be known as the First Frontier War.
1990 Weekend Post 31 Mar. 14Early shows had a multitude of problems to deal with, such as Frontier Wars and endemic stock disease.
The eastern districts of the former Cape Colony; the boundary zone between the area under the control of Xhosa-speaking peoples and the area under colonial rule. Also attributive.
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