krantz, krans, noun

Forms:
crance, kraantsShow more Also crance, kraants, kranse, krants, krantze, kranz.
Plurals:
krantzes, occasionally krantze /ˈkransə/, or (formerly) krantzen.
Origin:
South African Dutch, Dutch, Middle DutchShow more South African Dutch krantz, krans from Dutch krans (earlier krants) from Middle Dutch crans coronet, chaplet.
1. ?obsolescent. A vertical wall of rock crowning the summit of a mountain.
1795 C.R. Hopson tr. of C.P. Thunberg’s Trav. I. 166This bitumen was to be found in great abundance in the cracks and crevices of the mountain, especially at one large projecting krants, or summit.
1798 S.H. Wilcocke tr. of J.S. Stavorinus’s Voy. to E. Indies I. 31A narrow ridge of the mountain..ended about halfway up abruptly, against the side of a precipice. This place, the inhabitants of the Cape call the krants or wreath.
1852 C. Barter Dorp & Veld 88 (Pettman)We passed this morning under a mountain whose summit is garlanded with a ring of perpendicular rocks appropriately termed kranz.
1852 C. Barter Dorp & Veld 93We had been directed to look out for a white krans in the mountain.
1893 Africanus in Cape Illust. Mag. July 418It resembles Table Mountain in form, but has no large ‘kransen,’ and is verdant up to the top.
1908 J.M. Orpen Reminisc. (1964) 63There is a small flat topped hill there, with a little irregular krantz all round the top.
1910 J. Buchan Prester John 46The top was sheer cliff; then came loose kranzes in tiers, like the seats in a gallery.
1913 Times Lit. Suppl. (U.K.) 24 July 309How are we to describe the curious crowns of rock so common on the Cape mountains except by the word ‘kranz’?
1916 J. Buchan Greenmantle 283A little hill split the valley, and on its top was a kranz of rocks.
1925 H.J. Mandelbrote tr. of O.F. Mentzel’s Descr. of Cape of G.H. II. 93A phenomenon appeared below the krantz of the mountain that looked like a veritable carbuncle to some and a crowned serpent to others.
1949 L.G. Green In Land of Afternoon 21A krantz is not merely a cliff, but a steep, rocky place near the summit of a berg.
1956 A.G. McRae Hill Called Grazing 64You see the pale azure of the sky just touching the top of the Hill Called Grazing, you see the shape of the little krantzes which crown it.
1972 Daily Dispatch 4 Sept.The billowing Themeda triandra in autumn looks like a great field of wheat rising right up to the basalt krantzes of the Drakensberg.
2. A sheer rock face, a precipice; an overhanging cliff. See also klipkrans.
1834 T. Pringle Afr. Sketches 515Kranz, in colonial usage, signifies a steep cliff or overhanging rock, such as the Bushmen often select for depicting their rude sketches on.
1835 T.H. Bowker Journal. 22 Apr.Corporal Kelly of the engineers fell drunk over a krantz last night. He is to be buried to night.
1853 F.P. Fleming Kaffraria 39Rising up, here and there, from some of these deep and gloomy kloofs, appear immense perpendicular krantzes (or precipices) of iron-stone and granite rock.
a1858 J. Goldswain Chron. (1946) I. 100He fell over a Crance or a rockey precipice and the next morning was found quit dead.
1861 Queenstown Free Press 16 Jan. (Pettman)Five horses were precipitated down a krans (or precipice) by the same wind and killed.
1877 R.M. Ballantyne Settler & Savage 144Started the echoes of the precipices — which he styled Krantzes — and horrified the nearest baboons with shouts of bass laughter.
1892 Midland News & Karroo Farmer 4 Mar. 6The krantz that overhangs the Maraisburg road..is in a very dangerous state, and yesterday a large stone..fell into the road.
1911 D.B. Hook ’Tis but Yesterday 56He could scale any ‘krans’ and find nests..in the rocky precipices.
1937 C. Birkby Zulu Journey 175Twenty-five miles of precipitous kranzes cut off the Oribi Flats from the outside world of Natal.
1956 J. Chatterton Return of Drums 1The burning noon silence was broken by the sudden, shrill chatter of monkeys disturbed from their midday rest in the shade of the krantz.
1964 V. Pohl Dawn & After 30Presently two big black horses inspanned to an empty Cape cart came careering past, heading straight for the edge of the plateau, where the kranz dropped about thirty feet.
3. Used as an element in place names: see quotations.
1847 G.H. Berkeley in Imp. Blue Bks Command Paper 969–1848, 8I had intended making a combined movement on Murray’s Krantz at daybreak to morrow morning.
1853 T. Shone Diary. 12 Dec.Our Jack and horse was carried down the river at Blue Kraants, he lost Henry Greatcoat.
1956 F.C. Metrowich Valiant but Once 206His headquarters were a peak of almost perpendicular rock in the Eastern Amatola mountains. This peak, afterwards known as Murray’s Krantz, was a natural fortress and appeared to be well-nigh impregnable.
1974 S. Afr. Panorama Nov. 11This krans was also known as the ‘Skietkrans’ (shot precipice) because when the north wind blew, it made sounds like shots.
A vertical wall of rock crowning the summit of a mountain.
A sheer rock face, a precipice; an overhanging cliff.
see quotations.

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