ration, noun

Origin:
EnglishShow more Special sense of general English ration a (daily) allowance of food or other provisions, especially as provided in the army.
Usually in the plural : Food supplied to black or ‘coloured’ farm-workers and domestic servants as part of their wages, or in lieu thereof. Also attributive.
1821 G. Barker Journal. 11 Aug.I was told by others that he has said he expected to receive Rations of food here & never thought to have been requested to herd cattle &c.
1835 T.H. Bowker Journal. 25 MayThe fingoes shufle each other in dealing their ration meat.
1892 The Jrnl 20 Sept. 1 (advt)Mealies, Kafir Corn, Ration Meal, Flour, Mealie Meal, Kafir Corn Meal,..Transvaal and Boer Tobacco.
1944 C.R. Prance Under Blue Roof 107Kafirs, fear-spurred at last to energy, ran to and fro with the milk-pails, their rations, and embers to start their fire.
1958 A. Jackson Trader on Veld 45The average labourer’s pay was ten to twenty shillings cash per month, or in lieu thereof, one or two sheep or goats, plus a fixed quantity of rations.
1961 D. Rooke Lover for Estelle 105The servants were waiting at the back door for their rations...Each servant got a basinful of mealie meal, a double handful of broad beans and two tablespoonsful of dripping every night; and as much skim milk as they wanted.
1973 Weekend Post 27 Oct. 17The average annual payment, including rations, is R67 a servant.
1980 J. Cock Maids & Madams 34A number of workers, 18 percent, received the same food as their employers, but the majority, 80 percent, received ‘servants’ rations’ and one received both.
Food supplied to black or ‘coloured’ farm-workers and domestic servants as part of their wages, or in lieu thereof. Also attributive.
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18211980