Afrikaans, DutchShow more Afrikaans (earlier Dutch remschoen), rem to brake + skoen shoe.
1.In historical contexts. Wagon-making.A brake-shoe or skid of iron or heavy timber, used on the rear wheels of a wagon prior to the invention of the screw-brake; lock-shoe; rem shoe.See also riemverb sense 1.
1816G. Barker Journal. 13 Feb.Some Hottentots persuaded us to cross it (sc. the river) immediately which we did my box was set upon the rim-schoem to keep it dry.
1822W.J. BurchellTrav.I. 151The remschoen (lock-shoe or skid), is a log of wood, generally about eight inches square, and nearly two feet long, having a groove in it to receive the felly of the wheel; and is furnished in front with a stout loop of twisted raw hide.
1835A. SteedmanWanderingsI. 121On regaining the track, we found the reimschoon, or iron slipper, which had fallen from the waggon, lying in the road.
1839W.C. HarrisWild Sports 299The perpendicular character of the bank rendered a skid, or as it is termed by the Colonists, a remscoan, necessary upon each hind wheel, in addition to the drag-chain.
1860J. Sanderson inJrnl of Royal Geog. Soc.XXX. 239Christmas-day we celebrated by dining al fresco, seated on stones, riemschoen (waggon-drags), and wildebeest skulls, which, turned up, make capital rocking chairs.
1866Cape Town Dir. 117Upon every wheel of every four wheeled vehicle not provided with a wooden shoe (remschoen) or an iron shoe not less than eight inches broad.
1892The Jrnl 8 Sept. 1Notice is hereby given that the Divisional Council has agreed to frame a Bye-Law..forbidding the use of a ‘Remschoen’ on Public Roads in this Division under a penalty not exceeding £5.0.0.
1936E. RosenthalOld-Time Survivals 12Previously the sole way of moderating its speed or of preventing the vehicle careering down a hill was to lock the wheels with a chain and place a so-called ‘remskoen’ or braking-shoe beneath the iron tyres, to prevent their being worn away.
1949L.G. GreenIn Land of Afternoon 126Voortrekker wagons were equipped with..the remskoen instead of brakes.
1974A.A. Telford inStd Encycl. of Sn Afr. 569To brake the wagon on steep slopes a remskoen or skid, of timber or iron, was placed under the rear wheels...The remskoen had gone out of use by this time; brake blocks acting on the rear wheels by means of a screw had been introduced in 1860.
1988J. Burman inSmuts & AlbertsForgotten Highway through Ceres & Bokkeveld 75I was particularly struck by the wide band cut into steeply-sloping rock two feet high, presumably by the ‘remskoene’ (brakes) of descending wagons.
1911E. Prov. Herald 27 Oct.Those arguing against the Act were ‘sukkelars’, and formed a ‘remschoen’. He (sc. General Botha) asked them to co-operate in making the Act a success.
1912E. London Dispatch 2 May 5Riemschoen party, The name applied a few years back to that party in Cape politics which appeared to be averse from progress; the word Riemschoen is applied in other directions with the same meaning, e.g. ‘Riemschoen Districts’.
1919M.M. SteynDiary 266My vote has always been for progress, whereas the ‘remschoen’ party’s vote was always for keeping the country back. They set themselves against the Scab Act, Dipping and other measures that were for the good of the land.
1960L.M. ThompsonUnification of S. Afr. 1902–10 391The remschoen (brake-shoe; obscurantist) element in the Transvaal was held in check by the enlightened non-racial leadership of General Botha’s government.
1975Dict. of Eng. Usage in Sn Afr. 146Remskoen..is..used figuratively, for anyone who holds back progress hence the expression ‘a remskoen party’ in early Cape politics.
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