steenbras, noun

Forms:
steembras, steenbrasenShow more Also steembras, steenbrasen, steen brass, steenbrasem, steenbrassem, steenbrazen, steinbrase, stembras, stem brass, stienbrass.
Plurals:
unchanged, or (formerly) steenbraesem, steenbrassam, steenbrassen.
Origin:
DutchShow more Transferred use of Dutch steenbras, steen stone + brasem bream (a name given to Sparus saxatilis).
a. Any of several marine fishes, especially either of two species of seabream of the Sparidae, Petrus rupestris (see red steenbras, sense b below), or Lithognathus lithognathus (see white steenbras sense (a), sense b below). Also attributive.
Note:
The first quotation refers to New Guinea.
[1625 S. Purchas Hachluytus Posthymus (1905) II. 278Sixe great Canoas followed us, (and yet we saw no men on land) bringing dried fish, (which wee tooke to be Steenbrasses).]
[1731 G. Medley tr. of P. Kolben’s Present State of Cape of G.H. II. 203The sea about the Cape is well stocked with a sort of fish the Cape-Europeans call Stone-Brassen; and the Cape-Europeans take great numbers of ’em.]
1790 tr. of F. Le Vaillant’s Trav. I. 32Fish are very abundant at the Cape. Among those most esteemed, the principal are the rooman,..the steenbraasen, the stompneus, and some others.
1790 W. Paterson Narr. of Four Journeys 8About noon we came to the mouth of the Stienbrassam River, which takes its name from a species of fish, called Stienbrassam.
1801 R. Semple Walks & Sketches (1805) 124We supped upon a fine large Steinbrass fish, and went soon to rest.
a1823 J. Ewart Jrnl (1970) 13Stienbrass, similar in shape and size to the salmon.
1892 Nicolls & Eglington Sportsman in S. Afr. 141The Steen Brass (Dentex rupestris). (Some have been caught weighing up to 70 lbs. General colour, variegated, clouded irregularly with ultramarine blue, oil green, and lavender purple; profile of head, irregular; a large bulge over the eyes.)
1913 W.W. Thompson Sea Fisheries of Cape Col. 58The steenbras was supposed to be a bream, even in Percival’s Voyages (1786–1801) it is designated ‘la brême de roche’.
1930 C.L. Biden Sea-Angling Fishes 156All local anglers and fishermen use the word ‘steenbras’ which is Dutch for ‘stone-bream’. The Afrikaans name is ‘rooisteenbras’ (..the approximate pronunciation..is ‘roy-stē’m-bräss’).
1930 C.L. Biden Sea-Angling Fishes 159Old anglers are of opinion that the young steenbras is the most gorgeously painted fish of all at the Cape, even allowing for the brilliance of such others as the dageraad..and red stumpnose.
1930 M. Raubenheimer Tested S. Afr. Recipes 112The best fish for pickling is either Geelbek, Snoek, Kabeljaauw or Steembras.
1950 M. Masson Birds of Passage 121Vendor and buyer alike haggled over the merits of Hottentot, Hake, Evert, Kingclipfish, Steenbrazen and Stompneus.
1977 E. Prov. Herald 17 Nov. 15Many estuary fishermen believe steenbras and grunter blow burrowing baits, mainly prawns, out of the beds to feed on them.
1981 E. Prov. Herald 23 Apr. 11The name ‘steenbras’ is probably the most abused name in the whole of our fish nomenclature...Species called steenbras in various parts are only distantly related, some not at all.
1982 S. Afr. Panorama May 29The picturesque fisherman’s cottages have long gone, but some seine netters remain, still catching mullet, yellowtail, galjoen and steenbras in the old-fashioned way.
1992 V. Kabalin in Afr. Wildlife Vol.46 No.2, 201No ill effect on the sustainable stock in the Bay of yellowtail, kob, baartman, elf and steenbras.
b. With distinguishing epithet:
bank steenbras [English bank shelving elevation in the sea], either of two species of marine fish, (a) the red steenbras (see below); (b) the fingerfin Chirodactylus grandis of the Cheilodactylidae; tigerfish sense 2 a;
black steenbras, the black musselcracker (see musselcracker sense 2), Cymatoceps nasutus;
bronze steenbras, copper steenbras, or (more commonly) red steenbras, the seabream Petrus rupestris, a fine game fish reaching over two metres in length and varying in colour from golden yellow to bronze and red; copper; red poenskop, see poenskop sense 2 b; seventy-four sense b; silver-fish sense 1 b;
river steenbras, bank steenbras sense (b), see above;
rooi steenbras /ˈrɔɪ-/, [Afrikaans (earlier roode steenbrassem), rooi red], red steenbras (see above);
sand steenbras, the bontrok, Lithognathus mormyrus;
silver steenbras, the east coast name for the white musselcracker (see musselcracker sense 2), Sparodon durbanensis;
white steenbras, either of two species of seabream, (a) Lithognathus lithognathus, which reaches up to two metres in length and is considered a fine game fish; musselcracker sense 1 a (also called mussel crusher); (b) less frequently, the white musselcracker (see musselcracker sense 2), Sparodon durbanensis;
yellow steenbras, in KwaZulu-Natal, a name for the red steenbras (see above).
Note:
In Smith and Heemstra’s Smiths' Sea Fishes (1986), the name ‘bank steenbras’ is used for Chirodactylus grandis, ‘red steenbras’ for Petrus rupestris, ‘sand steenbras’ for Lithognathus mormyrus, and ‘white steenbras’ for Lithognathus lithognathus.
1902 J.D.F. Gilchrist in Trans. of S. Afr. Philological Soc. XI. iv. 230Rooi Steenbras, Roode Steenbrasem (Pappe), Red Steenbras, Bank Steenbras..Dentex rupestris.
1971 Argus 14 May 14At Anvil Rock, Brian Clark, John Hughes and Arthur Ridge found the reef alive with 5 kg bank steenbras and red roman.
1930 C.L. Biden Sea-Angling Fishes 257Pagrus nasutus..East London — Black Steenbras.
1971 Daily Dispatch 2 June 15J. Opperman, one black steenbras 13,5 kg.
1989 A. Sparg in Ski-Boat Jan.Feb. 35The two best black steenbras (poenskop) of the tournament..weighed 28 and 25,5 kg.
1981 E. Prov. Herald 23 Apr. 11There is the red steenbras, a name used right around the coast except in Natal where it is a bronze or copper steenbras.
1988 C. Norman in S. Afr. Panorama Dec. 41In the eastern Cape the copper steenbras (Petrus rupestris) and..musselcracker..are prized trophies.
1990 D. Jones in Sunday Times 18 Nov. 7A lucrative operation at Coffee Bay..is threatening the last known breeding ground of the red or copper steenbras.
1801 J. Barrow Trav. I. 30The red and the white Steenbrassems, or Stone-breams, two species, or perhaps varieties only, of perches.
1831 S. Afr. Almanac & Dir.January...Fish in Season...Harder, red Steenbrassem, [etc.].
c1936 S. & E. Afr. Yr Bk & Guide 1108The steenbras, red and white, which may be caught with a 20-foot rod from the rocks around the Cape Peninsula, runs up to 70 lbs. in weight.
1949 J.L.B. Smith Sea Fishes of Sn Afr. 277Petrus rupestris...Red or Rooi Steenbras (Cape). Yellow Steenbras (Natal)...Attains over 6 ft. in length and..150 lbs. Found only in South Africa.
1973 Farmer’s Weekly 18 Apr. 102The red steenbras is seldom caught weighing over 120 pounds.
1981 E. Prov. Herald 23 Apr. 11I read a report..from Plettenberg Bay about ‘blue poenskop’ and ‘red poenskop’ being caught down that way...I had to telephone Jock Hunter, of Plettenberg Bay...He told me the fish referred to were poenskop and red steenbras.
1988 D.E. Pollock in Conserva Oct. 10Red steenbras undertake eastward spawning migrations.
1991 Weekend Post 30 Mar. 2 (caption)Craig Saunders..holds a 40,6kg Red Steenbras which he caught from a boat off Noordhoek.
1902 J.D.F. Gilchrist in Trans. of S. Afr. Philological Soc. IX. 231Tiger-fish, or River Steenbras (E. London).
1913 C. Pettman Africanderisms 413Rooi steenbras, A much esteemed Cape fish.
1993 R. Van der Elst Guide to Common Sea Fishes 352It is adept at camouflage, for the darker crossbars marking its flanks blend with the ripple marks that..pattern the..sandy sea-bed...Thus the sand steenbras remains inconspicuous even when present in fair numbers.
1971 Daily Dispatch 2 June 15One silver steenbras of 7,7 kg on light tackle.
1979 Snyman & Klarie Free from Sea 38Musselcracker,..Steenbras/Silver Steenbras.
1993 Grocott’s Mail 17 Sept. 13Athol Waters and his son Vivian caught hottentot and a silver steenbras aggregating 12,0 kilograms in the Kleinemond area.
1843 J.C. Chase Cape of G.H. 169Steenbras, red and white. Very good.
1902 J.D.F. Gilchrist in Trans. of S. Afr. Philological Soc. XI. 231Steenbras, Steenbrasen (Castelnau), Steenbraesem (Riebeck’s Journal), White Steenbras, Kaapse Blaauwe Steenbras (Pappe)...Pagellus lithognathus.
1930 C.L. Biden Sea-Angling Fishes 257Sparus durbanensis...East London — White Steenbras.
1970 Argus 30 July 8White steenbras of up to 9 kg have been taken on prawn and worm.
1979 Snyman & Klarie Free from Sea 56White Steenbras,..Highly prized angling fish, delicately flavoured, and the white flesh has large flakes when cooked.
1989 I. Jones Woman’s World Cookbk 41Fish Vinaigrette...Use a firm white fish such as..white steenbras or white stumpnose.
1979 Snyman & Klarie Free from Sea 44Red Steenbras, Yellow Steenbras/Steenbras.
Any of several marine fishes, especially either of two species of seabream of the Sparidae, Petrus rupestris (see red steenbras, b below), or Lithognathus lithognathus (see white steenbras sense (a), b below). Also attributive.