trektou, noun

Forms:
tracktoe, tracktowShow more Also tracktoe, tracktow, tracto, tractoe, tractow, traktow, treck-tow, trektouw, trektow, and as two words.
Plurals:
trektous, and (rarely) trektowen.
Origin:
Afrikaans, DutchShow more Afrikaans (earlier Dutch trektouw), trek see trek noun + touw rope, cord, twine; it is not clear whether forms in -tow arose through transliteration or through translation.
usually historical
a. A trace or drawrope made of twisted or plaited rawhide thongs and used in drawing a wagon, being attached to the yokes of the draught animals and to the pole. See also tou sense 1. b. transferred sense. A chain used for the same purpose; trek chain, see trek noun sense 12 a. Also attributive.
1817 G. Barker Journal. 16 MayHad a Buffaloo’s hide cut to make a Trek tow.
1822 W.J. Burchell Trav. I. 151The trektouw (draw rope or trace), is a long rope made of twisted thongs of raw hide, made fast by a hook to the staple at the end of the pole, and having iron rings attached to it at proper distances, into which rings the yokes are hooked.
1835 A. Smith Diary (1940) II. 32The crocodile sometimes takes off tractoes and the iron rings have been found in the stomachs of some that have been killed.
1835 A. Smith Diary (1940) II. 309Wagons with trak tow rims etc. complete.
1836 A.F. Gardiner Journey to Zoolu Country 319The baggage waggon sunk to the axles in the mud; twice the tractow was broken in the endeavour to urge it forward.
1850 J.E. Methley New Col. of Port Natal 22A span of twelve or fourteen oxen..are attached by yokes fastened on the neck to a long chain or treck-trow, which is made fast to the dissel-boom.
1864 S. Turner in D. Child Portrait of Pioneer (1980) 7The trektouw or rope made of hide by which the oxen pull the wagon broke, and the wagon ran back off the road.
1878 H.A. Roche On Trek in Tvl 185A thump from impatient fists..makes him clatter the trek-tow chain.
1899 Natal Agric. Jrnl 31 Mar. 4All words in connection with trekking are of Dutch origin, ‘trektouw,’ the long hide rope or chain of modern days on which the oxen pull.
1910 J. Angove in J. Mockford Here Are S. Africans (1944) 91I would..have been able to buy a brand new buck-wagon, new yokes and a wire trek-tow!
1939 S. Cloete Watch for Dawn 300The oxen..were put in. The trek-tous slipped over their backs and strained tight as they came into line.
1955 L.G. Green Karoo 115One great advantage of the raw hide trektou is that it does not attract lightning.
1969 T. Montgomery in F.G. Butler When Boys Were Men 183The axles were made of wood and our trek towen of riems tied together, which were very apt to break especially in wet weather.
1977 F.G. Butler Karoo Morning 117This fellow had a problem. How to connect the trek tow to the aardvark’s tail?
1994 M. Roberts tr. of J.A. Wahlberg’s Trav. Jrnls 1838–56 55Hans Joubert cheats me over the trektouw.
1994 M. Roberts tr. of J.A. Wahlberg’s Trav. Jrnls 1838–56 59Trektouw riem eaten by a dog, who paid for his prank with his life.
A trace or drawrope made of twisted or plaited rawhide thongs and used in drawing a wagon, being attached to the yokes of the draught animals and to the pole.
A chain used for the same purpose; trek chain, see treknoun12 a. Also attributive.
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18171994