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[tren-cher] /ˈtrɛn tʃər/
a person or thing that digs trenches.
ditchdigger (def 3).
a rectangular or circular flat piece of wood on which meat, or other food, is served or carved.
such a piece of wood and the food on it.
Archaic. food; the pleasures of good eating.
Origin of trencher
1275-1325; Middle English trenchour something to cut with or on < Anglo-French; Middle French trencheoir. See trench, -ory2 Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the Web for trencher
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • We have three trencher bowls, and another larger one in which all the food is placed.

    Mary of Plymouth James Otis
  • If you're eating for honour, you mustn't leave anything on the trencher.'

    Despair's Last Journey David Christie Murray
  • As if the entrance of Mr. Brandon had been the signal for him to bolt, he put on his trencher and turned to the door.

    Johnny Ludlow, Fifth Series Mrs. Henry Wood
  • One of the most important articles for setting the table was the trencher.

    Home Life in Colonial Days Alice Morse Earle
  • If he ate alone, he had a book by his trencher of dry bread rarely garnished with relishes.

    Hugh, Bishop of Lincoln Charles L. Marson
  • Now the tall man, the one conspicuously dressed, had been trencher.

    From Place to Place Irvin S. Cobb
  • But trencher had quit looking that way and was looking another way.

    From Place to Place Irvin S. Cobb
  • "Crowd chasing a pickpocket, I imagine," said trencher indifferently.

    From Place to Place Irvin S. Cobb
  • I feel like eating all that myself;' and, trencher on knee, they dined with real backwood appetites.

    Cedar Creek Elizabeth Hely Walshe
British Dictionary definitions for trencher


(esp formerly) a wooden board on which food was served or cut
Also called trencher cap another name for mortarboard (sense 1)
Word Origin
C14 trenchour knife, plate for carving on, from Old French trencheoir, from trenchier to cut; see trench


a person or thing that digs trenches
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Word Origin and History for trencher

c.1300, "wooden platter on which to cut meat," from Anglo-French trenchour, from Old North French trencheor "a trencher," literally "a cutting place," from Old French trenchier "to cut" (see trench).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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