trenchers

trencher

[tren-cher]
noun
1.
a person or thing that digs trenches.
2.
ditchdigger ( def 3 ).
3.
a rectangular or circular flat piece of wood on which meat, or other food, is served or carved.
4.
such a piece of wood and the food on it.
5.
Archaic. food; the pleasures of good eating.

Origin:
1275–1325; Middle English trenchour something to cut with or on < Anglo-French; Middle French trencheoir. See trench, -ory2

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World English Dictionary
trencher1 (ˈtrɛntʃə)
 
n
1.  (esp formerly) a wooden board on which food was served or cut
2.  another name for mortarboard Also called: trencher cap
 
[C14 trenchour knife, plate for carving on, from Old French trencheoir, from trenchier to cut; see trench]

trencher2 (ˈtrɛntʃə)
 
n
a person or thing that digs trenches

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 10th Edition
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Etymonline
Word Origin & History

trencher
c.1308, "wooden platter on which to cut meat," from Anglo-Fr. trenchour, from O.N.Fr. trencheor "a trencher," lit. "a cutting place," from O.Fr. trenchier "to cut" (see trench).
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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