This blog is for everyone who uses words.

The ordinary-sized words are for everyone, but the big ones are especially for children.



Monday, 21 October 2013

Spot the frippet: skep.



A skep is a lovely thing.

It's a beehive, especially one made of straw.

This is one from 1800s Switzerland:


 
You get them in other places, too - here are some British ones:
 
File:Skeps in the bee shelter at Hartpury - geograph.org.uk - 686836.jpg
These are at Hartpury in England. Photo by Pauline Eccles.
 
If you come from a place where beehives of any kind are hard to find then fortunately a skep is also the amount of stuff you can get in, well, a skep.
 
In this case a skep is any kind of a large basket of wickerwork or straw.
 
Round here, a skep is most likely to be holding dirty washing, slightly broken toys, and possibly a spare battery for the bathroom scales (though that might be in the garage, the bathroom cabinet, or the tin in the kitchen instead).
 
They used to be popular for holding pot plants, too.
 
Finally, for a miner a skep is a more substantial thing altogether. It's a square metal container for holding coal or ore.
 
For anyone who is reading this on an electronic device - ie everyone - then, you never know, a skep might have been part of the process involved in bringing this account of itself to your attention.
 
Spot the frippet: skep. This word comes from the Old English sceppe, from the Old Norse skeppa, which means bushel, a unit of volume.

2 comments:

  1. I wish they used the skep beehives here rather than the wooden boxes.
    They look more like 'home' for the bees.

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    Replies
    1. And how competent and manly it would be able to stride off and plait ourselves a beehive.

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